1 John 1:1
Parallel Verses
English Standard Version
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—

King James Bible
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;

American Standard Version
That which was from the beginning, that which we have heard, that which we have seen with our eyes, that which we beheld, and our hands handled, concerning the Word of life

Douay-Rheims Bible
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:

English Revised Version
That which was from the beginning, that which we have heard, that which we have seen with our eyes, that which we beheld, and our hands handled, concerning the Word of life

Webster's Bible Translation
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;

Weymouth New Testament
That which was from the beginning, which we have listened to, which we have seen with our own eyes, and our own hands have handled concerning the Word of Life--

1 John 1:1 Parallel
Commentary
Vincent's Word Studies

Compare John 1:1, John 1:9, John 1:14. The construction of the first three verses is somewhat involved. It will be simplified by throwing it into three parts, represented respectively by 1 John 1:1, 1 John 1:2, 1 John 1:3. The first part, That which was from the beginning - Word of Life, forms a suspended clause, the verb being omitted for the time, and the course of the sentence being broken by 1 John 1:2, which forms a parenthesis: and the Life - manifested unto us. 1 John 1:3, in order to resume the broken sentence of 1 John 1:1, repeats in a condensed form two of the clauses in that verse, that which we have seen and heard, and furnishes the governing verb, we declare. Thus the simple sentence, divested of parenthesis and resumptive words would be, We declare unto you that which was from the beginning, that which we have seen with our eyes, that which we beheld, and our hands handled concerning the Word of Life.

That which (ὃ)

It is disputed whether John uses this in a personal sense as equivalent to He whom, or in its strictly neuter sense as meaning something relating to the person and revelation of Christ. On the whole, the (περί), concerning (A. V., of), seems to be against the personal sense. The successive clauses, that which was from the beginning, etc., express, not the Eternal Word Himself, but something relating to or predicated concerning (περί) Him. The indefinite that which, is approximately defined by these clauses; that about the Word of Life which was from the beginning, that which appealed to sight, to hearing is, to touch. Strictly, it is true, the περί is appropriate only with we have heard, but it is used with the other clauses in a wide and loose sense (compare John 16:8). "The subject is not merely a message, but all that had been made clear through manifold experience concerning it" (Westcott).

Was (ἦν)

Not ἐγένετο came into being. See on John 1:3; see on John 8:34; see on John 8:58. It was already existing when the succession of life began.

From the beginning (ἀπ' ἀρχῆς)

The phrase occurs twice in the Gospel (John 8:44; John 15:27); nine times in the First Epistle, and twice in the Second. It is used both absolutely (John 3:8; John 2:13, John 2:14), and relatively (John 15:27; 1 John 2:24). It is here contrasted with "in the beginning" (John 1:1). The difference is that by the words "in the beginning," the writer places himself at the initial point of creation, and, looking back into eternity, describes that which was already in existence when creation began. "The Word was in the beginning." In the words "from the beginning," the writer looks back to the initial point of time, and describes what has been in existence from that point onward. Thus, "in the beginning" characterizes the absolute divine Word as He was before the foundation of the world and at the foundation of the world. "From the beginning" characterizes His development in time. Note the absence of the article both here and in John 1:1. Not the beginning as a definite, concrete fact, but as apprehended by man; that to which we look as "beginning."

Have heard - have seen (ἀκηκόαμεν - ἑωράκαμεν)

Both in the perfect tense, denoting the still abiding effects of the hearing and seeing.

With our eyes

Emphasizing the direct, personal experience in a marvelous matter.

Have looked upon (ἐθεασάμεθα)

Rev., correctly, beheld. The tense is the aorist; marking not the abiding effect of the vision upon the beholder, but the historical manifestation to special witnesses. On the difference between this verb and ἑωράκαμεν we have seen, see on John 1:14, John 1:18.

Have handled (ἐψηλάησαν)

continued...

1 John 1:1 Parallel Commentaries

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

That which.

1 John 2:13 I write to you, fathers, because you have known him that is from the beginning. I write to you, young men...

Proverbs 8:22-31 The LORD possessed me in the beginning of his way, before his works of old...

Isaiah 41:4 Who has worked and done it, calling the generations from the beginning? I the LORD, the first, and with the last; I am he.

Micah 5:2 But you, Bethlehem Ephratah, though you be little among the thousands of Judah...

John 1:1,2 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God...

*etc:

John 8:58 Jesus said to them, Truly, truly, I say to you, Before Abraham was, I am.

Revelation 1:8,11,17,18 I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, said the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty...

Revelation 2:8 And to the angel of the church in Smyrna write; These things said the first and the last, which was dead, and is alive;

which we have heard.

1 John 4:14 And we have seen and do testify that the Father sent the Son to be the Savior of the world.

Luke 1:2 Even as they delivered them to us, which from the beginning were eyewitnesses, and ministers of the word;

John 1:14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelled among us, (and we beheld his glory...

Acts 1:3 To whom also he showed himself alive after his passion by many infallible proofs, being seen of them forty days...

Acts 4:20 For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard.

2 Peter 1:16-18 For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ...

and our.

Luke 24:39 Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I myself: handle me, and see; for a spirit has not flesh and bones, as you see me have.

John 20:27 Then said he to Thomas, Reach here your finger, and behold my hands; and reach here your hand, and thrust it into my side...

the Word.

1 John 5:7 For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.

John 1:14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelled among us, (and we beheld his glory...

John 5:26 For as the Father has life in himself; so has he given to the Son to have life in himself;

Revelation 19:13 And he was clothed with a clothing dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God.

Cross References
Luke 1:2
just as those who from the beginning were eyewitnesses and ministers of the word have delivered them to us,

Luke 24:39
See my hands and my feet, that it is I myself. Touch me, and see. For a spirit does not have flesh and bones as you see that I have."

John 1:1
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

John 1:4
In him was life, and the life was the light of men.

John 1:14
And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.

John 19:35
He who saw it has borne witness--his testimony is true, and he knows that he is telling the truth--that you also may believe.

John 20:27
Then he said to Thomas, "Put your finger here, and see my hands; and put out your hand, and place it in my side. Do not disbelieve, but believe."

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