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A Study of Christ - The Prologue of John - John 1:2-3

With this study, we continue our examination of the prologue of John's Gospel.

John 1:2-3

2He was with God in the beginning. 3Through Him all things were made; without Him nothing was made that has been made.

John now begins to expand on what he said in verse 1. In that verse we learned: "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." Here, John reiterates: "He was with God in the beginning." Furthermore, the Word was not merely "with God" in the beginning, but was active with the Father in the creation: "Through Him all things were made; without Him nothing was made that has been made." This verse supports all three of the statements made in verse 1. Since the Word was active in creating all things, clearly He existed "in the beginning" and "was with God". Moreover, the fact that "all things were made" through the Word (and the omnipotence that the creation of all things implies) supports the fact that "the Word was God."

And so, in verse 1, Christ is introduced as the "Word", the supreme revelation of God; then, in verses 2 and 3, we see Christ as creator of the universal revelation of God, the heavens and the earth. This is not the only place where Christ's role in the creation of the universe is described. Paul expands on the all-inclusiveness of the statement that "all things" were made through Christ: "[Christ] is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For by Him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by Him and for Him. He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together" (Col. 1:15-17). So Christ is not only the Creator of all things seen (the physical world), but also of the unseen spiritual world, including the angels, the demons, and the vastness of the kingdom of God that our eyes cannot see. The immensity of "all things" that Christ has created is beyond our comprehension, beyond our imagination. The term "all things" that John uses means (in the original language) each thing individually: every atom, every particle, each created with special care by Christ, for His good pleasure. Moreover, as John states: "[W]ithout Him nothing was made that has been made." This is more than a restatement of the first clause in verse 3, for it suggests the continued work of Christ in creating things. Each day, thousands of humans and millions of other creatures, come into being; and they all come to exist through Christ, for "without Him nothing was made that has been made." As Christ Himself said: "My Father is always at His work to this very day, and I, too, am working" (John 5:17). As cited above, Paul goes on further to tell us that Christ's work in the creation goes beyond the act of creating: "He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together" (Col. 1:17). The writer of Hebrews agrees, saying that Christ "sustain[s] all things by His powerful word" (Heb. 1:3). This is telling us that Christ is the mystery behind the physical forces: the gravitational force, the electro-magnetic forces, the strong and weak nuclear forces. It is Christ who sustains all things and holds all things together: holding each atom together, keeping us anchored to the earth, sustaining the revolutions of the planets around the sun.

Paul also elsewhere speaks of the roles of the Father and the Son in the creation: "[T]here is but one God, the Father, from whom all things came and for whom we live; and there is but one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom all things came and through whom we live" (I Cor. 8:6). The Father is the source of the creation, "from whom all things came", and Christ is the agent of creation, "through whom all things came." These roles, in fact, can be seen in the narrative that describes the creation at the beginning of the book of Genesis. There, we see that the Father brings things into being through Christ His Word: "And God said, `Let there be light.'. . . And God said, `Let there be an expanse 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.'" etc. The unity of the Bible is amazing. In Genesis, we see the creation through the Word of God; in the Psalms, we are told: "By the word of the Lord were the heavens made" (Ps. 33:6); here in John, we are introduced to the Word of God, Jesus Christ, and we are told that "through Him all things were made."

These verses in John say much about the attributes of Christ. Since "through Him all things were made," then Christ is eternal. He is not a created being, but rather, He always existed. Also, Christ is omnipotent, Lord over all creation. He who made everything, holds all things together, and sustains all things, has complete power over all things, and is in complete control. Why are we surprised at the amazing miracles of Christ? Surely, He who made all things can make bread enough to feed five thousand. He who ignited lightning and gave voice to thunder can surely calm the storm. He who gave life to all creatures, can certainly raise Himself from the dead.

In these verses, John speaks of Christ's creation of the universe. Later in this chapter, John will speak of the new creations of Christ, the life that is available to us through Him. We all have been created through Christ; we all must also be newly created through Him as children of God. Christ Himself said: "I tell you the truth, no-one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again" (John 3:3). This new life is available to all through Christ: "[T]o all who receive [Christ], to those who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God" (John 1:12). As important as the natural creation is to us, far more important is the new creation, new birth through Christ into the kingdom of God.

Father, we praise You for the new life that is available to us through Your Son, for the great privilege to be considered Your children. We thank You also for sending Your Son, through whom all things were made, to this earth, so that through Him, we might know You. May He receive all glory, honor and praise from us. In the name of Him who made all things, we pray these things, Amen.


6. In the following verses: 1:4; 1:18 (twice); 1:25; 2:2; 2:17; 2:18; 2:19; 2:28; 2:29; 3:1; 4:1; 4:4 (twice); 4:10.

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