Devotional J.C. Ryle (1)

J.C. Ryle’s Daily Devotional book entitled “Daily Readings – From All Four Gospels” [published 1998] available from

Here is an excerpt from the ‘evening’ devotional for today with scripture reference John 1:14-18

The main truth which this verse teaches is the reality of our Lord Jesus Christ’s incarnation or being made man. John tells us that “The Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us.”

The plain meaning of these words is that our divine Saviour really took human nature upon him, in order to save sinners.  He really became a man like ourselves in all things, sin only excepted.  Like ourselves he was born of a woman, though born in a miraculous manner.  Like ourselves, he grew from infancy to boyhood and from boyhood to man’s estate, both in wisdom and in stature (Luke 2:52).  Like ourselves, he hungered, thirsted, ate, drank, slept, was wearied, felt pain, wept, rejoiced, marvelled, was moved to anger and compassion.  Having become flesh and taken a body, he prayed, read the Scriptures, suffered, being tempted, and submitted his human will to the will of God the Father.  And finally, in the same body, he really suffered and shed his blood, really died, was really buried, really rose again and really ascended up into heaven.  And yet all this time he was God as well as man!

This constant undivided union of two perfect natures in Christ’s person is exactly that which gives infinite value to his mediation and qualifies him to be the very Mediator that sinners need.  Our Mediator is one who can sympathize with us, because he is very man.  And yet at the same time he is one who can deal with the Father for us on equal terms, because he is very God.  It is the same union which gives infinite value to his righteousness, when imputed to believers.  It is the righteousness of one who was God as well as man.  It is the same union which gives infinite value to the atoning blood which he shed for sinners on the cross.  It is the blood of one who was God as well as man.

God the Son shares with us a common experience of living in a fallen world.  His understanding of us in not therefore theoretical but personally experienced.