John 1:3
Through Him all things were made, and without Him nothing was made that has been made.
Sermons
And Truly Our Fellowship is with the Father, and with His SonHugh BinningJohn 1:3
Christ the CreatorCornelius a Lapide.John 1:3
Christ's Creative KnowledgeH. C. Trumbull, D. D.John 1:3
Christ's Presence in His CreationLuther.John 1:3
Creation the Work of GodD. Thomas, D. D.John 1:3
Divine Designs Open to Us in CreationH. W. Beecher.John 1:3
God in NatureH. W. Beecher.John 1:3
The Christian Doctrine of CreationLange.John 1:3
The Christian Features in All ThingsLange.John 1:3
The Confidence Inspired by Christ's CreatorshipHengstenberg.John 1:3
The Creation in ChristGeorge MacDonaldJohn 1:3
The Creative Power of the WordA. H. Moment.John 1:3
The Creator Must be DivineT. Guthrie, D. D.John 1:3
The Greatness of the Universe a Testimony to the Greatness of ChristJ. Culross, D. D.John 1:3
The Relation of Christ to the Created UniverseVan Doren.John 1:3
The Universal Creatorship of ChristVan Doren.John 1:3
The Universe a Revelation of ChristJ. Culross, D. D.John 1:3
What was Not, and What was Made by ChristJohn 1:3
A Notable ConversionJ. J. Van Oosterzee, D. D.John 1:1-5
Christ and GodD. Thomas, D. D.John 1:1-5
Christ is GodJohn 1:1-5
Christ the True GodJohn 1:1-5
Christ the Word of GodJ. Cumming, D. D.John 1:1-5
Controversy About ChristBp.Ryle.John 1:1-5
God not SolitaryJ. Cynddylan Jones, D. D.John 1:1-5
On BooksCharles Kingsley, M. A.John 1:1-5
Practical ReflectionsBp. Ryle.John 1:1-5
The Deity of Christ an Impossible InventionCanon Liddon.John 1:1-5
The Divine Father and SonArrowsmith.John 1:1-5
The Divinity of Christ Revealed in the Gospel of JohnDr. Pentecost.John 1:1-5
The Heavenly Analogy of the Connection of Speech with ReasonDean Goulburn.John 1:1-5
The Nature of Christ Perfectly Similar and Equal to that of the Eternal FatherJ. F. Denham.John 1:1-5
The Origin of the Term Logos, or WordT. Whitelaw, D. D.John 1:1-5
The Relation of This Revelation with that of Genesis 1J. Culross, D. D.John 1:1-5
The Resemblance Between the Written and the Personal WordDean Goulburn.John 1:1-5
The Term Word Applicable to ChristG. Steward.John 1:1-5
The WordJ. Cynddylan Jones, D. D.John 1:1-5
The WordW. Denton, M. A., Beaux Amis.John 1:1-5
The Word Made FleshW. Perkins.John 1:1-5
The Word of Scripture Concerning the BeginningLange., Lange.John 1:1-5
What is Gained by Defending the Eternal Pre-Existence of Jesus ChristJ. Cynddylan Jones, D. D.John 1:1-5


The language of the prophet in this passage is obviously figurative. In poetical terms, the boldness and beauty of which are not exceeded by the graceful and imaginative writers of classical antiquity, Joel depicts the reign of peace, plenty, and prosperity. Literally these words have not been, and will not be, fulfilled. To some they speak of a restoration of Israel, yet in the future, of a period when all the delights that a nation can enjoy shall be secured in abundance to the descendants of Abraham. It seems a more sober and more profitable interpretation to read in these words a prediction of the spiritual prosperity of God's people, whether to be enjoyed upon this earth or in the new heavens and the new earth.

