Topic: Words That Matter [September 25, 2016]
Read: 1 John 1:1–4, Bible in a Year: Song of Solomon 6–8; Galatians 4
That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes . . . this we proclaim concerning the Word of life. 1 John 1:1
Early in my days of working as an editor for Our Daily Bread, I selected the cover verse for each month’s devotional. After a while, I began to wonder if it made a difference.
Not long after that, a reader wrote and described how she had prayed for her son for more than twenty years, yet he wanted nothing to do with Jesus. Then one day he stopped by to visit her, and he read the verse on the cover of the booklet that sat on her table. The Spirit used those words to convict him, and he gave his life to Jesus at that very moment.
I don’t recall the verse or the woman’s name. But I’ll never forget the clarity of God’s message to me that day. He had chosen to answer a woman’s prayers through a verse selected nearly a year earlier. From a place beyond time, He brought the wonder of His presence to my work and His words.
John the disciple called Jesus “the Word of life” (1 John 1:1). He wanted everyone to know what that meant. “We proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and has appeared to us,” he wrote of Jesus (v. 2). “We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard, so that you also may have fellowship with us” (v. 3).
There is nothing magical in putting words on a page. But there is life-changing power in the words of Scripture because they point us to the Word of life—Jesus.
Prayer: Thank You, Father, that Your Word is living and powerful!
Words that point us to Christ are always words that matter.
In the Greek language in which it was originally penned, the verbs in 1 John 1:1–2 are in the perfect tense. They describe something completed in the past with abiding results into the present: “That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked at and our hands have touched—this we proclaim concerning the Word of life. . . . The life appeared; we have seen it and testify to it.” These verses connect remarkably with John’s gospel: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. . . . Through him all things were made.”
This message was written by Tim Gustafson [Our Daily Bread Ministries.]