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Faithlife
Faithlife

John 1_14 The Light Shines

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Secular:

  • Wedding Ring
  • More than jewellery
  • At the wedding the ring is given as a symbol of a promise…
  • “The wedding ring is the outward and the visible sign of an inward and spiritual bond which unites two hearts in endless love. The circle, the emblem of eternity; the gold, the type of what is least  tarnished and most enduring--it is to show how lasting and imperishable is the faith now pledged. Let the ring, a fit token of that which is unending, continue to be to you both a symbol of the value, the purity, and the constancy of true wedded love, and the seal of the vows in which you have both pledged your most solemn and sacred honour.”
  •  But after almost 19 years of marriage I look at the ring… and it means even more
    • Every tender moment
    • Every battle we have endured
    • Every joy savoured
    • Every challenge overcome
    • Every loving moment
  • Deep reflection reminds me it was more than a moment in history
  • It represents so much more!
  • When we look at pictures of  the nativity… or hear the Christmas story again we need to remember that the birth of Christ is about so much more than a baby… a marriage is more than a ring or a ceremony… Christmas is about so much more than the arrival of a baby…. Even about more than a Saviour!

Biblical:

John 1: 14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.

Personal:

  • It is official… I am getting old….
  •  Technology used to come naturally….
  • Owner’s manual… seriously…
  • But I recently found out both my computer and my blackberry both have far more features than I have been using…
  • It wasn’t that they were somehow limited because I didn’t know…. But because I didn’t know I did not experience the full benefit… failed to fully grasped there capabilities!
  • GPS Mapping!
  • An as a modem… no extra hardware!
  •  I failed to see the full extent of that which was in my hand!

Bridge:

  • It is Christmas….
  • Any child will inform you that there is more to a present than wrapping paper… you need to open it to experience it!
  • To leave it wrapped… or in its box is a failure to appreciate its real value!
  • On the First Christmas morning…. The eternal God… sent his only begotten Son into the world as a baby….
  • If we stop there…. If we see only the child in a manger we miss the gift…
  • It is richer…. More valuable…. More glorious….

1.      The Lord Has Come

2.      His Glory Displayed

3.      Nature of God Manifest

  •  Like the ring that symbolizes more than a day or an event….
  • The Christ child is oh, so much more than a just a baby… Christmas more than just a day or celebration!

Body:

I. The Lord Has Come!

And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us,  

  • The Word became flesh…
  • The Word John 1:1" In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." (John 1:1, ESV)
  • The Word that became flesh was God…
  • Christmas is the celebration of the gift of God himself.
  • Perfect revelation of God…
    • The Word… valued… revered by the people of God… in the O/T…
    • Now Perfect revelation in Christ… God disclosed…
  • It is a gift better than a comfortable life, or peace, it is even better than the gift of eternal life… the great gift is the gift of God for himself. – in the Flesh!
  • Became Flesh… not sin…. Human form
  • The Word… very God… born of a woman to live amongst humankind…
  • Royalty, Deity, Perfection – God to dwell with us….
  • Dwelt amongst us – tabernacled / tented
  • "Then the cloud covered the tent of meeting, and the glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle." (Exodus 40:34, ESV)
  •  The tent of meeting… the intimate presence of God
  • Exodus 33:11…. Is wow!
  • Jesus is God tabernacled with us…. Immanuel… the Word in the Flesh
  • The very test of genuine faith!
  •  1 john 4:1-3 the test! - " Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world. By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you heard was coming and now is in the world already." (1 John 4:1-3, ESV)
  • Testimony to the Incarnation is Christian… failure to acknowledge… is not of God!
  • It is absolutely necessary for the Spirit of God to enlighten our spirit - to know Jesus is God.
  • Anything else is a false faith…. every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God.
  •  "But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law," (Galatians 4:4, ESV)
  •  Jesus came… as promised… in perfect time…. The Son of God… as a man… under the law…
  • The Lord promised a sign… even to an unbelieving people…. For it is not contingent on us whether Jesus is Lord…
  • God has made it clear… God was faithful… demonstrating his holiness… faithfulness… steadfastness… his glory…
  • "Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel." (Isaiah 7:14, ESV)
  •  God with us…. The gift of himself…
  •  And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, 
  • (Heb 4:14-16)
  • Even when the world turns its back… and seems dark… and we forget as his created people our beloved Creator…. Have hope…. And arise!
  •  " Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord has risen upon you. For behold, darkness shall cover the earth, and thick darkness the peoples; but the Lord will arise upon you, and his glory will be seen upon you." (Isaiah 60:1-2, ESV)
  •  Arise… and turn to God…. And be the light of his glory….
  • "Great indeed, we confess, is the mystery of godliness: He was manifested in the flesh, vindicated by the Spirit, seen by angels, proclaimed among the nations, believed on in the world, taken up in glory." (1 Timothy 3:16, ESV)
  • This is the timeless testimony….
  • This is our Lord….
  • This is Christian faith!
  • And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us

