As you read the book of John, I encourage you to slow down and take your time. Read and reread each day’s chapters so you can fully engage with what John is trying to teach us. There is so much you will miss if you read through it too quickly, so spend some time!
As you read, take note of the names, titles, and descriptions that are given to Jesus. John intentionally includes them all to try and reveal a full picture of who Jesus is. I circled them as I read. Here are the names given Jesus I found in the first eight chapters of John:
- The Word
- Son from the Father
- Jesus Christ
- Lamb of God
- Son of God
- Jesus of Nazareth
- Son of Joseph
- King of Israel
- Son of Man
- Teacher from God
- Bread of Life, the Living Bread
- The Light of the World
- I Am
If you just look at that list, a few things become obvious. John proclaims...
Jesus is... God in the flesh (the Word became flesh, and he is Joseph’s son - flesh).
Jesus is... Lord (He is God).
Jesus is... the Christ, the Messiah; that is, he is the anointed one of God. He is the One the prophets said would come.
Jesus is... the Lamb of God. We know that means he is the sacrifice for sin, the one who’s death pays the price of atonement for our sin.
Jesus is... rabbi, teacher, prophet. He is the one who reveals the truth about God and fulfills the Scripture’s teaching about God’s law and grace.
Jesus is... the King of Israel, the who comes to perfectly fulfill the spiritual role of Israel’s kings - to lead the people to be faithful to God.
Jesus is... the bridegroom. He is the lover who comes to claim his bride (his church) as his own, to purify and sanctify her that the two may become one.
Jesus is... the Bread of Life. He is true nourishment, eternal nourishment. He is the one source of life all men need.
Jesus is... the light of the world. He is truth. He is hope. He is pure. He is holy.
Jesus says of himself, “before Abraham was, I am” (See Genesis 3:13-14).
You can see with just that very cursory summary that John is proclaiming Jesus to be the fulfillment of everything promised in the Old Testament. Jesus is everything man needs for life and salvation. Jesus is the fullness of the truth and grace of God, come to save his people.
Take your time. Read it slowly. You don’t want to miss anything.