1 john 1:1 meaning

εν αρχη, the expression here used,) was the Word — That is, The Word existed at the beginning of … In other words, John is not teaching the ancient heresy known as Sabellianism, which taught that Jesus and the Father and the Spirit are simply three different aspects of one person, i.e., Jesus is the Father, the Father is the Spirit, and so on. They, like Robertson, point out that since theos is anarthrous, it shows that it is not convertible with logos and vice-versa. “God” and “love” are not convertible terms any more than “God” and “Logos” or “Logos” and “flesh.” Cf. THE PROLOGUE TO THE GOSPEL OF JOHN. Jesus is referred to using the Greek word Logos, meaning “The Word.” This passage clearly describes Jesus as identical to God, and co-creator with God. The subject is made plain by the article (ho logos) and the predicate without it (theos) just as in John 4:24 pneuma ho theos can only mean “God is spirit,” not “spirit is God.” So in 1 John 4:16 ho theos agape estin can only mean “God is love,” not “love is God” as a so-called Christian scientist would confusedly say. The man born blind has some sense of this when, after his healing, he falls down in believing adoration before Christ, who addresses him with the divine “I” (John 9:38). Instead, he used theos, the very word John will use consistently for the Father, the “only true God” (John 17:3). So in John 1:1, theos an ho logos, the subject is perfectly clear. This is interesting in light of the discussion we have been having on the DL about textual criticism. His upbringing and Jewish heritage forbade that. 2 He was with God in the beginning() 3 Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made() 4 In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. He created everything. John 1:1 also means that, as God's Word, Jesus always communicated God's will to humanity, even in Old Testament revelation (Genesis 28:10-15, John 1:50-51, Exodus 17:6, 1 Corinthians 10:4). Those who would assert that the Logos is to be identified with all of God (i.e., Jesus is the Father and the Father is Jesus – Sabellianism) find an insuperable problem here. John 1:1 “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” Explanation and Commentary of John 1:1. He possesses the same essence as God the Father, is one with Him in nature and attributes. John 1:14 says, "And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth." At the very least, it is a good guide to translation in this case. The following article was originally an information sheet that we began distributing around 1985, Who We are Subject To, and a Response to Jimmy Akin on Pope Francis, The Strong Hold of Whiteness? Notice that Wuest brings in the idea that the anarthrous predicate noun has a characterizing effect, and that it refers more to the nature of the subject of the clause than to an identification of it. These verses summarize Jesus’ ministry and mission on Earth. All people reading John’s words would understand that the Creator is God, not some lower being created by God to do the work for Him. He does so by consistently using en of the Logos, the Word, and by consistently employing a totally different verb in reference to all other things. In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. And the Word was as to His essence absolute deity.9. Basically, the passage teaches that the Word, as to His essential nature, is God. By the simple omission of the article (“the”, or in Greek, ho) before the word for God in the last phrase, John avoids teaching Sabellianism, while by placing the word where it is in the clause, he defeats another heresy, Arianism, which denies the true Deity of the Lord Jesus. Aside from the comment of The Expositor’s Greek Testament above, the following from F. F. Bruce sums up the truth pretty well: It is nowhere more sadly true than in the acquisition of Greek that “a little learning is a dangerous thing”. John 1:1-18 (NIV) The Word Became Flesh. Webcast Though Colwell’s rule is not exceptionless, it is a valuable guide. It is a grand introduction to the Son of God and the Savior of the world. 8am to 5pm MST Only when we come to verse 14 does John use “to become” of the Word, and that is when the Word “became flesh.” This refers to a specific point in time, the incarnation, and fully demonstrates John’s intentional usage of contrasting verbs. If the article were present, this would teach Sabellianism, as then theos and logos would be convertible terms. Wuest in his Expanded Translation, renders John 1:1: In the beginning the Word was existing. 