The Word Made Flesh: Dwelling Among Us In the Shadows & Experiencing Life With Us

Today’s selected reading is found in the New Testament gospel narrative of the life and ministry of Jesus the Christ as it was written and recorded by the apostle John. More specifically, today’s passage is found in chapters one through four of this New Testament book. When you come to this particular portion of Scripture you will find the final of the four gospels concerning the public life and ministry of Jesus the Christ. As you approach the New Testament gospel narrative concerning the life and ministry of Jesus the Christ you will find the second account of His life as it was written and recorded by the second of one of the apostles of Jesus. The New Testament gospels begin and open up with the narrative written by one of the apostles of Jesus while the four gospels end and conclude with the second of two gospel narratives written by one of Jesus the apostles. It’s actually quite interesting to think and consider that our first glimpse and introduction to the life and ministry of Jesus the Christ came at the hand and pen of one of Jesus’ apostles, while the final gospel glimpse of the life and ministry of Jesus the Christ came from one of His apostles.  The words which are found in the opening chapter of the gospel narrative written by the apostle John, however, are entirely and altogether different from the other gospels, and I would dare say more closely resembles that which is found in the opening chapter of the New Testament gospel narrative written by John Mark. If and as you read the four gospel narratives you will find that while the apostle Matthew and the beloved physician Luke chose to include words concerning the birth of Jesus the Christ as it was prophesied by the ancient Hebrew and Jewish prophets—John Mark and the apostle John chose not to begin their gospels that way. In all reality, it’s quite interesting to think about and consider the fact that in the New Testament gospel narrative written by the apostle Matthew He chose to write and speak of the birth of Jesus as the direct fulfillment of the prophetic word that was spoken by the mouths of the prophets Micah and Isaiah. You cannot read the words found in the New Testament gospel narrative written by the apostle Matthew and not encounter and come face to face with the absolutely awesome truth that he chose to write of the birth of Jesus the Christ as the fulfillment of the prophetic word that had been spoken in generations past by the ancient Hebrew prophets.

            It’s actually quite unique to think about how different the four gospel narratives concerning the life and ministry of Jesus the Christ actually are from each other, for while the gospel narrative written by the apostle Matthew chooses to include the birth of Jesus the Christ as the direct fulfillment of the prophetic word, the New Testament gospel narrative written by the beloved physician Luke chose to also write about the birth of Jesus the Christ, yet from the perspective of the angelic proclamation and declaration. The apostle Matthew chose to write of the narrative of the birth of Jesus the Christ in direct connection and relation to the fulfillment of the prophetic—and not only in direct relation to the prophetic, but also directly connected to those dreams which would be released to protect the life of Jesus after He had been born in Bethlehem. There is within the New Testament gospel narrative of the apostle Matthew an apparent link between the prophetic words of the past and the dreams given in the future, as both would be used by the living God to bring about the fulfillment of the life of Jesus the Christ. It would be in the New Testament gospel narrative written by the physician Luke that he also would write concerning the birth of Jesus the Christ—however, he wouldn’t merely write about the birth of Jesus the Christ, but also the birth of John the Baptist. Moreover, the physician Luke would write concerning the births of both of these individuals—the Messiah and the messenger of the Messiah—as a direct fulfillment of the angelic declaration and proclamation that would be spoken by the angel Gabriel. Whereas the apostle Matthew would choose to include the narrative of the birth of Jesus the Christ as a direct fulfillment of the prophetic declaration—the physician Luke would choose to include the narrative of the birth of Jesus the Christ as a direct fulfillment of that which had been spoken by the angel Gabriel. How absolutely and incredibly powerful it is to think about and consider the fact that the apostle Matthew chose to write of the birth of the Christ as a direct fulfillment of what was written and spoken in the past by the Hebrew prophets, while the physician Luke chose to write of the birth of the Christ as a direct fulfillment of what was spoken in the presence by the mouth of the angel Gabriel.

            With all of this in mind it’s quite interesting to think and consider how the apostle John and John Mark chose to pen their gospel narratives in an entirely different way. The apostle Matthew chose to present Jesus the Christ as the Son of David and the Son of Abraham while the beloved physician Luke chose to present Jesus as the Son of God tracing His lineage all the way back to Adam who was formed from the dust of the ground and in whose nostrils the LORD breathed, thus causing him to become a living soul. The apostle Matthew would choose to present Jesus as the Son of David and as the Son of Abraham, while the physician Luke would choose to present Jesus as the Son of God—and even as the Son of man. When you read and consider the words which are found in the New Testament gospel narrative written by John Mark you will find him writing and presenting Jesus as the Christ and the Son of the living God. It is important to note that in each of the four gospels the gospel authors painted and presented a powerful picture of Jesus as the eternal Son of God, yet when you come to the New Testament gospel narrative written by the apostle John you will find that he chose to present Jesus as both one-hundred percent divine, as well as one-hundred percent human. In the first and opening chapter of the gospel narrative written by the apostle John you will find him presenting Jesus as the divine and living Word which was in the beginning with God, and which in the beginning was God. What’s more, is that not only did the apostle John present us with the reality that Jesus was the living Word which was in the beginning with God and in the beginning was God, but he also presented Jesus as that living Word which was in the beginning God having been made flesh and dwelling among us. WHEN THE WORD BECOMES FLESH! WHEN THAT WHICH WAS SPOKEN IS GIVEN A BODY! WHEN THAT WHICH PROCEEDS OF GOD IS GIVEN A PHYSICAL BODY! In all reality I can’t help but be absolutely and entirely captivated by the reality and concept of Jesus as the living Word which not only took on the form of human flesh, but also dwelt among us, for there are two distinct principles that are at work here. There is of course the principle of the Word becoming flesh, but there is also the principle of the word dwelling among us. We dare not and must not miss and lose sight of this truly astounding truth, for it has the ability to dramatically alter and shift how we view Jesus the Christ—and not only Jesus the Christ, but also that which is spoken by the living God.

