Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain. 1 Cor. 15:58


Friday, June 1, 2012

John Chapter 1 (day 347)

Blogging Through The Book of John
Weekdays in June
If you blog about a John verse, please link up here. You can add as many posts as you like as long as they deal with the book of John.

These verses come from the New Living Translation of the Bible. 
Here we go...
John Chapter 1
(John 1:1-6)
In the beginning the Word already existed.
    The Word was with God,
    and the Word was God.
 He existed in the beginning with God.
 God created everything through him,
    and nothing was created except through him.
 The Word gave life to everything that was created
    and his life brought light to everyone.
The light shines in the darkness,
    and the darkness can never extinguish it.

John is great at giving us details... and if we don't get it the first time, he lets us know again. 'The Word', of course, is Jesus. John is telling us that before anything else, Jesus existed. Jesus was with God, and Jesus was God. 

God created everything, and Jesus gave life to everything. That was in the beginning.

Then, I think John does a bit of foreshadowing. Jesus (the light) shines in the darkness and can never be extinguished. 

John starts his book off as any writer would love too-- with a great hook. He makes you want to know what is coming next. I actually love his writing style. 

We know that Jesus is the Word-- and existed from the beginning with his Daddy... and is his Daddy. I like to think of it as a Venn Diagram. 
They are the same, but different... 

(John 1:7-9) God sent a man, John the Baptist to tell about the light so that everyone might believe because of his testimony. John himself was not the light; he was simply a witness to tell about the light.The one who is the true light, who gives light to everyone, was coming into the world.
Before Jesus came, the people had to be prepared... after all, how would they look for him if they didn't know he was coming. John the Baptist was advertising in a way. Kind of like a movie trailer (if you want to think of it in the basic terms). He was telling everyone about the Messiah coming and to be ready. Everyone was on the look-out because of John the Baptist. His purpose in live was to be a servant, a missionary.

(John 1:10-13) He came into the very world he created, but the world didn’t recognize him. He came to his own people, and even they rejected him. But to all who believed him and accepted him, he gave the right to become children of God. They are reborn—not with a physical birth resulting from human passion or plan, but a birth that comes from God.
Even though John told everyone the Messiah was coming, the world didn't recognize him. He came to his own, and they thought he was crazy. He was little Jesus the Carpenter; Joseph's son. The one they'd seen playing as a child. They figured he must have hit his head or something to think he was God's son... it wasn't possible. 
Lots of people rejected him. Lots of people still do. But then, like now, anyone who believes in him and accepts him become children of God. They are reborn. It's hard to explain, really. Even Nicodemus the Israelite scholar couldn't understand it. No one chooses to be born the first time. A man and a woman chose that (and of course God). The second time, it's all up to you. No one can force you to be saved. Oh, they can beg, plead, pray with you and for you, but in the end, no one can make you be born again. It's totally your choice. 

(John 1:14)So the Word became human and made his home among us. He was full of unfailing love and faithfulness. And we have seen his glory, the glory of the Father’s one and only Son.

This is one of the most awesome things I love about Jesus. He was human; fully human like you and me. He had feelings, thoughts, was tempted, he was human. If you think he doesn't understand you, he does. He's been there. Yes, he's God and should be worshiped, but there's another side, a friend side. A very human side...

(John 1: 15-28) John testified about him when he shouted to the crowds, “This is the one I was talking about when I said, ‘Someone is coming after me who is far greater than I am, for he existed long before me.’”
From his abundance we have all received one gracious blessing after another. For the law was given through Moses, but God’s unfailing love and faithfulness came through Jesus Christ.No one has ever seen God. But the unique One, who is himself God,is near to the Father’s heart. He has revealed God to us.
This was John’s testimony when the Jewish leaders sent priests and Temple assistants[h] from Jerusalem to ask John, “Who are you?”  He came right out and said, “I am not the Messiah.”
“Well then, who are you?” they asked. “Are you Elijah?”
“No,” he replied.
“Are you the Prophet we are expecting?”[i]
 “Then who are you? We need an answer for those who sent us. What do you have to say about yourself?”
John replied in the words of the prophet Isaiah:
“I am a voice shouting in the wilderness,
    ‘Clear the way for the Lord’s coming!’”
Then the Pharisees who had been sent asked him, “If you aren’t the Messiah or Elijah or the Prophet, what right do you have to baptize?”
John told them, “I baptize with water, but right here in the crowd is someone you do not recognize. Though his ministry follows mine, I’m not even worthy to be his slave and untie the straps of his sandal.”
This encounter took place in Bethany, an area east of the Jordan River, where John was baptizing.

Before Jesus came into the picture, John the Baptist was a big deal. He had crowds following him; and not just small crowds either. He even had disciples of his own. When you have that kind of influence and power, it's hard for it to not go to your head.

John the Baptist could have easily believed the hype about himself. He could have started thinking, "Yeah, you know what? I am pretty awesome... Look at all of this stuff I'm doing on my own."

But that's the key, isn't it? He didn't do any of it on his own, and he knew that. Sometimes we forget that nothing we do is ours. Yes, we do what God tells us to do (just like John the Baptist did), but we do it for God. We do it so others can know about him. 

