Blessed Assurance Series Sermon/// # 2 A Reliable Witness 1 John 1: 1-4
How many of you would like to see Jesus in person? I think every Christian would like to be able to
sit down and have a face to face meeting with their Lord. One thing that is amazing to me is that the disciples
spent three years walking with Jesus, listening to His wonderful teaching, seeing with their own eyes the
miracles He often did, yet they still had problems with their faith at times. These men spent three years with
Jesus, yet they still remained confused as to who He was. What Jesus was claiming about Himself, that He is
God in the flesh was almost inconceivable to any Jew in the first century. From the gospels it is clear that it
was not until after the resurrection that the disciples fully realized who Jesus was. Once that happened,
nothing would stop them from carrying the Gospel as far and as they were able.
They were fearless because they NOW KNEW who Jesus was. Now let us think about our situation for
a moment. John 20:29 29 Jesus said* to him, "Because you have seen Me, have you believed? Blessed are
they who did not see, and yet believed." It is EXTREMELY unlikely that we are going to get a sit down, face
to face meeting with Jesus this side of heaven. Then, how can we get to know Him personally like the disciples
came to know Him? How can we believe who He is without seeing Him? This is why God sent the Holy
Spirit. John 14:26 26 "But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will
teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you.
Let me ask you a question: If you cannot experience something for yourself, or if you cannot have the
opportunity to know someone in person, what is the next best thing we can do? We can read what others say
about a person or an event. The Bible is God’s Words. Written by the inspiration of The Holy Spirit. 2 Peter
1:21 21 for no prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke
from God. Today we are going to hear from someone who was an eyewitness to Jesus’ life, death,
resurrection, and ascension. Someone who walked with Jesus from the beginning of His ministry. Someone
who The Holy Spirit inspired to write each of these words we study together. As we study The Apostle John’s
words I pray that our Blessed Assurance will continue to grow stronger and stronger.
I. The Apostle John’s Credentials. Who is the witness we are hearing from? First thing you notice
when you look at the book of 1 John, you will not see the author naming himself. Yet, there has been little or
no question concerning the authorship of this book. Two of John’s students: Polycarp (died 155AD) and
Papias (died 163AD) both quote from this letter attributing it to their teacher, The Apostle John.
A. Who was This John, The Apostle ?
John was the son of Zebedee, he was part of an affluent fishing family in Galilee.(Luke 8:3, John
19:27, 18:15). //// John was a close friend to Simon-Peter. He was often mentioned in the same sentence with
Peter. The Apostle John was a part of the inner circle of disciples. Remember when Jesus was dying on the
cross, He specifically asked that John to take care His mother Mary. John 19:26-27 26 When Jesus then saw
His mother, and the disciple whom He loved standing nearby, He said* to His mother, "Woman, behold,
your son!" 27 Then He said* to the disciple, "Behold, your mother!" From that hour the disciple took her
into his own household. Same guy writing 1 John. John not only knew about Jesus, he knew Jesus
personally. Please remember, John is not just sharing facts about Jesus; he is sharing from his heart about his
Savior and Lord, of whom he had personal knowledge and a deep love for. John is most likely writing this letter
about 90 A.D some 60 years after Jesus ascended into heaven.
By the time John wrote this letter there was a lot of crazy teachings about Jesus that were springing up,
what we call heresy. John wanted to set the record straight. One crazy teaching that had begun to circulate was
that Jesus was only a spirit without a real body. (Docetism) This is the first thing John tackles in the opening
verses of the letter.
II. The Apostle John’s Testimony First John Makes clear that
A. John is an eyewitness. 1 John 1:1 1 What was from the beginning, what we have heard, what we
have seen with our eyes, what we have looked at and touched with our hands, concerning the Word of
Life. John heard the sermons Jesus preached, John witnessed the miracles that Jesus regularly performed,
John saw how Jesus treated people day in and day out. First, John explains that Jesus was from the
beginning. In other words, John is saying Jesus was preexistent. This is an affirmation of the eternal nature of
Jesus. This is the same way that the Apostle begins The Gospel of John. John 1:1 1 In the beginning was the
Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” As we look at these first couple of verses,
today we see that John lays out his contact with Jesus in increasing intensity. Let me show you. He begins with
the hearing Jesus.
