John 1:16-17 - Truth Through Christ

John 1:14b & 16-17 – Truth Through Christ

John 1:14, 16-17 (ESV) — 14b…glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. 16 And from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace. 17 For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.

In our text, John has thus far told us that grace and truth were through the Word.
• Last week we talked about how grace came through Christ and what grace was.
• Today we will tackle truth – how it came through Christ and what it is.


In the context of verse 14, as with grace, truth came through Christ through the incarnation – “Word became flesh and dwelt among us”.
• We discovered last week, with the story of Zacchaeus, how exactly grace came through Jesus.
• Today we will also look to Scripture to see exactly how and what truth came through Jesus.

What Scripture Says:
• Psalm 78:2–3 (ESV) — 2 I will open my mouth in a parable; I will utter dark sayings from of old, 3 things that we have heard and known, that our fathers have told us.
• John 17:8 (ESV) — 8 For I have given them the words that you gave me, and they have received them and have come to know in truth that I came from you; and they have believed that you sent me.
• John 8:31–32 (ESV) — 31 So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed in him, “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, 32 and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
• John 17:17–19 (ESV) — 17 Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth. 18 As you sent me into the world, so I have sent them into the world. 19 And for their sake I consecrate myself, that they also may be sanctified in truth.

The truth came from the spoken word of Jesus Christ!
• This fact gives further insight into why John called Jesus the “Word was God”.
• Jesus was, in every conceivable way, the “Word” of God who spoke the word of God.

As in the past few lessons, we again see (and will see) the intimacy and “hands-on” or “word-on” interaction Jesus had with His creation.

But what was the truth that came through Christ?


Christ said that He came to “bear witness to the truth”.
• He said that all those who are “of the truth” listen to His voice.
• And to these statements Pilate asked the same question we ask, “What is truth?”

John 18:37–38 (ESV) — 37 Then Pilate said to him, “So you are a king?” Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. For this purpose I was born and for this purpose I have come into the world—to bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth listens to my voice.” 38 Pilate said to him, “What is truth?” After he had said this, he went back outside to the Jews and told them, “I find no guilt in him.”

So we ask the same question as Pilate, but to answer it we need to know something to narrow our search.
• What category of truth does John refer to as coming through Christ?
• What category of truth is John meaning to reveal that Jesus bears witness to?
• Does he mean to say that Jesus bears witness to philosophical truth, doctrinal truth, spiritual truth, moral truth, the law of gravity, the law of thermodynamics, quantum physics, DNA translation and transcription, photosynthesis, the irreducible complexity of blood clotting, etc.?
• Surely anything that is true is upheld and sustained by Christ, but John and Jesus seem to be more narrowly focused in their treatment of the truth.

The category of truth:
Jesus helps us narrow our search down.
• John 1:17 (ESV) — 17 For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.
  o This truth is revealed through the incarnation as Christ’s spoken words (as we saw earlier).
• John 5:32–34 (ESV) — 32 There is another who bears witness about me, and I know that the testimony that he bears about me is true. 33 You sent to John, and he has borne witness to the truth. 34 Not that the testimony that I receive is from man, but I say these things so that you may be saved.
  o John the Baptist bore witness that Jesus is the one who bears witness to this truth
  o This truth saves
• John 8:32 (ESV) — 32 “…and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
  o This truth sets free
• John 8:40 (ESV) — 40 but now you seek to kill me, a man who has told you the truth that I heard from God. This is not what Abraham did.
  o This truth was given to Christ by the Father
• John 14:6 (ESV) — 6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
  o Acceptance of this truth is gives access to the Father
  o Denial of this truth precludes one from entering the presence of the Father
• John 17:8 (ESV) — 8 For I have given them the words that you gave me, and they have received them and have come to know in truth that I came from you; and they have believed that you sent me.
  o From this truth, it follows that Jesus is God
  o From this truth, it follows that Jesus was sent by the Father
• John 18:37 (ESV) — 37 Then Pilate said to him, “So you are a king?” Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. For this purpose I was born and for this purpose I have come into the world—to bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth listens to my voice.”
  o This truth is discriminatory, only those of the truth can truly “hear” it
• Luke 4:18-20 (ESV) — 18 “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed, 19 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.” 20 And he rolled up the scroll and gave it back to the attendant and sat down. And the eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on him. 21 And he began to say to them, “Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.”
  o This truth is a fulfillment of prophecy
  o This truth entails the state of humanity before God