John the Baptist is a great example for us!

(John 1: 29-34) The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Look! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! He is the one I was talking about when I said, ‘A man is coming after me who is far greater than I am, for he existed long before me.’ I did not recognize him as the Messiah, but I have been baptizing with water so that he might be revealed to Israel.”
Then John testified, “I saw the Holy Spirit descending like a dove from heaven and resting upon him.  I didn’t know he was the one, but when God sent me to baptize with water, he told me, ‘The one on whom you see the Spirit descend and rest is the one who will baptize with the Holy Spirit.’I saw this happen to Jesus, so I testify that he is the Chosen One of God.”

John the Baptist and Jesus were cousins. They grew up together, played together. John the Baptist had no idea this was the Messiah he'd been preaching about. Like everyone else, he probably thought of him as 'Just Jesus'. He only knew he was the Messiah when the dove rested on him as he was baptizing him (the sign he'd been waiting for). 

Can you imagine John the Baptist's face?! Here was his cousin, the son of God! I bet he looked at him with disbelief and a slack jaw for a few seconds before he either wrapped his arms around Jesus' neck, or fell to his knees. It had to be an awe-inspiring experience!

(John 1:36-37) The following day John was again standing with two of his disciples. As Jesus walked by, John looked at him and declared, “Look! There is the Lamb of God!” When John’s two disciples heard this, they followed Jesus.

Here we start learning about how Jesus found his disciples. The first two were originally followers of John the Baptist. John gave them the heads up, and they began following Jesus... just like that. Do we have that type of faith?

(John 1:38-45)Jesus looked around and saw them following. “What do you want?” he asked them.
They replied, “Rabbi” (which means “Teacher”), “where are you staying?”
 “Come and see,” he said. It was about four o’clock in the afternoon when they went with him to the place where he was staying, and they remained with him the rest of the day.
 Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, was one of these men who heard what John said and then followed Jesus. Andrew went to find his brother, Simon, and told him, “We have found the Messiah” (which means “Christ”).
Then Andrew brought Simon to meet Jesus. Looking intently at Simon, Jesus said, “Your name is Simon, son of John—but you will be called Cephas” (which means “Peter”[n]).
 The next day Jesus decided to go to Galilee. He found Philip and said to him, “Come, follow me.” Philip was from Bethsaida, Andrew and Peter’s hometown.
 Philip went to look for Nathanael and told him, “We have found the very person Moses and the prophets wrote about! His name is Jesus, the son of Joseph from Nazareth.

Don't you love how they just followed... no questions asked. Jesus talks to us the same way now... do we jump up and follow him? Or do we make excuses for why we can't?

Next.... we get a joke. An actual joke. It makes us realize how human these men were...

(John 1:46) Nazareth!” exclaimed Nathanael. “Can anything good come from Nazareth?”

Ha!... I know... Probably not the nicest thing ever, but still--

(John 1:46-51)“Come and see for yourself,” Philip replied.
 As they approached, Jesus said, “Now here is a genuine son of Israel—a man of complete integrity.”
 “How do you know about me?” Nathanael asked.
Jesus replied, “I could see you under the fig tree before Philip found you.”
 Then Nathanael exclaimed, “Rabbi, you are the Son of God—the King of Israel!”
Jesus asked him, “Do you believe this just because I told you I had seen you under the fig tree? You will see greater things than this.”  Then he said, “I tell you the truth, you will all see heaven open and the angels of God going up and down on the Son of Man, the one who is the stairway between heaven and earth.

The disciples had no idea what they would see, experience, or do. This is the beginning of their story. Nathanael believed just because Jesus saw him when no one was around-- that was such a small percent of Jesus' power. They had no idea what Jesus would do in the next three years of his life-- and they had no idea what THEY would do once the Holy Spirit began living in them. 

It is an exciting time in our story. The Messiah has came to town! Everyone is excitedly following Jesus, but that doesn't last long. Go back and re-read the verses to soak in just how happy a time this is, and just how human Jesus became. It will make the later parts of this book really hit home.

God Bless You,


(Chapter 2 will be up Monday. The Blogging through John will only be on weekdays. Weekends will still be 'wordless')

Linked with: Faith Filled Friday @ Beholding Glory and Faith Fiction Friday @ Oh That Mom Again


  1. I love the book of John. I love how he writes it but I think what I like the most and I dont know if its in all versions this way but I love how John when talking about him self says ...the one that Jesus loved. Isnt that a great way to think of yourself...The one whom JESUS loved....we all need to think this way..i know I know I got way ahead of the first the way chapter 1 first few verses were some I used in my sermon. :)

  2. I love it too. :) It's one of my favorite books. Looking forward to getting more into it. :)

  3. I never knew John did not know beforehand that Jesus was the Messiah. I just assumed that since they were cousins, that John's mother would have told him about Mary's visit when they were both pregnant. I am looking forward to learning more!
    Debbie B.

    1. Debbie, I didn't know it either until I wrote this. Even my husband fought me on it until I showed him lol. Maybe he 'knew', but he didn't 'know'. kwim?