“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 1:14 (ESV)
The mysterious “Word” that John writes about in the introduction to his Gospel is now revealed. We read that the “Word” actually “became flesh” – that is, came into the world as a human being – and lived among people. Furthermore, John and others (“we”) knew Him and observed Him to the extent that they saw His “glory”. Glory is an outward manifestation of honor or magnificence and it demonstrated that He was the one and only Son of God.
Another amazing element of this verse is John’s use of the word ‘dwelt’. This Greek word can also be translated as “setting up one’s tent” or “fixing one’s tabernacle”. The tabernacle was the tent the Israelites built to house the Ark of the Covenant and to contain God’s holy presence after the Exodus and through their wanderings and conquest of the holy land right up until they built the Temple of Jerusalem. John is suggesting – well, actually claiming and confessing – that Jesus, the Word made flesh, is the means by which we now have access to God’s presence.
But this isn’t simply a ceremonial or formal claim, as if John is asserting that Jesus merely replaces the tabernacle. John is saying that the glory of the Lord, the glory that was always too much for mortal eyes to see unveiled, has now taken on our form and become intimately accessible to us. That which has always been far away and inaccessible is now nearby, walking beside us and with us always.
Dear God, thank you for being the Word that became flesh and dwells among us. Help us realize that your Glory is available to us all the time and that You are with us always.
Contributed by Tara Boehne