            Before I delve into this particular reality and truth I find it absolutely necessary to call and draw your attention to the words which are found in the Old Testament prophetic book of Isaiah. It is within this Old Testament book of Isaiah we find the prophet prophesying concerning the mind of the LORD—and not only the mind of the LORD, but also the word of the LORD. As you turn and direct your attention to the words which are found in the Old Testament prophetic book of Isaiah you will find a powerful declaration and proclamation given by this ancient Hebrew prophet—one that would wonderfully and powerfully illustrate and demonstrate what we find in the first and opening chapter of the New Testament gospel narrative written by the apostle John. In all reality, I would dare say that if we want to truly understand the words which are found in the opening chapter of the New Testament gospel narrative written by the apostle John—not only is it necessary to read and consider the words which are found in the Old Testament prophetic book of Isaiah, but it is also necessary to read and consider the words which are found in the first and second chapters of the New Testament epistle written unto the Hebrews. It is within these passages of Scripture we not only encounter the awesome power of the word to bring about that which is purposed within the heart and mind of the living God, but within these passages of Scripture we are brought face to face with Jesus as the living Word taking on Himself—not only the form of a servant, but also the seed of Abraham that He might fulfill that which the eternal Father had sent Him into and unto the earth to accomplish. It is with this in mind I invite you to consider the following words which are found in both the Old Testament prophetic book of Isaiah, as well as the words which are found in the New Testament epistles written unto the Hebrews, as well as the New Testament epistle written unto the Philippian saints:

            “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts. For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater: so shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it” (Isaiah 55:8-11).

            “If there be therefore any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any bowels and mercies, fulfill ye my joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind. Let nothing be done through strive or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves. Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others. Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: but made Himself of no reputation, and took upon Him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: and being found in fashion as a man, He humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore God also hath highly exalted Him, and given Him a name which is above every name: that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father” (Philippians 2:1-11).

            “God who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, hath in these last days spoken unto us by His Son, whom He hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds; who being the brightness of His glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high: being made so much better than the angels, as He hath by inheritance obtained a more excellent name than they. For unto which of the angels said he at any time, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee? And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a son? And again, when he bringeth in the first begotten into the world, he saith, and let all the angels of God worship him. And of the angels he saith, Who maketh his angels spirits, and his ministers a flame of fire. But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom. Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity; therefore God, even thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows. And, Thou, Lord, in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth; and the heavens are the works of thine hands: they shall perish; but thou remainest; and they all shall wax old as doth a garment; and as a vesture shalt thou fold them up, and they shall be changed: but thou art the same, and thy years shall not fail. But to which of the angels said He at any time, Sit on my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool? Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation?” (Hebrews 1:1-14).

            “For unto the angels hath he not put in subjection the world to come, whereof we speak. But one in a certain place testified, saying, What is man, that thou art mindful of him? OR the son of man, that thou visitest him? Thou madest him a little lower than the angels; thou crownedst him with glory and honour, and didst set him over the works of thy hands: thou hast put all things in subjection under his feet. For in that he put all in subjection under him, he left nothing that is not put under him. But now we see not yet all things put under him. But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man. For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings. For both he that sanctifieth and they who are sanctified are all of one: for which cause He is not ashamed to call them brethren, saying, I will declare thy name unto my brethren, in the midst of the church will I sing praise unto thee. And again, I will put my trst in him. And again, Behold I and the children which God hath given me. Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; and deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage. For verily he took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on him the seed of Abraham. Wherefore in all things it behoved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people. For in that he himself hath suffered being tempted, he is able to succour them that are tempted” (Hebrews 2:5-18).

            It is absolutely necessary that we pay close attention to the words which are found within these passages of Scripture, for each of these passages bring us face to face with the tremendous reality that while it was indeed true that Jesus was indeed divine and was in fact the eternal Son of God, it was also true that Jesus the Christ was one-hundred percent human having taken on the form of human flesh. It is in the first and opening chapter of the gospel narrative written by the apostle John we read of the word becoming flesh and dwelling among us, and it is in the New Testament epistle written unto the Hebrews we find the word taking on the seed of Abraham. In all reality, if you want to truly understand the words which are found in the New Testament gospel narrative written by the apostle John we must understand it—not only as the Word becoming flesh and dwelling among us, but also the Word becoming flesh and doing life with us. Pause for a moment and think about how absolutely incredible and wonderful that is when you truly consider how the Word was in the beginning with God, and the Word was in the beginning God Himself, and yet how that eternal and living Word would become and take on flesh. Not only would the word take on and become flesh, but the Word would also dwell among us. If and as you read the New Testament gospel narrative written by the apostle John you will find example after example, and account after account of the Word in the form of flesh dwelling among us and doing life with us. Oh we dare not and must not miss and lose sight of this absolutely incredible and powerful truth, for when we read the New Testament gospel narrative written by the apostle John we must understand it in light of the Word taking on the form of human flesh, the Word dwelling among us, and the Word doing life with us. Although the Word was in the beginning with God, and although the Word was God from the beginning, the Word would take on the form of human flesh that He might dwell among us. What’s more, is that it is truly something worth thinking about and considering how the Word would be that which deliberately and intentionally chose to dwell with and among us—and not only dwell with and among us, but to do life with us. The Word would dwell among us, and for three and a half years the Word would do life with us and would essentially and ultimately walk and talk among us.