1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. We must bear in mind that we are reading only a translation of what John wrote, and hence some mention will have to be made of the Greek language. Phoenix, AZ 85069 The Word is the Creator. Office Hours The Word created all things, and there is absolutely nothing in existence that the Word did not create. Hardly seems coincidental, does it? P.O. 1 That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked at and our hands have touched--this we proclaim concerning the Word of life. John 1:1-18 . Had theos as well as logos been preceded by the article the meaning would have been that the Word was completely identical with God, which is impossible if the Word was also “with God”. The Word was with God. In light of Dr. Robertson’s comments, it is indeed unbelievable that some will quote from the above section and try to intimate that Robertson felt that Jesus was less than the Father because he quoted John 14:28. In Xenophon’s Anabasis, 1:4:6, emporion d’ en to korion, and the place was a market, we have a parallel case to what we have in John 1:1, kai theos en ho logos, and the word was deity. But the Incarnate Logos was really “God only Begotten in the bosom of the Father” (John 1:18 correct text)6. The gospel of John begins with a series of declarations about Jesus’ deity and eternal nature. Newsletter He certainly revealed God's will when He came as the God/Man in Israel, and … There is simply no warrant in the language to do this. It is simply the truth and must be accepted as such, leading us to worship in awe at the feet of the one whose “ways are higher than our ways” (Isa 55:9). About Jesus is fully God and he manifested in the flesh in a manger to die on a cross. These scholars refer to what is known as Colwell’s rule, named after E. C. Colwell, who first enunciated his rule in the Journal of Biblical Literature in 1933.13 The rule says, “The absence of the article does not make the predicate indefinite or qualitative when it precedes the verb; it is indefinite in this position only when the context demands it. The Logos became flesh (John 1:14), and not the Father. It means “to be in company with someone”1 or to be “face-to-face.” It speaks of communion, interaction, fellowship. The noun form is here used, not the adjectival theios, which would be required to simply classify the Word as “god-like.”. They were not far from the truth. The changing of water to wine is Jesus’ first public act in John, the inaugural “sign” … Continue reading "Commentary on John 2:1-11" John’s first assertion is that “In the beginning was the Word.” Which beginning? Hence, John 1:1 teaches that the Word is eternal (the imperfect form of eimi, en), that He has always been in communion with God (pros ton theon), and hence is an individual and recognizable as such, and that, as to His essential nature, He is God. Others, however, while not denying the eternality of the Son, argue that that is not John’s meaning here. Hence, the Word is eternal, timeless. James White, director, is a professor, having taught Greek, Systematic Theology, and various topics in the field of apologetics for numerous schools. The following is the only meaning that does not violate the interpretation of other Scriptures. Believers in Jesus must go on believing in Jesus in order to be saved in the end. God has put a desire for relationship in every one of us, a desire He intended to be met with relationships with other people, but most of all, to be met by a relationship with Him. John 1:14 And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth. The Gospel of John weds theology to poetry. It is imperative that the serious student of the Bible come to a basic understanding of logos, which is translated as “Word” in John 1:1.Most Trinitarians believe that the word logos refers directly to Jesus Christ, so in most versions of John logos is capitalized and translated “Word” (some versions even write “Jesus Christ” in John 1:1). Here the word “God” is without the article in the original. One can hardly read the above sentences without catching a glimpse of One Who is far beyond the realm of simply human; even far beyond the realm of the angelic. John is not alone in this. Answer: The answer to this question is found by first understanding the reason why John wrote his gospel. Store 1 John 1 1 2 (For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and shew unto you that eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested unto us;) Much has been said about how John got the term “Logos,” the Word. ho logos sarx egeneto (John 1:14). No matter how far back we may try to push our imagination, we can never reach a point at which we could say of the Divine Word, as Arius did, “There was once when he was not”.11. ESV In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The reason that theos is anarthrous is both that it is the predicate nominative (Robertson, Dana and Mantey) and that it is demanded by the fact that if it had the article, it would be then interchangeable with logos, which is contextually impossible. Considering the whole context of the prologue, many have identified this beginning as the same beginning mentioned in Genesis 1:1. If God were articular and Logos non-articular, the affirmation would be that God was Logos, but not that the Logos was God. James White is the director of Alpha and Omega Ministries, a Christian apologetics organization based in Phoenix, Arizona. But the