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14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.


The next phrase is not a repetition of “the Word became flesh.” The further idea is that the eternal Word assumed human nature permanently.

and dwelt [tabernacled] among us,

The word “dwelt” means tented among us. The idea is that the Word camped among humanity. He became human for a short period of time on earth but His humanity remains for eternity.

“Tabernacled” is an allusion to the tabernacle in the Old Testament when the people pitched a tent in the wilderness. The idea is that the Word took up residence among human beings. The Word assumed community of human nature and lived among mankind. The Word was no apparition or appearance of man; He became true humanity (Php 2:7; He 2:14, 17). This is the incarnation.

The Word became humanity and dwelt among men for 33 years. As the God of the Old Testament tented with Israel, so the Word pitched His tent in the humanity of Christ.


The Word took up residence among men.


As God manifested His glory in the tabernacles, so the Word manifested Himself in humanity. God’s indwelling of the tabernacle and temple in shadow is now revealed in actuality in the person of Christ’s humanity. In the Old Testament the Shekinah was the visible manifestation of God’s presence among Israel.