“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”
King James Version (KJV)
1:1 In the beginning - (Referring to #Gen 1:1|, and Prov 8:23.) When all things began to be made by the Word: in the beginning of heaven and earth, and this whole frame of created beings, the Word existed, without any beginning. He was when all things began to be, whatsoever had a beginning. The Word - So termed #Psa 33:6|, and frequently by the seventy, and in the Chaldee paraphrase. So that St. John did not borrow this expression from Philo, or any heathen writer. He was not yet named Jesus, or Christ. He is the Word whom the Father begat or spoke from eternity; by whom the Father speaking, maketh all things; who speaketh the Father to us. We have, in #John 1:18|, both a real description of the Word, and the reason why he is so called. He is the only begotten Son of the Father, who is in the bosom of the Father, and hath declared him. And the Word was with God - Therefore distinct from God the Father. The word rendered with, denotes a perpetual tendency as it were of the Son to the Father, in unity of essence. He was with God alone; because nothing beside God had then any being. And the Word was God - Supreme, eternal, independent. There was no creature, in respect of which he could be styled God in a relative sense. Therefore he is styled so in the absolute sense. The Godhead of the Messiah being clearly revealed in the Old Testament, (#Jer 23:7|; Hos 1:6; #Psa 23:1|,) the other evangelists aim at this, to prove that Jesus, a true man, was the Messiah. But when, at length, some from hence began to doubt of his Godhead, then St. John expressly asserted it, and wrote in this book as it were a supplement to the Gospels, as in the Revelation to the prophets.
Joh 1:1-3 The Beginning of Christ's Ministry SUMMARY OF JOHN 1: The Word Made Flesh. The Witness of John. John's Disciples Pointed to Christ. The Lord Calls His First Disciples. An Israelite Indeed. In the beginning was the Word, etc. The first fourteen verses are introductory. In order to set at rest all controversy the Divine nature of Jesus, John glances, in the first three verses, back to the "beginning", recorded in Genesis, and affirms: (1) That he who was afterwards manifest as the Christ existed before creation began; (2) that he was present with God; (3) that he was divine; (4) that he was the Word; (5) that by or through him were all things made that were made (Joh 1:3). The first chapter of Genesis helps us to understand its meaning. God said, "Let there be light" (Ge 1:3), "Let there be a firmament" (Ge 1:6), "Let the earth bring forth" (Ge 1:11), etc., and it was done. God exhibits his creative power through the Word, and manifests his will through the Word. There are mysteries belonging to the divine nature and to the relation between the Son and the Father that we have to wait for eternity to solve. They are too deep for human solution, but this is clear: that God creates and speaks to man through the Word. As we clothe "our" thoughts in words, so God reveals his will by the Word, and when the Word is clothed in flesh, as the Teacher of men, we recognize it as Jesus Christ.