"Whoever believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God, and everyone who loves Him who begot also loves him who is begotten of Him By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and keep His commandments For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome. For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world — our faith. Who is he who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God"?
The Certainty of God's Witness
"This is He who came by water and blood — Jesus Christ; not only by water, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit who bears witness, because the Spirit is truth. For there are three that bear witness in heaven: the Father, the Word, and the Holy Spirit; and these three are one. And there are three that bear witness on earth: the Spirit, the water, and the blood; and these three agree as one". If we receive the witness of men, the witness of God is greater; for this is the witness of God which He has testified of His Son. He who believes in the Son of God has the witness in himself; he who does not believe God has made Him a liar, because he has not believed the testimony that God has given of His Son. And this is the testimony: that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life. These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life, and that you may continue to believe in the name of the Son of God.
Confidence and Compassion in Prayer
"Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him. If anyone sees his brother sinning a sin which does not lead to death, he will ask, and He will give him life for those who commit sin not leading to death. There is sin leading to death. I do not say that he should pray about that. All unrighteousness is sin, and there is sin not leading to death".
Knowing the True — Rejecting the False
"We know that whoever is born of God does not sin; but he who has been born of God keeps himself, and the wicked one does not touch him We know that we are of God, and the whole world lies under the sway of the wicked one. And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us an understanding, that we may know Him who is true; and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life. Little children, keep yourselves from idols". Amen.
The “Blessed Assurance” of “Salvation”
I. The “New Birth” (Salvation): “Proven 3 Ways” (verses 1-5)
A. Proven “inwardly” by personal belief in faith (vs.1, vs. 10, vs. 13))
Whoever believes that Jesus is “The Christ” (Messiah) is “born” of God, that is, they have been “born again.” This means the person placed their “saving” faith in Jesus being God manifested in human flesh and in being God, the belief that HE is the “only” one who has the power to save them. As a child of God, they not only love God, but they love Christ the Son. “Saving faith” is trusting in Jesus Christ alone and in the finished work HE did while nailed to the cross on Calvary for the redemption of man and the forgiveness of our sin.
B. Proven “ on an “Outgoing” basis: By allowing God to love through us: By allowing the Word (the Holy Spirit of God) to be made flesh (alive) in us, live in us and work through us and so others can behold the glory of the Lord on us, in us, and working through us.
Important: Everyone that operates their lives in the love of God and shows that love toward their fellow man is further evidence that they have been “born again”. Based in 1 John 4:7-11(last week’s bible study) the Apostle John said: We are “obligated” to love our fellow man with the same love that God shows toward us. It’s also important for us to know that we are incapable of doing this by ourselves because it’s beyond the “human nature” of the “Natural Man.” 1 Corinthians 2:14: “But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. The only way this is possible, (to love our fellow man God’s way) we must submit ourselves totally to God and let HIM love our fellow man through us.
C. Proven “Outwardly”: (In our walk and in our talk) In 1 John 2:29, John said: Everyone who does righteousness (who makes it a living practice to do right at all times) is born again. 2 Corinthians 5:17: “If any man be in Christ, he is a new creature (creation): old things (old habits and ways) are passed away and all things are become new”.
D. The evidence of being “born again” (vs. 2-5)
1. We love God and keep His commandments. (vs.2)
2. We remember that God’s commandments are not grievous. (vs.3)
3. By being ‘born again, we have overcome the world. (Satan and the world system) We are more than “conquerors” through Jesus Christ in faith. We defeat Satan, the old man (who we used to be) and the power of Sin (the world’s system) in our concrete belief that Jesus is the Christ and the Son of God. (vs.4-5)
II. The “Witness” “Concerning Jesus Christ” (verses 6-9)
A. The Holy Spirit: Jesus came by “water” and “blood” and Heaven (vs. 6)
By “Water” means by “water baptism”. Jesus in Matthew 3:13-16 came down to the Jordan River to be baptized by John the Baptist. After convincing John to baptize him Jesus came up out of the water…the heavens opened up and he saw the Spirit of God descend from heaven like a dove and light upon Him. And a voice of heaven saying: “THIS IS MY BELOVED SON IN WHOM I’M WELL PLEASED”! His baptism with water was an emblem of the purity of his own character, and of the nature of his religion.
