by Olu Talabi (based on RLCF Bible Study on Wednesday, July 6, 2016)
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God” (John 1:1).
Jesus Christ is the fullness of God’s Word which became flesh (John 1:14). Many times when we speak of God’s word we immediately consider the Bible. It is true that the Bible is God’s word but Jesus Christ who is the Word extends far beyond the Bible which is the written word of God given to us. The Bible (the written word) remains our primary foundation, with the revelation of the Holy Spirit, in knowing who the true God is (John 20:31); but Jesus Christ (the fullness of God’s Word) extends beyond that which is written for us (the Bible)-John 20:30 and John 21:25. The Lord Jesus Christ is infinitely more than anything we can consider in the universe; He Himself is the limitless God.
Consider the beginnings mentioned in John 1:1 and Genesis 1:1. Certainly, the Son, the Word in John 1 existed before all things, including the creation of the world. Indeed everything, including the world, was created by Him (John 1:3; Hebrews 11:3; Colossians 1:16). Jesus Christ is Alpha and Omega. There is no beginning with Him. The concept of a beginning and time are used in relation to creation. The Son of God has no beginning.
The danger then is of knowing the written word and not the Word Himself (John 5:39-40). Many men pride themselves in knowing the Bible yet they may not have met the One whom the Bible speaks of. The primary end of reading the Bible, every Bible study, etc., is to see and know God’s will in Jesus Christ. If Jesus is not revealed to us (in the Old and New Testaments) our look into the Bible is incomplete. In addition, it is through Jesus Christ alone that we may know the living God; He has revealed God (John 1:18). Herein lies the fundamental difference between Christianity and any other religion in the world: while other religions strive through various actions and means to know God, a true Christian rests in the revelation of the living God in the face of Jesus Christ. His task after being born again then becomes to know more of his God through the Spirit of Jesus, the Word, his Savior.
The Word is one with the Father and the Holy Spirit (1 John 5:7). It is insufficient to say Jesus Christ is co-equal with the Father and the Holy Spirit. Co-equality suggests three different entities who are the same in various measurements, say power or strength, for example. The Father, Son and Spirit are simply ONE (Deuteronomy 6:4). One is One and not equal to One. May the Holy Spirit give us His understanding on this.
Jesus Christ only is our message. Jesus Christ only is the One we seek in looking at the Bible. Jesus Christ only is the One we share when we talk of the Bible. Jesus Christ only is the word of life we give to men in a dying world. Jesus Christ, the Word of God, is indeed our life (Deuteronomy 32:47)
Consider again that Jesus Christ needed grace from birth (Luke 2:40) to death (Hebrews 2:9). All that our Lord accomplished on earth was completely by the power of His Father through grace. Jesus Christ was fully a man just as we are. In Hebrews 4:15 we read that Jesus was tempted in all ways as we are, yet without sin. The next verse adjures us to come also to God’s throne to obtain the very grace by which He prevailed. In short, we have no more excuse for sin having any hold in our lives: a man like us has prevailed; we follow Him.
Without God’s grace, it is impossible to live a victorious life as a Christian. And although we are commanded to come boldly to receive grace from God (Hebrews 4:16) there yet is one hindrance to obtaining this grace: pride. More than one time in scripture, it says God resists the proud man, but He gladly gives grace to the humble (Proverbs 3:34; James 4:6; 1Peter 5:5). So, humility must be our position to receive God’s grace. Humility in making God our first choice and source of reliance in all that we do, not falling back on Him after failing in our strength. This means we must always acknowledge how weak we are even in the simplest things; we need God’s help. Jesus Christ was the humblest man who ever lived. Because of this, like it says of the Spirit that was given to Him (John 3:34), God’s grace was also given to him without measure.
In our battle against sin, what the law could not do, grace through the Lord Jesus is now able to accomplish (Romans 6:14). We walk the way of Christ. If grace was necessary for His victory on earth, we also will need God’s grace to prevail over the many pulls of our lives. Again, we have no excuse, a man like us has prevailed. Let us be encouraged no matter the state we are in right now. God simply says to come, admit our weakness in humility and ask for His grace in faith. He will grant it. Amen.