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In Jn. 1:18, the Scripture says, "No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father's side, he has made him known." Our God is an unseen God, and a God who is in many ways higher than our understanding. His character and will would be unfathomable to us if He did not reveal Himself to us. But that is precisely what He has done. Beginning long ago with the prophets and continuing down to the time when He sent His Son into the world, God has been disclosing Himself to mankind.
In His Son, Jesus Christ, God has given the full and final revelation of who He is and what He wills for us. Jesus is "the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature" (Hb. 1:3). According to Jn. 1:18, Jesus has "declared" (NKJV) God. The Greek word here for "declare" is the same word from which we get our word "exegesis" (an explanation or interpretation). It is Jesus Christ who "explains" God to us in terms we can understand. The ESV brings out the meaning well: with regard to God, Jesus has "made him known."
In Jn. 14:8-10, Philip, one of the apostles, asked Jesus, "Lord, show us the Father, and it is enough for us." Jesus replied, "Have I been with you so long, and you still do not know me, Philip? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, 'Show us the Father'? Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on my own authority, but the Father who dwells in me does his works."
By studying what Jesus said and did, we can learn what God is like. This is an astounding thought. We can learn our Creator not only in theoretical terms, but also in very personal terms. We can come to know Him and love Him. We can emulate Him and mold our characters to His. We can learn to think and act as He would if He were in our situation.
Perhaps we have believed these truths for so long they have become familiar and ordinary. If so, we need to go back and study Jesus with fresh eyes. It is marvelous that the God who created us has come into our world and revealed Himself! It will do us good to meditate on that this week.
Monday: John 1:1-18
Key Idea: God shows Himself to us in His Son, Jesus Christ.
Questions for Family Growth: Who is the "Word"? Why would He be called that? What does it mean that "the Word became flesh and dwelt among us" (v.14). If no one "has ever seen God" (v.18), how can we get to know Him?
Wisdom for the Day: Proverbs 27:15,16.
Tuesday: John 5:19-29,30
Key Idea: Jesus did only what God wanted Him to do.
Questions for Family Growth: What did Jesus mean when He said, "I seek not my own will but the will of him who sent me" (v.30)? Judging from this statement, why is it so important for us to study the examples of what Jesus did in His life?
Wisdom for the Day: Proverbs 27:17.
Wednesday: John 14:18-24
Key Idea: Jesus taught only what God wanted Him to teach.
Questions for Family Growth: According to v.24, when we hear Jesus' teaching whose word are we actually hearing? According to v.23, what will we do if we truly love Jesus, and what will Jesus and His Father do?
Wisdom for the Day: Proverbs 27:18.
Thursday: John 14:1-11
Key Idea: When we read what Jesus was like, we learn what God is like.
Questions for Family Growth: In v.9, what did Jesus say about the question that Philip had asked? In v.6, what did Jesus mean when He said, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me"?
Wisdom for the Day: Proverbs 27:19.
Friday: John 13:1-20
Key Idea: Jesus gives us a perfect example to follow.
Questions for Family Growth: Why were the apostles surprised that Jesus would wash their feet? What did Jesus mean when He said, "I have given you an example, that you also should do just as I have done to you" (v.15)?
Wisdom for the Day: Proverbs 27:20.