We can see then, in the below summary, that the truth we are dealing with is:
• Revealed through incarnation
• Attested to by John the Baptist
• It saves – It sets free
• Given to Jesus by the Father – Gives access to the Father
• Reveals that Jesus is God – Reveals that Jesus was sent by the Father
• It is discriminatory – not everyone can “hear” it
• It is a fulfillment of prophecy
• It concerns the state of humanity

So from these observations, I think we can safely say that we are dealing primarily with a category of truth that deals with the spiritual and moral standing of man before God as spoken of AND as remedied by God incarnate, the Messiah, Jesus Christ.

POI – This is NOT to say, by any means, that other categories of truth are not addressed by Jesus and/or the rest of the New Testament writers.
• If Scripture does not bear witness directly to these categories of truth mentioned earlier (and all other truth for that matter) we can be assured that, at the very least, these categories of truth proclaim and bear witness to the majesty of the Creator who made them possible and sustains them.

Now that we narrowed our focus down to essentially the moral/spiritual realm of truth, we can isolate in detail what truth John probably had in mind that came through Jesus.

To help us, we need to know what the Greek word “truth” used in our text means:
• The TDNT states that alḗtheia, the Greek word for truth in our text, can denote “the real state of affairs” that is “seen” or “expressed” or “disclosed” as opposed to “concealed” or “falsified”.
• R.C. Sproul says it like this; “Truth is that which corresponds to reality as perceived by God”.

We can now frame our question in a way that helps us determine what truth came through Jesus.
So what exactly was the “real state of affairs” that Jesus the Messiah revealed concerning Himself and mans’ standing before God?
Or, put another way, what was the “reality as perceived by God” that Christ bore witness to pertaining to spiritual/moral truth?

In studying and researching these questions in John’s Gospel, it appears that John seemed to focus on essentially 3 aspects of truth that Christ bore witness to with His spoken word.
• It could be argued, then, that it was the following that John had in mind when speaking of the truth that came through Christ.

The Word spoke the word of truth revealing the “real state of affairs” concerning:
• BTW - Notice how often the truth is associated with Jesus’ speaking (the through the incarnation part)!

TRUTH 1 – SALVATION – Without belief in the words of the Word there is no salvation but damnation.
• John 11:25–26 (ESV) — 25 Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, 26 and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?”
• John 3:3 (ESV) — 3 Jesus answered him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.”
• John 5:28–29 (ESV) — 28 Do not marvel at this, for an hour is coming when all who are in the tombs will hear his voice 29 and come out, those who have done good to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil to the resurrection of judgment.
• John 6:40 (ESV) — 40 For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him should have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.”
• John 7:37–38 (ESV) — 37 On the last day of the feast, the great day, Jesus stood up and cried out, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to me and drink. 38 Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.’ ”
• John 8:23–24 (ESV) — 23 He said to them, “You are from below; I am from above. You are of this world; I am not of this world. 24 I told you that you would die in your sins, for unless you believe that I am he you will die in your sins.”
• John 14:6 (ESV) — 6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”

TRUTH 2 – AUTHORITY – Jesus is of the Father, has authority from the Father, was sent by the Father and to reject Jesus is to reject the Father.
• John 5:26–27 (ESV) — 26 For as the Father has life in himself, so he has granted the Son also to have life in himself. 27 And he has given him authority to execute judgment, because he is the Son of Man.
• John 6:57–58 (ESV) — 57 As the living Father sent me, and I live because of the Father, so whoever feeds on me, he also will live because of me.
• John 7:16–17 (ESV) — 16 So Jesus answered them, “My teaching is not mine, but his who sent me. 17 If anyone’s will is to do God’s will, he will know whether the teaching is from God or whether I am speaking on my own authority.
• John 7:28–29 (ESV) — 28 So Jesus proclaimed, as he taught in the temple, “You know me, and you know where I come from? But I have not come of my own accord. He who sent me is true, and him you do not know. 29 I know him, for I come from him, and he sent me.”
• John 8:28 (ESV) — 28 So Jesus said to them, “When you have lifted up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am he, and that I do nothing on my own authority, but speak just as the Father taught me.
• John 10:37–38 (ESV) — 37 If I am not doing the works of my Father, then do not believe me; 38 but if I do them, even though you do not believe me, believe the works, that you may know and understand that the Father is in me and I am in the Father.”
• John 12:44–45 (ESV) — 44 And Jesus cried out and said, “Whoever believes in me, believes not in me but in him who sent me. 45 And whoever sees me sees him who sent me.
• John 12:49 (ESV) — 49 For I have not spoken on my own authority, but the Father who sent me has himself given me a commandment—what to say and what to speak.
• John 16:27–28 (ESV) — 27 for the Father himself loves you, because you have loved me and have believed that I came from God. 28 I came from the Father and have come into the world, and now I am leaving the world and going to the Father.”

