By Chaplain (Col) Stephen W. Leonard, USA, Ret.
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him was not anything made that was made. In Him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.” John 1:1-5
The first five verses from the Book of John settle all the questions of who Jesus truly is. They answer believers, heretics, angels and devils. They are an emphatic exclamation mark to truth, conveyed to the father of lies, as well as to you. These verses simply tell you the truth.
The Apostle John wrote by virtue of the Holy Spirit what is the very capstone of all four Gospels in the Book which he wrote. The author, who was known as “the disciple whom Jesus loved,” wrote more deeply of this One who loved Him, far more than any other.
I believe, in part, that John’s vivid vision on the Isle of Patmos gave John a fuller picture of who Jesus is than those who never saw the same vision. God chose to make John the receiver of this truth to pass it on. John was made privy to the actual return of the Lord Jesus Christ, a yet, future coming, but John was still held back from revealing all the truth that he saw.
These five short verses, however, completely destroy the heresies contrived against the Lord Jesus Christ. There would not be any heresies at all if every human opinionator hued exactly to the written, inspired Word of God. But there are those who use only the ignorance of their self-contrived opinions, rather than the facts available to them.
Satan ensured that human contrivers would deviate from the Word of God by introducing lies out of the mouth of the father of lies to subvert the character of God’s Son. It is highly improbable that any of these committed heretics were or later became genuine followers of Christ, but we ourselves are not privy to the names actually written down in the Lamb’s Book of Life.
All the names of those people who are genuinely saved are found in this book, for God Himself, in the person of Jesus Christ, inscribes their names in the book; they are truly engraved in the very palms of His hand, which is to say, they cannot be removed or erased from the Lamb’s Book of Life!
Jesus is eternal. He was with God before any matter came to be. From all eternity, the Word, who is the very Son of God, existed in an intimate relationship with the Father. He was and is God, along with the Father and the Spirit. We do not fully comprehend this triune God, who is Trinity, nor the truths of these five verses, but we humbly receive them like a little child, and as humble creatures of a Creator.
In Jesus, all things were made and have their existence. In Him, all things consist and actually hold together. And while you were still dead, Jesus died that you might be given life. This is the key. Life! This word “life” means eternal life. In Him was eternal life! You do not have any LIFE at all apart from Him.
And having life, you also have light! Life brings light. The darkness of ignorance no longer reigns. Darkness cannot, nor does it, overcome or shut out light. Jesus cannot be squelched. He gives life of His own accord to any whom He sees fit to give it. His gift is indiscriminate of age, sex, power, wealth, race, or anything that discriminates who men and women are. Those whom He chooses to love of His own perfect wisdom, receive life, and those who receive life see, because life brings light!
Do you want life? Your only means of receiving it is Jesus. And the life He gives brings light that can never be overcome. Otherwise, you will live in the future in total darkness; the worst condition that can be wished on anyone. Do not let the darkness overcome you forever! Come, before you can’t, to the light!
“Jesus, Thou joy of loving hearts, Thou fount of life, Thou light of men, from the best bliss that earth imparts, we turn unfilled to Thee again.”
(1st verse of Bernard of Clairvaux’s hymn, “Jesus, Thou Joy of Loving Hearts,” 1150)