I John

Chapter 1

            The One who existed from the beginning, who John had heard, who he had seen with his own eyes, who he had looked at and touched with his own hands – He is the Word of Life!  This life appeared; John had seen Him and testified regarding Him, and he now is proclaiming to me the eternal life, who was with the Father and appeared to John.

He is now proclaiming to me what he had seen and heard, so that I may have fellowship with him.  And our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son, Jesus Christ.  His is writing these things to me so that his joy may be made complete.

This is the message John had heard from Jesus and is declaring to me: God is light and in Him there is no darkness at all.  If I claim to live in fellowship with Him and go on living in spiritual darkness, I am lying and not living by the truth. But if I am living in the light of God’s presence, just as Christ is, then I have fellowship with fellow believers, and the blood of Jesus, His Son, cleanses me from all sin!

If I were to claim that I was without sin, I would only be deceiving myself and the truth is not in me.  If I confess my sins, He is faithful and just to forgive me of my sins and to cleanse me from all unrighteousness!  If I say that I have not sinned, I would be calling God a liar, and that His word is not in me.  

Chapter 2

             John is writing to me as one of his dear children so that I will not sin. But if I do sin, I have One who speaks to the Father in my defense – Jesus Christ, the Righteous One!  He Himself is the propitiation for my sins; and not mine only, but also for the sins of the whole world! I can be confident that I have come to know Him by obeying His commandments.

Someone who says, “I know Him,” but doesn’t obey what He commands is a liar and does not live in the truth.  But by obeying God’s word, I confirm that I really do love Him.  This is how I can know that I am in Him:  if say that I abide in Him, I ought to walk in the same manner as He walked!

John is not writing me a new commandment, but an old one, which has been since the beginning.  This old commandment is the same message that I have already heard before; but on the other hand, it is a new one!  This one is true in Him and in me, because the darkness is passing the true Light is already shining.  If I claim to be in the Light but hate my fellow brother or sister, I am still in the darkness.

When I show love to fellow Christ followers, I am living in the Light and not causing anyone to stumble.  But if I were to hate fellow Christ followers, I would be in the darkness and walking in darkness – not knowing where I was going, having been blinded by the darkness.

John is writing to me as a dear child of his because my sins have been forgiven on account of His name.  He writes to fathers, because they have known Him who is from the beginning.  He writes to those who are young, because they have overcome the evil one.  He writes to children, because they have known the Father.  He writes to fathers, because they have known Him who is from the beginning.  He writes to those who are young, because they are strong, and the word of God dwells in them, and they have overcome the evil one.

I should not love the world or anything that it offers.  If I were to love the world, the love of the Father would not be in me.  For everything in the world – the lust for physical pleasure, the lust for everything seen, and the pride of possessions do not come from the Father, but from the world.  The world and all of its pleasures will pass away, but if I do the will of God, I will live forever!  For this is the last hour.  I have heard that the antichrist is coming, and already many such antichrists have already appeared.  From this, I can know that it is the last hour.

There were those who left John and his followers, but they did not really belong to their group.  For if they had belonged, they would have remained with them, but their going showed that none of them really belonged with them.  But I have an anointing from the Holy One!  I know the truth!  And John is not writing to me because I don’t know the truth, but because I do know the difference between truth and falsehood.

Who is the liar but the one who denies that Jesus is the Christ?  Such a person is an antichrist for they have denied the Father and the Son.  If I were to deny the Son, I wouldn’t have the Father either.  But if I acknowledge the Son, I have the Father also.  I am to remain faithful to what I have been taught from the beginning, and if I do, I will be living in fellowship with the Son and the Father!

And this is the promise that Jesus Himself made to me: eternal life!  John writes these things to me to warn me about those who are trying to lead me astray. But as for me, the anointing I received from Him abides in me, and I do not need anyone to teach me what is true.  For His anointing teaches me about all things, and that anointing is real, not counterfeit.  So, I am to continue in what it has taught me, and to continue to remain in Him!

And now, as a dear child of God, I am to continue to abide in Him, so that when He returns I will have confidence and not shrink away from Him at His coming! Because I know that God is righteous, I also know that everyone who practices righteousness has been born of Him

Chapter 3

            How great is the love the Father has lavished on me, for He allows me to be called a child of God!  And that is really who I am!  For this reason the world does not really understand me, because they do not know Him. Although I am a beloved child of God, it hasn’t been revealed as to what I will be like.

But I know that when Christ appears, I will be like Him, for then I will see Him as He really is!  And because I have this hope in Him, I am to purify myself, just as He is pure. Everyone who practices sin also practices lawlessness; as sin is lawlessness.  But I know that He appeared to take away my sins, and in Him there is no sin.  When I continue to live in Him, I won’t sin either.  However, those who keep on sinning have never known Him or seen Him.

As a dear child of God, I should not let anyone deceive me; when people do what is right, it is because they are righteous, even as Christ is righteous.  But when people keep on sinning, it shows they belong to the devil, who has been sinning from the beginning.  But the Son of God appeared to destroy the devil’s work!

By being born into God’s family, I am not to sin, because God’s life is in me.  I should not keep practicing sin, because I would have been born of God.  So now I can tell who are the children of God and who are children of the devil.  Anyone whoe does not obey God’s commands and does not love other Christ followers does not belong to God.

