Prepare to Listen. As you light the 1st and 2nd purple candles, let these words still your heart and mind: Then God said, ‘Let there be light’; and there was light. (Gen 1:3)
Prayerfully Read John 1:1-3a, 14
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2He was in the beginning with God. 3All things came into being through him, and without him not one thing came into being…. 14And the Word became flesh and lived among us, and we have seen his glory, the glory as of a father’s only son, full of grace and truth.
“In the beginning… the Word.” These words recall the first verse of the Bible. The evangelist has purposely linked the story of redemption with that of creation in Genesis 1. The Word (logos) is personal—nothing was created without him. Redemption is about creation, God making all things new in the Word.
The Greek term, logos, was a loaded one for both Jews and Greeks. Jews related it to God’s word that called creation into being, and also to the prophets who repeatedly said, “the word of the Lord came to me saying.” Their spoken word was powerful, demanding obedience.
For Greeks logos referred to a “shaping, ordering and directing principle in the universe.” Both Jews and Greeks would have recognized that what John was writing about was immensely important. Logos (whom John reveals as Jesus), both embodies God’s creative, commanding word and is the governing principle in the universe. We ought to pay attention to Jesus, the Word.
The Word “became flesh and lived among us.” The Advent journey to Christmas doesn’t end with a celebration of Jesus’ birthday, but of the incarnation, “the awe-inspiring humility of God” who took on human flesh, from the womb to the tomb. We celebrate the powerful Word of God that governs and completes all creation and became flesh, one of us, living among us. This truth should cause us to bow down in worship, lost in wonder and awe. God, with power to create, command, redeem is among us in Jesus. That’s the Christmas celebration.
How can the Greek term, logos, shape how and what you’ll celebrate on Christmas day?
Respond to Jesus
Jesus, the Word, help me come to a deeper understanding of you as Creator and Redeemer so I worship you sincerely and humbly. Amen.
Live obediently. Worship God the Creator and Redeemer.
Bruce Milne, The Message of John. Leicester: InterVarsity Press. 1993, p. 32.
Philips, J. B. “The Dangers of Advent” in Watch for the Light. Farmington, PA: The Plough Publishing House. 2001, November 26.