1 IN THE beginning [before all time] was the Word (Christ), and the Word was with God, and the Word was God Himself. [Isa. 9:6.]
2 He was present originally with God.
3 All things were made and came into existence through Him; and without Him was not even one thing made that has come into being.
4 In Him was Life, and the Life was the Light of men.
5 And the Light shines on in the darkness, for the darkness has never overpowered it [put it out or absorbed it or appropriated it, and is unreceptive to it].
6 There came a man sent from God, whose name was John. [Mal. 3:1.]
7 This man came to witness, that he might testify of the Light, that all men might believe in it [adhere to it, trust it, and rely upon it] through him.
8 He was not the Light himself, but came that he might bear witness regarding the Light.
9 There it was–the true Light [was then] coming into the world [the genuine, perfect, steadfast Light] that illumines every person. [Isa. 49:6.]
10 He came into the world, and though the world was made through Him, the world did not recognize Him [did not know Him].
11 He came to that which belonged to Him [to His own–His domain, creation, things, world], and they who were His own did not receive Him and did not welcome Him.
12 But to as many as did receive and welcome Him, He gave the authority (power, privilege, right) to become the children of God, that is, to those who believe in (adhere to, trust in, and rely on) His name–[Isa. 56:5.]
13 Who owe their birth neither to bloods nor to the will of the flesh [that of physical impulse] nor to the will of man [that of a natural father], but to God. [They are born of God!]
14 And the Word (Christ) became flesh (human, incarnate) and tabernacled (fixed His tent of flesh, lived awhile) among us; and we [actually] saw His glory (His honor, His majesty), such glory as an only begotten son receives from his father, full of grace (favor, loving-kindness) and truth. [Isa. 40:5.]
15 John testified about Him and cried out, This was He of Whom I said, He Who comes after me has priority over me, for He was before me. [He takes rank above me, for He existed before I did. He has advanced before me, because He is my Chief.]
16 For out of His fullness (abundance) we have all received [all had a share and we were all supplied with] one grace after another and spiritual blessing upon spiritual blessing and even favor upon favor and gift [heaped] upon gift.
17 For while the Law was given through Moses, grace (unearned, undeserved favor and spiritual blessing) and truth came through Jesus Christ. [Exod. 20:1.]
18 No man has ever seen God at any time; the only unique Son, or the only begotten God, Who is in the bosom [in the intimate presence] of the Father, He has declared Him [He has revealed Him and brought Him out where He can be seen; He has interpreted Him and He has made Him known]. [Prov. 8:30.]
19 And this is the testimony of John when the Jews sent priests and Levites to him from Jerusalem to ask him, Who are you?
20 He confessed (admitted the truth) and did not try to conceal it, but acknowledged, I am not the Christ!
21 They asked him, What then? Are you Elijah? And he said, I am not! Are you the Prophet? And he answered, No! [Deut. 18:15, 18; Mal. 4:5.]
22 Then they said to him, Who are you? Tell us, so that we may give an answer to those who sent us. What do you say about yourself?
23 He said, I am the voice of one crying aloud in the wilderness [the voice of one shouting in the desert], Prepare the way of the Lord [level, straighten out, the path of the Lord], as the prophet Isaiah said. [Isa. 40:3.]
24 The messengers had been sent from the Pharisees.
25 And they asked him, Why then are you baptizing if you are not the Christ, nor Elijah, nor the Prophet?
26 John answered them, I [only] baptize in (with) water. Among you there stands One Whom you do not recognize and with Whom you are not acquainted and of Whom you know nothing. [Mal. 3:1.]
27 It is He Who, coming after me, is preferred before me, the string of Whose sandal I am not worthy to unloose.
28 These things occurred in Bethany (Bethabara) across the Jordan [at the Jordan crossing], where John was then baptizing.
29 The next day John saw Jesus coming to him and said, Look! There is the Lamb of God, Who takes away the sin of the world! [Exod. 12:3; Isa. 53:7.]
30 This is He of Whom I said, After me comes a Man Who has priority over me [Who takes rank above me] because He was before me and existed before I did.
31 And I did not know Him and did not recognize Him [myself]; but it is in order that He should be made manifest and be revealed to Israel [be brought out where we can see Him] that I came baptizing in (with) water.
32 John gave further evidence, saying, I have seen the Spirit descending as a dove out of heaven, and it dwelt on Him [never to depart].
33 And I did not know Him nor recognize Him, but He Who sent me to baptize in (with) water said to me, Upon Him Whom you shall see the Spirit descend and remain, that One is He Who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.
34 And I have seen [that happen–I actually did see it] and my testimony is that this is the Son of God!
35 Again the next day John was standing with two of his disciples,
36 And he looked at Jesus as He walked along, and said, Look! There is the Lamb of God!
37 The two disciples heard him say this, and they followed Him.
38 But Jesus turned, and as He saw them following Him, He said to them, What are you looking for? [And what is it you wish?] And they answered Him, Rabbi–which translated is Teacher–where are You staying?
39 He said to them, Come and see. So they went and saw where He was staying, and they remained with Him that day. It was then about the tenth hour (about four o'clock in the afternoon).
40 One of the two who heard what John said and followed Jesus was Andrew, Simon Peter's brother.
41 He first sought out and found his own brother Simon and said to him, We have found (discovered) the Messiah!–which translated is the Christ (the Anointed One).
42 Andrew then led (brought) Simon to Jesus. Jesus looked at him and said, You are Simon son of John. You shall be called Cephas–which translated is Peter [Stone].
43 The next day Jesus desired and decided to go into Galilee; and He found Philip and said to him, Join Me as My attendant and follow Me.
44 Now Philip was from Bethsaida, of the same city as Andrew and Peter.
45 Philip sought and found Nathanael and told him, We have found (discovered) the One Moses in the Law and also the Prophets wrote about–Jesus from Nazareth, the [legal] son of Joseph!
46 Nathanael answered him, [Nazareth!] Can anything good come out of Nazareth? Philip replied, Come and see!
47 Jesus saw Nathanael coming toward Him and said concerning him, See! Here is an Israelite indeed [a true descendant of Jacob], in whom there is no guile nor deceit nor falsehood nor duplicity!
48 Nathanael said to Jesus, How do You know me? [How is it that You know these things about me?] Jesus answered him, Before [ever] Philip called you, when you were still under the fig tree, I saw you.
49 Nathanael answered, Teacher, You are the Son of God! You are the King of Israel!
50 Jesus replied, Because I said to you, I saw you beneath the fig tree, do you believe in and rely on and trust in Me? You shall see greater things than this!
51 Then He said to him, I assure you, most solemnly I tell you all, you shall see heaven opened, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of Man! [Gen. 28:12; Dan. 7:13.]