John the Apostle’s words and writings are some of the most precious to me. Of course it’s kind of like asking a mother who her favorite child is…. I love, love, love the Prologue of the Gospel of John (Jn 1:1-18).
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning” (Jn 1:1-2).
“The Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us. We have seen His glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth” (Jn 1:14).
“In Him was life, and that life was the light of mankind” (Jn 1:4).
And so here’s John’s wonderful thesis: The Word (Christ) was. He was! He was with God. He was with God at the beginning of time. During the creative process as the world is formless and empty and the Spirit of God hovers above the waters – John affirms, Christ is there! And then, the Word became. He became! He became one of us. He lived among us. The living Word stepped into humanity and changed us forever.
You see the Word was, and the Word became. And because the Word became, we have life! Spiritual life. Eternal life. Life that is truly life.
And as I read John’s literature and come to understand the Word who was and who became and who gives life, I begin to see why John focused so much upon Christ’s love. John’s the one who records Jesus’ beautiful words: “For God so loved the world that He gave His One and Only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life” (Jn 3:16). John is the one who pens: “How great is the love the Father has lavished on us that we should be called children of God” (1 Jn 3:1). John is the one who affirms to us: “…God is love. This is how God showed His love among us: He sent His One and Only Son into the world that we might live through Him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins” (1 Jn 4:8b-10).
John can never even bring his pen to call himself by name. What does he always refer to himself as? The disciple that Jesus loved. Why do you think that is? My guess is he could never get past how much God the Father and God the Son loved Him. And so he always saw himself through the love of God, revealed in the Word who was, and the Word who became, and the Word who gives us life….
Glory to God!