< What I Learned Teaching Sunday School: 1st John 1:1-4

Saturday, May 12, 2007

1st John 1:1-4

1 John 1:1-4 “That which was from the beginning, that which we have heard, that which we have seen with our eyes, that which we beheld, and our hands handled, concerning the Word of life (and the life was manifested, and we have seen, and bear witness, and declare unto you the life, the eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested unto us); that which we have seen and heard declare we unto you also, that ye also may have fellowship with us: yea, and our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ: and these things we write, that our joy may be made full.”

Notice John doesn’t have an introduction/salutation like Paul always does. He starts in right away and he starts as he did in the Gospel of John: emphasizing that Christ is eternal.

In the next two verses he gives us his right to speak. And that right is based on his personal experience with Jesus Christ. He heard Jesus. He heard the message from Jesus Himself. This wasn’t second hand. He saw Christ and he touched Him.

John calls the Gospel the Word of Life. Most often in the New Testament it’s called the Word of God, sometimes it’s called the Word of the Lord. In Hebrews and Thessalonians it was called the Word of hearing, meaning it had to be spoken to an ear ready to hear it.

In Matthew it was called the Word of the Kingdom, the good news. In Acts, the Word of grace and the Word of salvation. In 2nd Corinthians; the Word of reconciliation. In 1st Corinthians it’s the Word of the cross and in several places it is called the Word of the truth.

Also in Hebrews it was called the Word of righteousness and in 2nd Timothy it is the health giving Word. Here and in Philippians 2:16 it is the Word of life because it is through its power that a man is delivered from death and enabled to enter into a life at its best.

John states two of his wishes for the reader; in verse 3: to produce fellowship with men and fellowship with God. And verse 4: to bring his people joy that is complete.
Because we are forgiven, the ultimate note of the Christian message is joy!

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