“The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us…”
Why is Jesus so important? His life was lived 2,000 years ago, why are we still talking about Him? What’s up with this man, whom people are lovingly obsessed over–or hate with all they are? Why is He such a polarizing figure and why won’t He just fade away, like any other fad or story? What’s the deal?
Further, why am I, personally, so drawn to knowing someone more and more, whom I’ve never met face to face? Someone whom I simply believe in? John chapter 1 answers all of these questions for me. It begins by telling me, “He was with God in the beginning” (John 1:2). So when they (Father, Son, Holy Spirit), decided to create this universe–the very notion of time–they already had a relationship going on amongst themselves.
This explains to me why I’m so drawn to my Creator–He, God, the Trinity, made me for an eternal relationship.
Second, it tells me “Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made” (John 1:3). This explains His infiniteness, and my finiteness. He always “has been.” We have not. He has no beginning or end. We do. Everything you can currently see and feel will end, because it has a beginning.
However, your spirit is everlasting just like God. It will go on for eternity, with, or without Him. We get to choose. He doesn’t choose for us. Hence, free will. This is what makes us like God.
So why Jesus? Why this man? Why not leave things as they were before He came? Verse 14 explains the reason, perfectly. “The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us…”
Jesus is called the Word--capital W–as in, a proper noun. Why is this? I heard it once said Jesus is called the Word because He’s everything God wanted to say to us! Jesus was and still is, GOD IN THE FLESH. The Word of God became flesh like us! God was now literally speaking to His creation, face to face!
Why is that important? Why did He do this? Why can’t we just believe in and worship God without Him becoming a man? Why do we need this personal relationship with Him–as in, “in person”?
In my quest of nearly 35 years of life, I’ve determined that God became a man for many reasons, but three of them stand out to me:
- We needed to know what God was like in person. Have you ever judged someone who you didn’t know personally? You thought you knew them, just by what others have said or what you’ve heard, but when you finally got to know them in person they were completely different than what your mind was already made up they’d be like? This happens all the time. It even happened to our Creator. God saw that not very many people really knew Him, intimately. So He became His very own creation! The Bible says Jesus has made him known (see John 1:18). The mystery of what God would be like in person is over! Jesus showed us God in the flesh!
- We needed a perfect role model. John 1:4-5 states, “In him was life, and that life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness but the darkness has not understood it.” Up until God manifested Himself in person, the world was just guessing as to who He really was. Everyone was feeling around in the dark, trying to understand Him. Sure, the Jews had the Law of Moses which included moral and ceremonial laws (over 600 of them, not just 10). But none of that stuff made them understand God perfectly. Jesus did just that! (See Hebrews 1:3). He set the example for us by gracefully completing every law in Himself, for us (see Galatians 3:13). He also overrode the Law with His teachings, miracles, and life! Jesus, the human, literally became a new agreement between us and our Creator! (See Hebrews 7:22, 2 Corinthians 5:21). So now, because of this New Covenant in Christ–which had to be perfect–we have the ideal example of how to live our lives just right: WIJDTM. “What Is Jesus Doing Through Me?” (See Galatians 5:22-23, 1 Corinthians 13:4-13).
- We needed our sin-debt paid off with God, once and for all. I could write a 5-page report on this, but to summarize, the grace-confused Christians will try to make you think you need to confess every single sin in order to be forgiven for them, even after you’ve accepted Christ as your Savior–and if you don’t, you are going to hell. This makes no sense because there are sins we forget about and overlook all the time. They fade away into the rear-view mirror of our lives, without any confession or asking of forgiveness. So this conditional, graceless forgiveness is madness, and incorrect. Such thinking keeps you focused on your sin, rather than on Jesus’ finished work for your sin (see John 19:30, Philippians 4:8). God had a better idea than having to worry about keeping track of our debts with Him. HE WILL PAY IT OFF! ONCE AND FOR ALL! (Hebrews 10:10). And He took it a step further, making it the easiest process ever, to be forgiven for good: admit you are sinful, admit Jesus is perfect, and then believe His sacrifice on the Cross has made you perfect…viola! (John 3:16, Romans 6:6-7, 10:9, Colossians 1:22, Hebrews 10:14). Now that is a loving God! A God who would die for us while we were still sinners just to make us a part of His eternal Family who are now saints! (See Romans 5:8, Ephesians 1:5, 1 John 3:1).
Of course, I’m sure if I put my mind to it, I could write an entire book on all the reasons why we needed Jesus to come to earth. But if I was forced to give one single reason as to why God got down off His throne in heaven, became a baby on His very own planet, grew up, taught us, led us, guided us, and saved us…it would be this: He wanted to show us what real love is like. That’s Jesus. That’s my Jesus. I know Him personally, do you?
A prayer for you: Jesus, today I want to thank you for your life, and your death, and your life! Spiritually, I know you are the truth! Thank you for creating me for this relationship with you. Thank you for pursuing me when I ran from you, in my mind, as fast as I could. Even though you were in me the whole time, I didn’t know it! Everywhere I went, you went too! Life is good now, even when my circumstances are not. Right now, I lift up all who are reading this, directly to you. For those who don’t know that it’s you who keeps knocking on the door of their hearts, saying, “Invite me in,” reveal this to them! Show them that your way is the best way! Teach them how much you love them! Teach them how to love you! Teach them how to love others! Teach them how to love themselves! In your name I pray, amen.
This devotional is from my bestselling book, 60 Days for Jesus, Volume 1. Get your copy here!