Today’s Lenten Reading and Reflections come from John 1-2.
John’s gospel begins with a beautiful prologue introducing some major themes that we will see repeated throughout the book of John. Notice especially: Light vs. Darkness, the repetition of “belief/believing”. Who is the Word? What is the significance of the Word becoming flesh and dwelling among us?
Notice that both John in 1:29 and 1:36, John the Baptist refers to Jesus as the Lamb of God (who takes away the sins of the world). What does this phrase “lamb of God” mean to you? Keep in mind that the Old Testament refers a lot to sacrificial lambs.
At the end of ch.1, Jesus goes about the process of choosing disciples. In vv.43-51, we see a very interesting encounter as Jesus calls Nathaniel. Even though Nathaniel is unsure who Jesus is, Jesus knows exactly who Nathaniel is. These are the very first words Jesus speaks to Nathaniel: “Behold, an Israelite indeed, in whom there is no deceit!” Nathaniel is shocked that Jesus already knows him. Jesus already knows us too—the good, the bad, the ugly. Would Jesus say the same of us, that in us there is no deceit?
In Matthew 2, Jesus performs the first “sign” at the wedding in Cana. Following this event Jesus cleanses the temple saying, “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up?” What temple is Jesus referring to? Why do you think John puts this event at the beginning of his Gospel, while Matthew placed this event ¾ of the way through his gospel?