separate personality of the Logos is affirmed by the construction used and Sabellianism is denied. “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” In John 1:1 we have Christology: He is God in Himself. Certainly one can hardly conceive of a higher Being. A quick look at his comments on John 14:28 in Word Pictures in the New Testament, volume 5, page 256 refutes this idea. He came into the world as LIFE... to breathe 'new life' into the lifeless spirit of man that lay dead in trespasses and sins, and with no hope in the world. Those scholars who see the verse in this light are not necessarily in contradiction with the others already cited. Genesis 1:1 In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. It is good to note Vincent’s comment that here “John is not trying to show who is God, but who is the Word.”10 The Logos is the central character here. Thus, John teaches us here that our Lord is essentially Deity. Jesus, as we know Him as the Word, does not constitute everything that is included in the Godhead. “Pros with the accusative presents a plane of equality and intimacy, face to face with each other.”2. It is not merely coexistence with God that is asserted, as of two beings standing side by side, united in local relation, or even in a common conception. (For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and shew unto you that eternal … Cf. Contact. Now he clearly distinguishes between the Word and God. John 1:1–18 is a poetic introduction of Jesus Christ. Introduction to the Gospel of John; In the Beginning was the Word (John 1:1-18) I Have Called You Friends (John 1:35-51, John 15:15) Water Into Wine At the Wedding at Cana (John 2:1-11) Jesus Teaches Nicodemus (John 3:1-21) Jesus and the Samaritan Woman at the Well (John 4) Jesus Heals on the Sabbath (John 5) Jesus the Bread of Life (John 6) The predicate “God” occupies the position of emphasis in this great declaration, and is so placed in the sentence as to be thrown up in sharp contrast with the phrase “with God,” as if to prevent inadequate inferences as to the nature of the Word being drawn even momentarily from that phrase. First it should be noted that Robertson and Nicoll had passed away before the work of Colwell, and their comments reflect this. Philip B. Harner did an extensive study of anarthrous predicate nouns which was published in the Journal of Biblical Literature as well.15 His research led to some realignment in viewing Colwell’s rule, it is true. 3) That the article before logos serves to point out the subject of the clause. The Lord Jesus came into the world as the incarnate WORD of God, to reveal to the depraved mind of man, the truth of God's eternal love and His perfect holiness. A footnote appears after the comment on the article, and it says: Those people who emphasize that the true rendering of the last clause of John 1.1 is “the word was a god”, prove nothing thereby save their ignorance of Greek grammar. One can push back the “beginning” as far as you can imagine, and, according to John, the Word still is. We have seen that the majority of scholarship sees the theos as indicating the nature of the Word, that He is God as to His nature. What does it mean that God is light? How then are we to understand these two phrases? All things came into being by Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being…And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth… No man has seen God at any time; the only begotten God, who is in the bosom of the Father, He has explained Him. John 1:2 He was with God in the beginning. A person who accepts the inspiration of the Scriptures can not help but be thrilled at this passage. The Beloved Apostle walks a tight line here. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him. 58-59.) 767f. This statement is all the more powerful when you realize it is the first sentence of what will follow as the life and passion of Jesus Christ, Savior of the world, Lamb slain since the foundation of the world, which was “in the beginning.”. Perhaps the clause could be translated, “the Word had the same nature as God.” This would be one way of representing John’s thought, which is, as I understand it, that ho logos, no less than ho theos, had the nature of theos.16. It can not be doubted that John would never call a creature theos. The fact that theos is the first word after the conjunction kai (and) shows that the main emphasis of the clause lies on it. The preposition John uses here is quite revealing. As it stands, the other persons of the Trinity may be implied in theos.7. KJV In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. Bible Commentary Bible Verses Devotionals Faith Prayers Coloring Pages Pros and Cons, 40 Important Bible Scriptures on Putting God First, Washing of Water by the Word Meaning and Meditation, Righteousness Exalts a Nation Meaning and Meditation, 18 Strong Prayers for a New Place to Live, Having Done All to Stand Meaning and Meditation, A Good Name Is Better than Riches Meaning and Meditation, 50 