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Bible Commentaries

Gary H. Everett's Study Notes on the Holy Scriptures
John 1

 

 

Other Authors
Verses 1-5

The Father Testifies of the Light of the World- We see that the testimony of the Heavenly Father reveals the divine pre-incarnation of the Lord Jesus Christ and how He held the office as the Word of God in the beginning ( John 1:1-2). Through the creation of the heavens, earth, and mankind, God the Father testified of His Son's per-incarnate deity from the time of Creation until the time of John the Baptist ( John 1:3-4). Yet, man rejected this witness ( John 1:5). The objective of John 1:1-5 is to declare Jesus as the Light of the World by which mankind comes to the knowledge of God and partakes of redemption. Thus, the next passage of Scripture ( John 1:6-13) picks up this motif and develops it in the preaching of John the Baptist.

The Divine Attributes of the Word of God- John 1:1-5 reveals to us the divine attributes of the Word of God. The Word is (1) eternal, (2) God Himself, (3) the medium of creation, and (4) the source of Life. Benny Hinn says that the "Word" within the context of this passage of Scripture means, "the Revelation of God." 98] In other words, since the beginning of time, God has revealed Himself to mankind through His creation by the means of "the light," or the revelation of Himself, that shines in the darkness of every man's soul. Hebrew John 3:1 tells us that there are two aspects to God's being; His essence and His glory. John 1:1-5 tells us that the Word is an attribute of His essence, and Psalm 19:1 says creation reveals His glory. God's glory is revealed to mankind through His creation, while His essence is revealed through the Word of God. God's creation reveals to mankind a general revelation of Himself ( Psalm 19:1-6), while the Word reveals specific details of God's divine nature or essence ( Psalm 19:7-10). In addition, the Word of God is manifested throughout Old Testament redemptive history through the office of the Prophet and recorded in the thirty-nine canonical books (for example, see 1 Kings 18:1).

98] Benny Hinn, "Fire Conference," Miracle Center Cathedral, Kampala, Uganda, 5-6 June 2009.

Hebrews 1:3, "Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high;"

Psalm 19:1, To the chief Musician, A Psalm of David. The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork."

1 Kings 18:1, "And it came to pass after many days, that the word of the LORD came to Elijah in the third year, saying, Go, shew thyself unto Ahab; and I will send rain upon the earth."

John 1:1-5 also reveals that a second aspect of God's essence is "life." Because creation is made up of living plants and animals, their life testifies to the existence of a living, Almighty God, who is holds all of life in His hands, under His divine control.

The Personification of the Word - The phrase "the Word" is somewhat personified in the opening verses of John's Gospel. We note a similar personification of "wisdom" in the book of Proverbs 8:22-31 as it more closely personifies the Holy Spirit.

Proverbs 8:22-23, "The LORD possessed me in the beginning of his way, before his works of old. I was set up from everlasting, from the beginning, or ever the earth was."

The Divine Genealogy of Jesus Christ- The Gospel of John does not begin with the virgin birth of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. This is because the purpose of this particular Gospel is to declare that Jesus is the incarnate Son of God. Therefore, the author begins with Jesus" pre-existent state as firm evidence of His divinity. The author is saying that in order to go back to the beginning of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, one must go back to the beginning of Jesus" ministry, which started before time began. His office and ministry in the beginning was as the Word of God.

When we compare this opening passage in John's Gospel to the opening passage in Genesis , we see some similarity. In the story of creation ( Genesis 1:1 to Genesis 2:3), we have the testimony of the Father's role as the One who has planned all things. In the opening passage of John's Gospel ( John 1:1-5) we have the testimony of the Son's role in creation as the Word of God. In the passage in Proverbs 8:22-31, we have the testimony of the role of the Holy Spirit in creation as the Wisdom and Power of God. Thus, Moses, the author of Genesis , received the greatest revelation of the Father regarding His role in creation, while John the apostle, the author of the Gospel of John , received the greatest revelation of Jesus regarding His role in creation, and Song of Solomon , the author of Proverbs , received the greatest revelation of the Holy Spirit regarding His role in creation. In summary, the Scriptures tell us the office and ministry of God the Father, Jesus Christ the Son and God the Holy Spirit in creation. Note that the book of Genesis is the foundational book of the Old Testament while the book of John is the foundational book of the New Testament.

The Pre-existence of Christ Jesus Mentioned Throughout Scriptures- This passage declares the pre-existence of Christ Jesus. If we examine Scriptures, we can find other passages that testify of the eternal existence of Jesus. Eusebius explains that in Genesis 1:26 and Psalm 148:5, we see both the work of the Father and the Word of God by His side. 99] As the Father commanded, the Word of God created.

99] Eusbeius writes, "‘For,' says Hebrews , ‘God said, Let us make man in our image and in our likeness.' And another of the prophets confirms this, speaking of God in his hymns as follows: ‘He spake and they were made; he commanded and they were created.' He here introduces the Father and Maker as Ruler of all, commanding with a kingly nod, and second to him the divine Word, none other than the one who is proclaimed by us, as carrying out the Father's commands." (Ecclesiastical History 125-6)

Genesis 1:26, "And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth."

Psalm 148:5, "Let them praise the name of the LORD: for he commanded, and they were created."

The fact that the Word of God pre-existed before creation is clearly stated by Solomon in Proverbs 8:22-31. In this passage, wisdom declares it's pre-existence.

Proverbs 8:22, "The LORD possessed me in the beginning of his way, before his works of old."

Eusebius goes on to show several passages where Jesus Christ revealed Himself in the form of a man to His saints. 100]

100] Eusebius discusses the revelations of the pre-incarnate Word of God to Abraham at Mambre, Jacob at Bethel and Peniel, and Joshua at Jericho. (see Ecclesiastical History 127-13)

Did not Adam walk with God in the cool of the day? Does it not take a human body to walk? Thus did Adam recognize the bodily form of our pre-incarnate Lord.

Genesis 3:8, "And they heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God amongst the trees of the garden."

Enoch also knew his Lord as he walked in intimate fellowship with Him.

Genesis 5:24, "And Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for God took him."

One Scriptural evidence to know that Adam and Enoch walked with the pre-incarnate Christ is found in 1 Corinthians 11:3, "But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God." This verse reveals that the woman was created to give fellowship to man. Mankind was created to have fellowship with Christ. Christ existed to give fellowship with the Father. Thus, Adam and Enoch"s fellowship would be in the presence of Christ.

Abraham honored the office of Melchizedek by giving Him a tithe of all things.

Genesis 14:18-20, "And Melchizedek king of Salem brought forth bread and wine: and he was the priest of the most high God. And he blessed him, and said, Blessed be Abram of the most high God, possessor of heaven and earth: And blessed be the most high God, which hath delivered thine enemies into thy hand. And he gave him tithes of all."

The author of the book of Hebrews reveals to us the deity of this man Melchisedec. Song of Solomon , we know why Abraham honored such a priest, because he recognized Him as deity.

Hebrews 7:1-3, "For this Melchisedec, king of Salem, priest of the most high God, who met Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings, and blessed him; To whom also Abraham gave a tenth part of all; first being by interpretation King of righteousness, and after that also King of Salem, which Isaiah , King of peace; Without father, without mother, without descent, having neither beginning of days, nor end of life; but made like unto the Son of God; abideth a priest continually."

He revealed Himself to Abraham in the plains of Mamre on two separate occasions ( Genesis 12:6-7; Genesis 18:1).

Genesis 12:6-7, "And Abram passed through the land unto the place of Sichem, unto the plain of Moreh. And the Canaanite was then in the land. And the LORD appeared unto Abram, and said, Unto thy seed will I give this land: and there builded he an altar unto the LORD, who appeared unto him."

Genesis 18:1, "And the LORD appeared unto him in the plains of Mamre: and he sat in the tent door in the heat of the day;"

Abraham recognized His Majesty by calling Him "The Judge of all the Earth."

Genesis 18:25, "That be far from thee to do after this manner, to slay the righteous with the wicked: and that the righteous should be as the wicked, that be far from thee: Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?"

Job knew that the incarnated Christ would stand upon the earth in the latter days.

Job 19:25-27, "For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth: And though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God: Whom I shall see for myself, and mine eyes shall behold, and not another; though my reins be consumed within me."

In Genesis 32:24-30, Jacob wrestled with a man whom he honored by asking His blessings. Jacob revealed the divine identity of this man by proclaiming the name of the place as Peniel, because he had seen the face of God and lived.

Genesis 32:30, "And Jacob called the name of the place Peniel: for I have seen God face to face, and my life is preserved."

Joshua recognized His deity as the Captain of the Lord"s Host by removing his shoes in His divine presence.

Joshua 5:14-15, "And he said, Nay; but as captain of the host of the LORD am I now come. And Joshua fell on his face to the earth, and did worship, and said unto him, What saith my lord unto his servant? And the captain of the LORD"S host said unto Joshua , Loose thy shoe from off thy foot; for the place whereon thou standest is holy. And Joshua did so."

John the apostle tells us that Isaiah saw His glory and spake of Him.

John 12:41, "These things said Esaias, when he saw his glory, and spake of him."

There are also New Testament passages that refer to the existence of Christ before His virgin birth. Philippians 2:5-11 tells us how Jesus left His throne of glory and humbled Himself in the form of a servant. Hebrews 2:9-18 tells us how Jesus partook of flesh and blood in order to pay for the sins of mankind.

Paul tells us that the birth of Jesus occurred in the fullness of God"s time, meaning that God sent Jesus to earth at this time in the form of a man:

Galatians 4:4, "But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Song of Solomon , made of a woman, made under the law,"

John 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

John 1:1Comments - The Use of the Word "Logos" - The Greek word λό γος was widely used throughout Classical Greek literature and antiquity, and therefore, it derived a broad use of meanings. John's used of λό γος in the prologue to his Gospel would have been largely based upon one of three possible uses during the first century. Andreas Köstenberger summarizes three "primary backgrounds" upon which the meaning of λό γος would have been based in the Gospel. This word was used in Hellenistic philosophy, as seen in the literature of Stoicism and Philo. Also, this word may be associated with the personification of wisdom's role in creation, as seen in ancient wisdom literature, such as Proverbs 8, Sirach 1:1-10, and the Wisdom of Solomon. Finally, this word is used in the Old Testament story of Creation when God spoke the world into existence through His Word. Köstenberger believes John the apostle used λό γος in the prologue based upon the Hebrew theology of Creation as its primary background because of the opening phrase "in the beginning," ( Genesis 1:1, John 1:2) and the repetition of the words God, light, darkness, and life, all of which are found throughout the Story of Creation in Genesis. 101]

101] Andreas J. Ksterberger, John , in Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Academic, 2004), 26-27.

The Divine Nature of Jesus- William Burkitt comments on three aspects of Jesus" character found in John 1:1 based on His designation as the Word. 102]

102] Willliam Burkitt, Expository Notes, with Practical Observations on the New Testament of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, vol 1 (Philadelphia: Sorin and Ball, 1844), 416.

a) His Eternal Existence- He has had an eternal existence. He did not have a time when He was created. He existed outside the realm of time and space.

b) His Personal Co-existence- He has had a personal co-existence with God. Jesus" co-existence means that He had a distinct existence apart from God. If Jesus has existed with God, it also means that His character is inseparable from the character and nature of God.

c) His Divine Essence- He has divine characteristics. If Jesus" existence was eternal and if His character is inseparable from God, then Jesus is God.

Note other reference verses to this great revelation of the divine nature of Jesus Christ.

