Tag Archives: 1 John

Connections

Down in the back roads of West Virginia, I met a man who had once known an old guy who fought in the Civil War.  He showed me the house where that guy had been born and had died in the same bed, with his Sharps rifle hanging on the wall.  Although it is unlikely, that guy could have met Abraham Lincoln.  Think about it: Who is your closest connection to antiquity, the person you know who goes back the furthest?

When John “sings his song” to the ones who have followed Jesus the longest, he calls them “fathers” and says this:

I write to you, fathers, because you have known him who is from the beginning.  (1 John 2:13a )

When John “sings” to the newest Christians, he has a couple of different things to say.  Same thing with the “adolescent” believers.  But to the “fathers,” to the mature believers, John repeats this same reminder, word for word:

I write to you, fathers, because you have known him who is from the beginning.  (1 John 2:14a )

What does he mean?  Jesus is the One “who is from the beginning.”   In his Gospel, John opens with these words about Jesus:

In the beginning was the Word (Jesus), and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was with God in the beginning.  (John 1:1-2)

If you could go back in time and meet just one person, who would it be?  Can you imagine having a chat with one of the Wright brothers, about what it was like to be there for the beginning of flight?   It would be cool to meet Ben Franklin, because he was there at the beginning of this country.  But how about getting to meet Someone Who was “there” at the beginning of everything?  He was not just an observer, but the Creator!

Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. (John 1:3)

John says that He was, that He existed, from the beginning!  He is eternal – timeless.  He is the One, Who “became flesh and made His dwelling among us.” (John 1:14b)

Try to wrap your mind around the enormity of what John is asserting here.  John doesn’t say, “You got to meet him.”  He says, “You fathers have known Him.”   Chances are pretty good that you have met someone famous.  There is a big difference between meeting someone and knowing him.   Knowing means having a deep and intimate relationship with someone.

John reminds those who have followed Jesus for a long time, “Don’t forget, don’t lose touch with this amazing reality, this great privilege.  Since the moment you surrendered by faith to Jesus, He has welcomed you into an authentic relationship.  And He is the One Who has always been.   Imagine!”

Talk about connections…

Light Reading

This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all. (1 John 1:5)

What is Light?   To a physicist light is electromagnetic radiation, radiant energy shining out from a source.  If you are lost at night, light is hope.  Artists know light as the ultimate medium.  A philosopher might equate light with truth.  A mechanic needs light to know why your car makes that screeching sound. A prisoner in solitary knows light is life.

John says God is light – completely.  There is nothing of God that resembles darkness at all.  Consider:

Morally, light is perfect righteousness, absolute purity:

Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness,  Isaiah 5:20a

God reveals Himself through the prophets as light:

For these commands are a lamp, this teaching is a light, and the corrections of discipline are the way to life, (Proverbs 6:23)

God sent Jesus as The Light:

I will also make you a light for the Gentiles, that you may bring my salvation to the ends of the earth, I will also make you a light for the Gentiles that you may bring my salvation to the ends of the earth.  (Isaiah 49:6)

When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” (John 8:12)

John Mayer, singing about his struggle to do the right thing in Gravity, makes this plea:  “Keep me where the light is…   keep me where the light is…”   f

Amen.