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On The Book of First John
The Book of First John, chapter 3
THEME: How the dear children may know each other and live together; the Father's love for His children; the two natures of the believer in action.
The last verse of chapter 2 seems to me like it should be here with the first three verses of chapter 3. 1 John 2:29 reads: "If ye know that he is righteous, ye know that every one that doeth righteousness is born of him."
It is one thing to testify that we know Christ and are in Him; it is quite another to have a life that reveals that He is our righteousness. It is wonderful to know positionally that we are in Christ and that we are accepted in the Beloved, but it is altogether different to have a life down here that is equal with that. John is telling us that the way we recognize other believers is by how they live, NOT by what they say. Righteousness is a family characteristic of Jesus, and the Father and His children. God's children take after their Father . . . they have His characteristics.
Children of God Discussed . . . 1 John 2:28-3:10
The Father's Love For His Children (3:1-3)
1 John 3:1 Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not. [KJV]
How I love this verse! It is simply wonderful to know our position in this world; to know we are indeed ‘in Christ’, and God’s child, and that we are accepted in the Beloved (Eph.1:6) Jesus, God’s only begotten Son. We do not expect to be, we are not working toward that goal, but we ARE children of God, because of Jesus! Such great love He has for us!
So, now that we are God’s children, there is a warning for us. The ‘world’ does not know us, nor does it love us! The ‘world’ here is referring to those who reject Jesus, or simply, unbelievers. Remember. The ‘world’ is the world system under the control of the devil. So the ‘world’ is unbelievers following along with what Satan offers; henceforth they are NOT children of God, but children of the devil (we’ll see more on this in verse 10). And they hate us just the same as they hated Christ. John 15:18 If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you. [KJV] 1 John 3:13 Marvel not, my brethren, if the world hate you. (KJV) . . . Don’t be surprised if the world hates you. We can EXPECT to be disliked, looked upon with disgust, shunned, criticized, even blasphemed, for the cause of Christ. There will be times when we are criticized by those whom we love most, and we will feel very low (speaking from my own experiences), but there is comfort to be found in God’s Word for these times: Matthew 5:10-12 Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 11Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. 12 Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you. [KJV] When I am really hurting from my loved ones hatred of me, I turn to this Passage.
It is one thing to SAY you are a "Christian", and say we are ‘in Him’, but it is quite a different thing to live a life that reveals His righteousness, especially in difficult times. We need to use Jesus as our role model in our life. Ask yourself: “What would Jesus do in this situation?” Then do accordingly!
1 John 3:2 Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth 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. [KJV]
The ‘world’ cannot understand this statement, or us, because it did not understand Jesus. They do not have spiritual insight, they do not have the Spirit of God indwelling them (Rom.8:9). We are God’s children NOW! Not tomorrow, or the next day or next week; NOW! John 5:24 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life. (KJV) . . . "Hath" = HAS! We have eternal life NOW! Jesus says so!
And even though we do have spiritual insight, we cannot begin to imagine what our new bodies will be like in eternity. We do know this: when He does appear, we will receive bodies like His! We now have bodies of flesh and blood. When we receive our new bodies at the Rapture (1 Thes.4:14-18) whether we are alive or dead, our new bodies will be like the Body of Jesus, which was flesh and bones (Luke 24:39). Jesus ate food (Luke 24:42-43). He entered a room without use of the door (Jn.20:19,26). He cooked and dined with the disciples (Jn.21:4-14). These are a few examples of what our new bodies will be like; for “we shall be like Him”!
We shall be like Him . . . but NOT identical! Just as we . . . you and I . . . are like each other in that we have physical bodies, yet we are NOT the same in many respects. We are NOT identical to one another. We will NOT be identical to Christ! We will have our own personalities. We will have our own individualities, be our own selves, but we will be “conformed” to the image of His Son (Rom.8:29). Jesus is unique in Who He Is! He is God’s Son, yes! BUT, He is God’s own, only begotten Son. Jesus IS God! We on the other hand are God’s children, yes! But we are the creation of God . . . NOT God! We are God’s children, through Jesus (Jn.1:12-13). We enter the ‘family of God’ through ‘adoption’ (Ro.8:15; 2 Co.6:18; Gal. 4:5-6; Eph.1:5). Gal.3:26 For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus. (KJV) . . . We should continually thank Jesus for what He has done for us!