            I sit here this morning thinking about and considering the tremendous and powerful truth of the Word which was in the beginning, and the Word which was with God taking on the form of human flesh and dwelling among us, for not only was the Word willing to take upon Himself our very nature, but the Word was also willing to dwell among and dwell with us. If you read the gospel narrative written by the apostle John and read it through in its entirety you will find example after example of the eternal and living Word—in the form of human flesh—dwelling among us. You cannot read the gospel narrative of the apostle John and not come face to face with and be met by the awesome and beautiful reality that when the Word which was in the beginning with God and was God in the beginning took on the form of human flesh—not only did He come to fulfill that which the eternal Father had purposed for Him to do, but the Word became flesh that not only might the Word itself dwell among us, but so also might the Word be present among us. It wasn’t merely about the Word taking on the form of human flesh, but it was through that form and likeness of human flesh the Word was able to do life with us. We dare not, we cannot and must not miss and lose sight of this truly powerful truth, for it wasn’t enough for the Word to take on the form and likeness of human flesh, but the Word also needed to dwell among us. Oh it is truly necessary and imperative that we recognize and pay close attention to this, for within and throughout the New Testament gospel narrative written by the apostle John we find narrative after narrative, account after account, and example after example of Jesus walking among us, Jesus dwelling among us, and Jesus doing every day life with us. You cannot read the New Testament gospel narrative written by the apostle John and not come face to face with the truly awesome and powerful truth of Jesus the Christ as the divine and living Word dwelling among us—and through that dwelling among us being the actual embodiment of the Word of God among us in our midst. How absolutely captivating it is to think about and consider the absolutely remarkable truth that the Word which was in the beginning with God, and the Word which in the beginning was God chose to dwell among us in the form of human flesh. It was absolutely necessary for the Word to take on the form of human flesh, for it would be through the form of human flesh the Word would be able to be the manifestation of the eternal God among us in the earth.

            I am absolutely and completely convinced that this is what makes the opening verse of the first chapter of the epistle written unto the Hebrews so absolutely astounding and remarkable, for the words which we find in the opening verse of this epistle reveals how God at sundry times and in divers manners spoke unto us by the prophets, but in these Last Days has spoken to and spoken unto us by and through His eternal Son. In the days of the Old Testament and during the days of the Old Covenant we find the living God speaking unto His people through His servants the prophets, and we find the living God speaking unto the people through His Law. We find the living God speaking to His people through the mouths of His servants the prophets as He anointed and inspired them, and yet when we come to the New Testament gospel narrative written by the apostle John we find the Word taking on flesh—and not only taking on flesh, but dwelling among us. Please don’t miss and lose sight of this awesome truth, for I am absolutely and completely convinced that it is not enough for the Word of God to merely take on the form of human flesh, but it is also necessary for the Word of God to dwell among us. It is the Word of God taking on the form of human flesh it is able to dwell among us, and it is when and as the Word of God dwells among us it is able to accomplish that for which it was sent to do. The Word taking on the form of human flesh would enable it to dwell with and dwell among us, and it would be in that dwelling among us the Word would accomplish that for which it was sent to do. Oh we must needs recognize and understand this, for there is something truly powerful about the Word no longer being that which was and that which is spoken, but rather being transformed into that which takes on the form which allows it to dwell among us. Oh there is something about the word of God being given flesh that it might not merely be that which is spoken, but rather that which dwells among us.

            As I sit here today I can’t help but think about and consider the awesome and powerful truth that while it is indeed powerful for the word to be spoken among us in our midst, there must also be room for the word to actually take on that which allows it to dwell and abide with us. In all reality, I would dare say that there are countless men and women who are content and satisfied with the word of God being spoken unto and spoken among us, and yet these individuals have absolutely no desire for the word of God to take on the form of that which allows it to dwell with and among us. Jesus was truly and indeed the Word which became flesh and dwelt among us, and we must needs ask ourselves if we are not only allowing the word to be spoken among us, but whether or not we are allowing the word to take on that nature and that form which allows it to dwell and abide with us. In all reality, I would dare say it is not enough for the word to merely be spoken to us, but the word must also take on that nature which allows it to abide and dwell with us. Oh there are many within our churches today who are chasing words, and who are looking for a word to be spoken, and yet there are very few among us who not only desire the word to be spoken, but the word to actually abide and dwell with us. It is only when the word abides and dwells with us it is actually able to accomplish that for which it was sent to do. Think about how incredibly easy it would have been for the eternal Word to come to the earth and to be manifested in our midst—even to emphatically declare that He was the Son of the living God—and then to return unto heaven. If there is one thing I absolutely love about the New Testament gospel narrative of the apostle John it’s not only that the apostle describes the Word as taking on the form of human flesh, and not only the fact that the Word dwelt among us, but it is in that dwelling with and dwelling among us the Word is actually able to accomplish what it needs. Would it shock and surprise you to think about and consider the fact that it wasn’t merely enough for Jesus to come to the earth in the form of human flesh and die upon the cross for our sins to make atonement and to give us redemption and salvation? If the only thing that was necessary for our atonement and our redemption was Jesus coming to the earth and dying upon the cross—or dying some other way that might have been ordained and appointed by the living God—the Word would not have dwelt among us. There is not a doubt in my mind that the Word dwelling among us not only touched the realm of those three and a half years in the public spotlight, but it also touched the first thirty years of His life as the carpenter’s son.

