The true light, which enlightens all men, was coming into the world. He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him. He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him. But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God (John 1:9-13).
In the opening verses to his Gospel, the apostle John gives us some of the most well-known verses in Scripture. And though they are well-known by themselves, they point to a text that is even more well-known, namely the first verses of the Scriptures found in Genesis 1. And what I believe the apostle is doing in writing these verses is that he is giving us a commentary upon the Genesis 1 account of the Creation in light of the revealed Person of Jesus Christ. And I say commentary and not revelation, because what the apostle is saying is not something that is new, but it is something that is seen more clearly in Jesus Christ.
To explain what I mean, let’s consider the first verses of the Genesis account in light of John 1. In Genesis 1, Moses writes, “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth” (Gen. 1:1). One thing I love about this text is the way by which the Holy Spirit had revealed it to Moses. For the phrase, “In the beginning” (which has been argued by non-Christian Jewish scholars before and after the coming of Christ), is a purposely ambiguous phrase in the Hebrew. For while it does convey the meaning of “In the beginning,” the same words are used later in the book of Genesis to refer to Jacob’s firstborn son, Reuben. These Jewish scholars, ironically, have shown that these first words in Genesis can be alternately rendered, “Through the Firstborn, God created the heavens and the earth.” Now, granting that is true and granting what the apostle Paul has written elsewhere concerning Jesus Christ, namely that he is the Firstborn of all creation, we have in the Genesis account precisely what the apostle John is saying in his Gospel, namely, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not anything made that was made” (John 1:1-3).