And the Life was manifested and we have seen it and we bear witness and show unto you that eternal Life which was with the Father and was manifested unto us.1 John 1:2
Continuing his assertion, John insists on the manifestation of the Life. More than a solitary witness, he includes a group of witnesses (presumably referring to the entire apostolic witness). Because they had seen the Life manifested, they were now compelled to bear witness and proclaim these glad tidings. The term “bear witness” (μαρτυρέω martyreo) will recur throughout this epistle, and we should remember how this theme of bearing witness crops up throughout John’s Gospel and his Apocalyptic vision (Jn 1:8, 5:31, 18:37, Rev. 1:2, 22:20). John has ascended the witness stand to testify to events which he had been a spectator of.
The next verb (ἀπαγγέλλομεν apaggellō) is a striking one in that it is related to the word angel/messenger. It means to bring tidings. We should think of the angels bringing glad tidings of the Savior of the World born in the stable. John, a man, is now taking on the task that in the Old Testament had generally been reserved for angels. He is proclaiming, heralding, bringing tidings of the manifestation of the eternal Life. Man is being brought into the Life of God by the manifestation of the Life which was with the Father. Here we also have the basis for later formulations of Trinitarian doctrine. The Word of Life was separate from the Father, but was with the Father. John is putting Jesus’ own words––“I and the Father are One”––in the philosophical terms of the first century.