“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God”
Jesus is God’s complete self-expression or Word. The Word is God, just as my word is me and not something other than me. Jesus said it is out of the abundance of the heart that the mouth speaks (Matt. 12:34). Jesus is the abundance of God’s heart, the One in whom God’s most personal reality is known.
Hebrews 1:1 tells us that the crown of God’s self-revelation is His Son, who is “the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being” (Heb. 1:1-3). Jesus Himself told His disciples, “Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father” (John 14:9). Hebrews show us that the message God has spoken in His Son supercedes prophets and their prophecies, supercedes the message spoken by angels, supercedes the revelation of Moses, supercedes the testimony of the tabernacle, supercedes the law, and the covenant of Mt. Sinai (Heb. 1:1, 2:2-4, 3:3, 9:11, 10:1, 12:18-24). In short, Jesus is the full message of God to us. Every other message that has been or will be is piecemeal and limited. Hebrews warns that we can end up rejecting the Son because of devotion to God’s partial revelation through other avenues. Note that these are not sinful things or false messages, but spiritual things that, while they serve God’s purpose, are nonetheless incomplete. We would do well to heed this warning. In the church today, Jesus is often shouted down by heralds of the miraculous, morality, spiritual warfare, spiritual gifts, the end times, holiness, revival, prosperity, faith, tradition, cultural relevance, and a million other messages. Again, these things aren’t bad or satanic. But in the end, whatever we preach other than Jesus is less than God’s full Word.
John tells us that God’s complete self-expression, His Word, became flesh and dwelled among us (John 1:14). He further says that God’s complete self-expression was heard, seen, and touched by those who knew Him (1 John 1:1). This is mind-boggling. Everything that God wanted us to know about Him walked among us, ate with us, showed us affection, talked with us. That being the case, it still took an act of God to make us see His revelation in the Son (Matt. 16:15-17).
Our birth into spiritual life is accomplished when the Word enters into us. Peter says we were born again by the living and enduring word of God (1 Peter 1:23). John says God’s seed is in us (1 John 3:9). We have received nothing less than God’s complete self-expression. It is this One who indwells us. Nevertheless, this reality remains veiled to us unless the Holy Spirit opens our eyes (2 Cor. 3:16-18). Christ may be in us, but without the Holy Spirit’s ministry we will fail to recognize Him within just as people failed to recognize Jesus of Nazareth as God’s Christ when He walked the earth. In Galatians chapter one, Paul says that God revealed Christ in Him so that he might preach Him. Amen. May we know God’s complete self-expression, His Word, by revelation, so that we might preach nothing less than Him.