I write unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. 1 John 2:13
I have written unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. 1 John 2:14
In telling the fathers why he was writing, John stated the same reason twice, changing only the tense of the verb “write”. The tense of the word “know” stays the same n both verses- “have known”. The fathers have known the One who is from the beginning. To “have known” someone means the hard work of knowing is complete. It indicates many miles walked, many words spoken, and many experiences shared. To “have known” instead “knew” someone means that the relationship is intact.
A father who has known the Father has a confidence in that relationship that is like no other. It is a relationship that is palpable. It can be sensed. It is rock-solid. It is a relationship of mutual respect, man for God, and God for man. It stems from sonship; the father is first a son. But we have a Father who became a Son, that we might become His sons. Our Father wants to share everything with His sons, but not everyone will receive from God equally. It is the one who really wants to know his Father that will receive the relationship in which that son can truly say, “I have known Him that is from the beginning.”
The fathers to whom John wrote had a mature relationship with Jesus. That is the pinnacle of spiritual development for anyone. It is supremely important for us earthly fathers to have a mature relationship with Jesus for the sake of our children. It is about demonstrating obedience to God, standing firm for God, and modeling God-likeness to our children.