The Sign of God (John 1:1-14)
John 1:1–14 - In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being. 4 In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. 5 The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it. 6 There came a man sent from God, whose name was John. 7 He came as a witness, to testify about the Light, so that all might believe through him. 8 He was not the Light, but he came to testify about the Light. 9 There was the true Light which, coming into the world, enlightens every man. 10 He was in the world, and the world was made through Him, and the world did not know Him. 11 He came to His own, and those who were His own did not receive Him. 12 But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name, 13 who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God. 14 And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.
The Sign of the Christ Child - We have heard the traditional Christmas stories in Matthew and especially Luke 2. Luke records for us those words of the angelic messenger to the shepherds. He gives them a sign by which to identify the Christ child. Remember these familiar words: “for today in the city of David there has been born for you a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger” (Lk. 2: 11-12) . . . .
The Signs of the Gospel - Baby Jesus in a manger was the sign to the shepherds, but John arranges other signs to convey the identity of Jesus in this Gospel, that we may believe that “Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing you may have life in His name” (20:31). In this outline of the signs of John, the center sign directly relates to the sign at Jesus’ birth.
The Seven Signs + One: The New Creation
1. New Creation Breaks In at Wedding: Water into wine (2:1-11) (3rd Day/6th Day)
2. Stopping Death with a Word: Prevents death of king’s man’s son (4:46ff)
3. Life of the World: True Sabbath - Paralyzed (38 years) at Bethesda pool (5:2-9) (sin no more)
4. The New Exodus: Bread of Life - Loaves (6:1-14) + Crossing the Sea (6:19)
5. Light of the World: Blind (born) cleansed at Siloam pool on Sabbath (9:1-7) (not his sin)
6. Calling Forth Life with a Word: Delays/death, then raises Lazarus (11:1-44)
7. New Adam: Water & blood on the cross (19:34-35)
+ 8. New Adam/Gardener: The resurrection (20:1-29) “First Day” (8th Day)
The Sign of God - The most astounding verse in the passage is the final one: “And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth” (1:14). Jesus was the sign of God. He pointed the way to the Father. He humbled infinity Divinity to take on human flesh, not as an Avatar, but as an Incarnate Son of God, so that we might be sons of God and have life in His name.
Gregg Strawbridge, Ph.D., is the pastor of All Saints Church in Lancaster, PA. He became a committed follower of Jesus Christ at age 20, discipled in the context of a University Navigator Ministry. As a result of personal discipleship he went on to study at Columbia Biblical Seminary (M.A., Columbia, SC, 1990), as well as a Ph.D. in education and philosophy... read more