THE NEW TESTAMENT
Chapter One hundred-twenty-four
The First Epistle from John
"Behold, what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us,
that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world
knows us not, because it knew Him not. Beloved, now are we the
sons of God, and it does not yet appear what we shall be: but we
know that, when He shall appear, we shall be like Him, for we
shall see Him as He is. And every man that has this hope in
himself purifies himself, even as He is pure" (verses 1-3).
WHAT VERSES THEY ARE! I want you to read them again, very
slowly, let it sink in deep into your mind.
True Christians are TODAY, NOW, the SONS of God, not the
sons of some angel, like Gabriel, but SONS of the FATHER! Paul in
Hebrews chapter two said that Jesus is NOT ASHAMED to call US -
BRETHREN - His very literal brothers and sisters!
Oh, most of Christianity, says the words, "children of God,"
or "sons of God," - they go around flippantly talking about being
God's children, but I tell you MOST really do NOT KNOW the DEPTH
of such language, and what being SONS of the Father REALLY MEANS!
We are NOW God's children, BUT - and here's a big "but" - IT
DOES NOT YET APPEAR WHAT WE SHALL BE! We are one day going to
LOOK LIKE Jesus Christ NOW LOOKS LIKE! And we are given a glimpse
as to how He looks like in GLORY form in the first chapter of the
book of Revelation. Read it for yourselves.
These first few verses of this chapter in 1 John, is really
... there are no words to put it in our language, it is truly
mind-shattering. But then it is also simple to read, just believe
it for what it clearly says. One day we shall BE LIKE Jesus is
now. The apostle Paul goes into more detail in the famous
"resurrection" chapter of 1 Corinthians. We shall in the future
be GLORIFIED, have bodies that shine like stars, be PERFECT in
every way. We shall YET INHERIT the Kingdom of God, the very
FAMILY of God, with all that that means. The Father is wanting to
SHARE ALL that He has with US! Perfection, glory, power, bright
holy light and all that He is. I have written a full in-depth
study on this matter. It is called "A Christian's Destiny."
Please read and meditate on it all.
As John says, when we have this sure hope within us, the
knowledge of it all, we shall DESIRE in attitude of mind, to want
to LIVE PURE, even as our Father and Elder Brother are pure.
To give emphasis to this attitude of mind concerning living
pure, John goes on to AMPLIFY it.
So I will use the AMPLIFIED BIBLE in this section, as it
brings out the true meaning of the Greek tenses used.
"Everyone who commits (practices) sin is guilty of
lawlessness; for (that is what) sin is, lawlessness (the
breaking, violating of God's law by transgression or neglect
- being unrestrained an unregulated by His commands and His
will). You know that he appeared in visible form and became
Man to take away (upon Himself) sins, and in Him there is
no sin (essentially and forever). No one who abides in him
(who lives and remains in communion with and in obedience
to Him - deliberately, knowingly, and habitually) commits
(practices) sin. No one who (habitually) sins has either
seen or known Him (recognized, perceived, or understood
Him, or has had an experiential acquaintance with Him).
Boys (lads), let no one deceive you and lead you astray. He
who practices righteousness (who is upright, conforming to
the divine will in purpose, thought, and action, living a
consistently conscientious life), is righteous, even as He
is righteous. (But) he who commits sin (who practices evil
doing) is of the Devil (takes his character from the evil
one), for the Devil has sinned (violated the divine law)
from the beginning. The reason the Son of God was made
manifest (visible) was to undo (destroy, loosen, and
dissolve) the works the Devil (has done).
No one born (begotten) of God (deliberately, knowingly, and
habitually practices sin, for God's nature abides in him
(His principle of life, the divine sperm, remains
permanently within him); and he cannot practice sinning
because he is born (begotten) of God.
By this it is made clear who take their nature from God and
are His children and who take their nature from the Devil
and are his children: no one who does not practice
righteousness (who does not conform to God;s will in
purpose, thought, and action) is of God; neither is anyone
who does not love his brother (his fellow believer in
Christ)" (verses 4-10).
There it is in clear language as the Greek tenses mean.
First, sin is the breaking of the law of God, the commandments of
God. Paul understood that fact and made it PLAIN to us in Romans
7:7-12. He had not known sin except the law had said .....
All that is in the Ten Commandments, the breaking, the
LIVING a life style that is breaking any one of them, IS SIN!
I've already given you the Bible definition of "righteousness" -
it is God's commandments (Ps.119:172). If you really know that
you know God, you will have His nature in you. You will have an
attitude of mind, that is willing to be LED by the Spirit of God,
to be corrected, to love to grow in grace and knowledge. You will
want to DO, to PRACTICE, as a WAY OF LIFE, the commandments of
the Father. The nature of God in you, cannot possibly lead you to
IGNORE or NOT practice the commandments of God. You will desire
to NOT sin, you will want to live the way of God.