John 1:15, "John bare witness of him, and cried, saying, This was he of whom I spake, He that cometh after me is preferred before me: for he was before me."

John 8:58, "Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am."

John 17:5, "And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was."

Philippians 2:6, "Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:"

1 John 1:1, "That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life;"

1 John 5:7, "For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one."

Revelation 19:13, "And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God."

Revelation 22:13, "I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last."

The Name of Jesus- Jesus did not receive His Blessed, Holy name until His birth. Therefore, in the beginning He is called "The Word." His title as the Word summarizes His initial ministry before taking upon Him the form of a man and becoming our Apostle. In the beginning, He was the Word of God in creation.

John 1:2 The same was in the beginning with God.

John 1:2Comments- John 1:2 serves as a summary of John 1:1. The antecedent of οὗτος (the same) is "the Word." The Word of God was in the beginning with God because it is a part of His divine essence (the Word was God).

John 1:3 All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.

John 1:3Comments - The first testimony that the Word is God can be seen in the story of creation. All things that were created in the beginning were created by the Word of God. Since there was nothing that was created apart from God's Word, we must conclude that the Word of God is superior to all of creation.

John 1:3 refers to the creation of the heavens and the earth, which statement reflects the general revelation that God as the Creator of all things. Creation testifies to all mankind of the One who created it. Paul writes, "Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:" ( Romans 19-20) The psalmist writes, "The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork." ( Psalm 19:1) God has revealed a general knowledge of Himself through His creation.

John 1:4 In him was life; and the life was the light of men.

John 1:4Comments - While John 1:3 offers mankind the first witness from the Story of Creation that testifies to the fact that the Word is God, John 1:4 offers the second witness from the existence of life itself, particularly from the creation of mankind. Our life, our very existence is evidence that there is a God, since we have been created in His image. It was through the Word of God, which is the pre-incarnate Jesus Christ, that life came into existence. This life is a part of God's creation, seen in the animal and plant kingdoms, and it serves as a witness, or light, of God's eternal power and godhead, as stated in Romans 1:19-20.

Romans 1:19-20, "Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:"

One unique attribute to the planet earth is the fact that it contains life. No other planet in the universe is known to be inhabited by any form of life. Thus, the creation of life serves as a testimony of the Creator Himself, and the Creator is God through the pre-incarnate Word. This life serves as the "light" that directs mankind to seek God as his Creator, and particularly as his Redeemer in need of deliverance from the bondages of sin, which mankind is made aware of through his own conscience, which either condemns his actions as evil or excuses them as good ( Romans 2:14-15).

Romans 2:14-15, "For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves: Which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing or else excusing one another;)"

John 1:5 And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.

John 1:5 — "And the light shineth in darkness" - Comments - The light of the revelation of the knowledge of God has shone in the hearts of men since the time of the fall of man in the Garden. God has always provided a witness of Himself to each generation of men.

John 1:5 is able to include the revelation of Jesus Christ to mankind. Since the theme of John's Gospel is the revelation of Jesus Christ as the Son of God, John 1:5 makes the opening statement regarding this revelation Jesus Christ, describing Him as a "light shining in darkness." This statement encompasses His public ministry of coming upon the earth to reveal His divinity to mankind. The next phrase of this verse will state the general response from the people of Israel as they failed to comprehend Him as their Messiah.

John 1:5 — "and the darkness comprehended it not" - Word Study on "comprehended" - The Greek word καταλαμβάνω (G 2638) literally means, "to lay hold of." (Vine) It can have two shades of meaning in a figurative sense, thus affecting this translation.

1. To Overcome or Quench- It can mean, "to take eagerly, to seize, to possess," (Strong), "to seize, win, attain, make one's own." (BDAG) Thus, John 1:5 b means, "the darkness does not gain control of light." It can mean, "to grasp (especially in a hostile manner)." (TDNT) Thus, John 1:5 b means, "darkness will never be able to eliminate the light."

2. To Understand- It can mean, "to grasp, find, understand." (BDAG) Thus, John 1:5 b means, "the darkness is unreceptive and does not understand the light."

BDAG translates John 1:5 b as, "the darkness did not grasp it…in which case grasp easily passes over to the sense comprehend."

Comments- The meaning of the phrase "and the darkness comprehended it not" is made clear by looking at the context of the passage, which favors the concept of "understanding." The theme of the Gospel of John is the revelation of Jesus Christ as the Son of God and man's response to either believer or reject Him. The light represents Jesus Christ in the context of this opening passage of the Gospel of John , and the darkness represents the people of this world who do not walk in the light of the Gospel. John uses this analogy of light and darkness often in his writings. Note:

John 8:12, "Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life."

John 12:35, "Then Jesus said unto them, Yet a little while is the light with you. Walk while ye have the light, lest darkness come upon you: for he that walketh in darkness knoweth not whither he goeth."

John 12:46, "I am come a light into the world, that whosoever believeth on me should not abide in darkness."

1 John 1:5, "This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all."

1 John 2:8, "Again, a new commandment I write unto you, which thing is true in him and in you: because the darkness is past, and the true light now shineth."

1 John 2:9, "He that saith he is in the light, and hateth his brother, is in darkness even until now."

1 John 2:11, "But he that hateth his brother is in darkness, and walketh in darkness, and knoweth not whither he goeth, because that darkness hath blinded his eyes."

According to the uses of this analogy in the writings of John the apostle, darkness represents the blindness of the world. The context of this passage says that Jesus came into the world of people who walked in darkness and blindness ( John 3:31-32). They did not receive him because of the hardness of their hearts ( John 1:7; John 1:10-11).

John 3:31-32, "He that cometh from above is above all: he that is of the earth is earthly, and speaketh of the earth: he that cometh from heaven is above all. And what he hath seen and heard, that he testifieth; and no man receiveth his testimony."

John 1:7, "The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe."

John 1:10-11, "He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not. He came unto his own, and his own received him not."

John uses this same Greek construction with the verb καταλαμβάνω with the noun σκοτί α again in John 12:35, which is translated, "for he that walketh in darkness knoweth not whither he goeth." (KJV) The concept of comprehension is so clearly favored over that of overcoming in John 12:35 that modern English versions overwhelmingly translate καταλαμβάνω in this verse as "know." Therefore, the KJV translation is very accurate in John 1:5 as well. In the context of this opening passage of John's Gospel, verse five declares that Jesus came into the world that He created, but most people rejected Him because they were walking in spiritual blindness.

John 1:5Comments - This light, or Revelation , of the godhead, is still shining today and that the darkness and sin, which dwells in mankind, cannot put away this testimony of God's redemption for them. John 1:5 tells us in a figurative way that mankind rejected God's witness of the Saviour since the time of His creation until now, although they had this witness speaking to them. The language of "the light shining in darkness" is figurative of the preaching of righteousness from the time of Enoch, Noah, and Abraham until John the Baptist was manifested. John 1:5 says, "and the darkness comprehended it not," meaning that men did not understand this message of God's righteousness. Because mankind overall rejected this testimony of a coming Messiah, God sent John the Baptist as a witness. Unfortunately, mankind rejected his testimony also ( John 1:10-11). John the apostle will develop the theme of the confrontation between light and darkness during the course of His Gospel. This conflict will escalate between Jesus Christ and the Jews until His arrest and crucifixion.

Regarding this light, or revelation of God, Jesus will tell Nicodemus that unless a man is born from above, he cannot see this light and understand the kingdom of God ( John 3:1-21).

We find a reference to the analogy of light verses darkness outside the Gospel of John where Paul the apostle equated light and darkness to the kingdom of Satan clashing with the kingdom of God, saying "To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me." ( Acts 26:18) This analogy is accurate to the Gospel of John as well.


Verses 1-18

The Testimony of God the Father that Jesus Christ is the Son of God - The theme of each book in the Holy Bible is revealed in the first few verses of each book. The theme of the Gospel of John is the testimony of the Father declaring Jesus Christ to be the eternal Son of God. This is clearly stated in the opening verses of John's Gospel ( John 1:1-18). Even in the closing passages of this Gospel the author makes a direct reference to the deity of Jesus Christ as the Son of God ( John 20:30-31) and an indirect reference by stating that if all of His works were recorded the world could not contain the books that would be written ( John 21:55).

John 20:30-31, "And many other signs truly did Jesus in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book: But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name."

John 21:25, "And there are also many other things which Jesus did, the which, if they should be written every one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written. Amen."

With the structure of John's Gospel being made up of the five-fold testimony of Jesus' deity, John 1:1-18 places emphasis upon the first of these five witnesses, that of God the Father. In this opening passage of Scripture God the Father gives His testimony to mankind that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. The theme of this passage that opens John's Gospel is that the Word of God was with the Father before He became flesh and dwelt among us. This is the testimony of God the Father. Thus, the first office and ministry of Jesus Christ before He became the Apostle of our faith and Great High Priest and soon coming King was the office of the Word of God. It is important to note that Jesus Christ was not the Son of God until He became a man. He is called the pre-incarnate Word of God until His virgin birth. When He partook of flesh and blood as the Son of God, Jesus Christ was rejected by men and crucified at Calvary. Later in this Gospel, we realize that the reason the Jews rejecting Him was because they were looking for a conquering king, one who would deliver them from Roman oppression. However, Jesus came first as the Lamb of God, slain from the foundation of the world ( Revelation 13:8). Thus, in the passage of Scripture that immediately follows, John the Baptist will introduce Jesus Christ as the Lamb of God to the Jews ( John 1:19-28). The Jews did not recognize Him as this Suffering Servant and, therefore, crucified Him for blasphemy because He called Himself the Son of God.

Revelation 13:8, "And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world."

Jesus Christ is described in John 1:1-18 as the Word of God, which office He still carries as testified in the book of Revelations ( Revelation 19:13).

Revelation 19:13, "And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God."

In summarizing John 1:1-18, John 1:1-5 contains a parallel passage to the Creation Story in Genesis by using the phrase "in the beginning," revealing the role of Jesus Christ prior to creation ( John 1:1-2), during creation ( John 1:3), and after creation ( John 1:5). After testifying to the pre-incarnate Jesus as the Word of God in John 1:1-5, the author jumps forward four thousand years from the time of creation to the testimony of John the Baptist ( John 1:6-13) and the incarnation of the Word ( John 1:14-18). John 1:14-18 takes us into the second phase of Jesus" ministry as the Son of Prayer of Manasseh , born thru the virgin Mary, and as the Son of God, conceived by the Holy Spirit. Hebrew John 3:1 called Jesus an Apostle in this second phase, which was His earthly ministry.

Hebrews 3:1, "Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus;"

Outline: Here is a proposed outline:

1. The Father Testifies of the Light of the World — John 1:1-5

2. The Father Sends John Baptist to Testify of the Light — John 1:6-13

3. Summary of the Five-fold Witness of the Father — John 1:14-18

The Genealogy of Jesus Christ- We can see John 1:1-18 in the form of a genealogy of the Lord Jesus Christ. We know that Matthew"s genealogy reveals Jesus as the Son of David ( Matthew 1:1-17), while Luke"s genealogy reveals Jesus as the Son of Man ( Luke 3:23-38). When compared to these two genealogies, we can see that John"s genealogy reveals Jesus Christ as the Son of God, who has no father or mother ( John 1:1-14). Note:

Hebrews 7:3, "Without father, without mother, without descent, having neither beginning of days, nor end of life; but made like unto the Son of God; abideth a continually."