            THE WORD BECAME FLESH AND DWELT AMONG US! More often than not we think of the Word becoming flesh and dwelling among us only touching those three and a half years of public ministry within and upon the earth, and yet I am absolutely and completely convinced that the Word becoming flesh and dwelling among us also touches those first thirty years. We must needs realize and understand that the Word became flesh and dwelt among us for thirty years before the appointed time ordained by the eternal Father came for it to be manifested in the hearing and sight of all those in Judaea, Galilee, Jerusalem, and the surrounding cities, towns, villages and regions. Pause for a moment and think about the fact that for thirty years the Word was in the form of flesh and dwelt among us—and not only dwelt among us, but dwelt among us in obscurity. WHEN THE WORD DWELLS AMONG US IN OBSCURITY! WHEN THE WORD DWELLS AMONG US AND IS HIDDEN AND CONCEALED! Stop and think about how absolutely incredible it is to think about how the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and it dwelt among us for thirty years before the appointed time came for the Word to not only dwell among us, but to actually begin to accomplish that which it was sent forth to do. In all reality, I would dare say one of the greatest demonstrations and manifestations of the Word being made flesh and dwelling among us for thirty years in obscurity is found in the offense of those in Nazareth when the Word began to be manifested as more than just the son of Joseph the carpenter, but as something much greater, and something much larger. There is not a doubt in my mind that for thirty years the Word was in the form of human flesh, and that Word dwelt among us in obscurity without anyone even knowing that it was present among us.

            Pause for a moment and think about the fact that for thirty years the Word was in the form of human flesh, and the Word dwelt among us and did life with us in obscurity. For thirty years the Word was in the form of human flesh, and dwelt among us, and lived in obscurity in the land of Nazareth being supposed to be the son of Joseph the carpenter. For thirty years the Word was in the form of human flesh, and the word dwelt among us without anyone knowing that the One dwelling among them was more than just the carpenter’s son, and was actually the eternal Word come down from heaven. In fact, this is what makes the words which are found in the eighth chapter of the New Testament gospel narrative of John so absolutely convicting, for what we find in this chapter is Jesus emphatically declaring that He was not only the bread come down from heaven, but He was also the Word which came down from heaven and dwelt among us. Perhaps one of the greatest truths we must recognize and understand is that there are essentially two elements and two distinct sides to the Word becoming flesh and dwelling among us. On the one hand there is the side of the Word becoming flesh and dwelling among us in obscurity in the shadows of the carpenter, while on the other hand there is the side of the Word becoming flesh and dwelling among us in manifestation, in demonstration and in power. Oh we must needs recognize and understand the powerful truth that the Word can indeed be released among us, and the Word can indeed be present among us, and yet the appointed time for the manifestation of the fulness of the Word has not come. In all reality, I am convinced that this is what makes the words which Jesus spoke unto His mother Mary at the wedding in Cana of Galilee so absolutely incredible, for Jesus declared unto her that His time and His hour had not yet come. Oh please don’t miss and lose sight of this powerful truth, for it shines a tremendous amount of light on to the presence of the Word among us. Think about the fact that for thirty years the Word was in the form of human flesh, and the Word dwelt among us in that form of human flesh, and did so in obscurity without teaching or preaching a single word, and without performing a single work, sign, wonder, miracle, and the like among us. For thirty years the Word was in the form of human flesh and dwelt among us simply doing life with us as any ordinary individual would do.

            Would it surprise you to think about the fact that it was just as necessary for the Word to become human flesh and dwell among us in obscurity that He might do normal and ordinary life with us as it was for the Word to become flesh and dwell among us in power and in might? More often than not we think about and consider the fact that the Word became flesh and dwelt among us in order that the Word might be manifested in power and in might, and yet only one eleventh of the entire life of Jesus was actually dedicated to ministry. Stop and think about the fact that ten elevenths of the actual life of Jesus the Christ was spent in obscurity simply doing life with us as any other individual in the town of Nazareth would. Think about the fact that the greatest portion of Jesus’ life was not spent in ministry, but was spent in obscurity and in the shadows of the town of Nazareth, as well as in the shadows of Joseph the carpenter. For thirty years Jesus would be the Word become flesh dwelling among us, and yet the Word would be hidden and concealed. How intriguing it is to think about and consider the fact that before the Word would be flesh and dwell among us in power it first needed to dwell among us in the shadows, and it first needed to dwell among us in obscurity. Oh we dare not and must not miss and lose sight of this, for when we think about the Word becoming flesh and dwelling among us we tend to think of it as being solely connected to it dwelling among us in power and in might. The more I think about this reality, the more I come face to face with the fact that there are times within our lives when the Word of the living God is present among us—not in power, not in might, and not in demonstration and manifestation, but rather in obscurity. There are times within our lives when the Word needs to simply be present among us in our every day life, and needs to work with us in that normal, ordinary and every day life before it can be manifested in power and in might. Please recognize and understand this truly astonishing truth, for it has the wonderful and powerful ability to completely alter and transform how we view the idea of “the Word became flesh and dwelt among us.”