I ask you, how can it possibly be that someone who claims
they are a child of God, is going around taking God's or Christ's
name in vain, as you hear the unconverted doing all around you
every day? It cannot be possible! How can it be possible that
someone who claims to be a Christian goes around coveting or lust
after this and that, as a way of life? It cannot be! How is it
possible that a person claiming to be a son of God can trample all
over the Sabbath day, and not obey the fourth commandment. It cannot
be! But I tell you there are HUNDREDS if not THOUSANDS of "ministers"
around the world, who will not teach people to obey the fourth
commandment. They themselves do not keep holy the seventh day,
and they will not teach others to do it. You have it in plain
words from the apostle John, the one who lived to the end of the
first century to see a "religious movement" LEAVE from the true
Church of God, and go out to lead people AWAY from the
commandments of God, and that movement wanted to still call
themselves "children of God."
John makes it pretty clear that such people with such a
mind-set, and who teach others to have the same mind as themselves,
are NOT the children of God. You can read it again and see for yourself
whose children they are. Yes, John was inspired to pull no
punches at times.
John ended that thought going back to NOT loving people. He
continues with that thought with verse 11 through to 18.
The message from the very beginning was that we as children
of God, must love our fellow mankind. We are not to follow the
example of Cain, who was under the power and influence of the
Devil. Cain was jealous of Abel. Cain knew his works, his way of
life was not the way of God. He also knew that Abel's life was
centered around serving and living according to the Divine will
and commandments of the Most High God.
We as children desiring to do the will of God, should not be
surprised that the world will hate us. At best they sure will not
understand us. If you truly follow the Lord in your living as
this Website shows you what the Lord's will is, many of your
friends and relatives will think you are "nuts" - they will think
you have gone of the deep-end into some "strange" religion.
One of the ways you can know you have passed from death to
life, is because you have love towards all people. Those who
cannot do that (and you have killings every day from people who
cannot love all people, no matter what their religion or
philosophy is) are in the company of the Devil and death. If you
"hate" your brother (and Jesus gave the parable of the "good
Samaritan" to show everyone is our brother), you cannot possibly
have eternal life in you. You are a murderer if you have hate in
your heart towards any other person. Do you see how the New
Testament does not abolish the Ten Commandments, it AMPLIFIES
THEM, just as Jesus did in the famous "sermon on the mount."
You may not like, you may and can "hate" the SIN, of people,
but you must love the sinner.
John now gets to the real down to earth application of
loving your brother. He reminds us that God, in the form of Jesus
Christ, LAID DOWN his life for us. The Greek tense here is
"aorist" - an action done and completed in the sometime past.
There was an historical moment when God died - Jesus did
literally die, and was dead for three days and three night. So,
John says, we ought to "lay down" our lives for the brethren. The
Greek "lay down" is in the "present" tense, which means, a
continual present. We are, as a way of life, living to serve
others. We are continually wanted to help others, in whatever way
John tells you that this is indeed what he is meaning here
(even if you do not know the Greek tenses - see the Bible is not
just written for only "scholars" of Hebrew or Greek, but for
children also) because he goes on to say: "Whosoever has this
world physical goods, and sees his brother in need of some of
them, and just shuts up his physical goods and does not share
them with anyone, the love of God cannot be in him" (my own
amplification on verse 17).
We are not to just love in word, but in DEED (works) and in
truth (having the right attitude of mind in doing it all) - verse
There are many ways today to serve and share with others
that are less fortunate, or have hit a troublesome time in their
Oh, by-the-way, this verse 18 is a good example of how the
Bible can contain verses that give emphasis to part while
seemingly shutting off another. The KJV says, "My little
children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue, but in deed
and in truth." Are we NOT to love in word? Can we say all kinds
of evil things, with the tongue? No, of course not, the mouth is
important, the apostle James as we have seen, gave a good part of
a chapter on how evil the tongue can be, which should not be part
of the Christian's life. This verse here should then be
understood: "My little children, let us not love in word (ONLY),
neither in tongue (ONLY); but in deed and in truth."
If we do what he has just stated, we can know we are of the
truth, and can have full assurance before God. If we have
misgivings at times about our conduct as a Christian, God is
greater than our fleshly mind, He sees DEEP within us, knows we
are trying our best to live according as He wants. If our
heart-mind hardly ever has misgivings, then we are in real super
shape spiritually. I guess Job was of the latter. He could not
think where he was falling down. Not many of us get into the
spiritual shape Job thought he was in. Mind you, he was in
terrific shape, even God said he was, but he did have an area in
life that he could not see was a weakness. He never really saw
God for what God really was, but he finally did (Job 42), and was
blessed beyond measure. So, if we are like a Job then we can sure
have confidence before God. Yet if most of us cannot come close
to being a Job, all is not lost by any means.
John says in verse 22, that God knows we are trying to keep
His commandments, and doing those things that are pleasing to
Him. God knows our heart, that it is right towards Him and His
way of life, so we have our requests and prayers answered. Now,
the answering of those requests may not always be as our human
mind would like, and they are not always answered till God
decides the best time to answer them. God did not answer Job
right away, but He did answer, in the right way at the right
John sums up his thoughts to end this chapter, with these
"And this is His commandment, That we should believe on the name
of His Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, as He gave us
commandment. And he that keepeth His commandments dwelleth in
Him, and He in them. And hereby we know that he abideth in us, by
the Spirit which He has given us" (verses 23-24).
Ah, we are back to Jesus as Savior, no salvation outside of
Christ, pure and simple, and just as pure and just as simple,
God's children will keep His commandments! And all this is done
through the very Spirit of God, which He gives to those who obey
Him (Acts 5:32).
Written October 2007