December 28, 2021 - Pastor's Corner
Dear Church Family,
The key verse of 1 John is 5:13, “I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life,” and the main theme of his letter is Certainty of Faith in Jesus Christ and Our Subsequent Practice. This assurance is addressed in multiple ways throughout 1 John through contrasts, direct statements, and three specific areas of Christian living—moral (obedience), social (love), and theological (Jesus is the God-man).
In 5:1-5, the apostle John returns to one of the main assurances of our faith—obedience to Christ’s commands. Please take a quick moment to read these verses anew. From this passage come the following brief insights:
- In his return to a tell-tale mark of true faith in Jesus, namely, obedience to our Lord’s commands, John speaks of both positional and practical results of true faith.
- Positionally speaking, John says true faith in Jesus, that He is God’s Anointed One to save His people, is evidence God has regenerated us; we “have been born of God.” This phrase is repeated three times in our passage, which proves its significance. When God caused us to be reborn, He gave us the faith to believe in Jesus. Moreover, John attaches this true faith evidence to the evidence of love for God being proven by our love for all who “have been born of Him.”
- This second mention of being “born of Him” speaks to obedience to God’s commands being evidence of God’s children loving one another. You see, the world is openly hostile to God and everything that pertains to Him. Thus, it is easy to see who does not belong to God; the one who lives according to the world. “For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world.”
- If the ways of this world, the self-centered commitment to have life our own way, permeates and directs our thoughts and actions; if obeying God’s Word is not what we regularly choose to do, then we have not overcome the world. This is not indicative of those who “have been born of God.”
- The world does not hold sway over our lives if we are God’s children by faith in Jesus Christ alone. For John’s rhetorical question in verse 5 indicates that only true believers in Jesus, those who hold that He is exactly who He says He is, we continuously overcome the ways of the world. And this is because Jesus has already overcome the world (John 16:33).
As always, I encourage you to read ahead to prepare for our time next week—1 John 5:6-12.
Grace and peace be to you.