            While it is true the gospel narrative written by the apostle John does in fact present us with the wonderful and powerful truth that the Word became flesh and dwelt among us in fulness, in demonstration and in manifestation, it is also true that before the Word ever dwelt among us in power, and before the Word every dwelt among us in authority, in dominion, in strength and in might, the Word would first dwell among us in the shadows and in obscurity. This is truly something worth thinking about and considering, for I firmly believe that there is a great need for the Word to dwell among us in obscurity and in the shadows without accomplishing and fulfilling anything among us that it might simply experience life with us. For thirty years the Word was in the flesh, and the Word dwelt among us in that form of human flesh, yet the Word dwelt among us as the carpenter’s son, and the Word dwelt among us being trained in the craft of carpentry. Stop for a moment and think about it, for as much as we read the four gospel narratives written concerning the life and ministry of Jesus the Christ, and as much as we witness and behold the Word dwelling among us in power, in authority, and in might, we must also recognize that the Word was flesh and dwelt among us for thirty years before it would actually be manifested among us in our midst. For thirty years the Word would dwell among us without us even knowing and being aware of its presence with us, and it would only be at the appointed time ordained by the eternal Father we would see and encounter the Word dwelling among us in power and authority. This actually brings me face to face with something I have never seen before—much less thought and considered—namely, that there are times within our lives when the Word must be flesh, and the Word must dwell among us in obscurity and in the shadows that the Word might simply dwell and abide with us in every day life. Jesus spent the greatest part of His life in the shadows and in obscurity before that appointed time came when John the Baptist would begin proclaiming Him as the Lamb of God which takes away the sins of the world, and before Jesus would be baptized of John the Baptist in the waters of the Jordan, and would emerge from the waters to an open heaven as the Spirit would descend upon Him in the form of a dove, and as the voice of the Father would speak and declare that this was His beloved Son in whom He was well pleased.

            For thirty years the Word dwelt among us in the form of human flesh, and yet the Word performed no miracles, the Word did not teach in any synagogue, and the Word did not preach in the Temple. For thirty years the Word dwelt among us in the form of human flesh, and the Word worked with His hands in the craft of carpentry being supposed to be the son of Joseph. For thirty years the Word dwelt among us and was perceived as and thought to be the son of Joseph the carpenter, and yet there would come a point in time when the Word would no longer dwell among us in the form of human flesh in obscurity and in the shadows, but the Word would dwell among us in power, in authority, and in might. I absolutely love the word which is written in the opening chapter of the gospel narrative written by the apostle John, for within the gospel narrative written by John we find the powerful declaration that the Word became flesh and dwelt among us. For years I have always read these words and thought of it solely in terms of the Word dwelling among us in power, in authority, in strength, in might, and in dominion, and yet the truth of the matter is the Word dwelt among us in the form of human flesh for thirty years before that would even be a manifestation and demonstration in the earth. For thirty years the Word would dwell among us in the form of human flesh, and yet no one even knew that the living Word come down from heaven was even present among us. For thirty years the Word which was in the beginning with God, and the Word which in the beginning was God dwelt among us in the town of Nazareth, and there was not a single person who understood the true identity of Jesus the Christ—save His mother Mary, and perhaps even save Joseph Mary’s husband. For thirty years the Word would dwell among us in the form of human flesh, and yet there would be absolutely no demonstration and manifestation of that Word in power among us. For thirty years the Word dwelt among us in the form of human flesh and would perform a different kind and a different type of work—namely, working with His hands together and side by side with Joseph who was a carpenter. For thirty years the Word which became flesh and dwelt among us would dwell among us in perhaps a dirty and dusty carpenter’s shop as He would learn the art and craft of carpentry. During those thirty years the eternal Word of God and the eternal Word of heaven would dwell among us, and would do so with needs of others being unmet.

            Stop and think about the fact that the woman with the issue of blood had that issue of blood for twelve years, which would mean that the Word would still be present among us, and the Word would still be dwelling among us, yet would be doing so in obscurity. Think about the fact that the woman whom Satan had bound for eighteen years keeping her bent double would experience that bondage while the Word which became flesh was dwelling among us in obscurity. Think about the fact that the man who was born blind which the apostle John writes about in the ninth chapter of this gospel would walk in blindness while the living and eternal God would dwell among us in the form of human flesh. Think about the fact that the man who was at the pool of Bethesda would be lame and crippled while the Word dwelt among us in the form of human flesh without any demonstration and manifestation. It is truly something worth thinking about and considering that for thirty years the Word would dwell among us in the form of human flesh, and would do so in the shadows, and would do so in obscurity while there were needs all around Him. Not only this, but I can’t help but think about the fact that it was while the Word was dwelling among us, and it was while the Word was dwelling among us in obscurity and in the shadows that the woman with the issue of blood would first begin experiencing it. It would be while the Word dwelt among us in obscurity that the daughter of Abraham whom Satan hath bound for eighteen years would first experience that bondage. Pause and think about all the needs that would be present and manifested in the earth during those thirty years while the Word was indeed flesh and dwelling among us, and yet it wouldn’t be until the Word would actually be manifested in authority, in dominion, in might and in power that the Word would begin dwelling among us in an entirely different light and perspective. In fact, I am convinced that this is what makes the reality of the Word dwelling among us, and the Word being the light of the world, as the Word would essentially dwell among us in the shadows for thirty years before the people which sat in darkness would see a great light. The word would dwell among us for thirty years in the shadows—perhaps even in darkness—before the Word would actually be manifested in the earth as the Light of the world.

