Lesson 9

18 Children, it is the last hour, and as you have heard that antichrist is coming, so now many antichrists have come. Therefore we know that it is the last hour. 19 They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us. But they went out, that it might become plain that they all are not of us. 20 But you have been anointed by the Holy One, and you all have knowledge. 21 I write to you, not because you do not know the truth, but because you know it, and because no lie is of the truth. 22 Who is the liar but he who denies that Jesus is the Christ? This is the antichrist, he who denies the Father and the Son. 23 No one who denies the Son has the Father. Whoever confesses the Son has the Father also. 24 Let what you heard from the beginning abide in you. If what you heard from the beginning abides in you, then you too will abide in the Son and in the Father. 25 And this is the promise that he made to us—eternal life.

26 I write these things to you about those who are trying to deceive you. 27 But the anointing that you received from him abides in you, and you have no need that anyone should teach you. But as his anointing teaches you about everything, and is true, and is no lie—just as it has taught you, abide in him. Continue reading “Lesson 9”

Fellowship with God: Confidence in Christ, Lesson 8

Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16 For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride of life—is not from the Father but is from the world. 17 And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever.

As we go through our lessons, we must remember to read each new passage in the context of what has gone before. The portions of 1 John that we study each week are small snippets of a larger whole—an entire epistle—with a logical flow of thought. John has just encouraged his readers that they are indeed beloved children of the Father. He knows this to be true. He now holds up for our inspection the outrageous inconsistency that one so loved should choose to also love the world which is at war with all that our Father—and therefore we—should hold dear. Continue reading “Fellowship with God: Confidence in Christ, Lesson 8”

Fellowship with God: Confidence in Christ, Lesson 7

12 I am writing to you, little children, because your sins are forgiven for his name’s sake.

13 I am writing to you, fathers, because you know him who is from the beginning.

I am writing to you, young men, because you have overcome the evil one

I write to you, children, because you know the Father.

14 I write to you, fathers, because you know him who is from the beginning.

I write to you, young men, because you are strong, and the word of God abides in you, and you have overcome the evil one. 

In our last three lessons, covering 1 John 1:5-2:11, you may have picked up on the fact that John’s humility does not equate to weakness of conviction. He has already dropped some uncompromising truth in our laps and your head may be throbbing by now if you wonder if you are passing the tests of faith. Yes, the tests are for the purpose of bringing assurance to true believers, and though they are offered with the apostle’s tender concern for his readers, they may still have knocked the wind out of those who question their faith. (“Do I really love the brethren? I don’t know!”) Our passage this week gives us a pause as John transitions from his challenging exhortations to gentle words of affirmation and consolation. Continue reading “Fellowship with God: Confidence in Christ, Lesson 7”

Fellowship with God: Confidence in Christ, Lesson 6

 

Beloved, I am writing you no new commandment, but an old commandment that you had from the beginning. The old commandment is the word that you have heard. At the same time, it is a new commandment that I am writing to you, which is true in him and in you, because the darkness is passing away and the true light is already shining. Whoever says he is in the light and hates his brother is still in darkness. 10 Whoever loves his brother abides in the light, and in him there is no cause for stumbling. 11 But whoever hates his brother is in the darkness and walks in the darkness, and does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded his eyes.

 

In last week’s lesson we learned that we can be assured that we are in Christ when we obey God. God’s love for us and our love for him in return motivate us to obey his commandments. Obedience motivated out of love for God takes the shape of love for God and for others, so love and obedience overlap. This overlapping continues as we now come to the second test of assurance of faith: the social test, or, the test of love. Framed as obedience to God, John now narrows the obedience to a particular command. Continue reading “Fellowship with God: Confidence in Christ, Lesson 6”