TRUTH 3 – HEARING/OBEY – If you are of me you will “hear” me; if you are not of me you will not “hear” me. Those who don’t “hear” me are of the devil and will be judged for not “hearing” me.
• John 8:43–44 (ESV) — 43 Why do you not understand what I say? It is because you cannot bear to hear my word. 44 You are of your father the devil, and your will is to do your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, and has nothing to do with the truth, because there is no truth in him…
• John 8:45–47 (ESV) — 45 But because I tell the truth, you do not believe me. 46 Which one of you convicts me of sin? If I tell the truth, why do you not believe me? 47 Whoever is of God hears the words of God. The reason why you do not hear them is that you are not of God.”
• John 6:35–37 (ESV) — 35 Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst. 36 But I said to you that you have seen me and yet do not believe. 37 All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out.
• John 6:43–45 (ESV) — 43 Jesus answered them, “Do not grumble among yourselves. 44 No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him. And I will raise him up on the last day. 45 It is written in the Prophets, ‘And they will all be taught by God.’ Everyone who has heard and learned from the Father comes to me.
• John 6:63–65 (ESV) — 63 It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh is no help at all. The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life. 64 But there are some of you who do not believe.” (For Jesus knew from the beginning who those were who did not believe, and who it was who would betray him.) 65 And he said, “This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless it is granted him by the Father.”
• John 8:37–38 (ESV) — 37 I know that you are offspring of Abraham; yet you seek to kill me because my word finds no place in you. 38 I speak of what I have seen with my Father, and you do what you have heard from your father.”
• John 10:25–27 (ESV) — 25 Jesus answered them, “I told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in my Father’s name bear witness about me, 26 but you do not believe because you are not part of my flock. 27 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.
• John 12:47–48 (ESV) — 47 If anyone hears my words and does not keep them, I do not judge him; for I did not come to judge the world but to save the world. 48 The one who rejects me and does not receive my words has a judge; the word that I have spoken will judge him on the last day.
• John 15:22–24 (ESV) — 22 If I had not come and spoken to them, they would not have been guilty of sin, but now they have no excuse for their sin. 23 Whoever hates me hates my Father also. 24 If I had not done among them the works that no one else did, they would not be guilty of sin, but now they have seen and hated both me and my Father.
• John 9:39 (ESV) — 39 Jesus said, “For judgment I came into this world, that those who do not see may see, and those who see may become blind.”

BTW – What does Jesus mean when he says “hear”?

POI - Jesus withheld from those that did not “hear” His word and shared all with those that “heard”.
• John 15:15 (ESV) — 15 No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you.
• Mark 4:11–12 (ESV) — 11 And he said to them, “To you has been given the secret of the kingdom of God, but for those outside everything is in parables, 12 so that “they may indeed see but not perceive, and may indeed hear but not understand, lest they should turn and be forgiven.”
  o Mark 4:12 is from Isaiah 6:9-10, about which J.E. Smith says, “How long must he continue to preach a message which would cause his people to entrench themselves ever deeper in sin?”
  o And John MacArthur says, “[The] Lord speaking in parables is a judgment to the non-believers who are fixed in their rejection”.
  o William Kaiser says Jesus had, “the same (retributive) purpose behind the call of Isaiah: to harden the hearers in their unbelief”.
• So when Christ spoke to those who did not “hear” he entrenched them deeper in their sin!

POI – It seems that those that believe “hear” something different than those that don’t believe when confronted with the words of the Gospel.
• The one who believes is the one “who has hears to hear”.
• Why is that? Is it something in their will or is it the “grace that empowers our choosing”?

John seemed to have some specific things in mind we discussing the truth that came through Jesus.
It seems clear that the category of truth mostly at issue was spiritual/moral truth.
And the truth spoken by the Word of God was:
1. Without belief in the words of the Word there is no salvation but damnation.
2. Jesus is of the Father, has authority from the Father, was sent by the Father and to reject Jesus is to reject the Father.
3. If you are of me you will “hear” me; if you are not of me you will not “hear” me. Those who don’t “hear” me are of the devil and will be judged for not “hearing” me.

Do you believe…can you hear the words of the Word?
Does the truth Christ speaks penetrate your heart & mind or dull your heart & mind?
The answers to these questions have eternal significance!


John 1:14b & 16-18 - Fullness of Grace Part II

(The below is inspired by and adapted from “Jesus Through Middle Eastern Eyes”.)

We will examine this story and uncover the role grace played as it unfolded.
• You need to familiarize yourself with Part I of this lesson first.
• It is there that we define Grace and here where we see it in action.

Verse 1
• Jesus was passing through on His way to Jerusalem.
• The town would have expected a chance to show him some hospitality.
• They had already demonstrated their desire to do so via the act of going out of town to greet him.
• But Jesus had made clear (He kept walking) that he was not going to stop.

Verse 2
• Zacchaeus was a tax collector; somehow he had acquired the rights to collect taxes for Rome.
• Rome would have told him exactly the tax to turn over, the rest he could keep.
• Since only Rome and the tax collector knew how much tax was required, the system was ripe for greed and corruption on the part of the tax collector.
• Because of this corruption tax collectors were considered unclean and were despised.
• They were seen as Gentile collaborators.
• They were oppressors as compared to the oppressed that Jesus had just healed a few verses earlier.

With the 1st 2 verses, the scene has been set for Jesus’ grace to have its way.

Verse 3
• Zacchaeus for some reason had a desire to see Jesus.
• The crowd became an obstacle to this because he could not see over them.
• Had he been a respected rich man in Jericho, the crowd would have made way for him.
• But, because he was hated, he knew there was no way they would let him through to the front where he could see.
• Plus, to be a hated man in a crowd is not the safest place to be.

What drew Zacchaeus to want to see Jesus?
• Grace empowers our will

Verse 4
• Zacchaeus’ solution was to do two things that a rich Middle Eastern man would never do so that he could see Jesus.
• First, he ran in public (a humiliating act).
• And then he climbed a tree (also a humiliating act).
• A sycamore tree is very bushy; many believe Zacchaeus climbed it to hide and thus avoid being seen and humiliated.

Why would Zacchaeus risk humiliation?
• Grace empowers our will

Verse 5
• Zacchaeus was busted and the hated, rich, unclean tax collector was humiliated in front of everybody.
• Jesus, and probably others as well, saw him, and Jesus called him down.
• No doubt the crowd was waiting for Jesus to heap it on this defiled, Gentile collaborator.
• But Jesus does that which is “both unthinkable and unprecedented”; He invites Himself to the traitor’s house.
• Especially in the Middle East, “the community selects the form of hospitality, not the guest”.
• Jesus, however, insulted the town by both in inviting Himself and in inviting Himself to a tax collectors house.
• As a result, Jesus shifts the ire of the crowd from a humiliated Zacchaeus to Himself!
• Isaiah 53:5 – “by his wounds we are healed”.

Why did Jesus say he must go to Zacchaeus’?
• Grace empowers His choosing
Why did Jesus shift the ire of the crowd to himself – a costly act on His part?
• Grace led the lamb to the slaughter

Verse 6
• Having been “accepted” by Jesus, Zacchaeus accepts Jesus invitation and accepts Jesus joyfully.

How was Zacchaeus able to receive Jesus joyfully in the midst of his humiliation?
• Grace empowers repentance and salvation

Verse 7
• Jesus entered Zacchaeus’ house, a place of defilement in the eyes of the town.
• What kind of Messiah would defile Himself in such a way?

