1 John 1:1-4
A glorious sweep of God’s saving work:
1. ETERNITY PAST (v.1a)
2. THE INCARNATION & EARTHLY MINISTRY OF JESUS (vv.1b-2)
(Allusions to John 1:1-18)
3. THE APOSTOLIC PROCLAMATION OF THE GOSPEL (v.3a)
“The Christian message is neither a philosophical speculation, nor a tentative suggestion, nor a modest contribution to religious thought, but a dogmatic affirmation by those whose experience and commission qualified them to make it.” (John Stott, The Epistles of John, p.62)
4. THE PRESENT-DAY INVITATION INTO THIS FELLOWSHIP (v.3b)
“The purpose of the proclamation of the gospel is, therefore, not salvation but fellowship. Yet, properly understood, this is the meaning of salvation in its widest embrace, including reconciliation to God in Christ (fellowship…with the Father, and with His Son Jesus Christ), holiness of life (see v.6), and incorporation into the church (you too…with us). This fellowship is the meaning of eternal life (Jn 17:3).” (Stott p.63)
“The Greek word [for fellowship] is koinonia, and it refers to more than casual friendship. The Greek term indicates a partnership in which each member takes a stake in the success of the whole. (The J.R.R. Tolkien novel, The Fellowship of the Ring, is a good illustration of this concept of a ‘fellowship.’) John uses this term to describe the nature of the church as a society whose members have mutual duties to one another.” (1-3 John Study Guide, by Dane Ortlund, Crossway, p.18).
5. THE FULLNESS OF (OUR) JOY (v.4)
God the Father invites each one of us into a deeply personal and eternally joyful relationship with Him and with one another through His Son Jesus Christ!