He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not.…
I. By the WORLD.
1. They were in a condition in which they might have known much of Him. He made the world and preserved it and was in it. Yet there was no proper recognition of Him.
2. This ignorance of Christ was the sin of the world, and it is its sin now, a sin for which there is no excuse. In addition to creation and providence we have revelation.
II. By His own.
1. Who are His own. In a sense(1) All mankind by the right of creation;
(2) The converted by the right of redemption and adoption;
(3) As distinguished from both these, the Visible Church. That its members are His own arises from their possession of advantages peculiarly distinctive — the oracles of God — the ordinances of the kingdom. They are in covenant. Christ is under engagement to grant to them eternal life: they are under engagement to seek that gift and accept it.
(a) Virtually such was the covenant at Sinai. Christ engaged to bring His own to Canaan, through their obedience to the law by which they were to live. They engaged to go up and possess their inheritance in reliance on Him. The covenant was typical as well as temporal, and typified a spiritual salvation.
(b) Israel violated this covenant, by the rebellion in the wilderness, and by slowness of heart to understand its moral meanings.
(c) This covenant has passed away, the substance of its shadows having come, but thousands like Israel are false and perfidious to the new and better covenant: they have the profession without the power of godliness.
2. He came to His own.
(1) This was unsolicited by them, the kindness and consideration were all His.
(2) He came to them in the wilderness and at various periods of their history, but they rejected Him.
3. He came as the Incarnate Word, and they received Him not. Is this also true of the Visible Church to-day? The unconverted hearers of the gospel are more guilty than the Jews, and will therefore he visited with a heavier condemnation.
(A. Beith, D. D.)
Parallel VersesKJV: He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not.
WEB: He was in the world, and the world was made through him, and the world didn't recognize him.