Before reading this you should know I’m a huge Lord of the Rings fan. I read the books when I was a kid, and absolutely love the movies…hence this blog about Frodo and the Gospel of John.
The beginning of the book of John reminds me of a Lord of the Rings movie. It’s in the way the narrator introduces the story of Christ; to me it sounds so much like something the orator at the beginning of the Fellowship of the Rings would say. It’s beautiful, mysterious, and ominous. It’s the grand opening for what it is to come; it hooks you. I think it’s beautiful, powerful, and vague in such a way that draws you deeper into the story. In the way it begins you get that feeling like you know something big is coming, something that you don’t yet fully understand, something that may be beyond you to fully comprehend, but that is still occurring right before us.
In this book we begin with creation; “The Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made.” The wording of the passage is inspiring; it makes me want to jump in and learn and try to understand the story of the one who made all things, who is the Word and who is with God. The book of John was clearly written by a storyteller, who wants us to reflect and think on the scripture. It is different in style from any other gospel, and I think that is what captivates me about it. I just want to let the word wash over me as the writer lays it out in a way meant to entice, and to force us to think on the nature of Christ. Because that is exactly what the opening does in its vacuity and powerful language, we can’t help but want more. This being, the Word that is life that is the light of man, something darkness cannot understand, is profound and it is bigger than our imagination – the ultimate higher power. And then, like Frodo being introduced for the first time in the Fellowship, the narrator turns to John. John is introduced as a bridge between something powerful and unknown – something he cannot fully understand, but he continues to use his life to make the glory of the Lord known to us. John attempts to explain the power, glory, and light of the Lord through his understanding and experience; which likens to Frodo trying to convey the power of the one ring to those who have not experienced what it can do.
The book of John wants to reveal the glory of Christ, not only convey the magnificent life of Christ, but also to allow the reader to dwell on the character and nature of God. John 1:12 says, “yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God…” The language, in its subtle yet strong way, clearly indicates power. It conveys the higher power that is Christ. That he came as man, but He is God, and he alone gives us the right to become children of God. That’s incredible. He is bestowing something upon us. It’s majestic and worthy of pause and consideration; that because we believe he gives us the right to become children of the Living God. Amazing. We can come to him, but it is because he allows it that we are born again of God. We believe in his holy name, and He bring unto himself.
I think the Gospel of John is beautiful, and yes when I read it I am often hearing the voice of the orator of the Lord of Rings in my head. It’s the beginning of an adventure, a quest, and a journey that will impact the world. The world as we know it does hang in the balance of people understanding the glory and the light of the Lord. Frodo understood the magnitude of his quest to Mordor, and I hope that along our journey to follow after and share the glory of Christ, we do it with the same sense of urgency, fortitude, and zealous adventure.