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John 1:1-18 Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

Christ Comes to the World

Before the world began, the Word[a] was there. The Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was there with God in the beginning. Everything was made through him, and nothing was made without him. In him there was life, and that life was a light for the people of the world. The light[b] shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not defeated[c] it.

There was a man named John, who was sent by God. He came to tell people about the light. Through him all people could hear about the light and believe. John was not the light. But he came to tell people about the light. The true light was coming into the world. This is the true light that gives light to all people.

10 The Word was already in the world. The world was made through him, but the world did not know him. 11 He came to the world that was his own. And his own people did not accept him. 12 But some people did accept him. They believed in him, and he gave them the right to become children of God. 13 They became God’s children, but not in the way babies are usually born. It was not because of any human desire or plan. They were born from God himself.

14 The Word became a man and lived among us. We saw his divine greatness—the greatness that belongs to the only Son of the Father. The Word was full of grace and truth. 15 John told people about him. He said loudly, “This is the one I was talking about when I said, ‘The one who is coming after me is greater than I am, because he was living before I was even born.’”

16 Yes, the Word was full of grace and truth, and from him we all received one blessing after another.[d] 17 That is, the law was given to us through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18 No one has ever seen God. The only Son is the one who has shown us what God is like. He is himself God and is very close to the Father.[e]


  1. John 1:1 Word The Greek word is “ logos,” meaning any kind of communication. It could be translated “message.” Here, it describes Jesus Christ before he was sent to earth as a human being, which is the way God chose to tell the world about himself. Also in verses 10, 14, 16.
  2. John 1:5 light Meaning Christ, the Word, who brought to the world understanding about God. Also in verse 7.
  3. John 1:5 defeated Or “understood.”
  4. John 1:16 one blessing after another Literally, “grace in place of grace.”
  5. John 1:18 The only Son … Father Or more literally, “The only Son, God, who is very close to the Father, has shown us what he is like.” Some other Greek copies say, “The only Son is very close to the Father and has shown us what he is like.”
Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

Copyright © 2006 by Bible League International


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