Friends, our Gospel for Christmas day is the Prologue to the Gospel of John. In many ways, it is the entire Gospel, indeed the entire Bible, in miniature.
Let’s turn to the central passage: “And the Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us.” The word used in Greek here for “dwell” is Eskenosen, which means literally, “pitched his tent among us.” Don’t read that in a folksy way. It is meant to call to mind the tabernacle of the temple.
The Word becoming flesh is God coming to dwell definitively in his world, undoing the effects of sin and turning it into what it was always meant to be. Notice, too, what we see in the wake of this tabernacling: “And we saw his glory, the glory as of the Father’s only Son, full of grace and truth.”
So John is telling us that Jesus is the new Eden, the new temple, the restored creation, the realization of God’s intention for the world. And our purpose is not simply to gaze on this fact with wonder, but rather to enter into its power: “From his fullness we have all received, grace in place of grace.”