Tuesday, July 3, 2012

The Word by Which We Understand All Words

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. (John 1:1)
The Greek word for “word” is logos. It speaks of meaning and purpose, of logic and reason. The Logos John speaks about is a Person who presents the wisdom of God and is, indeed, God. This Word is identified as the one who “became flesh and dwelt among us” (John 1:14). He is Jesus the Messiah, the Son of the Father.

This Word is further identified as the Creator: “All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made” (John 1:3). When we read in Genesis 1:1, “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth,” it is speaking of the Word, of Jesus. He is the Creator.

John the Baptist gives this testimony concerning Jesus: “For He who God has sent speaks the words of God” (John 3:34). The Word is God and therefore speaks the word of God. Indeed, Jesus is the Word by which we understand all the words of God. John begins his account of the Gospel with the same words that begin the Old Testament, connecting the gospel of Jesus the Messiah with God’s original purpose.

Not only Genesis, but all the Old Testament scriptures speak of Jesus, as He told the Jewish leaders. “You search the Scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and these are they which testify of Me ... If you believed Moses, you would believe Me; for he wrote about Me” (John 5:39, 46).

After His resurrection, Jesus spoke with the Emmaus disciples: “And beginning at Moses and all the Prophets, He expounded to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself” (Luke 24:27). These were not merely the merely the particular messianic prophecies scattered throughout, but the whole trajectory and thrust of the Old Testament pointed to the fulfillment of all God’s promises and purposes found in the Messiah, Jesus.

The words of Scripture are ultimately about Jesus. All their meaning is centered on Him and apart from Him we cannot understand their fullness. In Him we have the complete and ultimate revelation of God.
God, who at various times and in various ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets, has in these last days spoken to us by His Son, whom He has appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the worlds; who being the brightness of His glory and the express image of His person, and upholding all things by the word of His power … (Hebrews 1:1-3)
Jesus is not only the Word by which we understand the words of God, He is the Word by which we understand all other words. For the world itself comes forth from the Word of God. “By faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible” (Hebrews 11:3). Heaven and earth were created by the Word, Jesus, and all things are sustained by Him. The reality of the physical realm as well as the spiritual find their meaning and purpose in Him and cannot be fully understood apart from Him.