Tuesday, March 13, 2012

John 1

     John 1 is the prologue. Whereas Matthew and Luke begin with the birth and infancy narrative of Jesus, John begins with a theological treatise. John's focus is not on what happened but on why. John 1 explains that though Jesus, the human being was born in Bethlehem, The Christ (Son of God) was eternally preexistantly God. The "Word" is the Greek word "Logos". Christians have taught and understood that when God spoke the "Word" in the creation poem of Genesis 1, the Word through which God spoke was the preexistant Son of God. Thus in the beginning the Word was with God and the Word was God.
     Verse 14 is the very heart of all Christian theology. It is Incarnation. Matthew and Luke tell us about Incarnation  through the stories of virgin birth and the miracle of the baby Jesus. John tells us simply and plainly: the Word became flesh and lived among us! Eugene Peterson uses the more colorful and God became flesh and "moved into the neighborhood." The Divine and Holy assumed corruptible human flesh and lived among us.
     I love Andrew's behavior in John 35 and follow. When Andrew is shown that Jesus is the Messiah (Christ) his first instinct is to share this news with someone close. He immediately goes and gets his brother Simon and when Simon is introduced to Jesus, Jesus changes Simon's name to Cephas (in Greek Petros) usually rendered in English as Peter. The name means "Rock" in all three languages. How much fun would it have been if the first English translators had simply translated Cephas and Petros to Rocky. Later at Caesarea Philipi Jesus could have said "you are Rocky and on this Rock I will build my church!"
    Andrew knows that news like this should not be kept to oneself: he had to tell his brother!

No comments: