14 And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as ofthe only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth. 15 John testified about Him and cried out, saying, “This was He of whom I said, ‘He who comes after me has a higher rank than I, for He existed before me.’” 16 For of His fullness we have all received, andgrace upon grace. 17 For the Law was given through Moses; grace and truth were realized through Jesus Christ. 18 No one has seen God at any time; the only begotten God who is in the bosom of the Father, He has explained Him.
I find it appropriate that John took 13 verses to describe Christ and then he talks about the part where Jesus became a man. This follows suit with the point that Jesus Christ existed before He became flesh or, in the form of man. This is echoed in verse 15, a quote from John the Baptist who, if you read his story in other gospels, was actually born before Christ was (on earth). So even though John the Baptist was physically born before Christ, and started his ministry before Christ, John the Baptist proclaimed Christ’s existence before him.
Christ on earth was an example of God’s fullness: in the Law of the Prophets, in grace and love, and of the Truth. In reading verse 16 I think about a plate with rice being scooped upon it. In imagining God’s grace and our human condition I imagine us turning to the server (Christ) and saying, “thanks, but that’s enough” and Jesus just smiles and keeps piling it on. Our plate overflows. He keeps piling it on more and more so that the rice He gives us overflows and is plenty more than we need and the pile keeps spreading on the table until it begins to reach other plates and the people sitting around us also begin to receive that which the server is serving us. We begin to consume this grace until we are completely full but it keeps on coming. It never spoils but continues to flow. How loving a God we have! Too often we complain “but it’s too much!” We take our plate and run away until it is all consumed and then we come back asking for more or we decide “He won’t serve me like that again, I guess I have to look elsewhere.” Or we smack away the spoon telling Him to stop giving it to us, until we run out then we regret our previous actions but are too ashamed to turn back and ask Him for more.
Folks, God has poured out His unending and unconditional grace on us as a result of how much He loves us, yet we reject Him every chance we get. We see what someone else has and instead yearn for that, finding out it brings us temporary pleasure. We want to be God ourselves and turn away from the constant serving of grace and try to “make it on our own” as if we have something to prove to ourselves or even to God. The truth is, which we all realize at some point in our lives (whether we will admit it or not) is that we can’t make it on our own. If we could, then we would be God, wouldn’t we? Then all this would be for naught. Maybe some of you feel that way, that this whole “God thing” is pointless and weak. Fortunately, that is not the case and if this is really how you feel and what you believe, my friends you have been duped into believing the oldest lie in the book (quite literally). For grace and truth were realized through Jesus Christ and it isn’t until we ask Him to open our eyes that the truth will be revealed to us.
Don’t take my word for it, seek Him out yourself. This isn’t a message for the “unbeliever” but rather for everyone, including myself (as every message I write is for). We should never be satisfied with what is on our plate. In a society today where we constantly seek out “a better future” we only see our future with God in the moment, completely negating everything we have been given and promised by Him. Sometimes we don’t want to believe it because we have become accustomed to relying on man’s promises which are usually “too good to be true.” My friends, I tell you that God’s promises are so good BECAUSE they are true!
Will you seek the truth or continue to live in the cloud of a lie?