This is the last of three messages that I’m sharing about John’s incredibly beautiful Prologue (John 1:1-18), one of the most enriching descriptions of the Incarnate Son of God to be found anywhere in Scripture. Tomorrow we’ll study the culmination of John’s Christological message: “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, . . .”
We’ve spent a fair amount of time over the last two weeks discussing what John meant when he described Jesus as “the Word” (i.e., the logos). He took a philosophical concept used by the Greeks who argued about the existence of an organizing principle in the cosmos. But John says the thing that unifies everything isn’t a thing . . . it’s a Person, “the Word.”
But even more, a word is something that reveals the essence of the thing or person that it’s expressing. I might reveal my true self to you by my words. In Jesus’ case, of course, he is not *a* word but *the* Word . . . he perfectly expresses the essence of God, because he is God. “If you’ve seen me,” he would later say, “you’ve seen the Father.”
And the bombshells keep falling. The-Word-Who-Is-God “became flesh,” John continues, which was scandalous to the Greeks, who maintained a clear and defined separation between spirit and flesh. And to the Jews it was scandalous as well, for different reasons. How could a Person exhibit the glory of an ineffable God? Wasn’t that blasphemous?
Such is the scandal of the Incarnation: a God who enters the world as a helpless, in-the-flesh baby, who became a Man who expressed the glory of God not in power and glamour as expected by the world, but in the suffering of the cross.
This, above all else, is at the core of what we believe as Christians. And if you believe it, it forever changes you. As C.S. Lewis wrote, “Christianity, if false, is of no importance, and if true, of infinite importance; the only thing it cannot be is moderately important.”
If what John wrote here is true, it simply cannot be “moderately important” to any of us.