B. By “blood” means the voluntary shedding of His blood for the redemption of man and the forgiveness of sin. This was in accordance with all that the Jewish prophets had written concerning him. Here John says that the Spirit witnesses this; that he came not by water only-being baptized, and baptizing men in his own name that they might be his followers and disciples; but by blood also-by his sacrificial death, without which the world could not be saved
C. From Heaven: It’s recorded that 3 bear witness: God the Father, Jesus (the WORD) and The Holy Spirit. (vs. 7)
1. God the Father bore witness to Jesus Christ –His begotten Son.(Matthew 3:16)
2. Jesus Christ bore witness to the Father: If you have seen Me, you have seen the Father.
3. The Holy Spirit bearing witness of both God the Father and Jesus (God the Son)
D. From Earth: It’s recorded that 3 bear witness: the Holy Spirit, the water (Jesus’ baptism) and the blood (Jesus shed blood on Calvary) (vs.8)
1. The Holy Spirit: Christ was ENDOWED by the Holy Spirit. The prediction was the “Messiah” would be. (Isaiah 11:2 and chapter 61:1) (Luke 4:18) John 3:34.
a. The Holy Spirit bore witness to his Messiahship, after his ascension, by descending, according to his promise,n his apostles, and by accompanying the message which they delivered with saving power to thousands in Jerusalem, Acts 2.
b. He still bears the same testimony on every revival of religion, and in the conversion of every individual who becomes a Christian, convincing them that Jesus is the Son of God. (John 16:14-1)
c. He does it in the hearts of all true Christians, for "no man can say that Jesus is Lord but by the Holy Ghost.
2. The Water: Jesus’ baptism both identified Him as the Messiah and signaled the beginning of His earthly ministry work.
3. The Blood: The shedding of His blood also signified that He was the Son of God and revealed these things also:
a. The shedding of His blood showed that he really did die,-that his work for our redemption was completed.
b. The shedding of this blood-the darkened sun, the earthquake, the rending of the veil of the temple-showed in a manner that convinced even the Roman centurion that he was the Son of God.
c. The shedding of Jesus’ blood "atonement" was made for sin. Only Jesus could do this.This act was ordained before the foundation of the world. (Revelation 13:8) All three of these examples (emblems) agree that Jesus is the Son of God. (vs.8)
d. If we receive (accept) the witness of men, the witness of God is greater because God testifies of His son. (vs. 9)
III. Fact: You Can be Saved and Know It (verses 10-12)
A. The Fact of Eternal life: (vs.10)
1. Whoever believes on the Son of God (Jesus)
God has witnessed that whosoever believes in his Son shall be saved, and have everlasting life; and shall have the witness of it in himself, the Holy Spirit bearing witness with his spirit that he is a child of God. That person will know, and feel his sin has been forgiven, and have the testimony of this fact in the heart from the Holy Spirit.
2. Whoever doesn’t believe God makes Him out to be a liar. (God never lies)
3. The “record” is: God has given us eternal life through Jesus Christ. (vs.11) John 1:4: “ In Him was” life” and the “life” was the “light” of men.”
