In the Beginning was The Word

Melva Lea

By Asher Intrater

“Oh Wow!” I accidentally blurted out.

“Is there anything wrong?” asked Betty with concern.

“Quite the contrary,” I explained. “In my daily scripture devotions, I’m getting to John chapter one right now. I still get excited about reading the scriptures every day and am particularly excited today to read John 1 again.”

As I started to read, the first couple of words jumped off the page at me.

John 1:1 – In the beginning was the word…

(Greek: En arche en logos). The WORD is the LOGOS. And it was there from the beginning. “In the beginning” is of course the opening phrase, the very first words of Genesis chapter one. That is how Jews refer to the book of Genesis as a whole: In the Beginning, B’reshit, בראשית

“Oh Wow!” I blurted out again.

The meaning and impact of that statement hit me. It is a compact statement that connects Genesis to John, the beginning and the end. Its implications are enormous. Let’s touch on them briefly in five key aspects:

1. Creation – The physical universe was created by a spiritual God by using words. God said, “Let there be…” and there was. Words are the bridge between the spiritual and the physical – the instrument of creating. First, there is a spiritual concept, which then becomes a thought in word form in the soul. It is pronounced physically into the world in a spoken form. This understanding is foundational to biblical faith (Psalm 33:6, Hebrews 11:3).

The production of a “thing” is done by speaking it into being. Amazingly in Hebrew the word DAVAR, דבר means both “thing” and “word.” A word is a thing, and a thing is a word.

2. Messiah – It is clear from the rest of John 1 that the word is also Yeshua the Messiah. The christos and the logos are one. The word was the intermediary of creation, and Christ is the personification. (Colossians 1:15-20) When the prophetic word was spoken, the word was itself YHVH or the pre-incarnate Yeshua as the Angel of the LORD (for example I Samuel 3:7, 10). Yeshua’s name is called “the word of God” – Revelation 19:13.

[Note: Kaufman Kohler in the Jewish Encyclopedia on “Memra”, (Aramaic for “word”) cites many examples of the “personification” of the word and describes Memra as: …the creative or directive word or speech of God manifesting His power in the world of matter or mind; a term used especially in the Targum as a substitute for “the Lord” when an anthropomorphic expression is to be avoided.]

3. Scriptures – The “word” or “logos” also refers to the scriptures. The Law, Prophets and New Covenant are all logos. Yeshua is the personification of the logos; the scriptures are the “written logos” which testify of Him. As there is a spoken word and a living word, there is also a written word.

The most important statements of God, and about God, that are meant for all humankind to read, are recorded in the Bible. This aspect of the logos becomes the graphe – the scriptures. What an astounding privilege we have just to be able to read the written word every day!

4. Prophecy – In the Law and the Prophets, the gift of prophecy was a unique experience that God would speak to a special few. That gift has been expanded in the New Covenant after the immersion of the Holy Spirit on Shavuot, Pentecost in Acts 2. Now the “special few” can be anyone who believes in Yeshua, walks in obedience, and listens to the internal voice of the Holy Spirit.

God is alive and speaks to His children. The word of God that we hear on the inside is often referred to as rhema. We can all prophesy as we hear God. Since God can speak to any of us, we all know part of the truth and therefore prophesy in part the truth that was revealed to us – I Corinthians 13:9, 14:31

5. Proclamation – Having the word available to us in Yeshua, in Scriptures, and in prophecy, should transform the way we speak. Every word that comes out of our mouth has much more influence than we can imagine. We are made in the image of God and can speak as no other animal can. That is a divine gift.

The power of death and life is in the tongue – Proverbs 18:21. We should not speak meaningless words – Matthew 12:36. We should speak words meant to build up other people – Ephesians 4:29. Words spoken in faith can move mountains – Mark 11:23.

We can simply read a scripture out loud and proclaim our faith through it. We are in a sense “co-speaking” with God. This is the meaning of “confess”, or “co-fess”: to profess a word in cooperation with the word of the Lord. To speak in Greek is logeo. To co-speak, confess or speak the same is: homo-logeo.

In the beginning was the Word. At the end will be the Word. The Word of God is from beginning to end. Oh Wow!

This article originally appeared on Revive Israel – Tikkun Global, April 21, 2022, and reposted with permission.

 

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