23 September 2018

John 1:10-11

One of my favorite reality TV shows is Undercover Boss. I love seeing the CEO of a large company face the consequences of his choices and corporate strategies. I love how he interacts with his employees and discovers that their jobs are more difficult than he imagined. But most of all, I love it when employees throw shade at upper management with him right there in the room. That's good TV, my friends.

In this passage, Jesus is the ultimate Undercover Boss:
He was in the world, and the world was made through Him, and the world did not know Him. He came to His own [or own things, possessions, domain], and those who were His own did not receive Him. (John 1:10-11, NASB)
The Beginning: All is nothingness, an unformed chaos. A mysterious breath hovers over the surface of dark waters.

A disembodied Voice speaks. Light illumines the darkness. The light is constrained to a pattern of behavior: Day; Night; goto Day;

The Voice speaks again. The shapeless void is distinguished into wet water, grainy sand, loamy earth. The sky is divided from the earth and the sea from the land. The world begins to take form, to be distinct from the universe around it.

And so goes creation: The Voice speaks, bringing order and beauty from the void, and it is very good.

John's claim is that Jesus, housed in a frail meatflesh body that defecates and stubs its toes and sometimes has a bad cough, is the very embodiment of the Voice that wove the world into its beautiful being.

More than that, Jesus is the same eternal God who made a deal with Abraham: Follow me, and I will make you a great nation. Your wife may be barren, but that won't stop me from giving her descendants numbering like the stars in the sky or the grains of sand on the seashore. (See Genesis 12-17.)

So here comes this Jesus into the land of Israel, to the very descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. As he walks, his feet grow dusty with the dirt he formed in the beginning. He is walking among people who are the very grains of sand, the skystars he promised to Abraham.

And yet, like the hapless CEO of Burger Behemoth, failing to keep up with the fry timers in the back of the restaurant, Jesus is not seen for who he is. Many reject him, especially those who have a lot to lose from any disruption to the status quo.

But, as we'll see in our next installment, there's a great reward for those employees who respond well to this Undercover Boss.

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