I. THE MOUNTAINS DROPPING WINE SYMBOLIZE THE SPIRITUAL JOYS OF CHRIST'S CHURCH. The Scriptures speak of wine as "making glad the heart of man." The "new wine" of the gospel is for the enjoyment of the elect. The wine of the kingdom is of celestial vintage; they who partake of it are "filled with the Spirit." The joy of the new covenant, the joy of the Lord, is the portion of the rescued, emancipated, and consecrated Israel.

II. THE HILLS FLOWING WITH MILK SYMBOLIZE THE SPIRITUAL NUTRIMENT OF CHRIST'S CHURCH. We are taught by the apostle to "desire the sincere milk of the Word, that we may grow thereby." Even the babes in Christ can partake of this nourishing spiritual diet; but the strong men do not disdain the food. As Canaan was "a land flowing with milk and honey," so the Church of the blessed Saviour abounds with all that can enrich and nourish and bless the people of God. "They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more."

III. THE RIVERS FLOWING WITH WATERS SYMBOLIZE THE REVIVAL AND REFRESHMENT OF CHRIST'S CHURCH, Several of the prophets, expatiating (as they loved to do) upon the glorious prospect afforded them by inspiration of the future of the Church, describe one element of that happy future by the figure of a river flowing from its source in the Lord's house at Jerusalem, and fertilizing the soil until it should enter the Dead Sea or the Mediterranean. And the Apostle John beheld the river of the water of life, flowing out of the throne of God and of the Lamb. How exact is the correspondence between the prediction and the reality! It was in Jerusalem that Jesus was condemned, and hard by that he suffered; and his cross was the source of a river of spiritual blessing to mankind. Wherever his Spirit penetrates, there life is revived, souls are saved, society is purified, weariness is refreshed. Not earth only, but heaven, is fertilized and cheered by the water which Christ gives in a sweet, unceasing stream. - T.







All things were made by Him.
I. THE PURIFICATION OF THE HEATHEN DOCTRINE: obviating the eternity of matter.

II. THE DEEPENING OF THE JEWISH DOCTRINE of the Shekinah: clearly pronouncing the personal life of love in God as it enters into the world.

III. THE GLORIFICATION OF THE SOUND DOCTRINE of scientific investigation: man the final cause of things; the God Man the final cause of man.

IV. THE VERDICT OF THE SPIRIT respecting the derivation of the world from a non-spiritual source: materialism.

(Lange.)

I. The CREATURELY instinct of dependence, as an impulse towards the upholding Word.

II. The NATURAL, SELF-UNFOLDING instinct, as the impulse towards freedom (Romans 8.).

III. The COSMICAL, WORLD-FORMING instinct, as an impulse towards unity.

IV. The SPIRITUAL instinct, as the impulse to rise in the service of the Spirit.

(Lange.)

I. As He is the efficient cause of all.

II. As He is the pattern by which all were made.

III. As all things are created by the Godhead, and the Word was God.

(Cornelius a Lapide.)

I. ASSOCIATES HIS NAME WITH ALL EXISTENCE, PAST AND PRESENT.

1. It furnishes the key to the dark problems of nature and providence.

2. It gives to science and Christianity a common foundation.(1) Science reveals the eternal power and Godhead of the Word.(2) Christianity the means of mercy to fallen man through the Word.(3) Each a compartment of one great fabric reared to the glory of God. Science the outer court: admire and adore. Christianity the holy place: kneel, pray, praise (Hebrews 4:16).

II. AFFORDS TO FAITH THE GREATEST ASSURANCE AND ENCOURAGEMENT. "His every word of grace is strong," etc.

III. INSPIRES THE HUMBLEST WITH CONFIDENCE. Christ cares for the humblest of His creatures (Psalm 104:27; Matthew 7:11).

IV. IRRADIATES THE FUTURE WITH A GLORIOUS HOPE (Revelation 21:1, 5).

(Van Doren.)

All things are —

I. IN Him. All archetypal forms and sources of creative life eternally reside in Him.

II. BY Him. He is the one Producer and Sustainer of all created existence.

III. FOR Him. He is the end of created things. Living for Him the explanation and law of every creature.

(Van Doren.)