For this is the message that I have heard from the beginning:  I am to love one another!  I must not be like Cain, who belonged to the evil one and murdered his brother.  And why did he murder him?  Because Cain’s own actions were evil and his brother’s were righteous.  So, I shouldn’t be surprised if the world hates me.

By loving my fellow Christ followers, I prove that I have passed from death to life.  If I do not love, I remain in death.  If I hate another Christ follower, I am similar to a murderer, and I know that murderers don’t have eternal life within them. This is how I know what real love is:  Jesus Christ laid down His life for me! Therefore, I ought to lay down my life for my brothers and sisters!

If I have enough money to live well, and I see a brother or sister in need and refuse to help – how can God’s love be in me.  As God’s child, I am not to love with words or tongue but with my actions and in truth! I can know by this that I belong to the truth, and I can set my heart at rest in His presence even if my heart condemn me.  For God is greater than my heart, and He knows everything!  And if my heart does not condemn me, I can have confidence before God.

I will receive from Him what I ask, because I obey His commands and do what pleases Him.  And this is His command:  that I believe in the name of His Son, Jesus Christ, and that I love one another just as He commanded me.  By obeying God’s commandments, I live in Him and He lives in me. And this is how I know that He lives in me – by the Spirit He has given us.

Chapter 4

            I should not believe every spirit, but I should test the spirits to determine whether or not they are from God, as there are many false prophets in the world.  This is the way I can know the Spirit of God; every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God.  But every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus is not from God.  This is the spirit of the antichrist, which I should know is coming, and is already in the world.

For I belong to God and have overcome them, as greater is He who is in me than he who is in the world.  These other people are from the world and therefore speak from the viewpoint of the world, and the world listens to them.  But I belong to God and those who know God will listen to me, but those who do not belong to God do not listen to me.  This is how I can determine whether or not someone has the spirit of truth or the spirit of deception.

I am to love others, for love comes from God.  Anyone who loves is born of God and knows God, but those who do not love do not know God, because God is love.  God showed how much He loved me when He sent His one and only Son into the world that I might live through Him.

This is real love; not that I loved God, but that He loved me and sent His Son as the sacrifice to take away our sins.  So if God loved me that much, I definitely am to love others.  No one has ever seen God, but if I love others, God lives in me, and His love is perfected in me.

I know that I abide in Him and He abides in me, because He has given me His Spirit.  Others have seen with their own eyes and now testify that the Father has sent His Son to be my Savior and the Savior of the world.  When I, or anyone, acknowledge that Jesus is the Son of God, we can be assured that God lives in us, and we live in Him.

Now I know and rely on how much God loves me.  God is love and when I abide in love, I abide in God, and God abides in me.  This is how my love is perfected, so that I may have confidence on the day of judgment, because in this world I am like Him.  For me, there should be no fear in this love, as perfect love casts out fear, because fear has to do with punishment.  By having fear, I demonstrate that love has not been perfected in me. 

            I am able to truly love because He first loved me.  If I were to say that I love God but hate a fellow Christ follower, I would be lying, for if I do not love people whom I can see, how can I love God whom I have not seen.  God has given me this command:  If I love God, I must love my fellow Christ followers also!

Chapter 5

            Because I believe that Jesus is the Christ, I am a child of God, and if I love the Father, I am to love His children as well.  This is how I know that I love the children of God; when I love God and obey His commandments.  For this is the love of God, that I keep His commandments; and His commands are not burdensome! By being born of God, I overcome the world!  And this is the victory that has overcome the world – my faith.  So, who are those who overcome the world?  Only those who believe that Jesus is the Son of God!

This is the One who came by water and blood:  Jesus Christ.  He did not come by water only, but by water and blood.  It is the Spirit that bears witness to this, and the Spirit is the truth.  So I have these three witnesses:  the Spirit, the water, and the blood.  And all three are in agreement!  I believe the testimony of people, but God’s testimony is far greater!  And God has testified concerning His Son.  And when I believe in the Son of God, I also know God’s testimony is true.  Those who don’t believe God have made Him out to be a liar, because they don’t believe the testimony God has given about His Son.

And this is God’s testimony:  He has given me eternal life, and this life is in His Son.  If I have the Son of God, I have life; but if I do not have the Son of God, I do not have life. John is writing to people like me who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that I may know that I have eternal life.  The confidence I can have when approaching God is that if I ask anything according to His will, He hears me!  And knowing that He hears whatever I ask, I also know that I have what I asked of Him. If I were to see a fellow follower of Jesus sinning in a way that does not lead unto death, I should pray and God will give life to those whose sin does not lead to death.  But there is a sin that does lead to death and John is not stating that I should pray for those who commit it.  All unrighteousness is sin, but not all sin leads to death. I should know that when I become part of God’s family, I should not make a practice of continual sinning.  For God’s Son holds on to me securely, and the evil one cannot touch me!  I know that I am a child of God, and that the whole world is under control of the evil one. And I know that the Son of God has come and has given me understanding, so that I may know Him who is true!  And now I am in God because I am in His Son, Jesus Christ.  He is the true God, and He is eternal life!  As a child of God, I am to keep myself from idols.

Responses

  1. Larry…verses 1:5-7 are missing & there is a duplicate/copy of verses 1:8-10.
    I was here fixing to copy/credit your first person of the 5-7 but oooopsie.
    Blessings and I am so amazed at the scope of your personalizing the Word.
    Blesses me so much!
    CYA soon…but will miss you next wk:(


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