Thus, as Matthew and Luke trace the physical genealogy of Christ Jesus, John traces His spiritual genealogy.

Hebrew Poetry in John's Gospel- This first chapter of John is written almost entirely in poetic Hebrew parallelisms. This means that John states a thought and repeats this thought using different words and different forms of parallelisms. For example:

John 1:3, "All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made." (synonymous distitch)

John 1:5, "And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not." (antithetical distitch)

John 1:8-12, "He was not that Light, (repeat) but was sent to bear witness of that Light. That was the true Light, (repeat) which lighteth every man that cometh into the world. He was in the world, (repeat) and the world was made by him, (second repeat) and the world knew him not. He came unto his own, (repeat) and his own received him not. But as many as received him, (repeat) to them gave he power to become the sons of God, (second repeat) even to them that believe on his name:" (three distitches, two tristitches)

John 1:20, "And he confessed, (repeat) and denied not; (second repeat) but confessed, I am not the Christ." (progressive tristitch)

This parallelism is found in many other instances throughout the Gospel of John.


Verses 6-13

God The Father Sends John the Baptist to Testify of the Light of the World - Because mankind rejected the Father's testimony of the Word since the time of creation ( John 1:5), the Father now sends John the Baptist to testify of the coming of the per-incarnate Son of God and to reveal Him through water baptism ( John 1:6-13). These verses focus on John's message of Jesus Christ as the pre-incarnate Light who created all things and to whom creation bears witness of the Light and knowledge of God ( John 1:6-9). Although many have rejected the testimony of God the Father ( John 1:10-11), those who accept it will be born of God ( John 1:12-13).

The Theme of the Gospel of John - Since the prologue of John embodies its theme, we can see within the passage of John 1:6-13 how it foreshadows the events in the Gospel of John. Jesus Christ would bring the light of the Gospel to mankind. Many of them would reject Him and His message and would crucify Him. For those who do receive him, they received the power to live as children of God. We can see within John 1:10-13 a summary of much of the Gospel of John. There are many passages in this Gospel about how Jesus was rejected by the Jews. In contract, there are an equal number of passages where both Jews and Gentiles received Jesus. This becomes one of the major themes that are woven within the fabric of this Gospel. John's Gospel emphasizes those who believed upon Him as the Son of God as well as those who rejected Him.

When comparing how the other three Gospels introduce John the Baptist, it becomes very clear that John 1:6-13 places emphasis upon the Father's testimony of the deity of His Son. While the other Gospels emphasize the fact that John is the herald who proclaims the coming Messiah as prophesied in Isaiah ( Matthew 3:1-12), or that John is the first preacher of the Gospel ( Mark 1:1-8), or that John can be verified as a reliable witness of Jesus' ministry ( Luke 3:1-18), or that John is one of five witnesses of the deity of Jesus Christ ( John 1:19-28), we clearly see a distinct emphasis in John 1:6-13 that John was sent by the Father as one of His witnesses as to the pre-incarnate nature of Jesus Christ. We are told that John was sent from God ( John 1:6) to testify of the pre-incarnate Light of the world ( John 1:7). Thus, this passage has its own particular focus and emphasis in contrast to the other passages on John the Baptist found within the Gospels.

John 1:6 There was a man sent from God, whose name was John.

John 1:6Comments - In the midst of the spiritual darkness of human depravity, God sent John the Baptist as a witness of the incarnation of the Word; that Isaiah , to testify of the light, or Revelation , that God has given to mankind through the coming of the Lamb of God.

John 1:7 The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe.

John 1:7Comments - The theme of the Gospel of John is the testimony that Jesus Christ is the son of God. The revelation of Jesus Christ as the Son of God begins with John the Baptist's testimony. The purpose of John the Baptist was to be a witness of that light, Jesus Christ, so that all might believe in Jesus (through John's testimony). John"s purpose was to reveal the Messiah as the Son of God ( John 1:31). While God has given mankind general revelation of the knowledge of Himself through Creation, and He has given progressive revelation of Himself through the Old Testament prophets, John the Baptist is sent from God to give the most specific revelation to date of the Messiah, the Redeemer, who will deliver mankind from his sins.

John 1:31, "And I knew him not: but that he should be made manifest to Israel, therefore am I come baptizing with water."

Illustration- When a king visits a nation, there must be preparation. There must be someone to announce this arrival. If this protocol is followed for earthly kings, how much more the King of Kings. Therefore John the Baptist served as a forerunner of Jesus Christ.

John 1:8 He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light.

John 1:8Comments - Because of human depravity and darkness, he is easily confused about the revelation of the Word of God becoming flesh. God did not want the Jews to confuse John the Baptist with their Messiah. This is why the Jews asked John about his identity ( John 1:19-28). Thus, God revealed to John the Baptist his own identity and ministry in relation to that of the coming Messiah.

John 1:9 That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world.

John 1:9Comments- Jesus Christ as the Light of the World and the Light of God in the Creation Story- There are several verses in the Scriptures that give us an indication that every man born in this world has been given a measure of light, or knowledge, of God. Therefore, every man has an opportunity to respond to this light. He either receives it or he rejects it.

Now the light that God created on the first day has never ceased to exist so that still shines today. We can understand that the source of this divine light was by the presence of the Holy Spirit hovering over the earth in John 1:2. However, today we see in the natural realm so that we only recognize natural sunlight, which sustains the life that is already created by God. This is why some ancient peoples worshiped the sun, because they recognized it as sustaining the life around them, yet they could not see the One who created the sun. This is why Paul prayed "for God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, to shine in our hearts."

Now the light that God made on the first day is the same light that creates and gives life to us our spiritual today. It is the same source of power that keeps this present creation intact as God's Word emanates over His creation ( 2 Peter 3:5-7). For example, when we see the supernatural take place in the Scriptures or in modern times, we can recognize the presence of God's creative power which takes place through this divine light which shines on us still today. This is why Jesus Christ could say that He is the Light of the World, or the True Light which lights every man. He was referring to the spiritual realm that we live in. He is the Creator and source of divine light which still shines today in order to illuminate our hearts, or the spiritual realm that we live in. From our natural senses, we call this the supernatural, or the spiritual realm.

Song of Solomon , the creative power and light of God has never ceased to shine upon His creation since the first day. The divine light of God was the method that God used to create life on the third day, by the light that was emitted from the presence and mouth of God. The presence of the Holy Spirit hovering over the earth was the intermediary of this light. We know that heat was a physical manifestation of the presence of light. For example, when people are healed during crusades today, do they not feel a warmth or heat come over their bodies when they are touched by the presence of the Holy Spirit? It is this same heat that emanated from this divine light and divided the vapors and liquid elements on the second day of creation and this same heat that divided the solids from the liquid elements on the third day. It is this same heat that will one day intensify until the elements are burned up with a fervent heat.

2 Peter 3:10, "But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up."

The Scriptures bear witness to the fact that this divine light is still shining upon the earth since the first day of creation. It is the same divine light that shone upon the face of Moses after spending forty days in this divine realm.

Exodus 34:29, "And it came to pass, when Moses came down from mount Sinai with the two tables of testimony in Moses" hand, when he came down from the mount, that Moses wist not that the skin of his face shone while he talked with him."

It is the same light that shone down upon the shepherds in their fields to announce the birth of our Saviour.

Luke 2:9, "And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid."

It is the same light that shone down upon Jesus Christ on the Mount of Transfiguration.

Matthew 17:2, "And was transfigured before them: and his face did shine as the sun, and his raiment was white as the light."

It is the same light that shone upon Paul on the road to Damascus.

Acts 9:3, "And as he journeyed, he came near Damascus: and suddenly there shined round about him a light from heaven:"

Acts 22:6, "And it came to pass, that, as I made my journey, and was come nigh unto Damascus about noon, suddenly there shone from heaven a great light round about me."

Paul tells us that it is this same light that God commanded to shine out of darkness on the first day of creation that has now shone in our hearts.

2 Corinthians 4:6, "For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ."

Because the Holy Spirit dwells within us, Jesus tells us that we become the light of the world.

Matthew 4:16, "The people which sat in darkness saw great light; and to them which sat in the region and shadow of death light is sprung up."

Matthew 5:14, "Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid."

Thus, the Scriptures use the word "light" figuratively in reference to our spiritual walk in this life.

Isaiah 60:1, "Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the LORD is risen upon thee."

Matthew 5:16, "Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven."

Luke 1:79, "To give light to them that sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace."

Luke 2:32, "A light to lighten the Gentiles, and the glory of thy people Israel."

Ephesians 5:14, "Wherefore he saith, Awake thou that sleepest, and arise from the dead, and Christ shall give thee light."

Jesus Christ told the Pharisees that they could discern the natural sunlight and heavenly signs so as to determine the weather, but that they could not discern the divine light ( Matthew 16:1-4). The sun bears witness to the divine light of God the Creator since sunlight works in a similar way to God's divine creative light. Because of sin, mankind has been blinded from the recognition of this divine light.

2 Corinthians 4:4, "In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them."

John 1:10 He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not.

John 1:11 He came unto his own, and his own received him not.

John 1:10-11Comments - The Rejection of Jesus Christ - John 1:10-11 tells us that Jesus Christ would be rejected by most of the world. The motif of Jesus being rejected by the Jews is woven throughout the Gospel of John. Jesus is continually challenged by the scribes and Pharisees. He testified that He has no honor in His own country ( John 4:44). Prior to His Passion, the Jewish leaders sought to kill Jesus numerous times ( John 5:18; John 7:1; John 7:44; John 8:37; John 10:39; John 11:47-54), including several attempts to stone Him ( John 8:59; John 10:31). Although the Synoptic Gospels mention the persecution of Jesus by the Jews, John's Gospel makes the most references to this motif.

John 1:12 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:

John 1:12Comments - John's Gospel will provide overwhelming evidence that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, concluding with a statement similar to John 1:12, saying, "But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name." ( John 20:31) Andreas J. Kösterberger says the phrase to "receive him" means, "to entrust oneself to Jesus, to acknowledge his claims, and to confess him." 103]

103] Andreas J. Ksterberger, John , in Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Academic, 2004), 38.

John 1:13 Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of Prayer of Manasseh , but of God.

John 1:13"Which were born, not of blood" - Comments- A Christian is not born into the Kingdom of God by a natural birth. The Pharisees believed that it was enough to be born a biological child of Abraham ( John 8:39).

John 8:39, "They answered and said unto him, Abraham is our father. Jesus saith unto them, If ye were Abraham"s children, ye would do the works of Abraham."

John 1:13 — "nor of the will of the flesh" - Comments- A Christian is not born into the Kingdom of God by man's ability to live a good and moral life. The religious Jewish sects, such as the Pharisees and Sadducees, believed that their zeal for Judaism was what pleased God and made them in right standing with God ( Luke 18:11-12).

Luke 18:11-12, "The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican. I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess."

John 1:13 — "nor of the will of man" - Comments- A Christian is not born into the Kingdom of God by man's appointment. The religious Jewish sects believed in appointing titles to one another in honor of outstanding achievements.

John 1:13Comments- John 1:13 shows that there are three natural ways to gain an identity in this life:

1. By the blood or birthright.

2. By the will of the flesh or good moral lifestyles.

3. By the will of man or by Prayer of Manasseh -given titles and recognitions.

In many poor developing nations, people do not have possessions to find their identity. They have no material possessions or education that they can claim as an achievement. They long to be identified with something or someone great. As a result, they give great titles to their kings. They call their leaders, "Honorable, His Grace, His Excellence, His Holiness, etc." Titles become very important in these countries. They want to be identified with what they believe in. They want to be identified with their tribe, clan, their king, etc.