            The Word dwelt among us in the form of human flesh, and that Word would dwell among us for thirty years in the shadows before it would actually be the Light which would shine in the darkness. In the fourth and fifth verses of the opening chapter of the Gospel narrative written by the apostle John we find the apostle writing how in the Word was life, and the life was the light of men. Not only this, but the apostle John would also write how the light shined in darkness, and yet the darkness comprehended it not. As you begin reading with and from the sixth verse of the opening chapter of the New Testament gospel narrative written by the apostle John you will find that there was a man sent from God, whose name was John, and how this one who was sent from God came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through Him might believe. The apostle John would also go on to write concerning John the Baptist that he was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of the Light. The Word which was the true Light lighted every man that came into the world. In all reality, the words which we find in the opening chapter of the New Testament gospel narrative written by the apostle John is absolutely astounding and remarkable, for what we find concerning the Word which became flesh and dwelt among us is that for thirty years the Word dwelt among us in the shadows and dwelt among us in obscurity before the Word would actually be manifested in the earth as the Light which lights up the whole world, and before His glory would be manifested—the glory as of the only begotten of the Father. How absolutely intriguing it is to think about and consider the fact that the Word would indeed become flesh, and the Word would indeed dwell among us, and yet that Word would dwell among us in ordinary and every day life in the town of Nazareth before the appointed time would come for the Word to be manifested in the earth as the only begotten of the Father, and as the Light of the world. It would be after thirty years of dwelling among us in the shadows, and after thirty years of dwelling among us in obscurity the Word which dwelt among us would actually be manifested among us full of grace and truth. It would be after thirty years of dwelling among us as was perceived to be the son of Joseph the carpenter that the Word was actually manifested among us for that true and ultimate purpose for which it was sent.

            If there is one thing we must needs understand recognize when reading these words it’s that while it is true the Word does indeed dwell among us in the form of human flesh—that Word might not always dwell among us in power, in authority and in might. We dare not, we cannot, we must not think and believe that the Word dwelling among us is always in power, is always in might, and is always in authority and dominion. There might very well be times within our lives when the Word is dwelling among us, and that Word is not manifested in power and in might among us. We like to think that the Word dwelling among us is in authority and power, and yet the truth of the matter is that there are times when the Word dwelling among us is simply in fellowship and in doing ordinary and every day life with us. This is perhaps what is so awesome and powerful about the words which are found in the New Testament gospel narrative written by John, for in the first chapter we find the Word dwelling among us inviting others to come and walk alongside Him in this life. Not only this, but in the second chapter of the New Testament gospel narrative written by the apostle John we find the Word continuing to dwell among us, and doing life with us, as Jesus and His disciples would attend a wedding in Cana of Galilee. Not only this, but in the third chapter of this New Testament gospel we find Jesus the Christ speaking with a Pharisee by the name of Nicodemus as he was a man who had questions which he desired to ask of this man known as Jesus of Nazareth. Nicodemus would come unto Jesus by night, and it would be this nighttime encounter where Nicodemus would hear incredible and powerful truths—not only concerning the kingdom of heaven, but also concerning the eternal Son of God which was present within the earth. It would be in the second chapter we find Jesus dwelling among us in the form of human flesh as He would not only participate in a wedding, but would also at that wedding perform the first of His miracles—the miracle of turning water into wine.

            As you come to the fourth chapter of this New Testament gospel narrative you will find Jesus continuing to dwell among us and doing life with us, for we find Jesus coming into the region of Samaria in order that He might encounter a Samaritan woman at the well. Not only this, but it would be there in Samaria we find Jesus agreeing to spend two full days abiding and dwelling with the Samaritans in the town of Sychar. Oh, please do not miss and lose sight of this, for it further helps illustrate and demonstrate the awesome and powerful truth that the Word does indeed dwell among us in the form of human flesh, but the Word dwelling among us is not only in obscurity, but the Word dwelling among us is also in the form of flesh in power, in glory, in Light, and in truth. It is absolutely necessary and imperative that we pay close attention to this, for the more I read the New Testament gospel narrative of the apostle John, the more I come face to face with the beautiful reality that the Word did indeed become flesh, and the Word did indeed dwell among us, and yet the Word would both dwell among us in the shadows and in obscurity before it would dwell among us as Light, with glory, and in authority. What’s more, is that in the opening chapter of this gospel narrative we find the apostle John writing how the Word came unto His own and how His own received Him not. Not only this, but within these opening chapters we find Jesus declaring that men loved darkness rather than light because their deeds were evil. Oh there was a point in time when Jesus would be manifested among those during that generation in Light, in Truth, in Glory, and in power and authority, yet the Word first needed to dwell among us in the shadows doing ordinary and every day life with us. The Word first needed to dwell among us in the town of Nazareth working and experiencing every day life before the appointed time would come when the Word would actually dwell among us in power and in might. Oh stop and think about the awesome and powerful reality that for thirty years the Word would dwell among us and would perform an ordinary and seemingly mundane and tedious work of carpentry before the Word would actually be manifested among us in power, in might, in authority and in dominion. For thirty years the Word would dwell among us in flesh, and the word would dwell among us in obscurity and in the shadows before it would actually be manifested in grace, in truth, in light, and in authority.

