“We write this to make our joy complete."
In the first 3 verses, we have seen that the aim of John is to bring his readers into full fellowship with the Divine nature. In verse 1, he speaks of Christ as the tangible "Word". In verse 2, he further describes Jesus as "eternal life". In verse 3, John invites his readers into a relationship with more than just those who personally saw, touched, and held the Savior. He invites them into a very real fellowship with the God/man and His Father.
In verse 4, John summarizes his introduction by speaking of a complete joy that comes through the sharing and receiving of this marvelous news.
This is not the only time John uses such a phrase. In 2 John 12 the apostle writes this, "I have much to write to you, but I do not want to use paper and ink. Instead, I hope to visit you and talk with you face to face, so that our joy may be complete." Again we see John speaking of a completed joy that comes through communication about the good news of the God/man.
But the use of this phrase is not original with the apostle John. Another John in biblical history also spoke of this complete joy. In John 3:29, John the Baptist, the privileged proclaimer of the God/man's coming, says this, "The bride belongs to the bridegroom. The friend who attends the bridegroom waits and listens for him, and is full of joy when he hears the bridegroom's voice. That joy is mine, and it is now complete."
Can you imagine the great joy John the Baptist must have received from being the one chosen to prepare the way for the Lord? How gratifying it must have been to finally announce the arrival of the Messiah. In 1 John 1:4, the apostle John claimed to share in that same fulfilling joy. Just as John the Baptist announced the arrival of Christ, John the apostle gains a completed joy by adding his experiences to the story.
But that is not the climax to this passage. The climax is this, you and I, some 2,000+ years later, can also share in this complete joy. The God/man continues to be the tangible "Word of life" (1:1) through the lives and the testimony of His people. Each time we share with the world our own personal experiences with the God/man, we too can have complete joy.
Do you receive a fulfilling joy when you share the good news about Jesus? Do you anticipate a reaction? Are you anxious to share? Don't ever let the message become just another line of religious rhetoric. Make it personal. Share your good news experiences. Make your joy complete.
For assurance to be sure, we must let God speak for Himself. We must be true to the inspired context. After each study, read the entire chapter again taking note to the way today's verse relates to all the verses around it. Due to the colorful, complex nature of the original language, the best translation is multiple translations. Following each lesson, this chapter will be presented in a different translation. Below, we have featured the Holman Christian Standard Bible.
1 John 1 (HCSB)
What was from the beginning,
what we have heard,
what we have seen with our eyes,
what we have observed
and have touched with our hands,
concerning the Word of life—
that life was revealed,
and we have seen it
and we testify and declare to you
the eternal life that was with the Father
and was revealed to us—
what we have seen and heard
we also declare to you,
so that you may have fellowship along with us;
and indeed our fellowship is with the Father
and with His Son Jesus Christ.
We are writing these things
so that our joy may be complete.
Now this is the message we have heard from Him and declare to you: God is light, and there is absolutely no darkness in Him. If we say, “We have fellowship with Him,” yet we walk in darkness,we are lying and are not practicing the truth. But if we walk in the light as He Himself is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus His Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say, “We have no sin,” we are deceiving ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say, “We don’t have any sin,” we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us.
To continue this study, go to:
"God is Light: 1 John 1:5"
"Fellowship with Light: 1 John 1:6"
"Walk In or Out of the Light: 1 John 1:7"
"Formula for Assurance (Part 1): Honesty 1 John 1:8"
"Formula for Assurance (Part 2): Confession 1 John 1:9"
"Formula for Assurance (Part 3): Application 1 John 1:10"
"Blessed Assurance Review"
Missed the first four parts of this study? Check them out!
"Blessed Assurance: 1 John 1 Introduction"
"Jesus - Word of Life: 1 John 1:1"
"Jesus - Eternal Life: 1 John 1:2"
"Fellowship With the Father and the Son: 1 John 1:3"
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