On Sunday morning, I will be speaking on “God in the Flesh” from John 1:1-5,14. What a powerful and challenging topic! It is difficult to explain the unexplainable.
Without faith, how can we understand what it means to be God and man at the same time? Our text is so powerful that we can spend a lot of time on the subject. I plan a two-part series, trying to help my audience understand this difficult subject.
John’s gospel is not a biography but a treatise to prove the premise in John 1:1-5.14. John’s prologue is so overwhelming that no human being could ever live up to it. John spends the rest of the book laying out evidence to prove his case. Everything in this book is designed to illustrate his point. It comes to fruition when Thomas cries, “My Lord and My God!” in John 20:28.
What is the best way for you to explain what it means for Jesus to be God and man?
One can be a devoted student of Scripture and yet not understand the people to whom they minister. We must not be cloistered in our hole, failing to interact with others. The Bible student who is not also a student of human nature, misses the other half of the equation.
The ultimate goal of Bible study is two-fold. First, we desire heaven as our own future destination. Secondly, we want to inspire others to take the same path. How do we do the latter if we know nothing of our subjects?
We need to be very attentive to the ways and motivations of human beings. We must study how they think and react to certain ideas. Study the culture and know what turns people’s heads. In so doing, we become better armed when we reach out to people.
There is danger in this method, of course. Nietzsche is credited with saying, “When you stare into the abyss, the abyss stares back into you.” If we will learn the culture, we must not let it drag us into its web of deceit.
The most sensible word I’ve heard lately was from a Twitter post which said:
“Maybe the USA should consider Mexico’s law regarding immigration.”
After reading their immigration laws, it might not be a bad idea:
To me, the most striking phrase of Jesus is, “Have ye not read?” (Matthew 12:3,5; Matthew 19:4; Matthew 22:31; Mark 12:10,26; Luke 6:3).
The religious leaders of Christ’s day had indeed “read” the Old Testament passages that Jesus’ referred to in the above passages, but were more interested in upholding their own “traditions” rather than upholding God’s word (Matthew 15:3,6; Mark 7:8-9,13).
As a result, the Lord called these religious leaders “hypocrites” (Matthew 15:7-8 ; cf. Isaiah 29:13).
Today, our society would call them “reading-challenged.”
An important distinction in my life has been the distinction between good and evil. Many people in our society are woefully ignorant of that distinction (Isaiah 5:20). That distinction can only come about by a daily and habitual study of God’s word (Acts 17:11; Hebrews 5:13-14; 2 Timothy 2:15), as well as an application of it (Psalm 119:33-34).
Looking at the denominational world, I’d say the most misused word in the Bible would have to be the word “grace.” The “grace only” crowd have been misusing that word for many years.
They conveniently leave out man’s part in God’s redemptive plan – grace “through faith” (Ephesians 2:8; cf. Romans 4:16).
I’m a crossword puzzle person. Also like to play Scrabble, because it’s interesting to see what kind of words your opponent comes up with.