1 John 1:1-3 “What was from the beginning, what we have heard, what we have seen with our eyes, what we beheld and our hands handled, concerning the Word of Life—
2 and the life was manifested, and we have seen and bear witness and proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and was manifested to us—
3 what we have seen and heard we proclaim to you also, that you also may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father, and with His Son Jesus Christ.”
The ultimate spiritual hope for mankind is eternal life with God. God offers this to us through the person and work of Jesus Christ. This is so connected to Jesus that John stated, we “bear witness and proclaim to you the eternal life.” Then he tells what they saw and heard and touched of Jesus, and then calls Him the Word of Life.
Why is Jesus eternal life and the word of life? The gospel say that Jesus is the one that we can ask about eternal life (Matt. 19:16), and He is the one who teaches us about eternal life (Matt. 19:29; 6:47). That believing in Him brings us eternal life (Jn. 3:15,16,36; 5:24; 6:40,47) and that He gives eternal life to His followers (Jn. 10:28; 17:2)
Later New Testament writers tell us that eternal life is a free gift (Rom. 6:23), by His mercy (Jude 21).
Eternal life is so fully connected to Jesus and only Jesus that John speaks of His as “the eternal life” (1 Jn. 1:2 and 3:2) and concludes that: “God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son” (1 Jn. 5:11).