Can I Get a Witness?

1 John 1:1-3

1 THAT which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life; 2 (For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and shew unto you that eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested unto us;) 3 That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ.

Ok, so I am having a little fun with the title this morning. Today we will begin looking at 1 John with the goal of ReFocusing our hearts and minds on Christ as we get to know him in a deeper and fuller way. In Philippians 3:10 Paul tells us that his goal was to KNOW Christ when he wrote, “That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death.” John, Paul and the rest of the Apostles were first hand witnesses of Jesus. They experienced Him, and the more they experienced the more they wanted to Know!
Why was it so important to Paul to know more about Jesus? I think it was it was because Paul loved Jesus – and love motivates us to know. Some love football, and this love causes a desire to learn the names of the players, the stats, watch the games and buy the merchandise. We love our spouses and this love motivates us to want to know more about what they like or don’t like, what their hopes and dreams are that we might show that love in a deeper, more meaningful way. 1 John is about Knowing Christ!
So where do we begin? By what we already know of course! John starts this epistle by telling us that he was an eye witness of all that Jesus did. He walked with Him, was taught by Him, laid his head on Christ chest at the last supper, was there at the crucifixion, resurrection and the ascension. Look at the phrases he uses: heard, seen, looked upon, handled. And then John says,  “it is this that I want to show you, so you can know Christ like I know Christ”. John starts by telling us that what he is writing isn’t just book knowledge! He has experienced the awesome Grace and Power of Christ and he wants you to know that you can too!
For our 5th wedding anniversary we went to the Neuschwanstein Castle in Germany. It was truly beautiful as we went from room to room through the tour and saw amazing things. I can show you the pictures. I can describe the scenery of the mountains surrounding it. I may even be able to draw such a word picture that you can imagine your self there. But until you stand in that courtyard, see the beauty that surrounds it and walk through the rooms for yourself you will never truly experience it. John says it is his desire, not that we live vicariously through him relying on his experience and fellowship with Christ, but that we come to know Him as John knew Him. To love Him as John loved Him. 
Today as we Refocus our Hearts and minds on Christ let us determine that it isn’t enough to read about Christ – we must know Him! We should never be satisfied just to hear how God is transforming others lives. Instead may we desire to know him more as He works in our lives and we experience for ourselves the wonderful Grace of Jesus!