Compelling Bible Scriptures on Direction. Hence, when we see that the Word was, as to His nature God, we can understand exactly how He can be with God and yet be God. From all eternity the Word has been with God as a fellow: He who in the very beginning already “was,” “was” also in communion with God. This is right in line with what Robertson said – that the Logos is not all of God, and that you cannot say “the God was the Logos.” The very context (kai ho logos en pros ton theon) demonstrates this fully. I begin with the most quoted scholar on this subject, Dr. A. T. Robertson: And the Word was God (kai theos en ho logos). If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. A number of appendices have appeared in the NWT attempting to defend this translation by making reference to many of the same scholars that have already been quoted. Some have gone so far as to assert that the correct translation, therefore, is “the Word was a god,” basing the argument on the lack of the definite article ho before theos. There is obviously no scholarly support for the rendering of “a god,” and there is massive scholarly argument against it. John 1:1 is the first verse in the opening chapter of the Gospel of John.In the Douay–Rheims, King James, Revised Standard, New International, and other versions of the Bible, the verse reads: . Can He who is eternal (first clause) and who has always been with God (second clause), and who created all things (verse 3) be “a god?” 6) Just because a noun is not preceded by the article does not automatically justify the insertion of the English indefinite “a”. 1-john 4:19 We love him, because he first loved us. The unbelieving Jews called it blasphemy and sought to murder whoever made this claim. The context makes no such demand in the Gospel of John.”14 This is the view taken by Morris, Metzger, Griffith and others. The absence of the article here is on purpose and essential to the true idea.5. The Prologue to John’s Gospel is John’s birth story of Jesus. 3 We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard, so that you also … That beginning goes back before creation. Date of Writing: The Book of 1 John was likely written between A.D. 85-95. This translation violates the following principles: 1) Monotheism in the Bible – certainly it can not be argued that John would use the very word he always uses of the one true God, theos, of one who is simply a “god-like” one or a lesser “god.” The Scriptures do not teach that there is a whole host of intermediate beings that can be called “gods.” That is gnosticism. The “Word” reveals that Jesus is the mind of God, the thought of God, His full and living revelation. Their fellowship and relationship precedes all else, and it is timeless. John 1:1-2. The Incarnation of the Word of Life. 1. John 1:1-3. We have seen that the Word is eternal. Jesus contrasted Abraham’s “becoming” with His own eternal existence in John 8:58 in the same way. But Christ is the complete and perfect manifestation of the Word. By not qualifying his statement, John assured that we could correctly understand his intention and his teaching concerning Christ, the Word. No, he filled the Word with personality and identified the Word not as some fuzzy, ethereal essence that was the guiding principle of all things, (as the Greeks thought), but as the eternal Son of God, the One Who entered into time, and into man’s experience as Jesus of Nazareth. 5) The translation tears the phrase from the immediately preceding context, leaving it alone and useless. 2 The life appeared; we have seen it and testify to it, and we proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and has appeared to us. He did not use the adjective, theios, which would describe a divine nature, or a god-like one. And Some Other Stuff, Doing Theology Live on TV with Call-Ins With Jet-Lag, Same Sex Controversy part 1 of 3: Sodom, and more from the JW Martin Smart, Advice for Witnessing to Mormons and Role Playing With “Elder Hahn”, The Only Begotten of the Father in the Flesh: Mormonism’s Embarrassing Theology. John 1:1-5 - In Him Was Life, and the Life Was the Light of Men In Him Was Life, and the Life Was the Light of Men The first five verses of John's gospel say quite a lot about Jesus. Another scholarly source along this line is found in the Expositor’s Greek Testament: The Word is distinguishable from God and yet Theos en ho logos, the Word was God, of Divine nature; not “a God,” which to a Jewish ear would have been abominable; nor yet identical with all that can be called God, for then the article would have been inserted…12. He was in the beginning with God. Then, is John talking about two “gods?” Can more than one being be fully eternal? This phrase must be taken with the one that follows. Donate Though He was thus in some sense a second along with God, He was nevertheless not a separate being from God: “And the Word was” — still, the eternal “was” — “God.” In some sense distinguishable from God, He was in an equally true sense identical with God. As it is, John asserts that in the Pre-incarnate state the Logos was God, though the Father was greater than the Son (John 14:28). He is the revelation of God. There is but one eternal God; this eternal God, the Word is; in whatever sense we may distinguish Him from the God whom He is “with,” He is yet not another than this God, but Himself is this God. Controversy has arisen over the meaning and interpretation of 1 John 1:9-10. 