1 John 1:1

"That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked at and our hands have touched - this we proclaim concerning the Word of Life." NIV translation

John starts by letting us know how real Jesus was to him. He reminds us that he knows about Jesus through personal experience as he has seen, heard, and even touched the person of Jesus. He also reminds us that Jesus was with God from the beginning and was not a reaction to the need for salvation. Jesus was a part of God's plan from the beginning and was in fact the very Word of God that brings life. 

We should start by asking ourselves if this same Jesus is as real to us as it was to John. It is this personal experience with Jesus that brings forgiveness and salvation.