1 John | Day One
By: Callie Clayton | Click here to fill-in-the blanks!
When was the last time you received a note from someone? Maybe it was a birthday card with a sweet handwritten message on the inside. Or perhaps you got a long text from a friend on a hard day — the kind where you scroll three or four times before you get to the end.
Letters, notes, and texts from someone we care about are so special, aren’t they? Kind words from a friend often can cause us to re-read their healing words a couple of times before tucking them away to save. When someone offers encouragement to you in the midst of a hard season, you are reminded of the truth of your identity and pay attention to what they are saying.
In the same way, the apostle John—the disciple labeled as the one whom Jesus loved (John 13:23)—writes a letter to fellow Christians reminding them the truth about Jesus.In the midst of their doubt and confusion due to false teachers, John encourages them to live like Jesus. It’s an incredible letter with so much goodness that you and I need will take the next two weeks to read it carefully and soak it up! Because we need these reminders, too.
Before you begin, pray and ask God to speak to you during your time with Him.
Read 1 John 1:1-4.
Who is John talking about in verses 1-2?
According to John, through which three senses has he experienced Jesus?
Read the verses below from John’s gospel—His account of Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection. Match one of the three sense to the verse that proves John’s experience.
John 17: 1-3 A. Sight
John 13: 3-5 B. Touch
John 6: 16-21 C. Sound
What does Paul want to communicate to his readers by appealing to these senses?
Are you more likely to believe a story if it’s told by a person who actually experienced it themselves? Why or why not?
An apostle was anyone who was called specifically and personally by Jesus Christ Himself. John wants his readers to understand he walked with Jesus while he was on earth. Not only did he hear His message directly, but watched him live his life and perform miracles. This gives him some street cred!
It’s usually easier to believe someone when they tell a story about something they were actually involved in, rather than if it’s just hearsay. John’s readers are confused and discouraged because even though they are followers of Jesus, they’ve listened to several false teachers and their beliefs and behaviors are shifting from the truth. John wants them to know what he has to tell them is true and believable because he was actually with Jesus.
Do you think your faith would be different if you had walked with Jesus during his time on earth? Why or why not?
John’s readers had never met Jesus, never heard him teach, never watched him perform a miracle. They didn’t know Jesus Christ physically or personally which is one of the reasons it was so important for them to hear about Jesus from a man who did know him. Even though you and I haven’t walked with Jesus, we have letters from the men who did! We have words from the very mouth of God (2 Timothy 3:16) right in front of us!
And you and I can know Jesus personally. If you accept what Jesus did on the cross for you and for me, and if you believe he rose from the dead three days later, we have the incredible opportunity to be in a relationship with Jesus! That’s a two way street. We have the chance to know Jesus intimately, to hear him speak to us personally. Let’s not take that for granted!