3 Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. What is meant is that the Word shared the nature and being of God, or (to use a piece of modern jargon) was an extension of the personality of God. He asserts that they are distinguishable. God the Son, the Word, was alongside God from all time and before. Again, these scholars are pointing out the use of the article to show the subject against the predicate in a clause. The content, style, and vocabulary seem to warrant the conclusion that these three epistles were addressed to the same readers as the Gospel of John. This is a gross oversimplification of the facts, a practice unfortunately common amongst those who are not properly trained in the Greek language. Here... An excellent article in light of my comments on the continuing campaign of Richard Mouw, President of Fuller Seminary,... Alpha and Omega Ministries is a Christian apologetics organization based in Phoenix, Arizona. 4) It ignores a basic tenet of translation: if you are going to insist on a translation, you must be prepared to defend it in such a way as to provide a way for the author to have expressed the alternate translation. The distinct personality of the Word is therefore not obscurely intimated. But don’t get it in your head that the book is therefore only for unbelievers. For the article with the predicate see Robertson, Grammar, pp. Throughout this section, John carefully contrasts the Word, and all other things. Remember that the original readers of John’s Gospel would not have already read verse 14, and they would not have the preconceived knowledge that the Word is identified as Christ. The key element in understanding this, the first phrase of this magnificent verse, is the form of the word “was,” which in the Greek language in which John was writing, is the word en (the “e” pronounced as a long “a” as in “I ate the food”). also hoi theristai angeloi eisin (Mt.13:39), ho logos ho sos alatheia estin (John 17:17), ho nomos hamartia; (Ro. No one would dare publish such a “translation.” However, in 1950, the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society published its own translation of the Bible, The New World Translation of the Greek Scriptures. Instead, John here asserts the full Deity of Christ, while informing us that He is not the Father, but that they (“God” and the “Word”) have eternally co-existed. John 1:1 says of the Pre-existent: kai theos en ho logos…The lack of the article, which is grammatically necessary in 1:1, is striking here, and reminds us of Philonic usage. See also ho theos agape estin (1 John.4:16). That simply means at the starting point. John would have us realize that what the Word was in eternity was not merely God’s coeternal fellow, but the eternal God’s self.3. Others could be added, but this is sufficient. 1 John Chapter 1 The first epistle of John speaks of the relationship between God, Jesus, and man. Dr. Kenneth Wuest, long time professor of Greek at the Moody Bible Institute in Chicago, commented on this verse: The Word was God. It is true that ho theos an ho logos (convertible terms) would have been Sabellianism. 602-973-4602 The exact nature of what was before the beginning is a total mystery except for the fact that God was there in three Persons. When it is used in this way, it refers to the divine essence. In the beginning, just before God said, “There there be” (Gen 1:3,) God the Son was poised and ready at the right hand of God, prepared to speak what was in the mind of the Father into existence. Neither was the place the only market, nor was the word all of God, as it would mean if the article were also used with theos. 1 John 5:7 877-753-3341 (US Callers Only). This is a great mystery but the Word is the will of God declared. As icing on the cake, John then precludes anyone from misunderstanding his claim that Jesus is eternally God by writing verse 3. John avoids confusion by telling us that the Word was with God, and the Word was God. John is very careful in his language at this point. 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Then are we to understand these two phrases for unbelievers rule also comes into play at this point Son God. He showed us, because he first loved us mission on earth become ” ( )... Leave us to simply know the eternity of the Word is the offensive truth to anyone who to. En ho logos these scholars are pointing out the subject of the logos who became and. Mst 602-973-4602 877-753-3341 ( us Callers only ) John wrote his Gospel eternity of the article out.

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