            Oh, would it both shock and surprise you to think about and consider the fact that there are times within our lives when the Word can and will dwell among us, and the Word can and will dwell among us in the form of human flesh, and yet the Word will dwell among us in the ordinary and in the mundane? Would it surprise you to think about and consider the fact that the Word can indeed dwell among us, and can indeed dwell among us accomplishing that which might seem ordinary in our eyes before the appointed time ordained by the Father comes for the Word to begin to operate in authority and in power? I would dare say that there are times within our lives when the Word must needs dwell among us and accomplish that which is ordinary and mundane before the Word can actually accomplish and fulfill that which the eternal Father and living God desires it to accomplish that for which it was sent. It is truly something worth noting and pointing out that there are times when the Word must first dwell among us in the shadows, in obscurity, and in the ordinary before it can indeed operate among us in the supernatural. For thirty years the Word dwelt among us in the form of human flesh without performing a single miracle, and without teaching and preaching a single sermon in the synagogues and in the Temple. For thirty years the Word dwelt among us in the form of human flesh without accomplishing a single thing it would do during those three and a half years. The Word would dwell among us in obscurity and in the shadows before it would finally be released to fulfill and accomplish that for which it had been sent to do. Oh there is not a doubt in my mind that the Word dwelling among us in the form of human flesh was just as much about those first thirty years as it was about the final three and a half years. We tend to think about the Word becoming flesh and dwelling among us as being solely and only connected to those final three and a half years, and yet there were thirty years prior to the Word which became flesh, and the Word which dwelt among us would actually be manifested in authority, in dominion, and in power. We tend to focus on those three and a half years when we think about the Word becoming flesh and dwelling among us, and yet there is so much more truth to the Word becoming flesh and dwelling among us than those three and a half years.

            This reality of the Word becoming flesh and dwelling among us is actually quite captivating when you think about it—particularly and especially when you consider the fact that more often than not we think of the Word becoming flesh and dwelling among us as being solely linked and connected to the signs, wonders and miracles. More often than not we think about the manifestation of the Word being made flesh and dwelling among us as being solely linked and connected to those three and a half years of public ministry when He was manifested in the midst of Judaea, Galilee, Jerusalem, and the surrounding regions. The truth of the matter, however, is that to limit the truth surrounding the Word being made flesh and dwelling among us solely to those three and a half years is to miss out on a Jesus who was willing to dwell among us in the flesh for thirty years without performing a single miracle, without healing a single soul, without casting out a single devil, and without raising anyone from the dead. Oh we are incredibly naïve to think about and consider the fact that the Word becoming flesh and dwelling among us is solely about the public demonstration and manifestation of the kingdom of God rather than a willingness within the heart and soul of Jesus to simply do life with us. With this being said I am absolutely and entirely convinced that Jesus enjoyed life—and not only enjoyed life, but enjoyed life with others. There is not a doubt in my mind that when Jesus was at the wedding in Cana of Galilee He truly and thoroughly enjoyed Himself as a guest together with His disciples. I firmly believe with all my heart that each time Jesus was invited into the home of someone during those days He thoroughly and completely enjoyed Himself and the fellowship and relationship that was found in simply dwelling with others. Oh we dare not, we cannot and must not downplay the awesome truth of Jesus dwelling among us, for more often than we miss out on the fact that Jesus came to the earth to do more than die on the cross and to be a sacrifice for our sins. I am absolutely and completely convinced that Jesus came to the earth to dwell among us—and not only dwell among us, but also to experience life as we experience it. Stop and think about the fact that for thirty years of His life Jesus was the Word made flesh dwelling among us and simply doing life as we have always done it. During those thirty years there were no crowds, there were no multitudes, there were no large gatherings, there weren’t the masses which were tired, which were hungry, which were thirsty, and were spiritually, emotionally and physically in need.

            I sit here today thinking about and considering the reality of Jesus being the Word become flesh and dwelling among us and how Jesus dwelt among us for thirty year simply living life as we live life. For the first thirty years of Jesus’ life there were no miracles, there were no signs, there were no wonders, there was no healing, there was not casting out of demons, and there was no raising of the dead. For thirty years Jesus was the Word made flesh who dwelt among us as anyone else within our town and within our neighborhood. Stop and think about that fact for just a moment, for the reality of the Word becoming flesh and dwelling among us also touches the reality that the Word was willing to spend thirty years growing among us, learning among us, and experiencing life as we would. For thirty years Jesus would grow up as some would suppose as the son of Joseph the carpenter, and for thirty years Jesus would learn the trade and craft of carpentry from Joseph. We dare not and must not miss and lose sight of this awesome truth and powerful reality, for it has the awesome ability to transform how we think about and perceive of Jesus dwelling among us. We know within the gospel narrative written by the apostle John how Jesus declared that if any man love Him and keep His commandments He and His Father would come in unto Him and abide and sup with them. Not only this, but in the New Testament prophetic book of the Revelation of Jesus the Christ Jesus declared unto the church of Laodicea that He stands at the door and knocks, and that if any man hears His voice and opens up unto Him He would come in and make His abode with them. You cannot read the gospel narratives without seeing a Jesus who wasn’t merely all about signs, wonders and miracles, but Jesus was One who truly enjoyed experiencing life with those He encountered and came in contact with. Time and time again you will find Jesus entering into the homes of various individuals and sitting down to meat and breaking bread with them. The reality of Jesus being the Word made flesh and dwelling among us is more than simply His dwelling among us in power, but dwelling among us in fellowship and relationship. Oh, there is a vast and fundamental difference between dwelling among us in fellowship and dwelling among us in demonstration, between dwelling among us in relationship and dwelling among us in power. With this being said it’s important for us to recognize and understand that there are times when the two are intrinsically linked together.

