The arrival of Jesus is the most significant moment in human history and humans’ eternity. John 1:10-18 allows us to see the depth of meaning held within arrival into the world.
10 He was in the world, and the world was created through him, and yet the world did not recognize him. 11 He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him. 12 But to all who did receive him, he gave them the right to be children of God, to those who believe in his name, 13 who were born, not of natural descent, or of the will of the flesh, or of the will of man, but of God.
14 The Word became flesh and dwelt among us. We observed his glory, the glory as the one and only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. 15 (John testified concerning him and exclaimed, “This was the one of whom I said, ‘The one coming after me ranks ahead of me, because he existed before me.’”) 16 Indeed, we have all received grace upon grace from his fullness, 17 for the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18 No one has ever seen God. The one and only Son, who is himself God and is at the Father’s side—he has revealed him.
Through the life of Jesus, the incarnation presents a revelation of God that gives us insight into our new life, God’s family, the glory of God, grace that is offered, and truth that we need. Let me lay out five thoughts that we can glean from this passage.
1. The incarnation is a revelation of God through Jesus. In verses 14 and 18, we see that Jesus has arrived to show us God. It is a unique revelation. He is the one and only Son of God. It is a personal revelation. As singer and songwriter Chris Rice wrote, Jesus pulls our “injured flesh” around Himself to live as we do. It is a sympathetic revelation. Jesus pitched His tent among our lives so that He could be a sympathetic High Priest to the people in need of mercy.
2. The revelation of Jesus is an invitation into God’s family. In His incarnational work, Jesus desired to make us members of His family. He did not arrive to present ethereal or philosophical content for humans to debate. God revealed Himself to us so that He can be knowable. Being knowable means being accessible. Being accessible is an invitation to being in a relationship.
3. The entrance to God’s family is through the work of Jesus. We cannot gain access to God or entrance into family by our heritage, desire, or activity. Receiving this new birthright is achieved only by the Christ’s love and His provisions. He is the exclusive source of entrance to God’s family.
4. The work of Jesus is the delivery of glory, grace, and truth. In verses 14 and 16-17, we read that in Jesus we see God’s glory. It is God’s beautiful presence made known through His reputation and work among us. We also receive grace. We become the recipients of God’s blessings given to us at no cost to us. But, of course, it comes at great cost to Jesus. Truth, in its purest form, is also delivered in Jesus’ arrival. God’s eternal and fixed understanding of all things is revealed in Jesus.
5. All of this must be received by faith. We see in verses 10-11 that there were many who rejected Jesus. His own people did so. But to everyone who do receive Him – place their faith in Jesus and His work for us – we become the children of God. You can reject or receive His offer for entrance to the family of God. He does so mercifully and must be received by faith.
Do you see how it all connects together? The incarnation is a revelation of God through Jesus. The incarnation of Jesus is an invitation in God’s family. The entrance to God’s family is through the work of Jesus. The work of Jesus of delivery of glory, grace, and truth. All of this must be received by faith. It is beautiful truth that God has come in the flesh for our good and His glory.
As part of my sermon series through the Gospel of John, I’ll be posting summaries of my messages and sermon notes. You can listen to the messages at FirstBradenton.com.