Why did Jesus “defile” Himself on account of Zacchaeus?
• Grace led the lamb to the slaughter

Verse 8
• Zacchaeus freely makes a gesture to give away 50% of his assests.
• And on top of that says “he will pay back fourfold anyone he has cheated”.
• If he owes out just 13% of the 50% he has left, he will be unable to pay back everybody.
• Here Zacchaeus is exaggerating and in the Middle East, to exaggerate is to demonstrate sincerity.
• “If he does not exaggerate, the crowd will think he means the opposite”.
• Zacchaeus is showing the fruit of repentance.

How was Zacchaeus able to let go of what he held so dear?
• Grace empowers a sanctified Christian life

Verse 9
• Jesus says “salvation has come” both confirming the spiritual state of Zacchaeus and that it was He, Christ, that brought it.
• He calls Zacchaeus a “son of Abraham”.

Why could Jesus say that “salvation has come”?
• Grace empowers salvation and Zacchaeus had responded by faith to the grace offered to him.

So in this story, we have a beautiful display of how the grace of God brings salvation.
• By Grace it is planned by the Father (Jesus came to Jericho and Zacchaeus wanting to see Him)
• Through grace it is procured by the Son (Jesus calling Zacchaeus to Himself and taking the crowd’s ire on Himself)
• With grace it is applied by the Spirit (fruits of repentance and sanctification).

Ring Composition of Luke 19:1-9:
It reveals the emphasis of the story on Christ's grace in verse 5.

• JESUS ENTERS (vs. 1)
    o ZACCHAEUS (vs. 2)
        - THE CROWD (vs. 3)
            • THE TREE – RAN & WENT UP IT (vs. 4)
                o JESUS’ GRACE (vs. 5)
            • THE TREE – CALLED BY JESUS & CAME DOWN (vs. 6)
       - THE CROWD (vs. 7)
    o ZACCHAEUS (vs. 8)
• JESUS SPEAKS (vs. 9)


John 1:14b & 16-18 - Fullness of Grace Part I

John 1:14b & 16-18 – Fullness of Grace

John 1:14 (ESV) — 14b & 16-18 …glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. 16 And from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace. 17 For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18 No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father’s side, he has made him known.

John has told us that creation was made through him – hands on (breath of life into the dust).
• We talked about how this parallels how the new birth is through him – hands on (crucifixion on the cross).
• Now John tells us that grace and truth came through him.
• How are grace and truth through Jesus?
• BTW - today, we will only be dealing with grace; we will consider truth next week.


I want to first see how grace came through Christ and then explore what this grace is.
• John gives us a hint of how grace came through Christ when he says that it came “from his fullness”.
• “Fullness” here refers to the abundance of grace present in the incarnated Christ.
• Therefore, it was through the incarnation (the physical life of Christ) that the grace and truth of Christ manifested themselves in space and time.

So we have yet another “hands on” parallel.
• Grace was “hands on” in that it came through God being made flesh in the incarnation of Christ.

Paul says as much himself:
• Romans 5:2 (ESV) — 2 Through him [God incarnate – Jesus Christ] we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God.

What is Grace?
The scholarly definition:
• The absolutely free expression of the loving kindness of God to men finding its only motive in the bounty and benevolence of the Giver; unearned and unmerited favor – Strongs.
• This helps us isolate the grace we are discussing as a grace that exists between Creator and creation.
• But to really get a grasp of what this definition means, let’s use my favorite pastime of Bible-on-Bible commentary.

I think the best way to see what grace is will be to see what it does.

Grace empowers His choosing and our will:
• Romans 11:5 (ESV) — 5 So too at the present time there is a remnant, chosen by grace.
• Galatians 1:15 (ESV) — 15 But when he who had set me apart before I was born, and who called me by his grace,

Grace empowers belief:
• Acts 18:27 (ESV) — 27 And when he wished to cross to Achaia, the brothers encouraged him and wrote to the disciples to welcome him. When he arrived, he greatly helped those who through grace had believed,

Grace empowers repentance:
• Zechariah 12:10 (ESV) — 10 “And I will pour out on the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem a spirit of grace and pleas for mercy, so that, when they look on me, on him whom they have pierced, they shall mourn for him, as one mourns for an only child, and weep bitterly over him, as one weeps over a firstborn.