1 John 3:3 And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure. [KJV]
Pure, righteous Christ is . . . or should be, our pattern as we live here on Earth. If you really believe Jesus is coming, and that you will, one day, be “conformed” to His image (have same form, be similar), this should make us want to live a pure life, a life that is pleasing to Him! We cannot live this life of purity alone. We must permit His Spirit to assist us. We must not “quench the Spirit” (1 Thes.5:19). Each and every day we must ‘grow’ in the Lord! We must NOT stay spiritual babies! We must diligently strive to be more Christ-like! We must be obedient to our Lord!
1 John 3:4 Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law. [KJV]
Anyone who keeps on sinning are against God, for every sin is done against the will of God. Everyone who sins breaks God’s law. Every sin is lawlessness, every sin is disobedience to God. There are NO exceptions! But there is a big difference in committing a sin and continuing in sin. ALL believers sin (Rom.3:10,23). Not one is exempt! But when a believer sins, the Holy Spirit convicts them of that sin, and it is impossible (for me) to feel right, until I repent of that sin, and confess it to God, and get rid of it (1 Jn.1:8-9). I deeply regret what I have done. Fellowship I have with God, is gone, that big, high wall is between us, and it makes me feel just plain rotten! I just have to get right with Him again.
Continuing in sin (practicing sin) is a whole different thing. This person is NOT sorry for sin, or they would STOP. They remain in that sin, they seem to ‘cherish’ that sin. Some may make excuses for not forsaking their sin; but that is exactly what it is, excuses! This person will not confess their sin and so, they never receive forgiveness. This person is against God, no matter what they may say. Their ‘religion’ is their sin! (Religion is any system of conduct or practices.) Mat.7:16,20 Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them. [KJV] (Jesus’ words).
1 John 3:5 And ye know that he was manifested to take away our sins; and in him is no sin. [KJV]
Jesus came so that He might take away our sins. He (Jesus) was ‘manifested’ . . . He appeared, He became a Man . . . so He could die . . . for us, so that He could take away our sins.
- #1. He died a redemptive death to pay the penalty of our sins.
- #2. Also, He died so He could deliver us from the power of sin, here and now!
- #3. He was our Sacrificial Lamb, without spot or blemish (1 Pet)1:18-19; Jn.1:29; Ex.12:5; Heb.9:14).
- #4. He lived a perfect life, without ANY sin whatsoever, and sacrificed Himself for Our sins; and God the Father accepted that Sacrifice (Eph.5:2), and accepts anyone, who accept Christ and His Sacrifice.
1 John 3:6 Whosoever abideth in him sinneth not: whosoever sinneth hath not seen him, neither known him. [KJV]
NO one who abides in Christ can keep on sinning. NO one who continues to sin has either seen Him or known Him.
If we ‘abide in Him,' we will NOT ‘abide in sin’! We will NOT remain in sin; we will NOT practice sin; we will NOT live in sin! We CANNOT continue in sin. We simply CANNOT! We have God living within us (His Holy Spirit, Rom.8:9), and sin and purity just do NOT mix! Anyone who continues in sin, has not seen Him, nor has known Him! John is saying whoever keeps on in their sin is NOT God’s child. Very plain! Very clear! Very straight forward! FACT! TRUTH!
1 John 3:7 Little children, let no man deceive you: he that doeth righteousness is righteous, even as he is righteous. [KJV]
Don’t let anyone lead you astray. We must be righteous, just as He is righteous. If we do what is right and good, it is because you are ‘good,’ as He is and because of Him; you are ‘abiding in Him.’ This is what reveals the TRUE child of God. If you ‘abide in Him,’ in fellowship and service, sin does not have a place in your life. Sin and God absolutely do not, cannot mix!
1 John 3:8 He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil. [KJV]
If you keep on sinning, it shows you belong to Satan, who since he first began to sin has kept on, steadily at it. It was because of this that the Son of God came to destroy these works of the devil.
