From his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace. (John 1:16)
Just before the service last Sunday, the little band of praying saints was hard at work fighting for the faith of our people, and for the churches of the Twin Cities, and for the nations, as they prayed. At one point one man prayed the words of John 1:14, 16:
And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. . . . For from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace.
It was one of those epiphany moments for me. God granted in that moment that the word “fullness” — from his fullness — carry a fullness that was extraordinary in its effect on me. I felt some measure of what the word really carries — the fullness of Christ.
I felt some of the wonder that, yes, I had indeed received grace upon grace from this fullness. And I was at that moment receiving grace upon grace. I felt right then that nothing would have been sweeter than to simply sit at his feet — or read my Bible — all afternoon and feel his fullness overflow.
Why did this fullness have such an impact on me — and why is it still to this moment affecting me unusually? In part because . . .
- . . . the one from whose fullness I am being drenched with grace is the Word that was with God and was God (John 1:1–2), so that his fullness is the fullness of God — a divine fullness, an infinite fullness;
- . . . this Word became flesh, and so was one of us, and was pursuing us with his fullness — it is an accessible fullness;
- . . . when this Word appeared in human form, his glory was seen — his is a glorious fullness;
- . . . this Word was “the only Son from the Father” (John 1:14) so that the divine fullness was being mediated to me not just from God, but through God — God did not send an angel but his only Son to deliver his fullness;
- . . . the fullness of the Son is a fullness of grace — I will not drown in this fullness but be blessed in every way by this fullness;
- . . . this fullness is not only a fullness of grace but of truth — I am not being graced with truth-ignoring flattery; this grace is rooted in rock-solid reality.
Is it any wonder, then, that I would feel astonished and full of joy at the fullness of Christ!