One of the fundamental keys to understanding the New Testament, and actually all of the bible, is to read and understand the teaching of Jesus…ok, not rocket science here…but my point is that He was “TheTeacher”, so unless we read his students thru His eyes, we can easily miss Him. Look at 1john 1:1-4 with this in mind:
1 What was afrom the beginning, what we have heard, what we have seen with our eyes, what we have looked at and touched with our hands, concerning the Word of Life—
2 and the life was manifested, and we have seen and testify 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, so that you too may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father, and with His Son Jesus Christ.
4 These things we write, so that our joy may be made complete.
The apostles , who authored much of the New Testament were not robots. They did not go into a catatonic state and their hands moved apart from their minds and hearts to pen their epistles. Yes, 2 Tim. 3:16 tells us that all scripture is inspired by God, but again it was their experiences and, yes their words “inspired” from being with Him. All of these men had an encounter with Jesus and and lived fully in the kingdom of God, and their words came out of the fullness of their lives with Him. The fingerprints of Jesus (His words and their shared experiences of Him operating in God’s Kingdom) are all over the writings of His disciples.
In other words, they did not make this stuff up, nor is it their own. A good question to ask ourselves as we read these letters is, “what did they learn from Jesus that would have them say this”? This applies all across our readings and doctrinal spectrums, wether we are talking about love, the church, salvation, or Jesus Himself. I hope this helps us all as we read and study His life giving word.