"Our theme is Wisdom -- Wisdom to live by. For Wisdom is the Word, the Concept, the Substance, the very wholeness of Life."
These beautiful words are the very opening lines of John's Gospel and formed part of the Gospel's original Foreword composed by John, the Beloved Disciple, and his editor, John the Elder. (See "Mark and John: The First and Last Gospels", page 61).
Most editions of the Bible misplace this original Gospel Foreword in other positions. It is often tacked on to -- or hidden away inside -- John the Elder's First Letter.
Why this concerted effort to downgrade these important lines to a less prominent position?
My guess is that many priests and preachers felt that Wisdom was too hard a concept for people to understand. And the fact that the two Johns obviously identify Wisdom with the same Spirit of God identified as Wisdom in the Old Testament (particularly -- although by no means wholly -- in books that Protestants reject) added to their dilemma.
So what is John, the Beloved Disciple, telling us from the very outset? That Wisdom is the Word of God -- a concept he then emphasizes by quoting from an early Christian hymn. (I add the words. "soloist" and "choir" which are not present in the original):
Soloist: In the beginning was the Word, the Concept and Wisdom.
Choir: And Wisdom was with God.
Soloist: Yet Wisdom was divine.
Choir: She was present at the very beginning of Creation with God.
Soloist: Through Her, everything was created.
Choir: Without Her, nothing at all would exist.
Soloist: Life came into existence through Her.
Choir: And that Life became the Light of Men.
Soloist: That Light shines bright in the darkness.
Choir: And darkness can never overpower that Light.
[See "MARK and JOHN: The First and Last Gospels, page 62].