This is one of the most amazing and wonderful scriptures in the bible. The promise contained here is so amazing that it seems almost too good to be true. But we know that the bible does not lie and so it is the truth and what a fantastic truth it is.
The True Light
Jesus here is shown to be the true light of the world. By this we see that he is true, and that he bears witness to the truth. And he is the light which indicates also that he is the messenger of the truth. Indeed he could not be anything else for he proceeded and came forth from God. How could he be anything but light and truth?
Now in verse 10 we see it said, “He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him.” So not only did he come into the world but he was already in it. In fact we are shown here that he actually created the world and that it was made through him.
If we consider the first chapter of Genesis, we see that nothing was created until the word went out. So as an example, there was no light until the word went out that said, “Let there be light.” who was it that spoke these words? It was the God who is known also as the Word, as shown in verse 1 of this chapter.
If you will recall, verse 1 said, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” the Word was with God and he was God. Shortly we will see that the Word became flesh in the form of Jesus, but we will get to that in the next post.
Thus it can be seen that truly Jesus, or the Word, was and is indeed the true light that enlightens the world and all of mankind.
Rejected by the Jews
So Jesus came to the earth to preach the good news of the Kingdom of heaven. The Jews were expecting him for they had been foretold in many prophecies that the Messiah was to come and that he would bring a new kingdom and salvation to the people.
But as we see here, the Jews rejected him. They were expecting a king, not a carpenter. They were expecting someone to come in and take charge, not teach humility, love and freedom from sin and the law. They got the Messiah or the Christ, and they didn’t like the one they got because he didn’t fit in with what they thought he should be like.
How often do we today get answers from the Lord and reject them because they are not the answers we want? I’m pretty sure we have all been down that road from time to time, and we suffer when we reject His wisdom and try to use our own.
Well in the same way the Jews suffered loss in that time for they had the one they were waiting for, and because they rejected him, they suffered loss. But to the Gentiles, it was fantastic for he became our Saviour, our Lord and our God. He became the pioneer and perfecter of our faith so that we could receive the salvation that was rejected by the Jews. What a fantastic blessing! And the Jews who come to him will not miss out either for they too have this same promise. And what is that promise?
Born of God and Children of God
The promise that was made is that we would have the right to become the children of God. It says in verse 12, “But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God.”
This is the power of the call of Jesus. Not just that we will be saved, but that we will be saved to become the children of God. His call to us and his promise is that we can be born again, or born anew as the children of God.
Other translations of this verse 12 say that we will be given, “… Power to become the children of God.” And he does give us power. In the book of Acts 1:8 it says, “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you.” Part of the promise of the Lord in John 1 was that we would receive power to become the children of God. I believe that the work of the Holy Spirit in us is to do the work of transformation so that we can truly become the children of God. So that we can think, act and behave as God would do and not as man does today.
This is the power that was promised. It’s not about the power to do miracles and stuff like that, it’s the power to be transformed into the image of God through Jesus Christ. And that can only come through the working of the Holy Spirit and the teachings of the New Covenant in our lives.
(Picture sourced from stock.xchng taken by mattnolt)