See 1 Corinthians 8:6; Colossians 1:16; Hebrews 1:2. Observe —

1. God revealed Himself through His Son before the Incarnation.

2. To be a Creator the Word had to be God.

3. Matter is not eternal: the universe has an intelligent personality back of it, as architect, builder, and sustainer.

4. The stars are a manifestation of Christ, as well as the Bible: we see Him in natural as in revealed religion.

5. The Being who made all things is worthy of being trusted with the absolute work of making and sustaining our characters.

(A. H. Moment.)

The creation of a single atom would have been a revelation of Him: how much more is this great universe! A man is always greater than his work; no architect, for example, ever put his whole self into the noblest building he designed; even so the Word is greater than the universe which He has called into being. Still, so far as it goes, it reveals Him to us. To the eye of childhood this world into which we are born is beautiful and strange, and marvellous past expression. Not less so to the intelligent and thoughtful manhood. If the romance is gone, as the summer dew from the grass at noon, the real wonder only becomes more overwhelming.

(J. Culross, D. D.)

To the infidel, Nature's voices are but a Babel din. Trees rustle, and brooks babble, and winds blow; but there is no meaning in their sound. To the Christian, all speak of God; and if it were not for the dimness of the natural eye, he might see His host of angels at their ministry. The tree stretches out its arm, laden with fruit, like the arm of God. The morning sprinkles him with dew, as with holy water; and he is sung to sleep at evening with songs like the lullaby of earthly parents to their children.

(H. W. Beecher.)

When I was in the galleries of Oxford, I saw many of the designs of Raphael and Michael Angelo. I looked upon them with reverence, and took up such of them as I was permitted to touch as one would take up a love token. It seemed to me these sketches brought me nearer the great masters than their finished pictures could have done, because therein I saw the minds' processes as they were first born. They were the first salient points of the inspiration. Could I have brought them home with me, how rich I should have been! how envied for their possession! Now, there are open and free to us, every day of our lives, the designs of a greater than Raphael or Michael Angelo. God, of whom the noblest master is but a feeble imitator, is sketching and painting every hour the most wondrous pictures — not hoarded in any gallery, but spread in light and shadow round the whole earth, and glowing for us in the overhanging skies.

(H. W. Beecher.)

To create, to call something out of nothing — be it a dying spark or a blazing sun, a dewdrop cradled in a lily's bosom, or the vast ocean in the hollow of God's hand, mole-hill or mountain, the dancing motes of a sunbeam or the rolling planets of a system, a burning seraph or a feeble glow-worm, one of the ephemera that takes wing in the morning and is dead at night, or one of the angels that sang when our Lord was born; whatever be the thing created, the power to create is God's, the act of creation His; and therefore, since Paul says that Jesus Christ created all things, he cannot mean to depose our Lord from the throne of Divinity, and lower God's only begotten Son to the level of a created being.

(T. Guthrie, D. D.)

Creation is the work of God: "without Him was not anything made that was made." He only can create. The architect can rear a cathedral, the sculptor can cut forms of symmetry and grace from marble, the painter can depict life on his canvas, the machinist can construct engines that shall serve the nations; but not one of them can create. They work with materials already in existence. They bring existing things into new combinations; this is all. God alone can create.

(D. Thomas, D. D.)

1. We look around us upon the infinite variety of productions which the earth brings forth — their use, their goodness, their beauty; we sweep the eye of imagination over ocean and continent, hill and plain, lake and stream, corn-land and forest, sahara and paradise; we mark the changes produced by day and night, and the succession of the seasons; we listen to the music of nature — the boom of ocean dashing on the shore, the wind in the forest, the tinkling of the hidden moorland rill; we think of the countless tribes of living and sentient beings that inhabit earth along with us; we think of man with his marvellous endowments; we think of the treasures of darkness and hidden riches of secret places; we listen to all that science can tell us of the subtle agencies that pervade creation and the laws which bind all beings together.