In America and other developed nations, people find their identity in wealth, education and other achievements. John 1:13 shows that the identification with God who created us come by receiving and believing in Jesus Christ, His Son. John 1:12 gives us the conditions to being called "children of God." We must simply receive Him in order to be called His child. This is the greatest identity of all.

John 1:12-13Comments- The Acceptance of Jesus Christ - John 1:12-13 tells us of the blessings for those who accept Jesus Christ as the Son of God. Although many will reject Jesus Christ ( John 1:10-11), there are many who will believe upon Him when they hear this glorious Gospel.


Verses 14-18

The 5-Fold Witness Sent by God - After we learn that Jesus Christ was with the Father in the beginning and that creation testifies of Him ( John 1:1-5), and we are told that God sent John the Baptist to bear witness of the Light before Jesus was manifested to the world ( John 1:6-13), we now have a brief list of the five-fold witnesses that God sent to mankind once Jesus Christ was baptized in order to be recognized by the world as the Son of God ( John 1:14-18). God sent Jesus Christ into this world with a supernatural birth and the Word became flesh ( John 1:14 a). What would we see if we beheld the Word manifested and embodied in flesh and blood walking and living among us? What would God manifested in the flesh look like? The next few verses tell us what He looks like.

1. The Witness of the Father — John 1:14 b

2. The Witness of John the Baptist — John 1:15

3. The Witness of His Works — John 1:16

4. The Witness of Scripture — John 1:17

5. The Witness of Jesus' Words — John 1:18

This five-fold testimony will serve to identify for us the structure of the Gospel of John from which we will build an outline. John's Gospel can be divided according to this five-fold witness.

The Testimony of the Father — John 1:1-18

The Testimony of John and His Disciples — John 1:19-51

The Testimony of Jesus' Miracles — John 2:1 to John 11:54

The Testimony of Scriptures — John 11:55 to John 20:29

The Testimony of Jesus — John 21:1-23

In addition, Jesus discusses these witnesses in John 5:19-47.

1. Jesus Testifies of Himself — John 5:19-30

2. Testimony of John the Baptist — John 5:32-35

3. Testimony of His Works — John 5:36

4. Testimony of the Father — John 5:37-38

5. Testimony of the Scriptures — John 5:39-47

Here is a summary:

1. The Witness of the Father ( John 1:14 b) (see John 1:1-14) - How did the Father testify of the pre-incarnate deity of His Son Jesus Christ after His baptism? The apostles then beheld the glory of the God, or deity, embodied within the man Jesus Christ ( John 1:14 b). One example would have been at His baptism, and another would have been on the Mount of Transfiguration. Through these divine manifestations of God's glory mankind could see the Father's love for humanity.

2. The Witness of John the Baptist ( John 1:15) (see John 1:19-51) - How did John the Baptist testify of the pre-incarnate deity of Jesus Christ after His baptism? John the Baptist announced the earthly ministry of Jesus Christ as One who was pre-incarnate. Through his preaching mankind could see the Father's love for humanity.

3. The Witness of His Works ( John 1:16) (see John 2:1 to John 20:31) - How did the works and miracles of Jesus Christ testify to the pre-incarnate deity of Jesus Christ after His baptism? The apostles saw Jesus Christ in His fullness, both spirit, soul and body, as well as financially sound. He had no lack in anything, but walked in fullness in every area of His life. Jesus Christ showed to us what fullness means as a human being. God wants us complete in every area of our lives. Then, as Jesus Christ began to perform miracles, men began to partake of His fullness. We become whole, or walk in our fullness, by these miracles. Through these miracles mankind could see the Father's love for humanity.

4. The Witness of the Scriptures ( John 1:17) (see John 11:55 to John 20:29) - How did the Old Testament Scriptures testify to the pre-incarnate deity of Jesus Christ after His baptism? The life and ministry of Jesus Christ fulfilled many Old Testament Scriptures. By the fulfillment of prophetic Scriptures, Jesus Christ showed us a God of love and truth. These Scriptures revealed God's plan of bestowing His grace upon mankind while remaining true to His judgment upon a sinful world. Moses revealed to us laws to live by and these laws revealed man's sinfulness. But the Scriptures revealed Jesus Christ as the Father's way of showing His love for humanity.

5. The Witness of Jesus Christ Himself ( John 1:18) (see John 21:1-23) - How did Jesus Christ Himself testify to His pre-incarnate deity after His baptism? Jesus Christ declared Himself to be the Son of God who had been sent from the Father in Heaven.

Conclusion- This five-fold testimony will follow the same order as they are presented in the Gospel of John. In addition, these five testimonies are given in the order in which God gave them to mankind. The Father testified of the coming Messiah under the Old Covenant. John the Baptist appeared and served as the second witness just before Jesus' public appearance. The miracles of Jesus' ministry became the third witness of His deity. Finally, after Jesus' resurrection, the New Testament Church began to receive revelation from the Old Testament Scriptures of how Jesus fulfilled its prophecies, particularly by His Passion and Resurrection. Thus, John will present these five witnesses in a chronological order in his Gospel.

John 1:14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.

John 1:14 — "And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us" - Word Study on "dwelt" - The Greek word σκηνό ω literally means, "to pitch one's tent." 104] It is used three times in the New Testament ( John 1:14, Revelation 12:12; Revelation 13:6). Some scholars believe σκηνό ω is used in John 1:14 to allude to the fact that God first dwelt with Israel by means of the Tabernacle in the Old Testament, a parallel supported by the next statement saying, "we beheld his glory." The Jews understood that God's glory dwelt in the Tabernacle and the Temple, so that would associate God's glory to the fact that He has come to dwell among them.

104] Andreas J. Ksterberger, John , in Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Academic, 2004), 41.

John 1:14, "And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth."

Revelation 12:12, "Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time."

Revelation 13:6, "And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven."

Comments- John 1:14 tells us how God the Father sent His Son to earth to partake of flesh and blood. Note similar passages in Philippians 2:5-8 and Hebrews 2:14-18 which gives us a description of how Jesus Christ left His glory above and partook of flesh and blood. Jesus Christ is the only begotten from the Father. No other Messiah ever came from the Father of lights with whom there is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.

John 1:14"and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father" - Comments- With Jesus' public presentation at His water baptism, the Father began to testify to Israel of the pre-incarnate deity of His Son Jesus Christ. Beginning with His baptism the apostles beheld the glory of the God, or deity, embodied within the man Jesus Christ ( John 1:14 b). One example would have been at His baptism, and another would have been on the Mount of Transfiguration. Through these divine manifestations of God's glory mankind could see the Father's love for humanity. The Goodspeed translation brings out this idea in John 1:14 by saying, "abounding in blessing and truth, and we saw the honour God had given him, such honour as an only son receives from his father."

John opens his Gospel by stating in John 1:14 that his Gospel is intended to reveal the glory that Christ Jesus had with the Heavenly Father. Each miracle that John recorded was done so to reveal His glory ( John 2:11; John 11:4). The disciples of Jesus Christ beheld His glory each time He performed a miracle. These events revealed Christ's splendour, brightness, praise, honor, magnificence, excellence, preeminence, dignity, grace and majesty.

John 2:11, "This beginning of miracles did Jesus in Cana of Galilee, and manifested forth his glory; and his disciples believed on him."

John 11:4, "When Jesus heard that, he said, This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the Son of God might be glorified thereby."

In the Gospel of John , Jesus' glory and splendor as divinity is revealed by the various titles that He claims for Himself: the Word of God, the Only Begotten from the Father, the Light of the World, the Lamb of God, the Bread of Life, the Living Water, the Great I Amos , the Door, the Good Shepherd, the Son of God, the Son of Prayer of Manasseh , Master and Lord, the Resurrection and the Life, the Way, the Truth and the Life, the Vine, and the King of the Jews.

John 1:14"full of grace and truth" - Comments- Jesus revealed to us God's grace, or unmerited favor and love, when He showed compassion on the multitudes and healed them. Jesus revealed the truth by showing us a Holy God as He pronounced woes to the Pharisees and as He taught the laws of the Kingdom of God to the multitudes. It is because of God's love for mankind that He poured forth His grace upon us through Jesus Christ. It is because God is still a holy and just God that Jesus spoke of truth and righteousness and judgment. It was because of His truth and righteousness that Jesus had to bear the death of the Cross in behalf of all humanity.

Another way to see the use of these two words is to note that in the New Testament epistles, the word "grace" also applies to the gifts of the Spirit. Thus, Jesus was full of the anointing and of the Word of God. We see this duel description in the book of Acts.

Acts 6:3, "Wherefore, brethren, look ye out among you seven men of honest report, full of the Holy Ghost and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business."

Acts 6:5, "And the saying pleased the whole multitude: and they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Ghost, and Philippians , and Prochorus, and Nicanor, and Timon, and Parmenas, and Nicolas a proselyte of Antioch:"

Acts 6:8, "And Stephen, full of faith and power, did great wonders and miracles among the people."

Acts 11:24, "For he [Barnabas] was a good Prayer of Manasseh , and full of the Holy Ghost and of faith: and much people was added unto the Lord."

John 1:15 John bare witness of him, and cried, saying, This was he of whom I spake, He that cometh after me is preferred before me: for he was before me.

John 1:15 — The Witness of John the Baptist - Comments- How did John the Baptist testify of the pre-incarnate deity of Jesus Christ after His baptism? John the Baptist announced the earthly ministry of Jesus Christ as One who was pre-incarnate. Through his preaching mankind could see the Father's love for humanity.

John 1:16 And of his fulness have all we received, and grace for grace.

John 1:16"And of his fulness have all we received" - Comments- BDAG interprets this phrase to say, "from his fullness we have received grace." (see λαμβάνω 2)

John 1:16 — "and grace for grace" - Comments- BDAG interprets this phrase to say, "Grace after grace, or grace upon grace," meaning, "grace pours forth in ever-new streams." (see ἀντί 2) Andreas Kösterberger understands this phrase to means that the grace that God intended to pour forth upon mankind through the Law has now been poured forth through Jesus Christ. He says the preposition ἀ ντί means, "in exchange or return for," meaning the grace of the Law was exchanged for the grace obtained through faith in Christ Jesus. 105]

105] Andreas J. Ksterberger, John , in Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Academic, 2004), 46-47.

The reason that Jesus became the fullness of God was that we might receive grace and truth through His atoning sacrifice.

Also, note similar constructions in the Greek text:

John 1:16, "And of his fulness have all we received, and grace for grace."

Romans 1:17, "For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith."

Romans 6:19, "I speak after the manner of men because of the infirmity of your flesh: for as ye have yielded your members servants to uncleanness and to iniquity unto iniquity; even so now yield your members servants to righteousness unto holiness."

2 Corinthians 2:16, "To the one we are the savour of death unto death; and to the other the savour of life unto life. And who is sufficient for these things?"

2 Corinthians 3:18, "But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord."

Philippians 2:27, "For indeed he was sick nigh unto death: but God had mercy on him; and not on him only, but on me also, lest I should have sorrow upon sorrow."

John 1:16Comments- Out of God's abundance of grace towards mankind, all have partook. We have all received blessing after blessing of His grace.

Illustration - The phrase "grace upon grace" can be illustrated like the waves of the sea. When we stand upon the beach, the waves flow over us while another wave comes from behind and flows over us again and again. Thus, we experience a continual overflow of water. God's grace is continually poured forth upon us, day by day, during each situation we face in life.

