JESUS IS THE WORD: (John 1:1-5).
1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
As John starts his Gospel, he doesn’t begin with the birth of Jesus as a baby in a manger – he goes all the way back to creation. He reminds us about how God created the universe and flung the sun, the moon, the stars and the planets into space. He says, “In the beginning was the Word.” Notice that ‘Word’ here is capitalized. The Word here is one of the titles given to Jesus. Jesus is the Word. Then He goes on to make one of the most profound and deep statements in the Bible when he says, “The Word was with God, and the Word was God.” In the beginning, before the universe was created, Jesus was with God the Father. But it also says that Jesus was God. How can it be that Jesus was with God, and also that Jesus is God?
As Christians, we believe in the tri-unity of the Godhead. As the classic Westminster Confession of Faith declares: “In the unity of the Godhead there be three Persons of one substance, power, and eternity: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit.” John Himself wrote about this in his first letter: “For there are three that bear witness in heaven: the Father, the Word, and the Holy Spirit; and these three are one” (1 John 5:7). Although the Word trinity doesn’t appear in the Bible, the doctrine is seen throughout the entire Scriptures.
How can God be three, but also be only one? Now I’m not going to attempt to explain the trinity to you. There are men smarter and more educated than I who can’t even figure it out, so I’m not even going to try. But even though I can’t explain how God can be three in one, I still believe it because it’s in the Bible. This is one thing that sets Christianity apart from other world religions.
The founder of the Jehovah’s Witnesses religion – Charles Russell – took the Christian Bible and edited it and reworded that Scripture to say, “the Word was with God, and the Word was a god.” Because He didn’t believe in the Deity of Jesus Christ – that Jesus is God – He changed that Scripture to say that Jesus, the Word, was a god (small ‘G’). They believe that the Father (Jehovah) is God, but Jesus was just a man, and the Holy Spirit is just a force. Just because someone doesn’t believe the Bible doesn’t mean you can change the Bible! The Lord actually gives a strong warning to anyone like Charles Russell who would change the Bible: “If anyone adds to these things, God will add to him the plagues that are written in this book; and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part from the Book of Life…” (Rev. 22:18-19). Whether you believe it or not, the Bible teaches that Jesus is God.
Another false religion is Mormonism, started by Joseph Smith. They go to the opposite extreme belief. Instead of saying that there is only one God, they teach that God the Father, Jesus the Son and the Holy Spirit are all three separate gods. They also teach that if you follow the teachings of Mormonism, you too can become a god and have your own universe and planet to rule as god. What a crazy belief! Contrary to these false religions, the Bible clearly teaches that Jesus is God.
Now what does it mean to say that Jesus is the Word? The great Bible commentary Matthew Henry wrote: “The plainest reason why the Son of God is called the Word seems to be, that as our words explain our minds to others, so was the Son of God sent in order to reveal his Father’s mind to the world.” If I want you to understand what’s going on in my mind, I need to use words. To say that Jesus is the Word of God means that He is an expression of the heart and mind of God the Father to us. Jesus as the Word of God helps us to know what God is like. Jesus Himself said, “If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also; and from now on you know Him and have seen Him.” (John 14:7). As we study the life of Jesus in the Gospel of John, we are going to get to know God a little bit better, because Jesus reveals God to us.
Pastor Chris Jordan