4. Whoever has the Son has eternal life and whoever doesn’t have the Son does not. (vs.12)
B. The knowledge of Eternal Life (verses 13-16)
1. John wrote these things that we may know we have eternal life and that we may believe in the name of Jesus Christ. (vs.13)
2. We have “this” confidence : If we ask anything according to His (God’s) will, He hears us. (vs.14)
3. If we know He (God) hears us, whatever we ask (according to His will) we already have the thing we ask of Him. (In due season) (vs. 15)
4. Concerning a brother: (fellow believer) “Conditions for intercession” (vs.16)
a. If you catch them in the act, you are to intercede by praying for them and call them out in love that they may see the error of their ways and sin no more if that sin is not unto death. Yet you must understand that Romans 6:23a still applies “the wages of sin is death”…. Don’t be deceived…You will reap what you sow (Galatians 6:7)
Note: We pray in “intercession” that the “sinning” saint will see the gravity of their behavior and the grief they’re causing God the Father, Jesus our Savior, Lord, and who sits as our High Priest at this time and the Holy Spirit who lives on the inside. . ALL THREE HAVE BEEN GREIVED because you have turn your body (the temple of the Holy Spirit) from a house of prayer to a den of thieves (demons) who through your sin is stealing, killing and ultimately trying to destroy your witness, testimony and your human life. We pray that God would look beyond their fault and see their real need. We pray they desire to change, (7 Chronicles 7:14) and be delivered from the wrath of God which will sure come if they don’t change their evil ways. God will give you over to a reprobate mind and allow the sin to destroy your body but not your soul, that is, if you truly were saved but fell from grace.
b. There is a sin that is unto death-(blasphemous against the power and abilities of the Holy Spirit for one and other grievous acts that causes God to allow death in that situation) It’s a sin such a character that throws the offender beyond the reach of God’s mercy, and which God will not pardoned. (Mark 3:28-29.) The apostle John didn't reveal say what that sin was; or how they may know what it is; or even in any case where they could determine that "sin" had been committed. He simply said there is such a sin.
There are 2 “sins” that are widely known:
1. Living your life and denying that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, and the Savior of the World. ( the way to salvation)
2. Giving Satan credit for “anything,” especially miracles that can only be done by Jesus (God) through the WORD and the Holy Spirit. (Matthew 12:24,27; Mark 3:22; Luke 11:15, 18-19)
c. All unrighteousness is sin. There is a sin that is not unto death. (vs.17)
Commentary:(Taken from Barnes Note Commentary)
And he shall give him life for them that sin not unto death] "That is, God shall give life, and he shall be saved from the eternal death to which he was exposed. This, it is said, would be given to HIM who offers the prayer; that is, his prayer would be the means of saving the offending brother. What a motive is this to prayer! How faithful and constant should we be in pleading for our fellow-sinners, that we may be instrumental in saving their souls! What joy will await those in heaven who shall see there many who were rescued from ruin in answer to their prayers".
IV. Knowing the Truth- Rejecting “The Lie” (verses 18-21)
A. What we know: “about being born again” (vs. 18)
1. Whoever is born (born again) does not sin (that is practice sin).
2. The person that has been born again keeps themselves. That is, they will put forth their best effort to avoid sin, realizing that without the help of God, it is not possible. With God all things are possible.
3. Every effort of Satan regardless of the attack will not be successful against the child of God.
B. What we know : “concerning the world” (vs.19)
1. We are of God, that is, we are Christians.
2. The whole world, that is, everybody who lives in this regardless of race, color, creed, sexual orientation, or national origin that are unsaved, living in idolatry, and every sin of every kind “lieth” in wickedness. That is they are under the influence (under the power) of the “wicked one” (Satan) and the lives they live and many of the things they do are “demonically” induced.
C. What we know: “concerning Christ” (vs.20)
1. That Jesus Christ is the WORD of God and has already come. (based on John Chapter 1)
2. Christ has given us an “understanding.” That is, Christ has so instructed us that we do understand the great truths concerning salvation. God, and His government.
3. That we may know HIM. (the Way, the Truth, and the Life)
4. That we are “in” Him. That is, we are “united in Him, belong to Him and are His friends.
Conclusion: Little Children “Keep yourselves from Idols” (vs. 21)
Rev. Dr. William Edward Boddie