1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
The apostle John began his Gospel by affirming the divinity of Christ. He introduced Jesus Christ as “the Word”. In this Gospel and also in his other writings, John referred to Christ as “the Word” (John 1:1, 14; 1 John 1:1; 5:7; Revelation 19:13). According to John 1:14, “the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us”; this clearly indicates that the Word is Christ, the Incarnate or the One who is embodied in human form.
Much as our words reveal to others our personality and purposes, so Jesus Christ, as God’s “Word”, reveals God and His purposes to us. Jesus Himself said, “He that hath seen me hath seen the Father” (John 14:9). Jesus Christ is the ultimate divine revelation (cf. Hebrews 1:2). Being “the Word”, the faithful Witness of the mind of God (cf. Revelation 1:5; 3:14; 19:11), He is also the Truth and the Amen (John 14:6; Revelation 3:14). God’s ultimate self-disclosure to man is the Person of His own Son, Jesus Christ.
Because Christ, the Word, is the divine self-expression, He must have existed through all eternity past with God, which means He must be nothing less than God Himself. John insists the Word is divine. Jesus Christ is eternal, as indicated by his opening words: “In the beginning was the Word” (v. 1a). The words “in the beginning” point to a time prior to the Creation. When all things were created, Christ was there. His presence “in the beginning” proves His eternality. He existed even before the Creation.
Jesus Christ, the Word, is God. John said, “and the Word was with God” (v. 1b). The term “God” here is a reference to the First Person of the Trinity, God the Father. Jesus Christ is presented here as a Person distinct from the Father in the Godhead. He was always “with” God the Father. In verse 2, John reaffirmed the Son’s co-existence with the Father when he wrote, “The same was in the beginning with God.” The Father and the Son are not one Person, but two distinct Persons who co-existed from eternity past. The Word is God’s eternal Fellow!
The identification of the distinct Persons, namely “the Word” and “God”, suggests neither inequality nor polytheism. Such notions are refuted by the statement, “the Word was God.” In respect of essence and substance, the Word was God, and yet a distinct Person. To all who deny the deity of Christ, it must be plainly asserted that Christ is fully divine!