My favorite of all the apostles is John. I love his enthusiasm and his love for Jesus and the fellow believers he encountered. Of the four Gospels, John is my favorite, but I also love his epistles.
Most of all, I love his witness. He begins his first epistle like this:
We proclaim to you the one who existed from the beginning, whom we have heard and seen. We saw him with our own eyes and touched him with our own hands. He is the Word of life. This one who is life itself was revealed to us, and we have seen him. And now we testify and proclaim to you that he is the one who is eternal life. He was with the Father, and then he was revealed to us. We proclaim to you what we ourselves have actually seen and heard so that you may have fellowship with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son, Jesus Christ. 1 John 1:1-3 (NLT).
When I read this passage I can hear the excitement in his voice and the truth of what he shares is reinforced over and over by his reminder that he was an actual witness to the life and glory of Jesus Christ. He walked with Jesus, saw Him perform miracles and healings, stood nearby as He died on the cross, and then experienced firsthand the joy of the resurrected Christ. John isn’t retelling some story he has heard; he is telling us what he knows to be true.
John is a great example of what we are also called to do. It is true that I did not walk the earth with Jesus, I did not personally witness Him crucified, and I did not share grilled fish with Him after His resurrection. But I can still be a witness of my experience with Him.
Jesus is my Savior. He has given me His Holy Spirit to comfort me when I am hurting; to give me understanding of His Word; to help me be kind, gentle, loving, forgiving, and self-controlled; and to know beyond a shadow of a doubt that I am loved by God.
My relationship with Jesus is different than John’s was in many ways, but it is very real and I am just as excited about what I have heard and seen. I am a witness to His wonderful saving grace.
How about you? Have you experienced the blessing of Jesus in your life? Then share your joy and excitement as a witness of God’s love revealed in Christ.
But you are not like that, for the Holy One has given you his Spirit, and all of you know the truth. 1 John 2:20 (NLT).