This week our passage focuses on the differences between those who are “of the devil,” and those who are “born of God.” These differences highlight the evidence of who is who by the practices of each: those who are of the devil make a practice of sinning, and those who are born of God practice righteousness. John repeats the idea of “making a practice” to emphasis that he is not speaking of one who occasionally sins or does right, but of a pattern of life which is evidence of the condition of one’s heart. As we have already seen in this epistle, believers will sin, but it is not the defining characteristic of their lives. The defining characteristic of a believer’s life is that she has been born of God, and when the child of God sins, she may confess her sins, and our Father is righteous and just to forgive and cleanse! Continue reading “1 John P2R, Week 10”
Dear Ones, Last week I posted a week late for week 10’s memory work. After speaking with a friend who is memorizing with us about the busy-ness of the holidays and her concerns about falling behind, I decided to modify our schedule through December. We won’t “take a break” from memorizing, but we will slow down adding to what we have memorized, allowing us the opportunity to solidify what we have already covered, and time to catch up for those who may be lagging behind a bit.
So, instead of leaping ahead to week 11, dedicate your memorization efforts each day to rehearsing what you have already learned, driving it deeper in your heart for a more secure mastery of the passages. Next week I will post for week 11, and two weeks after that, week 12, … you get the idea. We will resume our weekly schedule mid-January, when our Bible study classes begin anew and our resolve to start the year with newly-strengthened disciplines is refreshed (and the Christmas decorations are packed away).
May your holidays be blessed!
The past two weeks have been busier than I anticipated (California-to-Texas road-trip, Thanksgiving, what’s so busy about those?), which resulted in this week’s memorization going down slower than usual, which further resulted in my not getting this post out last week as planned. Ah, the best laid plans… Now that we have reached what some consider to be the official beginning of the holiday season, we can reasonably expect our days to be busier than usual, or at least running at a different—faster—pace than normal. Wouldn’t it be nice if, instead of allowing the voices of urgency to dictate our days, we took this time to slow down and focus on what is truly important? Let’s give some effort to slowing down and continuing to hide God’s Word in our hearts, even through the holiday season. As we are reminded by the Christmas season of the love of God in sending his Son to us, let’s memorize his word which assures us of this love! Continue reading “1 John P2R, Week 9”
The last two weeks we worked on portions of 1 John that deal with antichrists: liars who are Christ-deniers, and John was very clear that they have no part in Christ. These were formerly members of the church, teaching false doctrines and masquerading as children of light while they continued to walk in the dark. But they left the church, leaving confusion and hurt in their wake. John wants to make crystal clear the fact that no true follower of Christ behaves that way, and so he has written to assure the believers of the differences between themselves and the false brethren, and to encourage them to hold fast to the gospel that they had heard from the beginning. Continue reading “1 John P2R, Week 8”