II. His Glory Displayed

14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father…

  •  The Presence of God… has been unseeable… incomprehensible… (glazed over look)
  • Fear…. High Priest with a rope on his leg…
  • Moses… the glory even as he was covered in the cleft of the rock… change him and radiated from him…
  •   It is the radiating magnificence of God!
  • Jesus is the revelation of the glory of God!
  • The New Jerusalem in its perfection… at the end of the age… "having the glory of God, its radiance like a most rare jewel, like a jasper, clear as crystal." (Revelation 21:11, ESV)
  •  Jesus, Immanuel…. The child in the cradle… the Man nailed to the cross… the Lord ascended to heaven is the glory of God.
  • "For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ." (2 Corinthians 4:6, ESV) and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father…
  •  The simplicity and complexity of Christ is the glory of God
  • The holiness, justice, mercy, compassion, demonstrated in His life, His death, His resurrection and His ascension…. Is the glory of God….
  •  In His sinlessness, His Truth…
  • LOOK UP 1 John 1:1-3
  • " That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we looked upon and have touched with our hands, concerning the word of life— the life was made manifest, and we have seen it, and testify to it and proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and was made manifest to us— that which we have seen and heard we proclaim also to you, so that you too may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ." (1 John 1:1-3, ESV)
  • Jesus is our connection to the Father!....
  • To glorify Him and Enjoy Him Forever!...
  •  Jesus is the Glory of the Father… (reflection of Christ to the Father)
  • Demonstrated in his life…
  • "This, the first of his signs, Jesus did at Cana in Galilee, and manifested his glory. And his disciples believed in him." (John 2:11, ESV)
  • Power and presence of God….
  • Jesus Glory Incarnate.
  • "Philip said to him, “Lord, show us the Father, and it is enough for us.” Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you so long, and you still do not know me, Philip? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on my own authority, but the Father who dwells in me does his works. Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me, or else believe on account of the works themselves." (John 14:8-11, ESV)
  •  Do we still ask… or do we see?
  • Jesus is Glory in word and in Deed
  • Testimony and Witness
    • Jesus is the Glory of God
  • "The glory that you have given me I have given to them, that they may be one even as we are one," (John 17:22, ESV)
  •  The Bride is to manifest the Glory… (Father preparing us for his Son)
  • See…. Radiate… Live
    • Unity with the Father
    • Unity within the Bride
    • Unity of the Bride with the Groom
  • God is worthy of glory…   
  • "to whom be the glory forever and ever. Amen." (Galatians 1:5, ESV)
  • "But we see him who for a little while was made lower than the angels, namely Jesus, crowned with glory and honour because of the suffering of death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone. For it was fitting that he, for whom and by whom all things exist, in bringing many sons to glory, should make the founder of their salvation perfect through suffering." (Hebrews 2:9-10, ESV)
  •  Introduction to Glory through the Word… to pursue the glory of God… no and for eternity… nothing more… nothing less…
  • Our introduction to that glory which we pursue for eternity….
    • Christmas is like the wedding ring…
    • We celebrate on the day… but it is the beginning of a dramatic and worthy change
    • Christmas is a time to reflect on the depths of the glory of God displayed in the Incarnate Christ in Immanuel!
  •  "He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power. After making purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high," (Hebrews 1:3, ESV)
  • More than a moment in history
  • More than a baby
  • Glory manifest
  • Glory for eternity poured out…. That we would radiate! 
  •  "For the Lord God is a sun and shield; the Lord bestows favour and honour. No good thing does he withhold from those who walk uprightly." (Psalm 84:11, ESV)
  • Just as Romans 1:18-20 talks about the nature of God…. His perceivable attributes
  •  The Incarnation, Glory Incarnate, has made the glory of God accessible to those who trust in Christ…. That we would reflect Christ… that Glory would be manifest to the very Word…. Glory Incarnate -  His Glory Displayed

 

  • III. Nature of God Manifest
  •  

14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.

  • Jesus of the cradle and of the cross is the full grace of God.
  • God’s grace… his unmerited favour… a gift given… undeserved… unearned…
  • But also context would suggest it is also a representation of the compassion, mercy and steadfast love of God.
  • The Word in the Flesh…. The revelation of the Glory of God…. Is a testimony to the Grace of God!
  • And remember the hard teachings…. The Word declared…
  • John 6:53…. Eat my flesh…
  • Eternal and truth…. Only in Christ….
  • The one true vine! John 15
  • Others gathered and burned!
  • The Word Incarnate… God in the Flesh… is a testimony to Truth… Grace and Truth… indivisible in God
  • If Jesus is the Full revelation of God… or God’s grace and truth… then He is a testimony to God’s character
  • Apart from Christ we can not know God…. Period….
  • Perfection revelation….
  • Nature of God Manifest
  • Full of Grace and Truth

Conclusion:

14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.

  • The Lord Has Come
  • His Glory Displayed
  • Nature of God Manifest

Psa 36:9  For with you is the fountain of life;

                         in your light do we see light.

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