We’ve been looking at the names of God and how his names help us understand him better. This week I want to look at the name, ‘The Word’.
When the Apostle John opens his account of the life of the Son of God, John starts with the tremendous statement: ‘In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made’ (John 1:1-3). Here, John calls Jesus ‘the Word’ and gives a similar title when he reports on a later vision of Christ: ‘He is dressed in a robe dipped in blood, and his name is the Word of God’ (Revelation 19:13).
What is John trying to teach us by referring to the Son of God as the Word? John is telling us that Jesus is God’s Word personified.
‘The Word of God’ is frequently mentioned in the Old Testament and it always does wonderful things.
For example, the Psalmist tells us that it is by God’s word that God created all things: ‘By the word of the LORD were the heavens made, their starry host by the breath of his mouth’ (Psalm 33:6). In fact, we see the truth of this in Genesis which opens with similar words to John’s Gospel: ‘In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth… And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light’ (Genesis 1:1,3). God spoke again and again and by his Word the universe came into being.
God also repeatedly reveals himself to humanity by his Word. For example, the Word of the Lord came to Abraham and to Moses and to Samuel and to David and to Elijah and to Isaiah and to Jeremiah and to Ezekiel. And each of these prophets of God then shared the Word of the Lord with others.
Thus it is through the Word of the Lord that we know who God is. The Book of Samuel says about Samuel himself: ‘Now Samuel did not yet know the LORD: The word of the LORD had not yet been revealed to him’ (1 Samuel 3:7). It is only by the word of God that we know God is a spirit, infinite and unchangeable in his being wisdom, power, holiness, justice, goodness and truth.
And it is by his word that God saves sinful man. The Psalmist says: ‘Some became fools through their rebellious ways and suffered affliction because of their iniquities. They loathed all food and drew near the gates of death. Then they cried to the LORD in their trouble, and he saved them from their distress. He sent forth his word and healed them; he rescued them from the grave’ (Psalms 107:17-20).
Additionally, it is by the Word of God that we know how to live rightly in this world. The Psalmist says: ‘Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path’ (Psalm 119:105). Without God’s word, we will stumble and fall.
But does Jesus do these things as the Word of God? Did Jesus create the world? Did Jesus reveal God? Did Jesus save? Did Jesus teach us how to live? Yes. Yes. Yes. And Yes. He did all these things par excellence. Jesus is worthy of the title ‘The Word of God’.
But has the Word of God come to you? Have you been saved by the Word? Trust in the Word before it is too late.