What John is referring to has already been discussed. It is people who “continue on in sin’; it is ‘practicing sin’. John is talking about those who ‘keep on in their sin’, and then try to justify what they are doing. We ALL are tempted by the devil. He never rests. Where does Satan tempt people? It is where they are the weakest. We all have a weak spot, and in each of us it is different; and Satan knows what it is! That is where he will tempt you. Speaking for myself, there are times that I seem to be ‘continuing on in my sin’. The difference is, I really feel terrible when the devil wins. We as Christians will continue to struggle with sin, until we leave this world, for we still have our old sinful nature within us; and the old us and the new us keep butting heads. (See Ro.7:14-25). Even the great apostle Paul had to struggle with sin. The best TRUE Christians struggle with sin! Knowing this, makes me feel somewhat better. We must remember the power we have available to us. We must take advantage of that power!
1 John 3:9 Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God. [KJV]
No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God’s Seed remains in him; he cannot go on sinning, because he has been born again. The Holy Spirit will not allow it! He will convict us of sin!
Jesus said we MUST be “born again” (Jn.3:7). We must be born into God’s family (spiritually). And anyone who is ‘born of God’ will NOT make a habit of sinning. The moment we are ‘born again’ God graciously grants His Holy Spirit to us (His Seed). The Spirit remains in us and will convict our hearts when we sin. If you have been born again, you have a divine nature that is appalled each and every time you sin.
The Holy Spirit dwells in TRUE believers: (John 14:16-17,23; Rom.5:5; 8:9; 1 Cor.2:12; 3:16; 6:19; 12:13; Eph. 2:22; 4:6; Phil.2:13; 2 Tim.1:14; John 2:27; 4:12).
1 John 3:10 In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the devil: whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God, neither he that loveth not his brother. [KJV]
We can know who is a child of God and who belongs to Satan. Whoever is willingly living a life of sin and doesn’t love his brother shows that he is NOT in God’s family.
In God’s eyes, there are only two families in the world today: #1. The children of God. #2. The children of the devil. And there are only two destinations for those two families. God plainly states in Mat.25:41, that He made Hell “for the devil and his angels” (and all who follow him). Heaven (which is God’s Home) is for God’s children (John 14:2-3; 1 Pet.1:4). Not one, not even one, who is NOT God’s child, will ever enter Heaven. The doctrine that everyone will go to Heaven is NOT what the Bible teaches. This damnable heresy of "Universalism" will take you to Hell! . . .
If you do not belong to God’s family, it is not too late for you. God holds out the GIFT of eternal life to you today. That life is in His Son. Reach out and accept that irreplaceable Gift! (Jn.3:15-18,36; 5:24; 8:24; 14:6; 1 Pet.1:4). My friend, you can access Heaven ONLY through Jesus! John 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. (KJV)
Love One Another 1 John 3:11-24
1 John 3:11 For this is the message that ye heard from the beginning, that we should love one another. [KJV]
We should love one another. John is simply reminding us of what our Lord taught. John 13:35 By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another. [KJV] . . . LOVE is the mark of a Christian. It should show others you are God’s child. All too often we fall short on this mark. I realize that some of our brothers and sisters in Christ are really hard to love; but what about us? I know I have faults and shortcomings that are not ‘lovable’. Love means we have real care and concern for others. It does not mean you have to run up and hug him (or her) every time you see them. And it does not mean you are to be taken in by every Tom, Dick and Harry (or Jane) either. But it does mean if you see a child of God in real need (not only money wise), we are indeed to assist that person to the best of our ability.
1 John 3:12 Not as Cain, who was of that wicked one, and slew his brother. And wherefore slew he him? Because his own works were evil, and his brother's righteous. [KJV]
We are not to be like Cain, who belonged to Satan and killed his brother. Why did he kill his brother? Because Cain had been doing wrong and he knew that his brother’s life was better than his.
Why did Cain get angry enough to kill his brother? (Gen.4:1-16). Because God accepted Abel’s offering, and refused his. Cain’s offering was refused for four reasons:
- #1. It came from the ground that God had already cursed (Gen.3:17).
