Sunday, June 5, 2016

The Beginning and The New Beginning: Genesis 1 & 2 and John 1

Consider as we are looking at Jesus in the Old Testament, how the apostle John sees Jesus.  The only Scriptures John had were in the Old Testament, and as he sat down to pen the very beginning of his gospel, the drumbeat of Genesis provides the bass notes for the lovely melody of his words.  As you read first from Genesis and then alternate with John, a cosmic picture of Jesus emerges.  

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning.

Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters.
 Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made.

And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. God saw that the light was good, and he separated the light from the darkness.  God called the light “day,” and the darkness he called “night.” And there was evening, and there was morning—the first day.
In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. 

And God said, “Let there be a vault between the waters to separate water from water...” 
And God said, “Let the water under the sky be gathered to one place, and let dry ground appear...”
Then God said, “Let the land produce vegetation: seed-bearing plants and trees on the land that bear fruit with seed in it, according to their various kinds...”
And God said, “Let there be lights in the vault of the sky to separate the day from the night, and let them serve as signs to mark sacred times, and days and years, and let them be lights in the vault of the sky to give light on the earth...”
There was a man sent from God whose name was John. He came as a witness to testify concerning that light, so that through him all might believe. He himself was not the light; he came only as a witness to the light.  The true light that gives light to everyone was coming into the world.  

And God said, “Let the water teem with living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth...” 
And God said, “Let the land produce living creatures according to their kinds…”
Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may      rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.”
So God created mankind in his own image,
    in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.
God blessed them and said to them, “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it. Rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky and over every living creature that moves on the ground.”
God saw all that he had made, and it was very good…
He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God—children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.

By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all his work. Then God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it he rested from all the work of creating that he had done.
 The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.  (John testified concerning him. He cried out, saying, “This is the one I spoke about when I said, ‘He who comes after me has surpassed me because he was before me.’”) Out of his fullness we have all received grace in place of grace already given. For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. No one has ever seen God, but the one and only Son, who is himself God and is in closest relationship with the Father, has made him known.

Amen.  We cannot have the Old without the New, for what the Old concealed, the New revealed.



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