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So that our joy may be complete

That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we looked upon and have touched with our hands, concerning the word of life—the life was made manifest, and we have seen it, and testify to it and proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and was made manifest to us—that which we have seen and heard we proclaim also to you, so that you too may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. And we are writing these things so that our joy may be complete.

1 John 1:1–4


  1. John emphasized that he and others heard, saw, looked upon, and even had physical contact with Jesus, the “word of life” (1 John 1:1). Why is it important that John and others heard, saw, and touched Jesus, and didn’t just relate a story someone else told?
  2. John said that he was proclaiming this message “so that you may have fellowship with us and indeed our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ” (1 John 1:3; cf. John 17:3). Is this fellowship a new concept for you? Explain.
  3. How can we as a community best express the fellowship that the gospel creates? What would it look like to love one another in our everyday lives?
  4. Overall, how is your Christian community? What aspects would you like to remain as they are? What would you like to see changed?
  5. One of the reasons John wrote this letter was to promote joy (1 John 1:4). What are some ways we can sustain our joy in God and others?
  6. The theme of our study is “love one another.” How does this week’s 
passage relate to John’s big idea and his hope for Jesus’ church?


  1. Pray that the group’s fellowship with God and one another would become enriched during this study.
  2. Pray for the removal of hidden sin or other obstacles that may be inhibiting your joy.


This is a great week for each person in your group to set aside a short getaway of prolonged time with God—for instance, a morning, afternoon, or evening—devoted to reading the Bible and prayer. There are a myriad of options. Based on one of the big ideas of this week’s passage, encourage everyone in the group to take a break from their normal day-to-day routines and purposefully spend time with God.

This devotion is adapted from the 1 John Study Guide. Pick up a copy today for only $9.99. The study guide includes 13-week curriculum with small group studies and group inductive studies.

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