Proverbs 20 11-20-21

Three-in-one is a difficult concept, especially when talking about the Father, Son and Holy Spirit!

27 The spirit of mankind is the lamp of the Lord, searching all his innermost parts [the Lord is familiar with every part of us–why wouldn’t He be? He created us!].

I learned the first five verses of the Gospel of John by listening to “Celebrate Life.” My church youth choir in Athens, Georgia, went to Daytona Beach, Florida, to join other youth choirs for a debut of the musical in an amphitheater in 1972 (I was 13). My mom and dad bought the double-LP album set, and I would set up our Panasonic quadraphonic speaker system around me on the floor and listen to the whole thing (I really don’t recall how many times I did it, but I can still sing most of the songs word-for-word, parts and all!). Here’s what the first five verses say,

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.

I learned recently that a literal reading of the first verse is, “From the beginning (implying before) was the Word [Logos, indicating the heart and expression of God], and the Word was face-to-face with God, and the Word was God Himself.” When reading Proverbs 8:23-31, I print here for your reading pleasure the footnotes in my Bible:

8:23 The Lord is the Father, and created in this statement means the Father established Wisdom over His works; for the Father made all things through Wisdom (AthanG). “Created” as used here does not mean the Father made Wisdom Himself, for the next clause shows the Father established Wisdom over His works in the beginning before time. Therefore, “created” is used in this verse as a synonym of established, for Wisdom, who is the Word and Son of the Father, is not a creature. He is “begotten from the Father before all time” (Creed; see also v. 25).

The beginning of His ways means two things. It means the Father made all things through Wisdom, and it also refers to the Incarnation, when the Wisdom and Word of the Father became flesh (see also John 1:14). The phrase for His works refers both to the works of creation and to those accomplished by Christ for our salvation, which are outlined in the Creed. “In the beginning before time” is the same as “In the beginning was the Word” in John 1:1. For the Father “established” Wisdom “before time.” Therefore Christ, the Wisdom and Power of God, is not a creature (1 Corinthians 1:24).

There’s more, but it pretty much states that Jesus is with God the Father at the time of creation and is the Agent of creation. We know this to be true because of Paul’s testimony in Colossians 1:16 and the testimony of the writer of Hebrews in 1:2. Hebrews 1:3 says that “He is the radiance of the glory of God [the exact representation],” and “the image of the invisible God” (Colossians 1:15).

There’s more, but we will have to wait until tomorrow to cover those verses. Suffice it to say that when we talk to one, we are talking to the others.

Abba, as we engage You in conversation, I thank You that You want to have conversation with me! I know that You are not hungry for fellowship because You have perfect fellowship within the Trinity, but You invite me in to Your inner fellowship. May I never take the Holy Trinity for granted. Amen.

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