The Gospel of John is thick with theological statements and concepts. John says much about Jesus, about God, about humanity, about belief or trust, and about sin. Some of the most potent and pregnant verses of the entire Bible are known as John’s prologue – the first 18 verses of his Gospel.
‘The Word’ is John’s unique way of referring to God the Son, and John introduces his reader to this focal point of his Gospel with amazing profundity. Here are 21 things John conveys about ‘the Word’ in just 18 verses (and the astute reader will find even more).
- The Word was ‘already existing’ in the beginning (v1, 2).
- The Word is distinct (in some sense) from ‘God’ (v1, 2).
- The Word is (in some other sense) ‘God’ (v1).
- The Word is the creator of all things (v3).
- The Word is the author of life (v4).
- The Word is the one through whom illumination/light/knowledge/wisdom comes (v4).
- The Word is unconquerable in illumination/light/knowledge/wisdom (v5).
- The Word is attested by God through the witness of others (v6).
- God intends for people to believe the Word (v7).
- The Word came into the world (v9).
- The Word is sovereign over the world, but the Word is also foreign to the world (v10).
- The Word was rejected by the very things He had made (v11).
- There were some who did receive the Word, and these He made children of God (v12).
- The Word is glorious, full of grace and truth (v14).
- The Word added humanity to His pre-existent nature and tabernacled among men (v14).
- The Word was perceived as glorious by John and others (v14).
- The Word is greater than John the Baptist because He existed before him, even though The Word came along after him (v15).
- The Word dispensed grace from His fullness (v16).
- The Word is Jesus Christ (v17).
- The Word brought a new covenant, distinct from the one that came through Moses (v17).
- The Word is the apex of God’s revelation of Himself (v18).
May we give ear to John’s witness and believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and have life in His name (Jn. 20:31).