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The Gospel of John I - Lesson 5

                  Jesus Christ, the Word of God                                John 1:1-18                                (Continued)

  1. THE INCARNATION OF THE WORD (John 1:14-18) (Continued)
    1. Having Received Grace for Grace (John 1:16)
      1. Grace in the place of grace; new grace to replace old grace
        1. This is the doctrinal or dispensational meaning.
        2. Old Testament Grace
          1. The emphasis is on grace being found.
            1. There are 28 references to grace being found in the Old Testament.
            2. There is only one reference to grace being found in the New Testament (Hebrews 4:16).
            3. The picture is that of grace being found by those who seek it.
          2. Examples of grace being found
            1. Noah (Genesis 6:8)
            2. Moses (Exodus 33:13, 17)
            3. Gideon (Judges 6:16-17)
        3. New Testament Grace
          1. The emphasis is on grace being given.
            1. There are 14 New Testament references to grace being given.
            2. There are only two Old Testament references to grace being given (Psalm 84:11; Proverbs 3:34, which is quoted in the New Testament).
          2. Examples: Romans 12:3, 6; Romans 15:15; 1 Corinthians 1:4; 1 Corinthians 3:10; Galatians 2:9; Ephesians 3:2, 7-8; Ephesians 4:7; 2 Timothy 1:9; James 4:6; 1 Peter 5:5)
      2. Grace on top of grace; continual gifts of grace according to the need
        1. This is the practical or spiritual meaning.
        2. Salvation is by grace (Ephesians 2:8-9; Titus 3:7).
        3. Daily living for Christ is by grace.
          1. By the grace of God we are and we labor (1 Corinthians 15:10).
          2. By the grace of God we abound to every good work (2 Corinthians 9:8).
          3. By the sufficiency of God’s grace, His strength is made perfect in our weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9).
            1. “My grace is sufficient for thee.”
            2. “Our sufficiency is of God” (2 Corinthians 3:5).
          4. At the throne of grace, we can find grace to help in time of need (Hebrews 4:16)
    2. Interpretation of John 1:17
      1. The key comparison is between the law and Christ.
        1. Both came from God.
          1. Law (Deuteronomy 30:10)
          2. Christ (John 8:42)
        2. Both were sent down to earth.
          1. Law (Deuteronomy 29:29)
          2. Christ (John 1:10)
        3. Both were empowered or written by the finger of God.
          1. Law (Exodus 31:18)
          2. Christ (Luke 11:20)
          3. The identity of the finger of God (cp. Luke 11:20 with Matthew 12:28) is the Spirit of God.
          4. Applied to Christ (John 3:34)
        4. Both are called the truth.
          1. Law (Psalm 119:142)
          2. Christ (John 14:6)
        5. Both are called light.
          1. Law (Proverbs 6:23)
          2. Christ (John 8:12)
        6. Both are called bread.
          1. Law (Deuteronomy 8:3)
          2. Christ (John 6:48, 51)
        7. Both were broken by the sins of the people.
          1. Law (Exodus 32:19)
          2. Christ (Luke 22:19)
        8. Both were resurrected by the power of God.
          1. Law (Exodus 34:1)
          2. Christ (Acts 2:23-24)
        9. As the two tables of stone represented one law, so Jesus Christ, being both God and man, is one person.
        10. As the two tables of stone were written within and without (Exodus 32:15), so Christ was totally pure within and without.
      2. God, even in the Old Testament, is both truth and grace (Exodus 34:5-7).
      3. The law that God sent down was truth (Psalm 119:142), but instead of being grace, it was full of judgment (Exodus 24:3).
      4. But Christ contained within Himself all the fullness of the Godhead bodily (Colossians 2:9). He could not show only a part of the nature of God, but must reveal the fullness of the nature of God (John 14:9). Therefore, in Christ, we see both truth and grace together in their fullest sense.
      5. In addition, the Old Testament has numerous references to truth and mercy (Psalm 25:10; Psalm 57:3; Psalm 61:7; Psalm 85:10; Psalm 89:14; Proverbs 3:3; Proverbs 16:6).
      6. But it is in the New Testament in Christ Jesus that grace and truth are fully joined on earth  (John 1:14, 17).
      7. Colossians 1:5-6 brings the two concepts together:
        1. Our hope is based on “the word of the truth of the gospel” (Colossians 1:5).
        2. By this gospel we “knew the grace of God in truth” (Colossians 1:6); this explains how Jesus Christ is full of grace and truth.
    3. No Man Hath Seen God (John 1:18)
      1. No man has seen God in His full glory while in the flesh (Exodus 33:20; John 6:46; 1 Timothy 6:16; 1 John 4:12).
      2. God has at times appeared in a veiled glory (Exodus 33:20-23; 1 Kings 8:12).
      3. But we can see the Father in the face of Jesus Christ (Matthew 11:27; 2 Corinthians 4:6).
David Reagan

Daily Proverb

Proverbs 15:16

Better is little with the fear of the LORD than great treasure and trouble therewith.