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The Scriptorium

Creator Word

All things were made by Him.

The Gospel of John: John 1.2, 3

Read and meditate on John 1.2, 3.
What has been merely suggested in verse 1, John now clearly declares: The Word with God, Who was God, is the Creator of everything that is. And to make sure his readers understand that nothing which exists is exempted from this claim, he declares it twice.

          2The Word was with God when the world
began, and as all space and time unfurled
at His command. 3And through The Word were all
things made; apart from Him, no creature small
or great, in earth or heaven, in sky or sea,
no seen or unseen thing, has come to be.

-        John 1.2, 3

1.  We might be tempted to say that all things in the beginning were made by the Word of God – as though only in the beginning of all things was God Creator. But that’s not what John says. In what sense can we say that all things – everything that has ever come to be, everything that now is – exists by the power and pleasure of the Word of God (cf. Heb. 1.3; Col. 1.16, 17)? Complete this prayer: Lord, You are the reason I exist, so…

2.  John keeps emphasizing that the Word was with God (and, of course, was God). He seems keen to associate the creating power of the Word with His association with God. What would this suggest about His intentions in creating all things, everything that has ever been made? How does this lead you to think about the purpose of everything, how things should be understood, received, and used? Is everything fulfilling that purpose now? Should we be content with that? What is your purpose for me today, O Lord?

3.  John uses two prepositions to further describe the creating work of the Word: through (Geek: dia) and without (Greek: choris). How would you describe the perspective on the Word’s creating work suggested by each of these prepositions? How do these two prepositions further reinforce John’s claim that the Word of God is responsible for having brought into being everything that exists? Is John simply restating what the psalmist claims in Psalm 24.1? The earth is Yours. I am Yours. My day is Yours. So today…

4.  Since the Word has created everything, does it make sense that He would have a continuing, vested interest in all things? To what ends? Do you suppose the gospel John is writing might have anything to do with creation? All creation? Those aspects of creation which are in your control? Lord, what would You have me to do with the things You have entrusted to my care?

5.  In just these first two verses, John has established various important connections: eternity and time, created things and the uncreated God, the beginning of all things and the beginning of John’s gospel, everything that exists and He Who makes everything. Just these two verses suggest a worldview that is dramatically at odds with the dominant worldview of our day. Explain. Bring together your prayers from questions 1-4 into a single prayer.

“This Word is not a human word. For how was there a human word in the beginning, when the man received his being last of all?...There was not then any word of humankind in the beginning, nor yet of angels; for every creature is within the limits of time, having its beginning of existence from the Creator…But what does the Gospel say? It calls the Only Begotten himself the Word. Basil the Great (ca. 330-379 AD)

The Word of God has power to create all things. He must have done so with good reasons, being Himself the very Reason of God. And because He has made all things, they can only be explained in the light of His being and intentions. The Word, the logos of God, is thus the Bridge between heaven and earth, time and eternity, the temporal world and the spiritual world, everything that can be known and everything that we can know, meaning and meaningless. Should anything other than this Word be the center and end of our worldview? Explain.

Closing Prayer
Why do the nations rage,
And the people plot a vain thing?
The kings of the earth set themselves,
And the rulers take counsel together,
Against the Lord and against His Anointed, saying,
“Let us break Their bonds in pieces
And cast away Their cords from us.”
He who sits in the heavens shall laugh;
The Lord shall hold them in derision.
Then He shall speak to them in His wrath,
And distress them in His deep displeasure:
“Yet I have set My King
On My holy hill of Zion.”
“I will declare the decree:
The Lord has said to Me,
‘You are My Son,
Today I have begotten You.
Ask of Me, and I will give You
The nations for Your inheritance,
And the ends of the earth for Your possession.”

Psalm 2.1-8

Psalm 2.1-8 (Agincourt: O Love, How Deep, How Broad, How High!)
Why do the nations vainly rage,
Conspiring together from age to age?
Earth’s kings and all of their counselors stand
Against You, Lord, and Your Right Hand:

“Now let us cast His yoke below,
His Kingdom authority overthrow!
Throw off His Law, reject His Word;
No more be governed by this Lord!”

O Lord in heav’n You laugh in wrath
At all who embark on this cursèd path.
Your angry Word to them is plain:
“Yet shall My King in Zion reign!”

T. M. Moore

Visit The Ailbe Seminary, where our course, One in Twelve: Introduction to Christian Worldview, can show you how Jesus is central to all aspects of life in the world – and beyond! Our course is free, and you can study at your own pace, watching videos and using the free materials provided.

We are happy to offer each week’s Scriptorium studies in a free weekly PDF, suitable for personal or group use. You can download all the studies in our series on the Gospel of John by clicking here. Please prayerfully consider sharing with The Fellowship of Ailbe through your giving. You can contribute to The Fellowship by clicking the Contribute button at the website or by sending your gift to The Fellowship of Ailbe, 19 Tyler Drive, Essex Junction, VT 05452.

Except as indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. All psalms for singing adapted from The Ailbe Psalter. All quotations from Church Fathers from Ancient Christian Commentary Series IV a and b: John, edited by Joel C. Elowsky, General Editor Thomas C. Oden (Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 2006. Verse translation of John by T. M. Moore.

T.M. Moore

T. M. Moore is principal of The Fellowship of Ailbe, a spiritual fellowship in the Celtic Christian tradition. He and his wife, Susie, make their home in the Champlain Valley of Vermont.
Books by T. M. Moore

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