Advent thoughts #1: Jesus = Grace & Truth

Title:  The mystery of the Incarnation
Text: John 1:1-18
Theme:  In the incarnation Jesus came full of grace and truth

Introduction:  The central message of the Bible is that we might know Christ.  The apostle Paul expressed it this way as he wrote to the Christians at Colossi,  “That their hearts might be comforted, being knit together in love, and unto all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the acknowledgement of the mystery of God, and of the Father, and of Christ.”

What is this mystery of God?

The New Testament use of the Word mystery can be defined as follows:

“A truth undiscoverable except by revelation; never necessarily (as our popular use of the word may suggest) a thing unintelligible, or perplexing in itself.  In Scripture a mystery may be a fact which, when revealed we cannot understand in detail, though we can know it, and act upon it. . . .  It is a thing only to be known when revealed.”  G.C. Morgan, quoting H. Moule.

There are some truths revealed in the Scripture that we can know but never fully understand on this side of Heaven.  Deuteronomy 29:29 is helpful at this point:

“The Secret things belong unto the LORD our God: but those things which are revealed belong unto us and to our children for ever, that we may do all the words of this law.”

I appreciate what G.C. Morgan says concerning this verse, “It is the solemn duty of all who desire to know the Christ, that they should diligently study the things revealed, and reverently rest with regard to the secret things”(The Crisis of the Christ p.69).

John 1:1-14 reveals the mystery of the Incarnation.  We can know it because God has revealed it; but we cannot fully comprehend it because the secret things belong unto God.

Let’s look at the New Testament theological commentary on the Birth of Christ in the prologue to the Gospel according to John.  Chapter 1, verse 1-18 are an introduction to the whole book.   It is John’s theses, his declarative statement of who Jesus is and why He came.  The rest of the book of John proves his theses by showing through the life of Christ that He is who He claimed to be.   And that through Him we might know that we have eternal life.

I would like to focus our attention on the declarative verses:

 John 1:1                     John 1:14

In the beginning was the Word

In the beginning  Genesis 1:1

Was –  “Imperfect tense” Suggest a continuous state – The Word has existed in all of eternity past, at this present time and into eternity future.  Timeless existence

Word – a means of expression-  “A description of Jesus designating Him as the divine Revealer of God’s wisdom and power”



And the Word was made flesh


Was made – ginomai: Became. “The creative activity is viewed as one event in contrast to the continuous existence in vv. 1” Not something new, but something that existed previously that changed in manifestation.

Flesh – The method of self-expression changed when the Word become flesh – Philippians 2:6-8

And the Word was with God

With – Accompaniment, as in a continuous relationship.

Expresses the unity of God the father and God the son.


And dwelt among us

(and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,)

Dwelt: to take up one’s temporary dwelling place. Live in a tent.

Beheld:  To watch, contemplate

Illustrate – John was with Jesus.  He saw all His miracles, he heard all his teaching,  he was present at His transfiguration.

And the Word was God

Supreme Deity of the Word continuously from eternity past – Absence of the article indicates sameness in quality.

Full of grace and truth.

Grace: unmerited favor – getting something we don’t deserve.

Truth: As opposed to false hoods and lies.  Satan tells lies:

John 8:44 Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.

John 1:18a

John 1:18b

No man hath seen God at any time




The only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him.

Only begotten – Word does not mean creation but speaks of Sonship and relationship.

In the bosom –   A Heb. Idiom expressing the intimate relationship of child and parent , friend and friend. This declaration of God  by the Son  is from the most tender place of God, from the heart of God.

Declared him –  Exegesis – to bring forth authoritatively into visibility what was always there but was not possible to see without help-


John 6:14,  Then those men, when they had seen the miracle that Jesus did, said, This is of a truth that prophet that should come into the world.

John 14:6,  Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

John 18:37,  Pilate therefore said unto him, Art thou a king then? Jesus answered, Thou sayest that I am a king. To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth. Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice


Acts 15:11, But we believe that through the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ we shall be saved, even as they.

Romans 3:24,  Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:

Romans 5:17,  For if by one man’s offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.) {by one man’s…: or, by one offence}

1 Corinthians 1:4,  I thank my God always on your behalf, for the grace of God which is given you by Jesus Christ;

2 Corinthians 8:9,  For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich.

Ephesians  2:7, That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.

2 Thessalonians 2:16,  Now our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God, even our Father, which hath loved us, and hath given us everlasting consolation and good hope through grace,

 1 Timothy 1:14,  And the grace of our Lord was exceeding abundant with faith and love which is in Christ Jesus.

2 Timothy 1:9, Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began,

Hebrews 2:9,  But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels 2for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.

1 Peter 1:13,  Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ;





2 responses to “Advent thoughts #1: Jesus = Grace & Truth

  1. Pingback: I have been bloging about Advent this Christmas season: | Grace Bible Church of Dillon, Montana

  2. Pingback: Christmas prayer and previous Chrismas posts: | Magnify!

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