Summary: The Trinity 14 - The Deity of Christ 3
THE TRINITY 14
The Deity of Christ 3
Today as we continue our study into the Trinity, and specifically into the deity of Lord Jesus Christ, we will be looking at one of the clearest declarations in all of Scripture of the deity of Christ. We have been looking at passages that demonstrate the pre-existence of Christ as the eternal Son of God.
Today we will be looking at the first 18 verses of the gospel John. So please turn with me there. These first 18 verses of John are known as the prologue of John. It is clear when you read and study these verses that John uses them as the glasses with which we must read the rest of gospel. The prologue of John is the seed of the rest of the gospel, which grows into a mighty oak with all of wonderful teaching of our Lord Jesus Christ. The rest of John is an expansion of what is written in John 1:1-18.
As the famed preacher G. Campbell Morgan stated “In these eighteen verses we have an explanation of everything that follows from the nineteenth verse of chapter one, to the twenty-ninth verse of chapter twenty.”
I would challenge each of you to read through this section of Scripture this coming week and think about some of what has been stated here today. What John writes in these 18 verses is some of the most succinct and comprehensive statements ever written regarding the nature of Jesus Christ. I think what we at times forget to realize when reading Scripture is that the authors of Scripture did not have computers or endless amounts of paper to write on. They had to be brief and to the point because they would not have an continual supply of papyri. They were limited in that way. Here in John 1:1-18 John demonstrates His ability to communicate in relatively few words the glory and majesty of Jesus Christ.
I also would like to say that because I want to keep this to one sermon we will be leaving out much more then we will be looking at. My goal this morning is simply show that John is very clear in his declaration of the pre-existence and deity of Jesus Christ.
Let us begin to go through this section verse by verse. Look at John 1:1; “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”
John begin with the words, “In the beginning was the Word” which is the same way the Bible itself begins, Gen. 1:1; “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” Genesis begins with creation, and as we see in vss. 3-4, John does as well. But John goes further, not only to tell us something about the creation of the world, but he goes on to speak of the new creation that the Word brings.
We should understand that here John is not simply telling us that the Word was simply at the beginning of creation, that little word “was” takes us back beyond that. John is very clear in letting us know that the Word goes back beyond time itself, the Word is eternal. John is saying that there never was a time when the “Word” was not.
James White states this regarding the word “was” in John 1:1; “It is a timeless word - that is, it simply points to existence before the present time without reference to a point of origin. One can push back the "beginning" as far as you can imagine, and, according to John, the Word still is.”
So then the first thing we learn about the Word is that He is eternal. The Word is timeless. The Word was not something that was created by God at some point in time, but there was never a time when the Word did not exist. The very first phrase of John declares to us that the Word pre-existed.
Notice what John states next, “and the Word was with God”. Here we learn that that Word has fellowship with God. The Greek word here has the idea of being face to face. Here we are told that the Word and God had this intimate, this face to face, fellowship with one another. Also make note that we have that verb “was” again, and just as with the first clause of John 1:1 it speaks of the eternal nature of what is being discussed and that is the face to face relationship between the Word and God.
In other words what John is saying is that there was never a time when the Word and God did not have this intimate face to face fellowship. Their relationship is one that goes beyond time into eternity.