The Word was God

The Word was God

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‘In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God and the Word was God.’ (John 1:1) Think about that phrase, ‘the Word was God’. Most people would not want to think of their God as the Word, and rightly so. God is not a book. But let’s think about it the other way around. Let’s see the Lord, the Divine Person who walked on earth and who glorified His Humanity, as the Word, and the pages we read as simply a way of expressing Him. In essence, the Word is not paper and black ink. The Word is the truth that the Lord gives us as a manifestation of His love, and the paper and ink are simply vessels that can contain and represent that inner reality.

In Psalms we read, ‘By the word of Jehovah the heavens were made, and all the host of them by the breath of His mouth…. For He spoke, and it was done; He commanded, and it stood fast.’ (Psalm 33:6,9) In one sense we can see the Word as simply what God says.

New Church teachings say that the Word is something more:

‘All power belongs to truth; indeed the power that Divine Truth going forth from Divine Goodness possesses is such that it has created all things throughout the universe…. Most people think that the Word or Divine Truth is merely what Jehovah has spoken and what He commands so to be done – this and nothing more. But in fact it is the Essential Being itself, the source from which all things exist and the means by which they are kept in existence. That Essential Being (Esse) which emanates from Him and, arising from it, the Coming-into-Being (Existere) of all things is what is meant by Divine Truth.’ (Secrets of Heaven 7678)

That may be hard to understand, so think about it this way. The Divine Truth is the basic order of reality. In natural terms we have laws of nature, such as gravity, magnetism, ‘for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction’. You cannot change these any more than you can fly. These laws exist because they reflect deeper spiritual laws. For example, there is the spiritual principle that everything you do comes back on you. This is the law of spiritual karma, if you will. Or another law: You do not gain spiritual reward for good deeds if you do them just for the credit you receive. And all these spiritual laws exist because they are a mirror of the Divine reality – of the Lord’s love and wisdom. The Lord’s love commands that these laws exist and so they do; they are the Word – Divine Truth manifesting itself in the world. They are as unchanging as the law of gravity. The words on the pages of the Book simply depict and reflect that truth in a perfect way.

Another passage says:

‘Few people understand how it is that the Lord is the Word. For they consider that the Lord can by means of the Word illuminate and teach people, without this entitling Him to be called the Word. But they should know that each individual is his own will and his own understanding, and this is what makes one person distinct from another… As for the Lord, He is love itself and wisdom itself, and so good itself and truth itself; He became these by fulfilling every good and every truth in the Word. For one who thinks and speaks nothing but truth becomes that truth; and one who wills and does nothing but good becomes that good. Since the Lord fulfilled all the Divine Truth and Divine Good which are in the Word, both in its natural as well as its spiritual sense, He became good itself and truth itself, and so the Word.’ (True Christian Religion 263)

One of the greatest things the New Church offers us is an explanation of who the Lord is. Another is how He is fully present in His Word, both through the internal sense that reveals Him, and because He lived out every truth in it such that He fulfilled and is the Word. What a gift that the Lord has made His Second Coming, to give us this vital information!

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