16 May 2010

New Creation in the Gospel of John

Genesis 1:1 - In the beginning [en arche] God created the heavens and the earth.
John 1:1 - In the beginning [en arche] was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
Genesis 2:7 - Then the LORD God formed the man of dust from the ground and breathed into [enephysesen] his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living creature.
John 20:22 - 'As the Father has sent me, even so I am sending you.' And when he had said this, he breathed on [enephysesen] them and said to them, 'Receive the Holy Spirit.'
The big-picture point of John 20:22ff is not simply that the disciples now receive the Spirit, henceforth to walk in love and power, being transformed from within (perhaps in a proleptic pre-Pentecost way). That is of course true, wonderfully true. But the whole-Bible point is that in Jesus, and the branches who are in him the true vine (John 15-->Isa 5!), humanity is being re-Adam-ized.

God breathed on Adam, sending him to fill and subdue the earth. Adam failed. God breathed on a second Adam, and this successful Adam then breathed on his own, sending them to re-fill and re-subdue the earth.

It's called the church. Count me in.

HT: Andreas Koestenberger, A Theology of John's Gospel and Letters (Zondervan 2009), 400

1 comment:

Jason said...

I've had an interest in the relationship of John's gospel and Genesis; looks like I should get Kostenberger's book!