Tag Archive: John 1:1


The Final Journey

“Surely it is a constant source of discouragement to Jesus — even in these last days, and after repeated lessons on humility — that his disciples are still seeking personal glory in the kingdom.  Even now the apostles continue to think only in terms of an earthly kingdom.  Even now the apostles continue to think only in terms of an earthly kingdom.  Jesus admonishes them once again, pointing to the spiritual nature of his kingdom and to the need for humility and service.

There is at least one person who already seems to understand about Jesus’ mission and his call for humility.  That person is Mary, the sister of Lazarus.  As Jesus’ journey to Jerusalem comes to an end, the Gospel accounts tell the beautiful story of Mary anointing Jesus with precious ointments.  It will be a touching prelude to the brutal events of the final week.”

Read:  Matthew 19:3-30, Mark 10:2-52, Luke 18:15-43, Matthew 20:17-34, Luke 19:1-28, John 11:55-57, Matthew 26:6-13, Mark 14:3-9, John 12:1-11

All quotations taken from The Daily Bible.

Return to Judea to Raise Lazarus

“While Jesus is in Perea he learns that his friend Lazarus is seriously ill in Bethany, near Jerusalem.  Jesus, of course, wants to be with Lazarus, despite his fearful disciples’ counsel against returning that close to Jerusalem.  Knowing that Lazarus has died, Jesus immediately sets out for Bethany.

Jesus meets Lazarus’ sisters, Martha and Mary, and is moved to tears.  He goes to the tomb and raises Lazarus from the dead, and is such a dramatic and conclusive demonstration of Jesus’ power that his opponents call a hasty conference and immediately plot to kill him.  Aware of the danger, Jesus withdraws northward to the town of Ephraim, near the wilderness.”

Read:  John 11:1-54

All quotations taken from The Daily Bible.

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God.  And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.”   John 1:1-2, 14

Words are powerful.  They have the ability to question, exclaim, describe, uplift, encourage, comfort, or destroy.  I have always loved words and enjoyed using them; writing, singing, studying, talking, you name it, and once I became a Christ follower and started reading scripture…oh my, those words!

Scripture is alive.  It breathes and can affect a person like a sucker punch, hitting directly at the heart.  Words found in the Bible not only uplift, encourage and comfort, but they offer guidance and truth.

I very much enjoy spending time reading God’s Word.  Don’t get me wrong, it can be very confusing and foreign at times but if I continue reading, God always reveals a phrase, a story or a truth that I can grasp… and then Scripture sings.

God opened my eyes to the power of words when I tried to break the habit of saying “Oh my gosh.”  Instead, I made a point to say “Oh my word” but found, as you can read in my post: OMG!, that using the phrase “Oh my word” is almost worse because as scripture tells us, the “WORD” is God…and more specifically, Jesus himself.

The area that I struggle with words most is memorization.  My kids attend AWANA, the youth program at our church, where they are taught to hide God’s word in their hearts. (Psalm 119:11)

Scripture memorization is vital in our Christian walk.  For instance, verses of praise help us appreciate God’s creation.  Verses of encouragement help when we’re feeling depressed, sad, or lonely.  God’s promises equip us to recognize His miracles in our life, get us through challenging times at work, at home or at school, they keep us strong against temptation and prepare us to share our faith with others.

God revealed to me through a friend last night in our small group how effective memorization truly is.  If John 1:1 is true, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. then why would we not memorize?  Psalm 119:11 says “Your word I have treasured in my heart…”

If Jesus truly is the Word, then when we memorize Scripture are we literally placing Jesus and His power into our hearts?

Definitely makes memorizing a little more interesting, doesn’t it??

 

O.M.G!

It seems recently the “OMG” craze has started to get to me.  Now, I understand the context and ease of use when a person, typically a teenage girl, is shocked, surprised, or disgusted…

In fact I used to say the actual phrase when I was a kid and didn’t realize, or didn’t care, the significance of it.  Plus, I grew up in the 80’s (’nuff said) but with all of the “I’m sure,” “totally,” and “gag me”‘s being thrown around, it was just another valley girl phrase to add to our repertoire.

That’s how the phrase is being used today, and I get it if you don’t know Christ, haven’t been churched or taught respect for the Lord, but it drives me batty when Christians, the people who are aware of what “OMG” stands for and the respect and reverence it holds and who would never be caught dead saying “Oh my God!” aloud, are ok using an acronym.

HOW is that ok?

Growing up I was taught that saying “Oh my God” was wrong.  I got in trouble if I said it and many times got in trouble if someone wrongly heard me say “Oh my gosh.”

In fact, I remember one time I was at Gram’s house helping her and a frustrated “Oh my god” flew out of my mouth and she called me on it.  Of course I wasn’t going to admit it so I nonchalantly said ‘No, of course I didn’t say that!  I said ‘Oh my gaaahhh’.”

Mmmm-hmmm…

Now when I was with my friends, of course I used that phrase as well as other much more colorful exclamatories, but the only time I said a swear word in front of my parents was when my Mom and I were driving out of a busy parking ramp at the Milwaukee airport.

I was the only one who could see around a huge cement column and I didn’t see the car that was speeding toward us until I told her it was ok to go.  She stepped on the gas, I then saw the car and said “OH SH**!!” which caused her to slam on the brakes, the car avoided us and it was never spoken of again.

So really in that instance it saved a life.  Yup, definitely a Martha Stewart “Good Thing”…

I continued saying “Oh my gosh” for many years as I became a Christian, got married and had children of my own.  Many of my friends would say a much gentler version that I remembered old ladies saying as I was growing up: “Oh my word” and never did I think that phrase would come from my tongue, until one day I heard my two year old daughter say “oh my gosh!”

It sounded a bit different coming out of her mouth, so I nipped that in the bud!

It didn’t too take long before I had an “Oh my word” habit formed and used it for years, and one Sunday I heard a sermon based in John.

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”   John 1:1

“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

I realized at that moment that saying “Oh my Word” was existentially worse!!  I was cursing Jesus himself, the One who saved me, the One who died in my place!!

No more!

I still struggle with not saying “Oh my Word,” habits are hard to break, but I am trying.  I heard another phrase recently that I’m considering… “OH MY GIDDLEYDONK”

…which turns out I mis-heard Juliet say in the movie Gnomeo & Juliet.  She actually says “Oh my giddy aunt” [cue: english accent]

so I’m still entertaining the “giddleydonk” idea.

“You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain, for the LORD will not leave him unpunished who takes His name in vain.”   Exodus 20:7 

“You shall not swear by my name falsely, and so profane the name of your God: I am the LORD.”   Leviticus 19:12

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