2. Then, standing on earth as on a promontory, we look upwards and outwards. Beneath the nether sky, with its cloud and scenery, and its sunrise and sunset hues of beauty, there are illimitable realms of space, studded with worlds moving harmoniously in close ravelled maze. These heavens were vast and glorious to the eye of the Chaldean gazer thousands of years ago; how have their vastness and glory grown to us since then! The globe which is our dwelling-place is one of the smallest planets wheeling round one of the lesser suns. It is conceivable that only our own little world might have hung solitary in immensity; but the space swept by the telescope teems with solar systems compared with which ours is insignificant. In the Milky Way alone are millions of suns, the nearest of which requires years to dart its light to us, though light travels two hundred thousand miles during the single vibration of a pendulum. In the presence of that immensity, our globe is but as a grain of sand on the sea-shore.

3. Leaving. the realms of space, with the help of geology, let us look back on the realms of time. Since our world became the theatre of life, ages on ages have run their course, for the duration of which we have absolutely no measure. The universe in its vastness, wonder, and divine beauty, and in all the evolutions through which it has passed during countless ages, lay first of all in His mind — if one may say so — as the grand cathedral was in the brain of the architect ere its foundation-stone was laid; it took all that we see, and all that science discloses, and all that mystery still hides, to express His creative idea. How great, then, must the Maker be! How wise, good, glorious!

(J. Culross, D. D.)

A quaint countryman, telling of his thorough knowledge of the people of his vicinity, said boastfully, "I know all these people as well as if I'd made 'em." That statement of his covered a great deal of ground, whether it were true or were only a suggestion of a truth. No man can understand a complicated piece of mechanism like the man who made it. And there was never so complicated a piece of mechanism on earth as the average man or woman. At the best, every man or woman is a bundle of contradictions; and the closest human friend is puzzled at times over some new phase of those contradictions in his friend. Only He who made that puzzle can know its parts in all their relations and in all their workings. What a comfort in the thought that our Friend of friends knows us as well as if He made us; knows us because He did make us — for "all things were made by Him."

(H. C. Trumbull, D. D.)

He is not a Master who, like a carpenter or builder, when he has prepared a house or ship, leaves the house for its owner to dwell in, or commits the ship to the mariners that they may traverse the sea in it, and he himself goes whither he may. No; God the Father has begun. and finished all things by His Word, and preserves it also continually by the same, and remains with His work until He wills that it shall no longer exist (John 5:13). As we were made by Him without our assistance, so also we cannot be preserved of ourselves. Thus here, were all to understand that all things created are preserved, in being otherwise they would not long remain created.

(Luther.)

If without Christ nothing was made, then nothing made by Him can do any injury to His kingdom. Fear loves to make exceptions; it allows all else to be innocuous; only that one thing which is directly in view appears to threaten danger. This is met with the assurance that all things, without exception, were made by the Word; therefore every fear is unreasonable to Him who has the Word on His side. If to be made, and to be made by Him, are the same thing, there can be no enemy that is to be feared, either in heaven or in earth.

(Hengstenberg.)

Many, wrongly understanding "without Him was nothing made," are wont to fancy that "nothing" is something. Sin, indeed, was not made by Him; and it is plain that sin is nothing, and men become nothing when they sin. An idol also was not made by the Word, and an idol is nothing. Therefore these things were not made by the Word; but whatever was made in a natural manner, whatever belongs to the creature, from an angel even unto a worm. What more excellent than an angel among created things? What lower than a worm? But an angel is fit for heaven, the worm for earth. He who created also arranged. If He had placed the worm in heaven, thou mightest have found fault; and if He had willed that angels should spring from decaying flesh, thou mightest have found fault. And yet God almost does this, and He is not to be found fault with. For all men born of the flesh, what are they but worms? And of these worms God makes angels.

( Augustine.)

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