Gospel of John

In the Gospel of John, the deity of Christ is the unmistakable testimony that demands our faith. In his first epistle, the same apostle places tremendous emphasis on the humanity of Christ.

First John opens with unmistakable stress placed upon John's own eyewitness testimony and personal experience with Jesus the Christ, the Son of the living God. A significant burden of First John was to dispell the heresy of doceticism, the first-century (pre-gnostic) heresy that taught that Jesus was divine but only appeared (from the Greek word dokein) to be a man. Jesus in First John is unambiguously presented as the Christ who did not just appear to be a man but was indeed fully God and fully man--Immanuel. Philipps eloquently captures the glorious humanity of Christ in these words:

"For three and a half years John and the other apostles saw the life of God manifested in the life of Christ. They saw One who was absolutely good and wholly without sin, feasting their eyes upon His miracles and lending their ears to His words. They saw One who was completely unselfish, who never lost His temper, was never hasty, thoughtless, or unkind. They watched Him as He 'went about doing good', never having to apologize for anything He said or did. He was humble and holy, loving and lowly, and patient and pure. His wisdom, love, and power never ceased to amaze them. He was never at a loss, never taken by surprise, never wrong, and He treated all men alike—rich and poor, powerful and weak, friend and foe—He loved and cared for them all. He had command over demons, disease, and death, could turn water into wine, and make loaves and fishes multiply in His hands. A word from Him and tempestuous winds and waves were hushed to rest. He could walk upon the waves or walk through solid walls and had eyes that could see through all of life's little disguises. He healed people with a word and never lost a case or charged a fee. Speaking the truth without fear or favor, He taught the truth with an unparalleled pungency and potency. He was never deceived, never discouraged, never dismayed. Such was the life He lived." -John Philipps

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