Graham Shearer shared with us this Sunday in the last sermon of his three-part series, looking in more detail at John 1:14-18.
Graham began by asking, “If you had one wish for the world, what would it be?” and asked us to reflect on what our greatest needs and desires may be to improve our lives, whether that be a better job or better health. The claim of the Bible and the Christian faith as a whole is that what will ultimately make us happy has already been provided for us, and described in four words:
John previously in his prologue introduced ‘The Word’ as a divine eternal person, who is God and is with God, and the one through which all things are made. Our lives hinge on whether we receive or reject him.
1 How He Came
Graham highlighted a few misconceptions about how God came, as described in verse 14. Jesus did not change God into a man. If this was the case, God would have stopped being divine. Jesus was fully God and fully man, and still is today. This is why we can worship Jesus as God.
Another common misconception Graham highlighted was that God was presented as a human on the outside, but on the inside was fully divine. However, it is clear by how John paints God later on, that God became fully human like us, in mind and body and with a human nature, “the Creator living as a creature”.
2 Why He Came
To provide grace
John tells us in verse 14 that Jesus came to bring grace and truth and he continues to expand on this:
The grace already given to us refers to the Law given to Moses, which was the perfect standard to human life. This was not enough, not due to a lack of guidance, but because the people couldn’t follow it. Graham challenged us with this: do we often make excuses, when the biggest problem in our lives is ourselves? Even when outside conditions are perfect, we ourselves often let us down.
Due to this, we need more than the Law given to Moses; we need forgiveness. This is why God became flesh, not for himself, but so he could offer his flesh for our forgiveness.
Through Moses, God gave the Law, but through Jesus, God gave himself. By doing this, he provided hope in the face of our sin and failures.
To provide truth
Graham highlighted that our consumer lifestyle will always leave us wanting more, but the only thing that will satisfy us is truth, which is to know God.
While nobody has seen God, the Son has made the truth known to us, by becoming flesh and showing us what God is like. No-one is better equipped to tell us the truth about God. His glory referenced in verse 14 is mostly revealed in his death, through which we can know his infinite love.
- What can ultimately make us happy? Only knowing the glory of God can make us ultimately happy. This is because of the grace and truth he provides, which was made known to us through the Word becoming flesh.