- #2. It was obtained through his own efforts, and not by faith (Eph.2:8-9).
- #3. It was an offering without blood, which pointed to Christ (Lev.17:11).
- #4. Cain’s heart was not right (Jer.17:10). Cain’s reason for murder was jealousy, or envy.
Envy = discontent, uneasiness, and/or pain at another’s good fortune. Envy or jealousy has NO room in the life of God’s children. We should be content with what we have (Heb.13:5).
People who live good lives (live in the light of Jesus), expose and shame those who live in sin (darkness), just as Jesus did when He was on Earth. When we live for the Lord, unbelievers bristle up and actually ‘hate’ us, because it makes them aware of the sinful life they lead.
1 John 3:13 Marvel not, my brethren, if the world hate you. [KJV]
Don’t be surprised my brothers if the world hates you. John warns us, that we should not be surprised or shocked when the ‘world’ (unbelievers) hate us. If we are followers of Christ Jesus, and true to Him; we can expect the ‘world’ to hate us and look upon us with disgust, for the very reason that the ‘world’ hated our Master first (Jn.15:18-19). The ‘world’ loves only those who are ‘of the world’, in other words, followers of the devil! Birds of a feather flock together.
1 John 3:14 We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. He that loveth not his brother abideth in death. [KJV]
If we love other Christians it proves that we have been delivered from Hell and given eternal life. Anyone who does not love others is headed for eternal death in Hell.
One of the reasons John wrote this letter is that we could ‘know’ we have eternal life! (Also see 5:13). In this verse, John tells us how we can ‘know’ this! That is very simply: “Because we love the brethren.” If you harbor hatred toward a brother or sister in Christ, you are walking on thin ice, and possibly headed for Hell. 2 Thes. 1:9 Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power; [KJV] Hell is being separated from God and all His goodness, and having eternal agony. (For more on Hell, see: Mt.25:46; Mk.3:29; Lu.3:17; 2 Pet.2:9; Rev.14:11; 20:15).
It gives me great sadness, because of loved ones and friends, and ALL lost souls that do not have the security of Jesus, to write of the horrors of Hell, (eternal death, everlasting destruction, second death, everlasting punishment, eternal damnation, everlasting fire, outer darkness, etc). But, I cannot teach the beauty and bliss of Heaven, and not teach what the Bible so very plainly states about Hell. I must not, I cannot be ashamed of Jesus, nor His Words (Mk.8:38), for I certainly do not want Jesus to be ashamed of me when He comes. Anyone who teaches God’s Word must be bold and teach it all, even if it offends someone. We, all of us, must try to please God, and not man (Gal.1:10). I think that Jesus taught more about Hell, than any other subject. WHY? Because He does NOT want anyone to go there! For years God has given me this burden, for lost souls who are headed for Hell. I teach about Hell, because I too, want to try to lead the lost ones away from it.
1 John 3:15 Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer: and ye know that no murderer hath eternal life abiding in him. [KJV]
Anyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and no murderer has eternal life. These are some mighty harsh words! I did not say them. Jesus said them, and John is saying them here; John is quoting Jesus (Mat.5:21-22). Envy and jealousy lead to bitterness; bitterness is like a cancer of the heart, and will eventually destroy you if you don’t get it under control. Bitterness will utterly defile you (Heb.12:15). Where does bitterness come from? HATE! If it is not ‘love’ it is ‘hate’! John says that if you ‘hate’ your brother in Christ, you are a “murderer”! These are some pretty rough words here! He goes on to say that “no murderer has eternal life”. Can we back that up any where else in the Bible? YES! Rev. 21:8 But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death. [KJV] Rev. 22:15 For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie. [KJV] “Without” means outside the ‘City’ (Heaven). Only those who “do His commandments” may enter the ‘City” (Rev.22:14). And what are His “commandments”? LOVE, LOVE! (Mat.22:36-40). If we do NOT love, we cannot enter into Heaven! ALL hate is potentially murderous.
