Christ is Life: Reflections on John 1:4
In [the Word] was life, and that life was the light of men. (John 1:4)
And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us. (John 1:14)
Jesus said to [Thomas], "I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." (John 14:6)
Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of the disciples [after His resurrection], which are not written in this book, but these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name. (John 20:30-31)
For to me, to live is Christ. (Phil 1:21a)
Jesus is Life. He is revealed as Life in His incarnation and in His teaching. Jesus is revealed as the Life by the divine will through the Cross and in His resurrection. Jesus declared that He is the Life when He was in close communion with His disciples. We too need communion with fellow believers that we would be ever more convinced that life is uniquely in Him.
Jesus is the Life because He is God, He is Man, and as the God-Man He conquered death. He took the death that we deserved in our place. Believing in Him, we have life in His name, both in this life and the life to come.
Jesus has life in Himself. The incarnate Word is—as we see throughout the Gospel of John—the eternal “I AM” of the Old Testament. “I AM” represented YHWH, the covenant name of God in the Old Testament. But whereas that name came to represent judgment and condemnation, since—by the weakness of our sinful flesh—people were entirely unable to keep the Old Covenant demands, the name Jesus literally means “YHWH saves.” The New Covenant established in His blood brings about life and peace with God.
The Word of God does not only create, but sustains all things. The Word of God does not only create and sustain, but He reveals who God is (He is the Light). The Word of God directs our paths (He is the Way). The Word of God is the Truth by whom all ideas must be evaluated.
The Word of God does not only create—does not only give life—in the natural realm, but in the supernatural and eternal realm as well. We ought not seek for life anywhere else. There is one Mediator between God and Man, the Man Christ Jesus. Jesus’ teachings offer us clear guidance. We obtain eternal life by faith alone; we gain access to God through Christ alone.
Jesus is the Life. These passages rebuke anyone who would seek to proclaim another source or end for life. These passages correct those who are confused about life, and who have something other than Jesus Himself as their chief concern in life. These passages train us to look to Jesus as the grounding for our lives, as the way to live our lives, and as the truth about life by which all other ideas must be evaluated.
Labels: Bible study