Who Did Jesus Come For–Why Everyone, Of Course

“9The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world. 10 He was in the world, and the world came into being through him; yet the world did not know him. 11He came to what was his own,c and his own people did not accept him. 12But to all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God, 13who were born, not of blood or of the will of the flesh or of the will of man, but of God.” — Gospel of John, chapter 1

When we talk about Jesus, who he was, what he did, and his invitation, do we digest what John says? “Which enlightens everyone.”

Do the people have different appearances than us? Different lifestyles? Different gender roles?

I thought for years that John was quite Greek in thinking. After all, he began with the Greek word Logos. Translated as word, it is steeped in Greek philosophic meaning. But that was probably just influence by the German theological movement of the late 1800s and early 1900s that strove to remove the “Jewishness” from the New Testament.

John’s writing is obviously quite Jewish (I have read explications of Revelation that relate the narrative to Jewish Temple worship). It must have pained him deeply to write “his own people did not accept him.”

We make the simple and miraculous too complex.

“To all who received him.”

Yesterday I talked of invitations. Last week of gifts. Both are implicit in these simple opening verses of the Gospel.

And there are no conditional clauses. No “if…then…else” statements.

Receive Jesus. Believe in his name. Become born a second time–born of God himself.

In December we recreate the invitation and the gift in our worship and study. Do we receive the gift? Do we pass along the invitation to the gift? To everyone?

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