1 John 3:16 Hereby perceive we the love of God, because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. [KJV]
True love is: Jesus Christ laid down His life for us. And we should have sincere love and compassion for our brothers. Love reveals itself in conduct. Real, true love is action, not just words, or feelings. Love is in no way selfish or self-indulgent. We know how Jesus loved us; He died for us! This love He showed was selfless and sacrificial. So how should we love our brothers and sisters in Christ? With that same kind of love! Do you know anyone who would lay down their life for you? Would you lay down your life for someone? Pretty sobering questions! I’d like to say I would be able to die for another; but when the time came, what would I do? I honestly do not know! There are times that ‘living’ for someone might be harder than ‘dying’ for them. Placing the needs and desires of our brothers over and above our own is hard to do. There is no way we can do this on our own. We need His help!
1 John 3:17 But whoso hath this world's good, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him? [KJV]
If anyone has material possessions and sees his brother in need but has no pity on him, how can the love of God be in him? This ‘love’ we are discussing is not sentimental love. The love of God in you should motivate you (put you in action). Expressing love with your tongue is good, yes; but expressing love with your feet is better by far. John is saying that if we are God’s children, our life will manifest, SHOW our love. How clearly do your actions reveal your love? Are you generous with not only your money, but with your time, possessions, and love? Both the murderer, and the miser have something in common: they lack love in their hearts. We should practice love in a proper manner; with actions and in truth. Sometimes love is simply a kind word or a smile, or a hug to one who is so lonely. Try it some time! See how good you will feel!
1 John 3:18 My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth. [KJV]
We must stop just saying we love people; we must really love them, and show it. James 1:22 But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. [KJV] . . . We must be sincere, NOT hypocrites (for we deceive no one but ourselves) as we live the life as God’s ‘little children’! We must not just say we love; we must show it! Self-sacrificing love (like that of our Lord Jesus Christ) is required of us. It may never be necessary for us to literally ‘lay down our life’ for someone; to actually die for them; but in all reality, it is certain that there will come a time it will be necessary to give of our money, possessions, time and/or love! (See: Jam.2:14-17 for more on this subject).
1 John 3:19 And hereby we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before him. [KJV]
When we truly belong to the Truth, our hearts rest in His Presence. If we love our brothers and sisters in Christ; we know we are “of the Truth” (of God). Have you ever felt you don’t love people as you should? Have you ever felt guilty that you are not doing enough to help those around you? Does your conscience ever bother you? I believe this is who John had in mind when he wrote this powerful letter. And truthfully, I think it includes all of us, at some time or other in our lives.
“And shall assure our hearts before Him.” When God’s children have a ‘conscience attack’, what causes it? It is the Spirit of God working within us. He is convicting us of something that we are doing, (or not doing) that is against God’s will. Once we make it right with the Lord, we feel good again! Our hearts are ‘set at rest’ (or, we have peace in our hearts; assurance before Him). There are three reasons ‘love’ is essential to assurance before God:
- #1. . . . It relieves the condemnation of our hearts (the guilty feeling is gone!)
- #2. . . . It gives us confidence in our times when we go to God in prayer.
- #3 . . . It fulfills God’s command.
Is ‘love’ really too much for God to ask of us?
1 John 3:20 For if our heart condemn us, God is greater than our heart, and knoweth all things. [KJV]
Do you ever feel guilty? Condemn yourself? Do you ever do things you know you should not do? Do you at times know you should be doing something, and do not do it? That is your heart condemning you. But, do you lose your salvation at times like these? NO! Absolutely NOT! If you are truly God’s child, you are His child forever (Jn.14:16; 2 Jn.2). OSAS!!! Once saved, always saved!
God does NOT give His Spirit to you one day and the next take Him away again! You are still His child; BUT, when you do something against God’s will, when you fail Him, He is NOT happy, He is not pleased. The wood shed may be His next step! God is greater than our conscience! Go to Him in prayer! God knows your heart; He knows ALL things (Josh.2:22; Job 26:6; 28:23; 31:4; 34:21; Ps.139:4; 147:5; Pro.15:11; Isa.40:26; 42:9; Eze.11:5-B; 37:3; Amos 4:13; Heb.4:13). If you are truly sorry, God knows that. He knows when you are sincere. On the other hand, He also knows when you are NOT sincere! He knows all things!