Grace empowers our justification:
• Romans 3:23–24 (ESV) — 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,

Grace empowers our salvation:
• Ephesians 2:5 (ESV) — 5 even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved—
• Acts 15:11 (ESV) — 11 But we believe that we will be saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus, just as they will.”
• Romans 5:21 (ESV) — 21 so that, as sin reigned in death, grace also might reign through righteousness leading to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Grace empowers a sanctified Christian life:
• 2 Corinthians 9:8 (ESV) — 8 And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that having all sufficiency in all things at all times, you may abound in every good work.
• Acts 20:32 (ESV) — 32 And now I commend you to God and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up and to give you the inheritance among all those who are sanctified.

Grace empowers Christian service:
• Hebrews 4:16 (ESV) — 16 Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.
• Acts 6:8 (ESV) — 8 And Stephen, full of grace and power, was doing great wonders and signs among the people.
• Acts 14:3 (ESV) — 3 So they remained for a long time, speaking boldly for the Lord, who bore witness to the word of his grace, granting signs and wonders to be done by their hands.

POI – God’s common grace even blesses those who are not saved.
• Matthew 5:45 (ESV) — 45 so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven. For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.

Grace led the Lamb to the slaughter:
• Hebrews 2:9 (ESV) — 9 But we see him who for a little while was made lower than the angels, namely Jesus, crowned with glory and honor because of the suffering of death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone.
• 2 Corinthians 8:9 (ESV) — 9 For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich.

Grace alone is enough:
• 2 Corinthians 12:9 (ESV) — 9a But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”
• Paul asked for healing – Jesus said “My Grace” is all you need and besides I am glorified in your weakness.

So from the above, we get a glimpse of all that the grace that came “through [the incarnate] Jesus Christ” does.
• It is not hard to see how this grace figures into our own lives.
• But so as to be even clearer, we will look at a specific Biblical example of “his fullness” of grace next week.


John 1:14 - The Word in Sandals

John 1:14 – The Word in Sandals
Diving Deeper Lesson Outline for John 1:14

John 1:14 (ESV) — 14 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).


John has just told us that the Word is:
• In the beginning – eternal
• With God – part of the godhead
• Was God
• Creator of all things
• Life (physical and spiritual)
• Light

And now, in verse 14, John drops the ultimate “J-Bomb” – this “Word became flesh”!

The gravity of this statement and the truth it conveys should be jaw-dropping in their implications.
• Eternal entered space and time
• 2nd person of godhead became son of Joseph from Nazareth
• God became man
• Creator of all things became creature
• Life came to die
• Light came to shine divine truth

It is a humbling thing for me when I consider the enormity of the incarnation.
• The idea that God would posit himself into space and time and humanity for our sake is AWESOME!
• Psalm 8:3–4 (ESV) — 3 When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, 4 what is man that you are mindful of him, and the son of man that you care for him?

John goes on in verse 14 to describe the impact of the incarnation.
• He mentions both that Jesus “dwelt among us” – something felt by humanity (physically).
• And he mentions a glory of Jesus “as of the only [unique] Son” – something seen by humanity (visually).
  o We will cover “grace and truth” next week.

So the incarnation made it possible to know God physically and visually in ways heretofore never possible.
• Thus, John can say at the end of verse 18, “he has made him known”.
• Or as Dick Woodward says, God has become “The Word in Sandals.”

So now we need to explore the dwelling (physical) and the glory (visual) ways God made himself known through Jesus as described by John.


The word dwelt is the same word for “tent” or “tabernacle”.
• So this part of the verse could also be translated, “The Word became flesh, and tabernacled among us”.
• This “translation is particularly significant because the word refers beyond any question to the portable wilderness tabernacle or temple of the Hebrew nation” – Boice.

The significance of this can be quickly discovered when we briefly look at the role of the tabernacle in the OT – Boice.
• We will see that to know God “physically” is to know Jesus as a serving as a tabernacle in the flesh.

The tabernacle was the center of Israel’s camp.
• It was placed with the Levites at the center of the camp of all the tribes.
• Jesus is the center of Christianity – He is the only mediator between God and man.

