“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” JOHN 1:1
Many times, throughout my years as a Christian, I have heard this passage cited. It has usually been used to assert, or confirm that Jesus is God. That being said, whether or not that was the intent of God Almighty when He gave this prophesy to John, is incumbent upon us, as Christians to determine. Disciples of Christ, and of God’s word, are to explore exactly what HE means, by this declaration, “the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”
Is this belief the totality, or even the primary point of God’s communication to us concerning, “The Word?” Why is it that God chose to relate this TRUTH to us in this particular way, and at the very beginning of the Gospel of John? Is it truly to set the basis for all Christian theology as the trinity, or is there more that He wants us to understand? If the primary purpose of this passage is to set the trinity as the defining characteristic of the personhood of GOD, why is the Holy Spirit not mentioned here?
If this question has never occurred to you, I would suggest that it should. If it has, I wonder whether you have studied it intently enough, and have you come to the understanding that God intends?
Let us look at this 1st verse of John in its context;
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
The same was in the beginning with God.
All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.
In him was life; and the life was the light of men.
And the light shines in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.”
I believe that this verse, and this phrase in particular has far greater significance than is represented in the statement, “Jesus is God.”
I will begin by asking a few questions, Is there a reason that the first affirmation is not that, “in the beginning was God,” rather it states, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” As I see it, the fact that God’s WORD was “in the beginning,” is being stressed more than that God was from the beginning. I notice that, “the beginning,” is not defined, or elaborated upon, rather that God’s word WAS, from before time, and there was never the existence of GOD, without HIS WORD.
"I will worship toward thy holy temple, and praise thy name for thy lovingkindness and for thy truth: for thou hast magnified THY WORD above all thy name.” Psalm138:4
“Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.” John 17:17.
Clearly, God has placed an high value upon His Word, when it is, “rightly divided,“ as stated in II Tim 2:15.
The next element of this phrase is, “and the Word was God.” This sets the relationship of God’s WORD, as at least equal with God himself. Psalm 138:1 elevates it even further, “I will worship toward thy holy temple, and praise thy name for thy lovingkindness and for thy truth: for thou hast magnified thy word above all thy name.” Is it really God’s intention here to communicate that God has magnified Jesus above himself, or is it HIS WORD itself, or God’s communication to the independent members of His creation, that He seeks to magnify?
Let us consider the word, “WORD.” This word, in the English, is translated in the New Testament, from the Greek word, LOGOS.
From G3004; something said (including the thought); by implication a topic (subject of discourse), also reasoning (the mental faculty) or motive; by extension a computation; specifically (with the article in John) the Divine Expression (that is, Christ): - account, cause, communication, X concerning, doctrine, fame, X have to do, intent, matter, mouth, preaching, question, reason, + reckon, remove, say (-ing), shew, X speaker, speech, talk, thing, + none of these things move me, tidings, treatise, utterance, word, work.
Total KJV occurrences: 330. STRONG’s
It is not a name, it was rarely, if ever, given to God’s servants, and prophets as a direct representation of the Person of God, rather it is used as a representation of God’s communication TO US, his creation.
Word, in the old Testament, is translated from DABAR, with the first occurrence in
Genesis 15:1, “the word of the LORD.”
From H1696; a word; by implication a matter (as spoken of) of thing; adverbially a cause: - act, advice, affair, answer, X any such (thing), + because of, book, business, care, case, cause, certain rate, + chronicles, commandment, X commune (-ication), + concern [-ing], + confer, counsel, + dearth, decree, deed, X disease, due, duty, effect, + eloquent, errand, [evil favoured-] ness, + glory, + harm, hurt, + iniquity, + judgment, language, + lying, manner, matter, message, [no] thing, oracle, X ought, X parts, + pertaining, + please, portion, + power, promise, provision, purpose, question, rate, reason, report, request, X (as hast) said, sake, saying, sentence, + sign, + so, some [uncleanness], somewhat to say, + song, speech, X spoken, talk, task, + that, X there done, thing (concerning), thought, + thus, tidings, what [-soever], + wherewith, which, word, work.
Total KJV occurrences: 1438. STRONG’s
God’s word is TRUE. Why, because God can not lie, and the opposite of the truth is a lie. (Numbers 23:19.) Since God’s word is true, it is a perfect representation of God, and HIS WILL. God can not even be tempted to lie, (James 1:13.) Only if we we have respect, and reverence for God’s revealed word, do we understand His Word as we ought.
Is it not possible that the gem of spiritual wisdom contained in the 1st verse of the book of John is that verbal, and/or written communication of the one true God, by the one true God and His disciples, is the very essence of God himself, and the most complete knowledge available to us until the fulfillment of the resurrection?
“For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.” I Co 13:12
God bless you, Dave