Gospel of John Essay
Pursuit of His Glory
After studying scripture my entire life and after close reading of the Gospel of John I have come to the conclusion that everything God does, He does to put his majesty on display. This idea of putting God’s greatness on display is called glory. Even from the beginning of time, the motivation of God’s first action was to glorify himself with creation. God speaks in Isaiah,
“I will say to the north, Give up, and to the south, Do not withhold; bring my sons from afar and my daughters from the end of the earth everyone who is called by my name, whom I created for my glory, whom I formed and made” (Isaiah 43:6-7).
The creation itself was something that manifested God’s name and brought him praise. The idea of glory to God is consistent throughout all of scripture, especially when viewing the redemption of man. After creation, the second step to the redemption process is the incarnation, which is found in the gospel of John. The incarnation is the Word becoming flesh as John explains in his first chapter. Jesus the center of man’s redemption reveals his father’s pursuit of his own glory through his miracles, teachings, and mission. In the gospel of John, in view of the actions of Jesus two things can be determined. One, Jesus is in fact God in the flesh. He is, was and will always be. He is a part of a perfect harmony with God and the Spirit and his will and the Fathers will are perfectly aligned because his purpose is to glorify his father. Two, the primary purpose of Jesus’s mission was to live a life that glorified his Father in heaven by glorifying himself on the cross, glorifying himself by exhibiting his power to change the hearts of men, to establish his “fruit” so that with the help of the Spirit is father’s name may be continued to be glorified when he is gone, and to receive all praise when he returns.
The gospel of John is unique in many aspects. One of its unique qualities is the brief history lesson as an introduction. John starts his gospel by going back to creation where he refers to Christ as the “Word”.
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not anything made that was made” (John 1:1-3).
The “Word” is Jesus. Jesus is portrayed immediately as a being who is everlasting, present at the beginning much like God the father. However, the word is not just like God, he was and is God. Jesus, the word has power to make things out of nothing and everything that has ever been made, has been made through him and by him. The “Word” who is Christ becomes human. John 1:14 says, “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.” This is the incarnation. Jesus is both man and God. This verse clearly states that God took on human form as Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ became flesh and when he became flesh he reveals the character of his father because they are one. The Father is full of “grace” and “truth” just as Christ is. James D.G. Dunn when describing Jesus says, “Jesus who came as primarily a revealer” (Dunn, Pf. 73). Jesus who lived among mere humans acts as a window so that God may be revealed to man more perfectly as glorious, so that man may glorify God and God may be praised.
Jesus’s words reveal some very important truths about whom he is and who the father is in the gospel of John. This truth is that the will of Jesus is perfectly aligned with the will of God, Jesus’s power comes from his father, and the Son does what He does so that the Father can be marveled at or praised. In Chapter 5 when Jesus is continuing to explain that he is the Son of God he shows that his purpose is to fulfill the will of his father.
“So Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do...
References: Dunn, J. (2011). Jesus, Paul, and the Gospels. Grand Rapids, MI: William B. Eerdmans.
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