1. John heard Jesus teach with his own 2 ears! Hearing is not a very personal contact, it can be done
at a distance with no direct contact other than by ear. Just because you hear someone does not mean you have a
relationship with him or her. Right? John goes on to say that
2. He saw Jesus with his own 2 eyes! John saw Jesus perform all of the miracles; John saw the love
Jesus showed to people as He traveled around the villages and towns. John saw it all as an eyewitness to all
Jesus had done.
3. John touched Jesus with his own hands! WOW! This is the most tangible, intimate and definitive
evidence. John sat next to Jesus at the last supper. He touched Jesus. Jesus was real. John used three of the
senses to give us evidence that Jesus was a real person who lived in a real time here on earth. John uses
these 3 senses to expose the foolishness of the false teachings that were gaining popularity during his time.
John emphasizes the literal flesh and bones of Jesus, which was seen, heard and handled to refute the crazy
rumors and teaching about Jesus that had absolutely no basis in fact.
III. The Apostle John’s Purpose for Writing: Listen, whenever you read something, it is important to
understand the motives behind the author’s writing. What agenda does the author have? Does he have an axe
to grind? What drives the author to write? What was John’s motivation for writing this letter to us?
A. John writes to Assure all believers of Eternal life in Jesus Christ.
1 John 1:2 2 and the life was manifested, and we have seen and testify and proclaim to you the eternal life,
which was with the Father and was manifested to us—This life is not the physical life which will one day
come to an end. /////This is eternal life which was revealed through Jesus Christ./// John 14:6
6 Jesus said* to him, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through
Me. There is no other way to eternal life except through Jesus Christ.
John explains to us the eternal nature of Jesus along with the fact that Jesus is the source of eternal life.
B. John writes so we can have fellowship with God and other Christians! 1 John 1:3 3 what we
have seen and heard we proclaim to you also, so that you too may have fellowship with us; and indeed
our fellowship is with the Father, and with His Son Jesus Christ.
What is fellowship? Fellowship is literally “a partnership or joint sharing”; “ Fellowship is a mutual
bond that Christians have with Christ that puts us in a deep, eternal relationship with one another.” How many
times have you heard me say “we are in this together” Here at Trinity Lutheran Church? I am referring to
this fellowship when I say that. The Life Application Bible shares the following principles involved in true
fellowship: Christian fellowship is grounded in the teaching of God’s Word alone. Without this solid
foundation, real togetherness would be impossible. Christian fellowship involves adherence to the truth of
God’s Word. In this case, it required recognizing and loyalty to Jesus as the truth, rather than to the strange false
teachings of the heretics.
Christian fellowship depends on the unity of believers.////Christian fellowship is made possible
only through a living faith relationship with Christ. ////Christian fellowship is renewed daily through the
C. John writes so our joy may be complete. ////1 John 1:4 4 These things we write, so that our joy may be
made complete. Whose Joy? Both John’s Joy and the joy of those who come into fellowship with both Jesus
and John. You see, The Apostle John, was so focused on his calling that it gave him great joy to see others
come to a knowledge of the truth and to trust in Jesus Christ as their Savior and Lord. It gave John great Joy to
see all the believers enjoy The Blessed Assurance that God’s Word is reliable and true.////God’s promise of
eternal life is certain. John 3:16 16 "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that
whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. Blessed Assurance Jesus is mine Oh what
a foretaste of glory divine. Heir of salvation purchase of God Born of His Spirit, washed in His Blood. This is
my story, this is my song, Praising my savior All the day long. Amen.