The Word Became Flesh

The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.

John 1:14

Up to this point, we know that the Word was with God and that the Word was God; the “Word-God.” We have also seen John refer to this Word-God as “he”. Now, for the first time, John identifies “him” as the Son of God, Jesus Christ. Yes, for it was none other than Jesus who became flesh and made His dwelling among us at the incarnation, it is of Jesus that the Hebrews author asserts, “and through whom also he made the universe” (Hebrews 1:2) which is parallel to John 1:3; there can be no doubt about whom it is that John is referring to here. It is Jesus who is the Son, having come to us from the Father.

Now that we are certain of just who John has been talking about, we can look at the attributes John mentions about Him, He was full of “grace and truth.” Notice the balance between those two; how many of us maintain that kind of balance between grace and truth when we are interacting with others? Some of us have a great deal of grace, so much so in fact, that we can overlook almost anything; we might even make the truth hard to find. Others are so strong on truth that we find ourselves pointing fingers at those around us, seldom displaying love or compassion or understanding.

I used to give my students a little chart containing two axes, the north-south axis was labeled “justice” at the top and “mercy” at the bottom, and the east-west was labeled “truth” on the west and “grace” on the east. Then I would ask them to rate themselves by making a little “X” where they think they fall on the chart as I asked them four or five simple questions. After that, I would ask the questions again and have them rate me…

Almost without exception, the students rated themselves right in the middle of the chart, and almost without exception they rated me in the upper left hand quadrant: they were all full of grace and truth, while I was cold, aloof and correct.

I always got a kick out of that and joked that they should just remember who was the one who was correct in the room. Then, springing the trap, I would congratulate them, for they had each placed themselves on a par with none other than Jesus Christ Himself, a position much loftier than anything the Apostle Paul would ever dare to claim!

The preacher who pounds his pulpit while heaping condemnation on the sinners around the room thinks he’s being just like Jesus, but where is the grace? The preacher who is willing to tolerate virtually any behavior also thinks he’s being just like Jesus, but where’s the truth? Oh yes, dear reader, it is so very hard for us to see ourselves the way that others do, and even harder to see ourselves as God sees us, but since being like Christ is our goal, we need to try.

It might just be that you, me and everyone else should seek His guidance in this through fervent and regular prayer that He, through His Spirit would guide our every action, that all around us would see His love at work in each of us.

Advertisements

About Don Merritt

A long time teacher and writer, Don hopes to share his varied life's experiences in a different way with a Christian perspective.
This entry was posted in Bible and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to The Word Became Flesh

  1. Tom says:

    I love your chart illustration! I will have to remember that one. It gives a great picture of who Jesus is and what He is like, while helping reveal what we are really like in comparison. It is the perfect balance, not all one way or the other.

  2. pipermac5 says:

    John 1:14 may be the most marvelous verse in all of Scripture, because, by Jesus’ Incarnation, God’s Plan of Redemption, which was inaugurated in Genesis 3:15, went from being a “plan” to being a “done-deal” through Jesus’ shed-blood and finished-work on our behalf. Jesus’ Incarnation is THE “hinge-pin” of redemption-history.

    Blessings!

    Steve

  3. Pingback: The Word Became Flesh | The Life Project | franciscansonthemountains

  4. Yes, I love John’s gospel. You can tell by his words he knew Jesus as his personal friend and Lord. He knew him as “the Word made flesh, full of grace and truth.” He understands the highest knowledge flows from the heart more than the head, as friends and lovers know and love each other. Many years ago I asked a mentor if there might be a single word that summarizes God’s truth. I still believe his answer is best. It was “relationship.” Relational knowing and loving Jesus, one another, our neighbor and yes, ourselves, is what it’s all about (John 13: 34, 35; 17: 3; 21,22)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s