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From the Beginning

December 25, 2018
By Rev. Peter Heckert

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From the Beginning
John 1:1-14

+ Grace to you, and peace, from God our heavenly Father, and from our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. + Amen.

The text for our meditation this glorious Christmas morn is our Gospel lesson, especially, where John wrote, “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.” Here ends our text; dear Christian friends…

We’re going back to the beginning. It may seem odd to do so on this blessed Christmas morn, but John does, so we shall do likewise. Nothing existed aside from YHWH, the One Whose very Name means “I Am that I Am.” He Who revealed Himself in the fullness of time to be Three in One and One in Three. There, in the beginning, was the Eternal Logos, the Eternal Word. He was with God, and He was (and is) God, and John tells us that, “All things were made through Him, and without Him was not any thing made that was made.” There is nothing in all creation, visible or invisible, that was not created by this Word, the Eternal Logos. He spoke, and it was, and it is. No living thing that has the breath of life in it received that life from another source. Only He gave it.

That’s right, my friends; though we may not think about it all that often, the pre-incarnate Christ was present in the creation of all things. The Eternal Logos, the Second Person of the Trinity, was there, admiring and loving the wondrous creation so new and perfect. But as we all know, that perfection was short-lived. In a way mysterious but no less devastating, our first parents, created perfect and the pinnacles of all creation, rebelled. They transgressed. They sinned, and as a result, all of the good creation, which came into existence by the Eternal Logos, was effectively destroyed. Where there had only been life, there was now death. Where there was once trust and obedience, there was now skepticism and sedition. Where there was once love and humble service, there was now hate and pride. And the Eternal Logos was there, when Man failed and caused the great cataclysm known as the Fall. As His good creation fell into ruin and despair, He was there.

He was there as His creation crashed, but even as He spoke the curse over the serpent who brought about all this misery and death and destruction, He also gave the promise: “I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and her offspring; he shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel.” This promise, that the Seed of Woman would come in the fullness of time to do battle and defeat the ancient foe, was the hope of the People of the Word for centuries, millennia. It was the hope of Adam and Eve, of Enoch, Noah, and Melchizadek. It was the hope of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and all his sons. It was the hope of David, Solomon, Jotham, Hezekiah, and Josiah. It was the hope of the prophets, from Moses to Malachi. The promise of the Eternal Logos to defeat the enemy, to right all wrongs, and to restore His now broken creation was what sustained His people through the eons of suffering and pain, sin and death. They longed for the Meshiach, the Messiah … and what we celebrate this morning is the culmination of that promise. The Logos … became the Meshiach, as He took on human flesh.

That’s what John is talking about on this blessed morn, as we remember when “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.” We know this – we celebrate this wonder in the making every year, but I think the enormity of its occurring is often lost on us. The Babe of Bethlehem, born in the city of David, was born for the purpose of ending the reign of sin, death, and the devil. As the Child wiggled and squirmed as children do in His makeshift cradle, as Mary and Joseph looked on in a sense of awe and wonder you and I can only imagine, He had already begun the process of redeeming the world.

But this redemption would not come painlessly. It would not come with accolades and cheers, as a king returning victorious from battle. No, the Babe of Bethlehem would grow into the Son of Man, coming from Nazareth, where nothing good really comes from, and He would only have glory and victory through gory and bloody death. The Eternal and now Incarnate Logos, Who was present from the beginning, would save the world He created by allowing Himself to be destroyed by His creations. The flesh He assumed would be beaten and broken, scourged and pierced. By the snarling, sneering, jeering people He had come to redeem.

More miraculous than even the incarnation itself is that the Eternal Logos, from eternity, knew this was what would occur, that this was what had to happen. In His infinite wisdom, He knew, before it was even made, that this would be the only way to save His creation … and He did it anyway. Gladly. Joyfully. Because of you. Yes, you, the lousy, rotten, no-good, stinkin’ sinner. The Eternal Logos, begotten of the Father from eternity, took on flesh, knowing full well that it would be broken … and He did it anyway, without giving it a second thought. Because, from eternity, the Eternal Logos knew you, and He loved you, and wanted that you be His own, to live with Him in everlasting righteousness, innocence, and blessedness.

The Law may have been given through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ, the incarnate Eternal Logos, the One Who was, and is, and is to come, crucified and resurrected, ascended and returning! He Who came from eternity to give us life, light, and truth will return that we may be His own forever! A very merry Christmas, and a blessed New Year to you all!

+ In the Name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. + Amen.