Are You Sure? Week 3
Are You Sure? Week 3
- Written by John to the Church in Ephesus, predominantly Jewish
- Challenges to the truth about Jesus and of God were being experienced
- John is writing nothing new, but reminding them of the foundational truths from Jesus
- His letter is not linear but cyclical and chiastic which would have been interpreted and understood by those receiving it – this is important for us to understand and interpret too.
INTO THE TEXT
The poetic chiasm of 1 John:
A) Jesus is God and is eternal life (From the beginning) (v.1:1-4)
B) Our lives should bear witness that Jesus is Messiah – to deny our sin makes God a liar (v.1:5-2:2)
C) Believers love one another and have victory and overcome evil (v.2:3-17) D) Beware liars and antichrists that deny the truth (v.2:18-27)
E) Our confidence in Jesus and our identity in Jesus (v.2:28-3:3)
F) Sin vs. Righteousness (v.3:4-11)
E) Our identity outside of Jesus and our confidence in God (v.3:12-3:24) D) Beware false witnesses and spirits that deny the truth (v.4:1-3)
C) Believers have victory and overcome the world & love for one another (v.4:4-5:5)
B) God has given witness that Jesus is Messiah – to deny Jesus is Messiah makes God a liar (v.5:6-12)
A) Jesus is God and is eternal life (v.5:13-21)
Q: What does this mean?
A: The journey through this letter leads us to evaluate our lives by the truth of sin and righteousness.
1 John 3:4-11 (NIV) – 4Everyone who sins breaks the law; in fact, sin is lawlessness. 5But you know that he appeared so that he might take away our sins. And in him is no sin. 6No one who lives in him keeps on sinning. No one who continues to sin has either seen him or known him. 7Dear children, do not let anyone lead you astray. The one who does what is right is righteous, just as he is righteous. 8The one who does what is sinful is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devil’s work. 9No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God’s seed remains in them; they cannot go on sinning, because they have been born of God. 10This is how we know who the children of God are and who the children of the devil are: Anyone who does not do what is right is not God’s child, nor is anyone who does not love their brother and sister. 11For this is the message you heard from the beginning: We should love one another.
FROM THE BEGINNING: WE ARE TO LOVE ONE ANOTHER!
The walk we are taking to get there (to love one another)
Week 1: Do you know the real Jesus? (1 John 1:1-3) (A)
- The ability to choose to love one another begins with knowing and placing your trust in God and the real Jesus
1 John 1:1-3 (NIV) – 1That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked at and our hands have touched—this we proclaim concerning the Word of life. 2The life appeared; we have seen it and testify to it, and we proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and has appeared to us. 3We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard, so that you also may have fellowship with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son, Jesus Christ.
Week 2: Do you have joy? (1 John 1:4-2:2) (B)
- Joy comes from knowing and loving God, Jesus and others according to God’s good will and directive – His law, commands and decrees.
- Joy comes from walking with Jesus in the light; from being in fellowship with one another; from the forgiveness and purification of sins through trusting and believing in Jesus and from trusting and believing that through Jesus we can choose to deny our sinful desires and choose not to sin… but when we do sin we can trust that God has sent us an advocate in Jesus the atoning sacrifice for that sin.
This Week: Are you changed because of Jesus? A believer’s life bears witness that they know and choose to trust the real Jesus. We bear witness by our obedience and love. (1 John 2:3-14) (C)
1 John 2:3-14 (NIV) – 3We know that we have come to know him if we keep his commands. 4Whoever says, “I know him,” but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in that person. 5But if anyone obeys his word, love for God is truly made complete in them. This is how we know we are in him: 6Whoever claims to live in him must live as Jesus did. 7Dear friends, I am not writing you a new command but an old one, which you have had since the beginning. This old command is the message you have heard. 8Yet I am writing you a new command; its truth is seen in him and in you, because the darkness is passing and the true light is already shining. 9Anyone who claims to be in the light but hates a brother or sister is still in the darkness. 10Anyone who loves their brother and sister lives in the light, and there is nothing in them to make them stumble. 11But anyone who hates a brother or sister is in the darkness and walks around in the darkness. They do not know where they are going, because the darkness has blinded them.
12I am writing to you, dear children, because your sins have been forgiven on account of his name. 13I 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. 14I write to you, dear children, because you know the Father. 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 lives in you, and you have overcome the evil one.
A believer who trusts God lives a changed life by:
- Trusting that God’s commands are good by obeying them – (story of Cain)
- Recognizing that just saying “I know God” but not living accordingly is simply lying
- Living as Jesus lived – we learn and practice together
- Loving God by loving others: we can’t love God without loving others like God loves us
- Remembering and trusting that what God says about us is true – v.12-14