1 John 3:21 Beloved, if our heart condemn us not, then have we confidence toward God. [KJV]
If our hearts do not condemn us, we have confidence before God. If your conscience is clear, and your heart right with God, you have confidence toward (before) God. You can then go to God in prayer with boldness (Eph.3:12; Phil.1:14; 1:20; 1 Tim.3:13; Heb.4:16; 10:19; 10:35; 1 John 2:28; 3:21; 4:17). You need not have fear, and you can be assured your prayers will be heard, and will be answered. Do not be like some people; when they don’t get what they ask for, they say God has not answered. God answers in three ways: #1. Yes. #2. No. #3. Wait. If you leave the decision up to God, He will always give what is best for you (Ro.8:28). He will always answer the prayer of His TRUE children when their heart is right with Him. John 9:31 Now we know that God heareth not sinners: but if any man be a worshipper of God, and doeth his will, him he heareth. (KJV) . . . Sin will turn God's Face away from us. Get yourself right with Him (1 John 1:9). Psalm 66:18 If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me: (KJV)
God will NOT hear an unbeliever! His Face is hidden (Eze.39:23; Mic.3:4; 1 Pet.3:12).
1 John 3:22 And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight. [KJV]
We get what we ask for because we obey Him and doing the things that please Him. Obedience = keeping His commands continuously; (doing His will). Doing things that please Him = serving Him; (doing His will). So, what is His will? Obeying, serving, and giving Him the honor and glory for all things! Keeping His commands have two aspects:
- #1. Place our faith in the Name of God’s Son (1 Jn.5:13), so we can be of the Truth.
- #2. Keep loving each other, just as God commanded us, through His Son, Jesus Christ. Right conduct will flow from right belief (2:3-4; Gal.5:6,13).
We must have an intimate relationship with God, and His Son. If we do this, we will receive whatever we ask for. So, . . . can we ask for worldly riches? Perfect health? Can we ask for selfish things and get them? The answer is NO! This would NOT be in God’s will! We are to use Jesus as a role model in our lives. Use Him as a guide in your prayer life too. If you don’t know if you should ask for a certain thing; just ask yourself one question: “What would Jesus do?” If He wouldn’t, you’d better not!
1 John 3:23 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. [KJV]
This is what God says we must do: Believe on the Name of His Son Jesus Christ, and love one another. In God’s Word, a person’s name stands for his character, represents who he is; if he is a good person or an evil one. When we think of Abraham, Moses, Joshua, David, etc. we think of ‘good’ people; and when we think of Pharaoh, Haman, Ahab, Herod, etc. we think of ‘evil’ people. Believing in Jesus’ Name means to pattern your life after Him; and to abide in Him, remain in Him, continue in Him (fellowship), and becoming more and more like Him each day you live. What better pattern could God’s children have, than Jesus? And if we pattern ourselves after our Lord, we will love each other, for no one in history has ever loved more than Jesus!
1 John 3:24 And he that keepeth his commandments dwelleth in him, and he in him. And hereby we know that he abideth in us, by the Spirit which he hath given us. [KJV]
Those who obey His commands abide in Him, and He in them, and this is how we know that He lives in us: by the Spirit He gave us. (Also see 1 Jn.2:3,5,27). Abiding (dwelling, living, remaining, continuing) in Christ results in a very intimate relationship with God the Father! One ‘mark’ of a Christian is love; another is that the Holy Spirit of God dwells within them (Ro.8:9). The Spirit verifies to us IF we have kept God’s commands. When we do not keep God’s commands, the Holy Spirit is grieved, and our hearts are convicted. How do we know we are God’s children? By His Spirit within us. He is there, and we know He is there! You know if you are doing God’s will; and you know if you are not!
Notice: in verses 23 & 24 that all three persons of the Trinity are mentioned. Also for our Triune God, see: Mat.28:19; John 14:26; 15:26; 2 Cor.13:14; 1 Pet.1:2; 1 John 5:7.
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