John 1:16 — The Witness of His Works - Comments- How did the works and miracles of Jesus Christ testify to the pre-incarnate deity of Jesus Christ after His baptism? The apostles saw Jesus Christ in His fullness, both spirit, soul and body, as well as financially sound. Jesus Christ showed to us what fullness means as a human being. God wants us complete in every area of our lives. Then, as Jesus Christ began to perform miracles, He imparted His fullness into people who lacked fullness, and men began to partake of His fullness. When the lady with the issue of blood touched the helm of His garment and virtue left Jesus' body, she partook of His fullness. When Jesus Christ took Jarius' daughter by the hand and raised her from the dead, the child partook of His fullness. When the hundred and twenty in the upper room were filled with the Hoy Spirit, they partook of His fullness. We become whole, or walk in our fullness, by such miracles. Through these miracles which Jesus Christ performed mankind could see the Father's love for humanity.

All of mankind has tasted of some portion of God's goodness. There is no man who has not been blessed by God in some way. This verse perhaps tells us that Jesus Christ wrought many wonderful works among us through His grace.

As we receive of His fullness by faith, we position ourselves to stand continually in His grace ( Romans 5:2). Thus, we partake of His ever-increasing grace, now called grace upon grace. Note:

Romans 5:2, "By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God."

John 1:17 For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.

John 1:17 — The Witness of the Scriptures - Comments- How did the Old Testament Scriptures testify to the pre-incarnate deity of Jesus Christ after His baptism? The life and ministry of Jesus Christ fulfilled many Old Testament Scriptures. By the fulfillment of prophetic Scriptures, Jesus Christ showed us a God of love and truth. These Scriptures revealed God's plan of bestowing His grace upon mankind while remaining true to His judgment upon a sinful world. Moses revealed to us laws to live by and these laws revealed man's sinfulness. Thus, John 1:17 tells us that Jesus Christ was the fullness of the Law that God gave to Moses. The Scriptures revealed Jesus Christ as the Father's way of showing His love for humanity.

John 1:17 — "but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ" - Comments- Grace and truth were the instruments that God used to pardon our iniquity. We are saved by grace through faith in Jesus Christ ( Ephesians 1:6; Ephesians 2:6). Jesus declared Himself as the Way, the Truth, and the Life ( John 14:6).

Ephesians 1:6, "To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved."

Ephesians 2:8, "For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:"

John 14:6, "Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me."

God poured forth His grace upon us through Jesus Christ because of His great love for mankind. It is because God is still a holy and just God that Jesus spoke of truth and righteousness and judgment. It was because of His truth and righteousness that Jesus had to bear the death of the Cross in behalf of all humanity. Note:

Proverbs 16:6, "By mercy and truth iniquity is purged: and by the fear of the LORD men depart from evil."

Note other translations of this verse:

ASV, "By mercy and truth iniquity is atoned for."

YLT, "In kindness and truth pardoned is iniquity."

John 1:17Comments- While the Law of Moses brought mankind under judgment and a curse because of his sinful nature, Jesus brought blessings by redeeming us from under the curse of the Law. We see examples of this contrast in the ministry of Jesus Christ as He confronted the religious leaders. For example, the Law required that the woman caught in adultery be stoned ( John 8:1-11). However, Jesus forgave her and her let go free. On another occasion a woman with an issue of blood pressed through the crowd and touched the helm of His garment. According to the Law she was unclean and required to separate herself from society ( Luke 8:43-48). However, Jesus commended her faith. There were times that Jesus and His disciples picked grain on the Sabbath ( Matthew 12:1-8). When the Pharisees condemned this action, Jesus replied that He was Lord over the Sabbath.

John 1:18 No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Song of Solomon , which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him.

John 1:18 — The Witness of Jesus Christ Himself - Comments- How did Jesus Christ Himself testify to His pre-incarnate deity after His baptism? Jesus Christ declared Himself to be the Son of God who had been sent from the Father in Heaven. In addition, John 1:18 tells us that Jesus Christ came to reveal to us the Father. This is what Jesus told Philip when he asked Jesus Christ to show him the Father.

John 14:8-9, "Philip saith unto him, Lord, shew us the Father, and it sufficeth us. Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Shew us the Father?"

John 1:18 — "which is in the bosom of the Father" - Comments- The phrase "which is in the bosom of the Father" is used figuratively to describe the position of Jesus Christ with the Father. This term is used when the Jews of this period in history gathered around a table. There were no chairs. Therefore, people reclined on the floor leaning on their left side, with their feet pointed away from the table. When a cushion or a floor mat was used to recline in this fashion, it gave the person in front a position of literally leaning close to the bosom of the person behind him.

The person of highest rank was given the chief place at the table. Those of more important positions were placed next to the chief guest. To recline next to someone was associated with being intimately acquainted with that person.

This phrase means that Jesus holds the closest relationship with God the Father of any man. Andreas J. Ksterberger says this phrase literally means, "in the Father's lap," and he paraphrases it to say "in closest relationship." 106] It means that Jesus knows the Father more intimately that anyone and is thus, qualified to make Him known.

106] Andreas J. Ksterberger, John , in Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Academic, 2004), 49.

John 1:18 reveals that Jesus still holds that perfect relationship with the Father that He has from eternity. Jesus" position with His Father has not been lowered in any way.

This phrase says basically the same thing that John 1:1 reveals. It tells us that Jesus was pre-existent, that this pre-existence was with the Father, and that Jesus shared intimate fellowship with the Father so as to share in His same character.

This phrase is used in other passages in Scripture. It is used of Sarai giving Hagar to Abraham.

Genesis 16:5, "And Sarai said unto Abram, My wrong be upon thee: I have given my maid into thy bosom; and when she saw that she had conceived, I was despised in her eyes: the LORD judge between me and thee."

It is used in other places to describe the tender love and devotion of a parent.

Numbers 11:12, "Have I conceived all this people? have I begotten them, that thou shouldest say unto me, Carry them in thy bosom, as a nursing father beareth the sucking child, unto the land which thou swarest unto their fathers?"

Ruth 4:16, "And Naomi took the child, and laid it in her bosom, and became nurse unto it."

2 Samuel 12:3, "But the poor man had nothing, save one little ewe lamb, which he had bought and nourished up: and it grew up together with him, and with his children; it did eat of his own meat, and drank of his own cup, and lay in his bosom, and was unto him as a daughter."

1 Kings 3:20, "And she arose at midnight, and took my son from beside me, while thine handmaid slept, and laid it in her bosom, and laid her dead child in my bosom."

1 Kings 17:19, "And he said unto her, Give me thy son. And he took him out of her bosom, and carried him up into a loft, where he abode, and laid him upon his own bed."

Lamentations 2:12, "They say to their mothers, Where is corn and wine? when they swooned as the wounded in the streets of the city, when their soul was poured out into their mothers" bosom."

In the New Testament, this phrase is used of Lazarus, after he died, being given intimate fellowship with Abraham.

Luke 16:22-23, "And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham"s bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried; And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom."

John the apostle"s tender relationship with Jesus gave him the position of lying in the bosom of Jesus at mealtime.

John 13:23, "Now there was leaning on Jesus" bosom one of his disciples, whom Jesus loved."

John 1:18 — "he hath declared him" - Word Study on "declared" - Strong says the Greek word "declared" ( ὲ ξηγέομαι) (G 1834) literally means, "to consider out (aloud), to rehearse, i.e. to unfold," and is a compound word coming from ( ἐκ) (G 1537), meaning, "out of," and ( ἡγέομαι) (G 2233), which means, "to lead, to command," and figuratively, "to deem, to consider." BDAG says it means, "explain, interpret, tell, report, describe." The Enhanced Strong says this word is used 6 times in the New Testament, being translated in the KJV as, "declare 5, tell 1."

Comments- From the Greek word ὲ ξηγέομαι we derive the English word "exegesis."

Comments - BDAG translates this statement as, "he has made known or brought new of (the invisible God). Jesus Christ has brought the invisible God forth for us to view in bodily form. Thus, Jesus declared God by revealing Himself that we might see God for ourselves ( John 14:9). This declaration of the Father is the content of the rest of the Gospel of John beginning in the following verse. 107]

107] Andreas J. Ksterberger, John , in Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Academic, 2004), 50.

The book of Hebrews tells us that Jesus was the brightness of God's glory and the express image of His person ( Hebrews 1:3).

John 14:9, "Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Shew us the Father?"

Hebrews 1:3, "Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high;"

In John 1:18, we see the role of the Lord Jesus Christ from creation, which is to declare the mind of the Father, thus, the title of Jesus as "the Word" in John 1:1 and more clearly as "The Word of God" in Revelation 19:13. This phrase means that Jesus revealed the Father to us, but the Greek verb shows us that Jesus did this by telling us, or declaring to us, the character of the Father.

John 1:1, "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God."

Revelation 19:13, "And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God."


Verses 19-28

John's Testimony to the Jewish Leaders ( Matthew 3:1-12, Mark 1:1-8, Luke 3:1-18) - John the Baptist was careful with his reply to the Jewish leaders; for he was answering a group of people that would one day seize the Messiah and crucify Him. In addition, when explaining his office and ministry to them, he gave himself a very humble title for a man doing such a great work of God. He described himself as the Word of God describes him, rather than how he saw himself in a humbled condition compared to others in society. We, too, are to say what God's Word says about us, rather than describe ourselves as defeated.

After giving himself a humble title before the Pharisees, John's testimony to the Jewish leaders emphasizes the authority of the One coming after him, whose authority supersedes that of the Pharisees, who believed themselves to be in authority.

When we understand the underlying themes of the four Gospels, it is easy to see each of these themes emphasized within their separate accounts of John the Baptist. Since Matthew's Gospel emphasizes the testimony of the Old Testament Scriptures, he begins in Matthew 3:1-12 about how that John the Baptist is represented as the one who fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah. Mark's Gospel emphasizes the proclamation of the Gospel. Although Mark 1:1-8 is very similar to Matthew's passage it gives more text about the proclamation of John the Baptist. Luke's Gospel emphasizes the prophetic eyewitness testimonies surrounding Jesus Christ's ministry. Therefore, Luke 3:1-20 begins by referring to verifiable dates of the ministry of John the Baptist with his prophetic message of the coming Saviour. Finally, this parallel passage in John's Gospel emphasizes John the Baptist's testimony of the deity of the Lord Jesus Christ as he declares that he was send by God to reveal the Lamb of God to the world. John 1:19-28 provides the testimony of John the Baptist as one of the five witnesses declaring the deity of Jesus Christ that make up the structure of the Gospel of John.

John 1:19 And this is the record of John , when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, Who art thou?

John 1:19 — "And this is the record of John" - Comments - John 1:19-34 opens and closes with the declaration that this passage of Scripture contains the testimony of John the Baptist.

John 1:34, "And I saw, and bare record that this is the Son of God."

"when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, Who art thou" - Comments- The book of Acts ( Acts 5:34-37), Josephus (Antiquities 1811; 2051, Wars 241, 281; 2178-10), and Eusebius (Ecclesiastical History 153-6) tell us that there were a number of Jewish rebels during this period who rose up and incited the people to resist Roman rule, which brought retaliation upon the Jews by Roman soldiers. Also, it was an area filled with "robbers and imposters" (Antiquities 20:85). These Jewish leaders, who constantly managed the fragile relationship between the Roman governor and the Palestinian Jews, was concerned about the motive of this new preacher in the desert.

