Daily Bible Studies & Sermon Notes


John 1:5-14
Pastor Steve Schell
Sunday: John 1:5-6
v5 (continued): When John pictures Jesus in heaven (vs1-3), he calls Him “the Word” because it was through Jesus that the Father spoke all creation into being (Rev 19:11-13). But when he describes Him on earth he calls Him “the Light” because as a man Jesus allowed the human race to see with our own eyes the true nature of God. Like a light being ignited in a dark room, Jesus showed us God and in doing so drove back the darkness of spiritual confusion and deception. v6: Jesus was unique. He was God’s divine Son, not just another human prophet (Mk 12:1-12), and as the book of Hebrews points out, He was not an angel either (Heb 1:5-14). But in order to prepare the hearts of the people of Israel to receive His Son, God sent a very special human prophet before Him (Jn 1:22-34; 3:28; Mt 3:1-3, 11-12).

Monday: John 1:6
v6 (continued): John the Baptist had been a very important figure in Israel’s recent history. Many thousands of people had gone out into the Judean wilderness to listen to him and be baptized (Mk 1:4-5). He was so powerfully used by God that the king (Herod Antipas) who put him to death was afraid God would raise him back to life (Mt 14:1-2). Even after John’s death some of his disciples continued preaching his message and carried it to other nations (Ac 13:24-25; 18:24-25). One of the cities, which we know had a community of his disciples, was Ephesus (Ac 19:1-5), the very place where the apostle John most likely wrote this gospel.

Tuesday: John 1:6
v6 (continued): It’s important to remember that the apostle John had been one of John the Baptist’s disciples before he became a disciple of Jesus (Jn 1:35-40), so he would have been very aware of his former rabbi’s enduring influence and the need to turn the attention of those who were still John’s followers toward the One whom he had declared to be the Savior (Jn 1:29-34). This may be why he mentions the prophet so early in his gospel and devotes so much time to his testimony concerning Christ (Jn 1:15, 19-37; 3:27-30). After only five verses the apostle introduces his former rabbi this way: “There arose (came into being) a human having been sent from God; the name [given] to Him [was] John” (Lk 1:11-13).

Wednesday: John 1:7-8
v7: He wants us to understand that there is a profound difference between Jesus and John. John was a prophet whose assignment was to bring people to Jesus, but Jesus was God’s divine Son whom He sent to save us. In verse two John described Jesus this way: “This One was in the beginning with (facing toward) God.” But here in verse seven he speaks of John this way: “This one came to bear witness so that he might witness to the Light so that all might believe through him” (literal). v8: John the Baptist had been a powerful prophet, and many who heard him preach wondered if he was the Messiah (Jn 1:19-21; Lk 3:15), and it’s possible such speculation lingered on even after his death. If so, the apostle John puts an end to such confusion by saying, “He (John the Baptist) was not that Light, but [was sent] to witness to the Light.” He will soon quote John the Baptist’s own words which make it clear how the prophet viewed himself and how he viewed Jesus (Jn 1:19-37).

Thursday: John 1:9-11
vs9-10: John was a witness, but Jesus “…was the true Light, which coming into the world enlightens every human being” (literal). The One who created the human race became a man and lived among us, but most humans who heard Him and watched Him minister did not realize who He was. v11: The world Jesus entered belonged to Him by right. It was His because He was its Creator, but it was also His because He was the Messiah whom the Father had promised would be heir of all things (Mk 12:7; Heb 1:2).

Friday: John 1:11
v11 (continued): John says, “He came to His own…,” using the neuter form of the word “own” so that it literally means His “own things.” The term was a Greek expression, often used to mean “home” (Jn 16:32; 19:27; Ac 21:6). So John pictures Jesus as someone arriving at a place that belongs to Him, like a property owner coming to inspect his vineyard, or the head of a household coming home and knocking on his own front door. Then John says, “...and His own did not receive (welcome) Him…,” and this time he uses the masculine, plural form of the word “own,” which causes it to mean “His own people,” referring generally to the nation of Israel but possibly even to His home town and family (Mt 13:54-58).

Saturday: John 1:12-14
vs12-13: Most of the people Jesus encountered did not recognize Him as God’s Savior or believe He was God’s divine Son, but some did, so John says, “But as many as received Him, He gave to them the right (freedom, power, authority to act) to become children of God, to those believing in (into) His name (the true name which God calls Him), who were born, not of blood (parents passing on physical life to their child), nor by the will of the flesh (a conception that resulted from sexual desire), nor by the will of man (humans deciding to have a child), but by the will of God.” v14: Having made it clear that the humanity of Jesus did not result from the natural forces which normally produce human beings, John selected a very special word to describe the miracle of the incarnation. He says, “And the Word became flesh and tabernacled (dwelled in a tent) among (in) us.” In other words, the spirit of the eternal Son came down from heaven and took up residence in a “tent” of human flesh (2Co 5:1-4). By bringing in the image of the tabernacle John emphasizes that the incarnation was the arrival of a pre-existent person. Just as God came down from heaven and personally camped among the people of Israel during the Exodus, the Son of God came down from heaven and camped among the human race in the physical body of Jesus Christ.  


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