One of my favorite verses to ponder is one of the easiest to remember but the hardest to understand. I am referring to the "E=mc˛" of biblical theology, namely John 1:1: "in the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." (ESV).
Say this to yourself a few times and you will find that it has a certain rhythm or cadence to it. It is a perfect paradox. It is a very comforting statement, for some reason.
Why should it not be comforting, when it unlocks the secrets of the universe? J.I. Packer writes "the mystery with which this verse confronts us is thus the mystery of personal distinctions within the unity of the Godhead." (Packer, J.I., Knowing God (London: Hodder and Stoughton) 1973.) This verse and those that follow assert the full divinity of Jesus. This is an important idea, for throughout church history much controversy has raged over whether Jesus is partly human and partly divine, or wholly one and not the other, or what most of us calmly accept as wholly divine and wholly human, both.
If this is not food for thought, or indeed a banquet feast for meditation and contemplation, then I do not know what is! Please read the rest of John 1-18. It is irresistible, it is exciting. It gives you everything in a nutshell. For example:
John 1:4: "and the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth."
"We have seen his glory." I love this phrase, for it takes us from the most abstract thoughts our little brains can handle-concerning the nature of the Holy Trinity-to the exclamation of a witness: "we have seen his glory." As committed Christians, we have, through the gift of faith, the opportunity to enjoy God's grace and also therefore to "see his glory."
J.I. Packer has defined the practice of meditation partly as follows:
Meditation is the activity of calling to mind, and thinking over, and dwelling on, and applying to oneself, the various things that one knows about the works and ways and purposes and promises of God. It is an activity of holy thought, consciously performed in the presence of God, under the eye of God, by the help of God, as a means of communion with God . . . Its effect is ever to humble us, as we contemplate God's greatness and glory, and our own littleness and sinfulness, and to encourage and reassure us-'comfort' us, in the old, strong, Bible sense of the word-as we contemplate the unsearchable riches of divine mercy displayed in the Lord Jesus Christ. (Knowing God, p. 20).
Blessings to all.