Acts 5:36-37, "For before these days rose up Theudas, boasting himself to be somebody; to whom a number of men, about four hundred, joined themselves: who was slain; and all, as many as obeyed him, were scattered, and brought to nought. After this man rose up Judas of Galilee in the days of the taxing, and drew away much people after him: he also perished; and all, even as many as obeyed him, were dispersed."

John 1:20 And he confessed, and denied not; but confessed, I am not the Christ.

John 1:20Comments - John's loyalty to God was tested on this occasion to speak the truth without fear man.

John 1:21 And they asked him, What then? Art thou Elias? And he saith, I am not. Art thou that prophet? And he answered, No.

John 1:20-21Comments- The Jews were looking for the coming of three individuals, based on Old Testament prophecy:

(1) The Messiah - In John's reply, "I am not the Christ," he shows that the Jews were looking for the Messiah.

Isaiah 7:14, "Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a Song of Solomon , and shall call his name Immanuel."

Isaiah 9:6-7, "For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this."

Isaiah 11:1-2, "And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots: And the spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD"

Micah 5:2, "But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting."

Zechariah 9:9, "Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee: he is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass."

(2) Elijah - In the question, "Art thou Elias," the Jews show that they were looking for the return of Elijah.

Malachi 4:5, "Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD:"

(3) The Prophet - In the question, "Art thou that prophet," the priests and Levites were referring to the prophecy of Moses in Deuteronomy 18:15, in which Moses prophesied of a prophet coming after him ( John 7:40).

Deuteronomy 18:15, "The LORD thy God will raise up unto thee a Prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, like unto me; unto him ye shall hearken;"

John 7:40, "Many of the people therefore, when they heard this saying, said, Of a truth this is the Prophet."

Jesus" first disciples reveal the fact that even they were looking for the coming of the Messiah.

John 1:41, "He first findeth his own brother Simon, and saith unto him, We have found the Messias, which Isaiah , being interpreted, the Christ."

John 1:45, "Philip findeth Nathanael, and saith unto him, We have found him, of whom Moses in the law, and the prophets, did write, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph."

Even the sinners had heard of a coming Messiah. Note the response of the Samaritans as the coming of Jesus:

John 4:25, "The woman saith unto him, I know that Messias cometh, which is called Christ: when he is come, he will tell us all things."

John 4:40-42, "So when the Samaritans were come unto him, they besought him that he would tarry with them: and he abode there two days. And many more believed because of his own word; And said unto the woman, Now we believe, not because of thy saying: for we have heard him ourselves, and know that this is indeed the Christ, the Saviour of the world."

At the feast, the people referred to the coming of the Messiah:

John 7:41,"Others said, This is the Christ. But some said, Shall Christ come out of Galilee?"

However, some of the Jews held wrong ideas about the coming Messiah:

John 7:27, "Howbeit we know this man whence he is: but when Christ cometh, no man knoweth whence he is."

John 7:41-42, "Others said, This is the Christ. But some said, Shall Christ come out of Galilee? Hath not the scripture said, That Christ cometh of the seed of David, and out of the town of Bethlehem, where David was?"

John 1:22 Then said they unto him, Who art thou? that we may give an answer to them that sent us. What sayest thou of thyself?

John 1:22Comments- Since John the Baptist did not confess to be one of the three prophetic persons coming to redeem Israel, the Jews then wanted an explanation from John as to his claim of identity.

John 1:23 He said, I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight the way of the Lord, as said the prophet Esaias.

John 1:23Comments- John responds to the request of the Jews by quoting from an Old Testament prophecy of his coming. This is a paraphrase from Isaiah 40:3.

Isaiah 40:3, "The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the LORD, make straight in the desert a highway for our God."

This Old Testament passage is also quoted in the parallel passages of the Gospels of Matthew and Mark.

Matthew 3:3, "For this is he that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight."

Mark 1:3, "The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight."

Some conjecture that John the Baptist may have adobe with the Jewish sect called the Essenes while living in the desert. The Dead Sea Scrolls were kept in the possession of these people and show that John the Baptist would have access to the Scriptures and may have read them and meditated upon them often while living quietly in the desert. At some point in John's early life the Lord revealed his ministry to him with these Old Testament Scriptures. John was so disconnected with traditional society that his identity was wrapped up in these Old Testament prophecies. In other words, he saw himself, not as a member of any particular group or organization; rather, he saw himself as a man with a divine commission to fulfill.

John 1:24 And they which were sent were of the Pharisees.

John 1:24Comments - The Pharisees would later play a key role in Jesus being rejected by the Jews and ultimate crucifixion. Thus, John 1:24 quickly introduces the Pharisees into his narrative story as leading characters in developing the plot of the Gospel of John.

John 1:25 And they asked him, and said unto him, Why baptizest thou then, if thou be not that Christ, nor Elias, neither that prophet?

John 1:25Comments- The Pharisees asked John the Baptist why he was baptizing. He does not give them a clear answer, but rather rebukes and warns them. Later, the next day, in verse 31, John gives the answer when Jesus comes to be baptized. John was baptizing in order to reveal the Messiah to the people of Israel.

John 1:26 John answered them, saying, I baptize with water: but there standeth one among you, whom ye know not;

John 1:27 He it Isaiah , who coming after me is preferred before me, whose shoe"s latchet I am not worthy to unloose.

John 1:28 These things were done in Bethabara beyond Jordan, where John was baptizing.

John 1:28Comments - John the Baptist received no endorsement or commission from men. His calling and ministry of preaching repentance and water baptism was entirely sanctioned by God alone.


Verses 19-51

The Testimony of John the Baptist and His Disciples- The testimony of John and his disciples is found in John 1:19-51. This is the second major division of John's Gospel after the testimony of God the Father ( John 1:1-18). This passage even opens by stating that it was the testimony of John ( John 1:19).

John 1:19, "And this is the record of John, when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, Who art thou?"

While the testimony of the Father ( John 1:1-18) reveals God the Father's divine foreknowledge in sending His Son into the world to redeem mankind, the testimony of John the Baptist and his disciples ( John 1:19-51) reveals the justification that Jesus Christ has come to bring mankind so that we may stand righteous before Him; for He must be slain as the Lamb of God.

Outline- This section can be divided into four subsections or four testimonies with the divisions marked by the phrase "the next day."

1. John's Testimony to the Jewish Leaders — John 1:19-28

2. John's Testimony to the people — John 1:29-34

3. John's Testimony to his disciples — John 1:35-51

a. The Testimony of John & Andrew — John 1:35-42

b. The Testimony of Philip & Nathanael — John 1:43-51

How the Author of John's Gospel Indirectly Invites His Readers into the Narrative Story- In John 1:19-51 author indirectly invites his readers to play the role of his characters and come see the deity of Jesus Christ unfold in the rest of the Gospel. The disciples of John the Baptist and their brothers are invited to "come and see" the Messiah, who promises "greater things than these" to come. As the readers identify themselves with these early disciples, they too are invited to continue reading and see the miracles that Jesus performs in John 2-20 so that they might "see" that Jesus Christ is truly the Lamb of God, sent from Heaven to atone for the sins of mankind.


Verses 29-34

John the Baptist Baptizes Jesus Christ as the Lamb of God ( Matthew 3:13-17, Mark 9:9-11, Luke 3:21-22) - In John 1:29-34 we read the story of how John the Baptist baptizes Jesus Christ and declares Him to be the Lamb of God.

John's Testimony to the People - John 1:29-34 records the testimony of John the Baptist to the people about the deity of the Lord Jesus Christ. This testimony emphasizes Jesus redemptive work on Calvary as the "Lamb of God" to take away the sins of the people.

John 1:29 The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.

John 1:29 — "The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him" - Comments- John records the earliest days of Jesus' public ministry ( John 1:29; John 1:35; John 1:43; John 2:1) after being presented to the nation of Israel by His water baptism. John 1:29; John 1:35 may refer to the first day of Jesus' public ministry, while John 1:43 would refer to His second day of public ministry, and John 2:1 would refer to His third day. The Synoptic Gospels tell us that Jesus was immediately led into the forty-day temptation in the wilderness after His water baptism ( Matthew 4:1, Mark 1:1, Luke 4:1). Biblical scholars and Gospel harmonies generally place John 1:29 immediately after the forty-day temptation, following the order of The Diatessaron (A.D 150-160), 108] John Chrysostom (A.D 340-407), 109] and the tradition established by early biblical scholars. 110] John Calvin and others define "the next day" as the day after the Jews came to John the Baptist to question him about his public ministry as recorded in John 1:19-28. 111] However, some modern scholars place John 1:29 prior to His temptation. 112]

108] The Diatessaron reads, "Jesus answered and said unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him alone shalt thou serve. And when the devil had completed all his temptations, he departed from him for a season. And behold, the angels drew near and ministered unto him. And next day John was standing, and two of his disciples; and he saw Jesus as he was walking, and said, Behold, the Lamb of God…" (The Diatessaron 51-5) in ANF9.

109] John Chrysostom agrees with the order of The Diatessaron, saying, " Matthew , after the return of Jesus from the wilderness, saying nothing of the intermediate circumstances, as what John spake, and what the Jews sent and said, and having cut short all the rest, passes immediately to the prison." (Homilies on John 17) See John Chrysostom, The Homilies of John Chrysostom, Archbishop of Constantinople, on the Gospel of St. John , Translated, with Notes and Incides, pt 1Homilies I-XLI (Oxford: John Henry Parker, 1848), 139.

110] Matthew Poole, Matthew Henry, John Gill, and Heinrich Meyer are examples of commentators who clearly place the Temptation before John 1:29. An example of Gospel harmonies that follow this view are James Macknight, A Harmony of the Four Gospels, vol 1 (London: Longman, Hurst, Rees, Orme, and Brown, and Ogle, Duncan, and Co, 1819), 174; Lant Carpenter, Harmony of the Gospels (Boston: Gray and Bowen, 1831), 17-20; J. M. Fuller, The Four Gospels, Arranged in the Form of a Harmony, From the Text of the Authorized Version (London: Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge, 1984), 11-12; John A. Broadus, A Harmony of the Gospels in the Revised Version (New York: A. C. Armstrong and Song of Solomon , 1894), 16-18; A. T. Robertson, A Harmony of the Gospels for Students of the Life of Christ (New York: George H. Doran Company, 1922), xv.

111] John Calvin, Commentary on the Gospel According to John , vol 1 (Edinburgh: The Calvin Translation Society, 1847), 63.

112] Kurt Aland, ed, Synopsis of the Four Gospels (Greek-English Edition of the Synopsis Quattuor Evangeliorum), 12th Edition (Stuttgart: Deutsche Bibelgesellschaft, 2001), in Libronix Digital Library System, v 21c [CD-ROM] (Bellingham, WA: Libronix Corp, 2000-2004).

John 1:29, "The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world."

John 1:35, "Again the next day after John stood, and two of his disciples;"

John 1:43, "The day following Jesus would go forth into Galilee, and findeth Philippians , and saith unto him, Follow me."

John 2:1, "And the third day there was a marriage in Cana of Galilee; and the mother of Jesus was there:"

John 1:29 tells us that on this day, Jesus the Messiah was manifested to John the Baptist. Note that on the previous day, John faced one of the greatest confrontations in his public ministry to date, when the Pharisees, whom everyone feared, asked John to justify his ministry. We often face the same situations in our lives. It is in the times of greatest adversity that God reveals His glory to us. John"s confrontation with the Pharisees was still fresh in his mind as he was baptizing Jesus and seeing the Holy Spirit descend upon Him.

