The life appeared; we have seen it and testify to it, and we proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and has appeared to us. 1 John, verse 2.
This one talks about life: real life and the real source for that real life. When I think about life, I think about newborn babies, and lush fields of green. I think of coral reefs in the ocean, and a city teeming with busy people, and the vivid colors that are the tapestry of humanity. Behind all that, supporting all that, is the source of all life, God. All life stems from God, is given by God, is from God. God is life. And all that life God put into a human version of Himself in which He walked around for a few, short years in a time and place long past. Christ must have been an exciting person to know, full of joy, knowledge, energy, optimism, real feeling and wisdom.
John knew Him face to face, and he was compelled, inspired to write it down to share with you and me so that, in a different way, we could come to know this same Jesus. John knew Him when Jesus was starting out, branching out beyond Nazareth, when twelve men walked, talked and lived together as students of the Most High incarnate. What’s more, John knew him as a best friend, man to man as well as man to God. Crocodile Dundee said it: “Me and God: we be mates.” That’s how John knew Jesus.
What’s more, John speaks in the third person because he’s speaking for his friends as well. Twelve had been intimately close with Jesus, hearing Him explain things that man had always desired to know. Of the four Gospel writers, only John could claim to authentically speak for the others of Christ’s inner circle. When he ways “we have seen it” he means that all who were close to Jesus, and then even all who knew, saw, or heard Jesus in person, could testify to what they saw.
What does that mean to you? All my life I’ve looked for an authentic Jesus encounter, thinking I should have some ‘aha’ moment where I can definitively point to my conversion. That moment has yet to occur. And yet, I can’t even count how many times I have felt Jesus’ loving touch on my heart, comforting my psyche, teaching my mind, sharing in the happiness and weeping in my tears. I have felt His life in my life, and I have known Him as friend, even while I’ve never seen Him. Someday, I’ll meet Him face to face and know Him as John did because, like Mick Dundee said, “Me and God: we be mates.”
Lord, I want to know you more. Thanks for giving life, inspiring life, and giving meaning to life. Thanks for being my friend. Because You live I live, and I want to live knowing you more.