            The more I think about and consider this reality the more I can’t help but think about the fact that the Word becoming flesh and dwelling among us is not simply about Jesus dwelling among us for thirty years before being publicly manifested in the midst of the earth, but also Jesus dwelling among us in fellowship and relationship. It is truly something worth thinking about that Jesus dwelt among us in ordinary life growing and experiencing life as we have experienced life and as we do experience it before He would be the Word who became flesh and dwelt among us in fellowship and relationship as the Son of God. For thirty years Jesus was the Word became flesh who dwelt among us and was perceived as being the son of the carpenter, while for three and a half years Jesus would be the Word become flesh who dwelt among us as the Son of God. Stop and think about that awesome reality for a moment, for Jesus would spend the first thirty years of His life as the Word become flesh dwelling among us in ordinary life while He would spend the next three and a half years as the Word become flesh dwelling among us as the Son of God. When we think about the Word become flesh and dwelling among us we must not only look at it from the perspective of the Word becoming and taking on flesh—thus the Word actually being given a physical and natural body that it might be present among us—as well as from the perspective of the Word becoming flesh and dwelling among us. When we think about Jesus as the Word, and as the Word becoming flesh we must needs think about Him as not only dwelling among us in ordinary and every day life as we would know it, but we must also think about Him as the word become flesh and dwelling among us right where we are. For thirty years Jesus would be the Word made flesh and dwelling among us in His hometown of Nazareth and would spend time where He was, while for three and a half years He would be the Word made flesh and dwelling among us where we are. For thirty years Jesus would be the Word made flesh and dwelling among us where He was in Nazareth, while during those three and a half years He would be the Word made flesh dwelling among us where we are—in our synagogues, in our homes, in the Temple, in the streets, on the mountains, at the lakes, at the seas, and in those places we have been confined and bound to. What an absolutely wonderful and powerful thought it is to think and consider how Jesus was the Word become flesh and dwelling among us in His hometown of Nazareth simply doing and experiencing ordinary, normal and every day life as we would and have, and for three and a half years Jesus would be the Word made flesh dwelling among us where we are.

            As I prepare to bring this writing to a close it is absolutely captivating and beautiful to read the opening chapters of the New Testament gospel narrative written by the apostle John, for within it we find Jesus dwelling among us at a wedding in Cana of Galilee, as well as sitting with Nicodemus at night speaking about the truth concerning the kingdom of heaven. Within the opening chapters of the New Testament gospel narrative written by the apostle John we find Jesus as the Word made flesh and dwelling among the Samaritans—those whom the Jews did not have any association with. How absolutely it is to read and consider Jesus as the Word made flesh and sitting with a Samaritan woman by a well speaking about spiritual and physical thirst as He would draw forth out of the heart and soul of this woman who came to draw out of the well which was there in Sychar. Not only this, but even after this woman left and returned to Sychar and spoke concerning one who had told her everything she had every done, Jesus would spend two full days abiding and dwelling with and among them. We dare not and must not miss and lose sight of this awesome and incredible truth, for it brings us face to face with the awesome and powerful truth that the Word becoming flesh and dwelling among us not only touches the first thirty years of His life which would have been perceived as ordinary and normal, but it also touches those three and a half years when the Word who had become flesh dwelt among us in the supernatural. Oh, is it possible that before the Word which had become flesh and dwelt among us could indeed and could in fact dwell among us in the supernatural and spiritual He first needed to dwell among us in the ordinary, in the natural, and in the seemingly mundane and routine part of every day life? Oh for thirty years Jesus would experience ordinary and every day life as we would, and would perhaps even work much like we would, as He would have worked alongside Joseph in perhaps the carpenter’s shop he had. Pause for a moment and think about the fact that for thirty years Jesus would indeed be the Word made flesh which would dwell among us in ordinary, normal and every day life—life much like we have experienced and still do experience during this generation and within these days. What a truly powerful thought and concept it is to think about the fact that the Word becoming flesh and dwelling among us not only touches the realm of the supernatural, but it also touches the realm of the natural, and it not only touches the realm of eternal life, but it also touches the realm of physical life.

When we read the gospel narrative of the apostle John we are brought face to face with the fact that Jesus was indeed the Word become flesh and dwelling among us—dwelling among us experiencing life as we have experienced, and life as we continue to experience it within and throughout the days, the culture, the society and generation we are presently living. Jesus was indeed the Word made flesh which dwelt among us, and the reality surrounding that statement is not only fellowship and relationship, but also in teaching and preaching, as well as in works and ministry. The more we think about Jesus as the Word becoming flesh and dwelling among us we must needs understand that this reality touches the realm of that which the Father had spoken and released into the earth actually having a physical and natural body that it might actually abide with us. Oh that we would recognize and understand this, for more often than not when the living and eternal God releases and speaks the Word among us within our hearts and lives He wants it to do more than simply be a quick manifestation and demonstration, but wants it to actually dwell among and abide together with us. The Word becoming flesh and dwelling among us is a truly wonderful and powerful truth, for the Word becoming flesh and dwelling among us touches the realm of both the physical and the natural as well as the spiritual and supernatural. The Word becoming flesh and dwelling among us is just as much about fellowship and relationship as it is about ministry and works. We must not allow ourselves to get so caught up in the works and ministry part of the Word becoming flesh and dwelling among us that we fail to truly understand the Word becoming flesh and dwelling among us in fellowship and relationship. The Word becoming flesh and dwelling among us is just as much about fellowship and relationship as it is about works and ministry, and is just as much about the physical and natural realm of every day life as it is about the supernatural and spiritual realm. Oh that we would recognize this within our own lives, for not only have we been called to dwell with and dwell among others in works and ministry, but we have also been called to dwell with and among others in fellowship and relationship. What’s more, is that we dare not undercut and short-change this reality of dwelling among others in fellowship and relationship, for more often than not it is the fellowship and relationship piece that makes room and makes place for the works and ministry piece. Oh that we would be a word spoken in season that would not only dwell with and abide with men and women in ministry and works, but also in fellowship and relationship.

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