This experience was a great source of strength and encouragement for John the Baptist. I have found that it is during the most difficult times in my life when God reveals Himself to me in such powerful ways.

John 1:29 — "and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world" - Comments- Why did John use the title "the Lamb of God" for the Messiah at Jesus' baptism? Since Jesus Christ came to take away the sins of the world, this is a prophecy of the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus. He is like a lamb offered upon the altar as a sacrifice.

John the apostle will use this title at least twenty-six times throughout the book of Revelation in reference to Jesus Christ.

John 1:29Comments- We must believe that John the Baptist and Jesus Christ had met as children. When we look at Mary running to spend time with her close relative Elisabeth while they were both pregnant, and rejoicing with one another at their miracles, we cannot but believe that they came together after their children were born to rejoice once more and to show these children to one another. It is very likely that John and Jesus were brought together on a number of occasions when Mary and Elisabeth and their families visited one another. Thus, John may have recognized his blood relative in the nature; but in John 1:29 he sees him for the first time as the One whom God revealed would come and be baptized and take away the sins of the world.

John 1:30 This is he of whom I said, After me cometh a man which is preferred before me: for he was before me.

John 1:31 And I knew him not: but that he should be made manifest to Israel, therefore am I come baptizing with water.

John 1:31"therefore am I come baptizing with water" - Comments- John came baptizing with water in order to reveal Jesus to the Jews. John the Baptist"s ministry was now completed. Therefore, his ministry had to decrease so that Jesus" ministry could increase.

John 1:29-31Comments- The Purpose of John's and Jesus' Ministries- In John 1:29-31 we are told by John the Baptist the purpose of both of their ministries. John the Baptist was sent to reveal the Messiah and prepare Israel for His coming. Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God. Jesus came to offer Himself as the sacrifice for the sins of the world.

John 1:32 And John bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him.

John 1:33 And I knew him not: but he that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is he which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost.

John 1:34 And I saw, and bare record that this is the Son of God.

John 1:34Comments - John 1:19-34 opens and closes with the declaration that this passage of Scripture contains the testimony of John the Baptist.

John 1:19, "And this is the record of John , when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, Who art thou?"


Verses 35-51

The Testimony of John's Disciples - We read in John 1:35-51 about the testimonies of how the disciples of John the Baptist recognized Jesus Christ as the Son of God. This passage tells us about five disciples named John , Andrew, Peter, Philip and Nathanael who met Jesus Christ and believed upon Him within the first few days of His Judean ministry. We will read in Matthew 4:18-22 how Jesus Christ was walking by the Sea of Galilee and called Peter, Andrew, John and James to follow Him while in His Galilean ministry. They immediately left their nets and followed Him. However, the events in the Gospel of Matthew took place after the death of John the Baptist, perhaps a year or two later. Thus, we see that the calling of disciples in the first few days of Jesus' ministry was not a calling to forsake their work and follow him, although we see them following him before the imprisonment of John the Baptist ( John 3:22-24). This second calling in Matthew emphasizes the fact that Jesus met them later and asked them at that time to lay down their nets, forsake all and follow Him permanently. In summary, John's Gospel emphasizes the fact that the disciples recognized Jesus Christ as the Son of God while Matthew's Gospel places emphasis upon Jesus selecting and training His disciples.

Outline - Here is a proposed outline:

1. The Testimony of John and Andrew — John 1:35-42

2. The Testimony of Philip and Nathanael — John 1:43-51

Comparison of Parallel Passages Recording the Beginning of the Public Ministry of Jesus Christ- When we compare the parallel passages of Jesus beginning His public ministry in the four Gospels, we find the third underlying themes clearly reflected.

The Gospel of Matthew - Matthew's Gospel emphasizes the testimony of Old Testament Scriptures, which prophesies of the Messiah coming to establish the Kingdom of Heaven. In this Gospel, the Kingdom of Heaven is established by making disciples of all nations. Thus, Matthew explains how Jesus' public ministry began as a fulfillment of Old Testament prophecy ( John 4:12-17). Jesus then calls disciples, who will be trained to fulfill the Great Commission of making disciples of all nations ( John 4:18-22). Jesus then begins to establish the Kingdom of God upon the earth through His teaching ministry ( John 4:23-25). Thus, Matthew's Gospel places emphasis upon Jesus' teaching ministry as Matthew states, "And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all manner of sickness and all manner of disease among the people." ( Matthew 4:23)

The Gospel of Mark - Mark's Gospel emphasizes the office of the evangelist, who preaches the Gospel with signs following. Therefore, he describes Jesus beginning His public ministry with the statement, "Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel." ( Mark 1:14-15) Mark describes Jesus beginning His public ministry by preaching ( Mark 1:14-15), which emphasizes Mark's theme of the testimony of Jesus' miracles through the preaching of the Gospel.

The Gospel of Luke - The parallel passage in Luke records the testimony of His ministry as one of great anointing and power ( Luke 4:14-15), which emphasizes the testimony of those who were eye-witnesses of the authority of Jesus' public ministry. Within the context of Luke's Gospel, which reflects the prophetic ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ, the statement, "Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit into Galilee," emphasizes the fact that Jesus was walking in the office of the prophet. In the opening chapters of Luke , we have already seen a number of people filled with the Spirit and deliver prophetic utterances. Zechariah , Elisabeth, Mary, Simeon and Anna have all been filled with the spirit and spoke of the Messiah. To show that this motif runs through the Gospel of Luke , in the closing chapter we see Jesus commanding His disciples to "tarry ye in the city of Jerusalem, until ye be endued with power from on high." ( Luke 24:49) Thus, the fact that Jesus was "full of the Holy Ghost returned from Jordan, and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness," ( John 4:1) then "returned in the power of the Spirit into Galilee" ( Luke 4:14) to tell the people that "The Spirit of the Lord is upon me," ( Luke 4:18) tells us that Jesus will deliver prophetic messages throughout the Gospel of Luke.

The Gospel of John - John's Gospel emphasizes Jesus in the office of the pastor. Thus, John describes Jesus as a Shepherd gathering His flock and gently leading the disciples. In this Gospel Jesus begins His public ministry in the office of a pastor by gathering His first disciples: John , Andrew, Simon Peter, Philippians , and Nathanael ( John 1:35-51). He will not move into the offices of Evangelist, Teacher, and Prophet until after the imprisonment of John the Baptist, as recorded in the Synoptic Gospels.

John 1:35-42 — The Testimony of Andrew and John - We read in John 1:35-42 of how two of John's disciples first met Jesus Christ and introduced Him to Peter. Scholars believe that the unnamed disciple in this passage in John. Since it was John the apostle"s custom in writing this Gospel not to mention his own name, but to only make a reference to himself, it is very likely that he is one of the two disciples that are first mentioned in this passage, since the second person is clearly named as Andrew in John 1:40. This deliberate attempt to avoid naming a person in this Gospel is a clear indication of the identity of John the apostle.

John's Possible Physical Relationship to Jesus Christ- Many scholars go so far as to suggest that John was related to Jesus Christ through his mother Salome. If this is the case, and we know that Mary, the mother of Jesus was related to Elisabeth, the mother of John the Baptist, this may explain the fact that John the apostle became one of the earliest disciples of John the Baptist and of Jesus Christ, being related to both of them.

John 1:38 — "They said unto him, Rabbi" - Comments- These two disciples did not know Jesus apart from John the Baptist's testimony that He was the Messiah. In this new relationship, they reverently called Him by the title "Rabbi."

John 1:38 — "which is to say, being interpreted, Master" - Comments- Scholars suggest that the phrase "which is to say, being interpreted, Master" was inserted by John the apostle as a way of clarifying the Hebrew term "Rabbi" to the early Gentile Church of the late first century, which was more familiar with the Greek equivalent "master," or "teacher."

John 1:39Comments - John the apostle ( John 1:39; John 4:6; John 4:52; John 11:9) as well as Josephus 113] appear to calculate the Jewish day beginning at dawn (6:00 a.m.), so that the tenth hour of the day would have been 4 p.m.

113] Josephus writes, "When I was informed of these affairs, I determined to go to the city of Tiberias in the morning. Accordingly, on the next day, about the first hour of the day, I came from Taricheae, and found the multitude already assembled in the Proseucha; but on what account they were gotten together, those that were assembled did not know." (Life 54)

John 1:39, "He saith unto them, Come and see. They came and saw where he dwelt, and abode with him that day: for it was about the tenth hour."

John 4:6, "Now Jacob"s well was there. Jesus therefore, being wearied with his journey, sat thus on the well: and it was about the sixth hour."

John 4:52, "Then enquired he of them the hour when he began to amend. And they said unto him, Yesterday at the seventh hour the fever left him."

John 11:9, "Jesus answered, Are there not twelve hours in the day? If any man walk in the day, he stumbleth not, because he seeth the light of this world."

The other Gospel writes appear to use the same calculations for Jesus' Passion.

Matthew 27:45, "Now from the sixth hour there was darkness over all the land unto the ninth hour."

Mark 15:25, "And it was the third hour, and they crucified him."

However, John appears to use Roman time in John 19:14, "And it was the preparation of the passover, and about the sixth hour: and he saith unto the Jews, Behold your King!"

John 1:40Comments - Simon Peter is one of the first characters to be mentioned in the narrative material of John's Gospel, and he will be the last individual that Jesus addresses ( John 21:15-25).

John , the author of this Gospel, first mentioned Peter by his dual name "Simon Peter" in order to distinguish him from the other apostle by the name Simon the Canaanite. Therefore, it was not necessary to make this distinction in the next verse ( John 1:41), where John simply calls him Simon.

John 1:41 — "which Isaiah , being interpreted, the Christ" - Comments- Scholars suggest that the phrase "which Isaiah , being interpreted, the Christ" in John 1:41 was inserted by John the apostle as a way of clarifying the Hebrew term "Messiah" to the early Gentile Church of the late first century, which was more familiar with the Greek equivalent "Christ."

John 1:42 — "which is by interpretation, A stone" - Comments- Scholars suggest that the phrase in John 1:42, "which is by interpretation, A stone," was included by John the apostle as a way of clarifying the the Aramaic word κηφᾶς (cephas) (a stone) to the early Church of the late first century, a largely Gentile congregation that was more familiar with the Greek equivalent πέτρος (a stone).

John 1:42Comments - The surname "Cephas" given to Peter by Jesus Christ in John 1:42 foreshadows the role that Peter will assume in the early Church, a leadership role that Jesus will further explain in His final instructions to Peter about feeding His sheep ( John 21:15-25). The imagery of a stone most likely reflects the stones that make up a building, an analogy used later by the New Testament writers as stones ( Matthew 21:42-44, Mark 12:10, Luke 20:17-18, Acts 4:11, Ephesians 2:20-22, 1 Peter 2:4-8), a building ( 1 Corinthians 3:9; 1 Corinthians 5:1, Ephesians 2:21), a house ( Hebrews 3:1-6), and a foundation ( Romans 15:20, 1 Corinthians 3:10-12, Ephesians 2:20, 2 Timothy 2:19). Jesus Christ is the chief corner stone ( Matthew 21:42, Ephesians 2:20, 1 Peter 2:6) and the foundation of the Church is laid upon the New Testament writings of the apostles and the Old Testament writings of the prophets ( Ephesians 2:20).