The tabernacle was the place where the law of Moses was preserved.
• The 10 Commandments were stored in the ark of the covenant which resided in the tabernacle.
• Jesus is the perfect fulfillment of the demands of the law, thus a perfect sacrifice.

The tabernacle was the dwelling place of God.
• God’s visible manifestation was His shekinah light or glory which was within the holy of holies.
• Jesus becoming flesh was the ultimate visible manifestation of God.

Because the tabernacle was the place where God dwelt among his people, it was also the place of revelation.
• This is why the tabernacle was called the “tent of meeting”.
• Jesus as the incarnation was the revelation of the Logos of God and all that John described therein.

The tabernacle was also the place where sacrifices were made.
• The tabernacle was where the priests offered the atoning sacrifices.
• Jesus’ sacrifice was the once for all sacrifice for the atonement of our sins.

Finally, the tabernacle was the place where the people of Israel worshiped.
• It was to the tabernacle that gifts and sacrifices were brought and offered up to God.
• Since His birth, those that are drawn to Jesus worship and sacrifice at His feet.

John makes clear that the incarnation of Jesus makes God known to us because Jesus “tabernacled” among us.
• Jesus, then, was not only “the Word in sandals” but “the tabernacled Word in sandals”.
• And he will be again:
  o Revelation 21:3–4 (ESV) — 3 And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. 4 He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”

As we stated earlier, in addition to the knowing God physically “tabernacally”, John tells us that God is known visually through His glory in Christ.


It is interesting that, as discussed earlier, the shekina glory of God resided in the tabernacle.
• So it should come as no surprise that the shekina glory of God resides in “the tabernacled Word in sandals”.
• And it does so in a number of ways.

Glory manifested in the transfiguration:
Matthew 17:1–2 (ESV) — 1 And after six days Jesus took with him Peter and James, and John his brother, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. 2 And he was transfigured before them, and his face shone like the sun, and his clothes became white as light.
• John was a witness of this glory.
• This is reminiscent of the Glory of God revealed to Moses at Mt. Sinai.
• And it is a preview of the Glory of God to come:
  o Matthew 25:31 (ESV) — 31 When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne.

Glory manifested in miracles:
John 2:11 (ESV) — 11 This, the first of his signs, Jesus did at Cana in Galilee, and manifested his glory. And his disciples believed in him.
John 11:4 (ESV) — 4 But when Jesus heard it he said, “This illness does not lead to death. It is for the glory of God, so that the Son of God may be glorified through it.”
• What was the first sign at Cana?

Glory manifested in the Passion:
John 12:23 (ESV) — 23 And Jesus answered them, “The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified.

Glory manifested after resurrection:
John 17:5 (ESV) — 5 And now, Father, glorify me in your own presence with the glory that I had with you before the world existed.

From these we get a sense of what John meant in describing Jesus’ unique glory as the Son of God.
• These manifestations of God’s glory were seen and witnessed by John and others.
• In fact, John 2:11 credits the seeing of this glory as drawing the disciples to belief; as making himself known.
• So Jesus was not only “the tabernacled Word in sandals” but also “the glorified Word in sandals”.

In contrast to God’s glory, John’s Gospel talks of another kind of glory – a glory that comes from man.
• John 12:42–43 (ESV) — 42 Nevertheless, many even of the authorities believed in him, but for fear of the Pharisees they did not confess it, so that they would not be put out of the synagogue; 43 for they loved the glory that comes from man more than the glory that comes from God.
• John 5:44 (ESV) — 44 How can you believe, when you receive glory from one another and do not seek the glory that comes from the only God?

What is the glory of man?
• Glory (Doxa) - the dóxa of man is human opinion and is shifty, uncertain, often based on error, and its pursuit for its own safety is unworthy – Strongs.
• It is the opposite of the grace and truth (vs. 14) found in the Glory of God that we will talk about next week.
• And Jesus makes clear that His Glory did not come from man.
  o John 5:41 (ESV) — 41 I do not receive glory from people.

Paul also makes clear that we are to seek “the glory that comes from God”.
• 2 Corinthians 3:18 (ESV) — 18 And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.

Whose glory are you being transformed into – God or man’s?
• The glory of man – shifty, human opinion full of error.
• The Glory of God – the character and image of God and new creation as received in and present in Jesus Christ – Strongs.