Mark begins his gospel with the adult Jesus. Matthew and Luke recount his birth but John, whose gospel was the last to be written, focusses on the identity of Jesus as the Divine Word, existing from all eternity. His prologue, a beautiful piece of mystical poetry, gives us a preview of the content of his gospel: “The Word was made flesh and lived among us” (John 1:14).
God had previously spoken through the prophets but now he spoke through his Word, Jesus, God’s most complete revelation. John uses images of darkness and light, recalling the very beginning of creation, to describe the redemption that Jesus would bring. He also recounts how the coming of God’s Word, so long foretold by the prophets and looked forward to by the Jewish people, would in the event be unwelcome to many. He is therefore not only announcing the birth of the Saviour but also his rejection and crucifixion.
Jesus lives among us still and he never forsakes us. Very often we are unaware of his presence but we know that that his light can never be extinguished; and however bleak things seem at present, the Lord will continue to shine in the darkness.