Aramaic was the lingua franca of the Middle East in the days of Jesus. Everyone spoke it. Parts of the Bible are written in it. Though Arabic replaced it as the key language for the region in the seventh century A.D., Aramaic endured through the centuries. But linguists now believe it is dying, with its last two generations of speakers driven from their homes by war and persecution now spread out around the world.
Human languages may die, but Jesus is the divine Word who has conquered death and given eternal life to all who believe on His name. Our month’s study now moves into its final section, “Silence and the Gospel.” In light of the fact that Jesus is God’s final Logos, what roles has silence played in the Gospel narrative?
John knew both the Jewish and Greek senses of the word Logos and clearly intended to signify both as well as to transcend both. To the Jewish mind, Logos meant God’s words, specifically the Law, and by extension God’s creation and governance of the world. To the Greek mind, Logos referred to both spoken and unspoken language and more importantly to an impersonal principle of reason or rationality.
The coming of Christ the Logos is like light in a dark place—the best Word humanity has ever heard! Just as God spoke light into creation, now comes His Son to speak life where there had been only death. Darkness and death have been overcome once and for all by the victorious Christ.
The theme of silence and the gospel must be situated within the context of Christ as the Divine Word. He broke four centuries of “prophetic silence” to accomplish God’s mission of redemption and bring hope to us all!
The apostle John opened his Gospel with words that directly evoke Genesis 1. If you have time, we suggest you read Genesis 1 as part of your devotional time today. Set the two passages side-by-side in order to better examine the themes and parallels. Creation and Incarnation are inextricably intertwined and life-changing realities!