Christ Comes to the World
1Before the world began, the Word#1:1 Word The Greek word is “logos,” meaning any kind of communication. It could be translated “message.” Here, it describes Jesus Christ before he was sent to earth as a human being, which is the way God chose to tell the world about himself. Also in verses 10, 14, 16. was there. The Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2He was there with God in the beginning. 3Everything was made through him, and nothing was made without him. 4In him there was life, and that life was a light for the people of the world. 5The light#1:5 light Meaning Christ, the Word, who brought to the world understanding about God. Also in verse 7. shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not defeated#1:5 defeated Or “understood.” it.
6There was a man named John, who was sent by God. 7He came to tell people about the light. Through him all people could hear about the light and believe. 8John was not the light. But he came to tell people about the light. 9The true light was coming into the world. This is the true light that gives light to all people.
10The Word was already in the world. The world was made through him, but the world did not know him. 11He came to the world that was his own. And his own people did not accept him. 12But some people did accept him. They believed in him, and he gave them the right to become children of God. 13They became God’s children, but not in the way babies are usually born. It was not because of any human desire or plan. They were born from God himself.
14The Word became a man and lived among us. We saw his divine greatness—the greatness that belongs to the only Son of the Father. The Word was full of grace and truth. 15John told people about him. He said loudly, “This is the one I was talking about when I said, ‘The one who is coming after me is greater than I am, because he was living before I was even born.’”
16Yes, the Word was full of grace and truth, and from him we all received one blessing after another.#1:16 one blessing after another Literally, “grace in place of grace.” 17That is, the law was given to us through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18No one has ever seen God. The only Son is the one who has shown us what God is like. He is himself God and is very close to the Father.#1:18 The only Son … Father Or more literally, “The only Son, God, who is very close to the Father, has shown us what he is like.” Some other Greek copies say, “The only Son is very close to the Father and has shown us what he is like.”
John Tells About the Messiah
(Mt. 3:1–12; Mk. 1:1–8; Lk. 3:1–9, 15–17)
19The Jewish leaders in Jerusalem sent some priests and Levites to John to ask him, “Who are you?” He told them the truth. 20Without any hesitation he said openly and plainly, “I am not the Messiah.”
21They asked him, “Then who are you? Are you Elijah?”
He answered, “No, I am not Elijah.”
They asked, “Are you the Prophet#1:21 Prophet They probably meant the prophet that God told Moses he would send. See Deut. 18:15-19. Also in verse 24.?”
He answered, “No, I am not the Prophet.”
22Then they said, “Who are you? Tell us about yourself. Give us an answer to tell the people who sent us. What do you say about yourself?”
23John told them the words of the prophet Isaiah:
“I am the voice of someone shouting in the desert:
‘Make a straight road ready for the Lord.’” Isaiah 40:3
24These Jews were sent from the Pharisees. 25They said to John, “You say you are not the Messiah. You say you are not Elijah or the Prophet. Then why do you baptize people?”
26John answered, “I baptize people with water. But there is someone here with you that you don’t know. 27He is the one who is coming later. I am not good enough to be the slave who unties the strings on his sandals.”
28These things all happened at Bethany on the other side of the Jordan River. This is where John was baptizing people.
Jesus, the Lamb of God
29The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Look, the Lamb of God. He takes away the sins of the world! 30This is the one I was talking about when I said, ‘There is a man coming after me who is greater than I am, because he was living even before I was born.’ 31I did not know who he was. But I came baptizing people with water so that Israel could know that he is the Messiah.#1:31 so that … the Messiah Literally, “so that he might be revealed as the Messiah to Israel.” See “Messiah” in the Word List.”
32-34Then John said this for everyone to hear: “I also did not know who the Messiah was. But the one who sent me to baptize with water told me, ‘You will see the Spirit come down and rest on a man. He is the one who will baptize with the Holy Spirit.’ I have seen this happen. I saw the Spirit come down from heaven like a dove and rest on this man. So this is what I tell people: ‘He is the Son of God.’#1:32-34 He is the Son of God Some very early Greek copies have “He is the chosen one of God.””
The First Followers of Jesus
35The next day John was there again and had two of his followers with him. 36He saw Jesus walking by and said, “Look, the Lamb of God!”
37The two followers heard him say this, so they followed Jesus. 38Jesus turned and saw the two men following him. He asked, “What do you want?”
They said, “Rabbi, where are you staying?” (“Rabbi” means “Teacher.”)
39He answered, “Come with me and you will see.” So the two men went with him. They saw the place where he was staying, and they stayed there with him that day. It was about four o’clock.
40These men followed Jesus after they had heard about him from John. One of them was Andrew, the brother of Simon Peter. 41The first thing Andrew did was to go and find his brother Simon. Andrew said to him, “We have found the Messiah.” (“Messiah” means “Christ.”)
42Then Andrew brought Simon to Jesus. Jesus looked at him and said, “You are Simon, the son of John. You will be called Cephas.” (“Cephas” means “Peter.#1:42 Peter The Greek name “Peter,” like the Aramaic name “Cephas,” means “rock.””)
43The next day Jesus decided to go to Galilee. He met Philip and said to him, “Follow me.” 44Philip was from the town of Bethsaida, the same as Andrew and Peter. 45Philip found Nathanael and told him, “We have found the man that Moses wrote about in the law. The prophets wrote about him too. He is Jesus, the son of Joseph. He is from Nazareth.”
46But Nathanael said to Philip, “Nazareth! Can anything good come from Nazareth?”
Philip answered, “Come and see.”
47Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward him and said, “This man coming is a true Israelite, one you can trust.#1:47 one you can trust Literally, “in whom is no deceit.” In the Old Testament, Israel’s other name, Jacob, is explained with words that mean “deceit” or “trickery,” for which he was well known. See Gen. 27:35, 36.”
48Nathanael asked, “How do you know me?”
Jesus answered, “I saw you when you were under the fig tree, before Philip told you about me.”
49Then Nathanael said, “Teacher, you are the Son of God. You are the King of Israel.”
50Jesus said to him, “Do you believe this just because I said I saw you under the fig tree? You will see much greater things than that!” 51Then he said, “Believe me when I say that you will all see heaven open. You will see ‘angels of God going up and coming down’#Quote from Gen. 28:12. on the Son of Man.”