Ephesians 2:20, "And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone;"

John 1:43-51 — The Testimony of Philip and Nathanael - In John 1:43-51 we read of how Jesus Christ calls two more disciples, Philip and Nathanael. Philip is listed in the Synoptics as one of the Twelve ( Matthew 10:3, Mark 3:18, Luke 6:14) while Nathanael is not mentioned at all in the Synoptic Gospels. Although Philip is associated with Bartholomew in each list of the Twelve, scholars have not been able to associate Nathanael with Bartholomew. 114] However, Nathanael is placed in John 1:43-51 because he one of the earliest witnesses of Jesus Christ as the Messiah.

114] Andreas Ksterberger, John , in Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Academic, 2004), 79-80.

Jesus' Comments to Nathanael- Why would Jesus make allusions to Jacob's dream in His greetings to Nathanael? Jesus first greets Nathanael by saying, "Behold an Israelite indeed, in whom is no guile!" Jacob had deceived his father and fled from the wrath of his brother Esau. Along his journey to the East to find the relatives of his mother Rebekah, Jacob falls asleep and dreams of angels ascending and descending from heaven ( Genesis 28:10-22).

Genesis 28:10-15, "And Jacob went out from Beersheba, and went toward Haran. And he lighted upon a certain place, and tarried there all night, because the sun was set; and he took of the stones of that place, and put them for his pillows, and lay down in that place to sleep. And he dreamed, and behold a ladder set up on the earth, and the top of it reached to heaven: and behold the angels of God ascending and descending on it. And, behold, the LORD stood above it, and said, I am the LORD God of Abraham thy father, and the God of Isaac: the land whereon thou liest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed; And thy seed shall be as the dust of the earth, and thou shalt spread abroad to the west, and to the east, and to the north, and to the south: and in thee and in thy seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed. And, behold, I am with thee, and will keep thee in all places whither thou goest, and will bring thee again into this land; for I will not leave thee, until I have done that which I have spoken to thee of."

The story of Jacob fleeing from Esau, and seeing a vision of angels contains a Messianic passage. The Jews believed that the nation of Israel would be restored with the coming of this Messiah. God's promise of the glory of Israel as a nation in Genesis 28:13-15 seems to indicate the rule and reign of the Messiah and the glory of this kingdom. Perhaps the story of Jacob in Genesis 28 was a part of the first century Jewish teachings on the coming Messiah. John the Baptists had been preaching of the coming Messiah. Nathanael may have been reading or pondering Old Testament passages on the restoration of Israel which referred to the coming of the Messiah while under the fig tree ( John 1:48). Therefore, Nathanael replies to Jesus in John 1:49 that He is the "King of Israel."

John 1:49, "Nathanael answered and saith unto him, Rabbi, thou art the Son of God; thou art the King of Israel."

In the story of Jacob's dream, God confirmed to the grandson of Abraham those promises made earlier. The open heaven that Jesus mentions in John 1:51 refers to divine revelation of God's redemption for His people Israel. For those who would follow Him, He Himself would become the source of divine revelation so that they might testify to the world of the coming of the Messiah. Jesus would manifest His glory to the disciples ( John 2:11) through His miracles and revelation of God the Father's plan of redemption through His atonement on Calvary. Jesus Christ is the doorway to heaven; He is the open heaven for mankind.

John 1:43 — "The day following Jesus would go forth into Galilee" - Comments- The idea of Jesus desiring to depart into Galilee suggests Him being led by the unction of His Spirit. He had been baptized by John the Baptist in Bethabara beyond Jordan ( John 1:28). He would now travel a short distance across the Jordan River into the region of Galilee. The text does not reveal to us the exact location.

John 1:28, "These things were done in Bethabara beyond Jordan, where John was baptizing."

John 1:43 — "and findeth Philip" - Comments- The Scriptures do not give us the reason for Jesus finding Philip. Perhaps one likely explanation is that His disciples, John , Andrew and Simon Peter, wanted to introduce Jesus to their closest friends, which would be Philip and Nathanael.

John 1:43 — "and saith unto him, Follow me" - Comments- I would think that Philip accepted this offer because of the supporting testimonies of his friends, John , Andrew and Simon Peter.

John 1:45 — "Philip findeth Nathanael" - Comments- The Hebrew name "Nathanael" means "God has given" (PTW). John the apostle will later tell us that Nathanael was of Cana in Galilee ( John 21:2). The name "Nathanael" is only mentioned in John 1:45-49 and John 21:2, so he is not found in the Synoptic lists of apostles. Therefore, some scholars suggest that Nathanael was the same person as Bartholomew. Also, John does not mention Bartholomew, while the Synoptics do not mention Nathanael, but rather Bartholomew ( Matthew 10:3, Mark 3:18, Luke 6:14). Others suggest he was also the same as Simon, the son of Cleopas, or Simon the Canaanite. However, scholars have not been able to clearly associate Nathanael with the Twelve. 115]

115] Andreas Ksterberger, John , in Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Academic, 2004), 79-80.

John 21:2, "There were together Simon Peter, and Thomas called Didymus, and Nathanael of Cana in Galilee, and the sons of Zebedee, and two other of his disciples."

"and saith unto him, We have found him, of whom Moses in the law, and the prophets, did write, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph." - Comments - The Jews of the early first century were expectant of the coming of the Messiah in a similar way that the Church is expectant of the Second Coming of Christ Jesus in the early twenty-first century. The expectation is seen in the preaching of John the Baptist, who announced the arrival of the Messiah to the Jews.

John 1:46 — "Can there any good thing come out of Nazareth?" - Comments- A. B. Bruce says this statement is "an ominous indication of a conflict with unbelief awaiting the Messiah." 116] In other words, it foreshadowed the rejection by the Jews that awaited Jesus.

116] A. B. Bruce, The Training of the Twelve (Edinburgh: T. & T. Clark, 1877), 2.

John 1:46 — "Philip saith unto him, Come and see" - Comments - When Philip invites Nathanael to come and see Jesus, the author also invites his readers to do the same.

John 1:47Comments - Deceit, or cleverness, is the primary characteristic of a corrupt society. Having lived as a missionary in Africa for many years, I concluded that cleverness is the key vice that shapes the moral fiber of all non-Judeo-Christian cultures, while integrity is the moral fiber that bonds together all cultures with a rich Judeo-Christian history.

John 1:48 Nathanael saith unto him, Whence knowest thou me? Jesus answered and said unto him, Before that Philip called thee, when thou wast under the fig tree, I saw thee.

John 1:48 — "when thou wast under the fig tree, I saw thee" - Comments- In the Old Testament, a man sitting under his fig tree came to mean a time of peace and prosperity in the nation (1Kg John 4:25, Micah 4:4, Zechariah 3:10). Although this was not a peaceful time in the land of Israel because of Roman rule, we do sense in this passage that there was peace in the life of Nathanael, as a man who was willing to put God first in his life.

1 Kings 4:25, "And Judah and Israel dwelt safely, every man under his vine and under his fig tree, from Dan even to Beersheba, all the days of Solomon."

Micah 4:4, "But they shall sit every man under his vine and under his fig tree; and none shall make them afraid: for the mouth of the LORD of hosts hath spoken it."

Zechariah 3:10, "In that day, saith the LORD of hosts, shall ye call every man his neighbour under the vine and under the fig tree."

John 1:49 — "thou art the King of Israel" - Comments- Notice how the Jews in the days of Jesus were looking for the Messiah to come as a conquering king. Jesus, however, was coming this time as a Lamb slain from the foundation of the world ( Revelation 13:8).

Revelation 13:8, "And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world."

John 1:50 Jesus answered and said unto him, Because I said unto thee, I saw thee under the fig tree, believest thou? thou shalt see greater things than these.

John 1:50Comments - When Jesus' tells Nathanael that he would see greater things than these, the reader identifies with Nathanael so that he also anticipates the next section of material that contains the testimony of Jesus' miracles. The greater things to see that Jesus refers to are the miracles and divine revelations of Jesus Christ recorded in John 2-20. The author concludes John 2-20 by referring to the many other miracles that Jesus performed before His disciples, saying, "And many other signs truly did Jesus in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book: But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name." ( John 20:30-31)

John 1:51 — "And he saith unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto you" - Comments - Jesus says, "Verily, verily, I say unto you." The pronoun is in the plural, so that Jesus is addressing all of His disciples. Those who follow Him would become recipients of the revelation and glory of God.

"Hereafter ye shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of man" - Comments - Jesus describes to His early disciples the concept of angels continually ascending and descending upon the Son of Man. This conveys the idea that Jesus' earthly ministry would be a continual flow of divine revelation and intervention from heaven.

Jesus uses the phrase "son of man" eleven times in the Gospel of John to describe Himself ( John 1:51; John 3:13-14; John 5:27; John 6:27; John 6:53; John 6:62; John 8:28; John 12:23; John 12:34; John 13:31), a phrase that many scholars believe finds it origin in the Old Testament prophecy of Daniel 7:13-14.

Daniel 7:13-14, "I saw in the night visions, and, behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought him near before him. And there was given him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations, and languages, should serve him: his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed."

John 1:51Comments- This section of John's Gospel ( John 1:19-51) closes with a promise in John 1:51 that this group of early disciples (and ourselves as fellow believers) would see the glory of the Son of man. In order to understand Jesus statement in John 1:51, we must reflect back upon the opening passage of this Gospel, which says, "And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth." ( John 1:14) Jesus now promises Nathanael that he would behold the glory of the Son of God. The theme of John's Gospel is the testimony that Jesus is the Son of God; thus, John records six miracles that reveal this glory, testifying that Jesus Christ was the Son of God. 117] If we will follow the book of John and believe as Nathanael and the disciples did, as they followed Jesus and believed, we will see what Nathanael saw, which is the revelation of Jesus as the Son of God.

117] John Peter Lange, The Gospel According to John , trans. Edward D. Yeomans, ed. Philip Schaff, in A Commentary on the Holy Scriptures, Critical, Doctrinal and Homiletical, With Special Reference to Ministers and Students, ed. John Peter Lange (Edinburgh: T. &. T. Clark, 1872), 102.

It is interesting to note that each of these miracles will be performed at festive occasions, telling us that Jesus' work of redemption for mankind is a cause for rejoicing and celebrating. John Lange notes that while the Mosaic Law brought condemnation, Jesus brought "life and peace." 118]

118] John Peter Lange, The Gospel According to John , trans. Edward D. Yeomans, ed. Philip Schaff, in A Commentary on the Holy Scriptures, Critical, Doctrinal and Homiletical, With Special Reference to Ministers and Students, ed. John Peter Lange (Edinburgh: T. &. T. Clark, 1872), 102.

The only other description in the Scriptures of angels ascending and descending in found in Genesis 28:10-15, when Jacob fell asleep and dreamed of a ladder extending from Heaven to earth with a host of angels ascending and descending upon it. John 1:51 gives us a strong indication that the vision of Jacob in Genesis 28:10-15 was in fact a prophecy of the coming of Jesus upon the earth, thus opening a doorway for mankind to access God"s throne in heaven.

 


Copyright Statement
These files are copyrighted by the author, Gary Everett. Used by Permission.
No distribution beyond personal use without permission.

Bibliography Information
Everett, Gary H. "Commentary on John 1:4". Gary H. Everett's Study Notes on the Holy Scriptures. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ghe/john-1.html. 2013.

Lectionary Calendar
Sunday, October 20th, 2019
the Week of Proper 24 / Ordinary 29
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