This teaching on 1 John ch 3 was given by pastor Barry Forder on 3rd January 2020 as part of Calvary Portsmouth’s online family service.
John gives us 5 key reasons for writing his 1st Epistle:
- That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us 1:3
- And these things write we unto you, that your joy may be full. 1:4
- these things write I unto you, that ye sin not 2:1
- These things have I written unto you concerning them that seduce you. 2:26
- These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God. 5:13
As we move into chapter 3 John builds on all of these and starts by reminding us of the incredible, unconditional love that God has for us, that we have been adopted and given the position of the firstborn son – who would inherit a double blessing. “Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God”.
The Greek word for ‘bestowed’ implies that God was obligated to give us what was due to us! This is incredible! For we did not earn or merit God’s love, Christ did; and in return for our sin (which Jesus took upon Himself), we were given His position and so the Father gives us what was earned by Christ!
John want’s us to be assured of this position we now have in Christ, so 7x reminds us of things we should by now know:
- We know when He appears, we shall be like Him v2
- We know He was manifested to take away our sins v5
- We know we have passed from death to life because we love the brethren v14
- We know that one who hates (or does not love his brother) does not have eternal life within him v15
- We know that He loves us because He laid down His life for us v16
- We know that are of the truth if our love is shown by our deeds v18-19
- We know that He abides in us though His Spirit if we keep His commandments v24
Along with this assurance John tells us of 5 ‘actions’ that elicit a response:
- If we have hope that He will appear again:
- we will purify ourselves (live a pure life in heart & mind) v3
- If we abide in Him:
- we will not sin v6
- If we are born of God
- we will not (habitually) sin v9
- Because He laid down His life for us:
- we should be willing to lay down our lives for the brethren v16
- If our heart is clean:
- we will not fear God’s gaze v21
May you be blessed and encouraged by this study.