1st John (part 1)

 THE BOOK OF 1ST JOHN (PART 1)

IF WE WANT FELLOWSHIP WITH GOD, WE MUST WALK IN THE LIGHT

(Pastor Lee Jackson)

I)     INTRODUCTION – I AM BEGINNING A SERIES ON THE EPISTLES OF JOHN: 1ST JOHN, 2ND JOHN & 3RD JOHN. THERE IS LITTLE DOUBT WHO WROTE THE BOOK OF 1ST JOHN.  IF YOU COMPARE THE OPENING OF THE BOOK OF JOHN WITH THE BOOK OF JOHN YOU HAVE THE SAME MAJESTIC LANGUAGE, THE SAME HONORING OF THE LIFE THAT APPEARED, THE SAME SYMBOLISM SPEAKING OF THE “WORD THAT BECAME FLESH”.  THE APOSTLE JOHN WAS CALLED JOHN THE BELOVED.  HE WAS ONE OF THE INNER CIRCLE OF THE APOSTLES:  PETER, JAMES & JOHN, WHO JESUS ASKED TO PRAY WITH HIM IN THE GARDEN OF GETHSEMANE.   IT WAS THE SAME THREE WHO WENT WITH JESUS TO THE MOUNT OF TRANSFIGURATION.  IT WAS JAMES AND JOHN WHO CAME TO JESUS ASKING THAT ONE BE ALLOWED TO SIT ON HIS RIGHT HAND AND THE OTHER ON HIS LEFT HAND – NOT THEIR FINEST HOUR.  CHURCH TRADITION INDICATES THAT JOHN WAS THE ONLY DISCIPLE THAT WAS NOT MARTYRED,  ALTHOUGH THEY TRIED TO BOIL HIM IN OIL; THAT FAILING, HE WAS EXILED TO THE ISLAND OF PATMOS, WHERE HE WROTE THE BOOK OF REVELATION, MORE SPECIFICALLY, THE REVELATION OF JESUS CHRIST, THE SON OF GOD.  THE EPISTLE OF 1ST JOHN IS NOT ADDRESSED TO ANY PERSON OR ANY SPECIFIC CHURCH BUT THE CHURCH AT LARGE.  JOHN WAS THE BISHOP OR OVERSEER OF THE CHURCHES OF ASIA.  IT IS BELIEVED THAT THESE LETTERS WERE CIRCULATED AMONG THE CHURCHES OF ASIA.

TEXT:   1 JOHN 1:1 – 10 (CHAPTER 1).

 II)    JOHN SPEAKS OF THE “WORD OF LIFE”.  (1-4)
A)   JOHN SPEAKS OF THAT WHICH EXISTED FROM THE BEGINNING – THE ETERNAL WORD OF GOD.  THE WORD THAT BECAME FLESH.  THE WORD THAT BRINGS LIFE, ABUNDANT LIFE AND ETERNAL LIFE – THAT COMES FROM THE SPIRIT OF GOD LIVING IN US.
B) JOHN 1:4 IN HIM WAS LIFE, AND THE LIFE WAS THE LIGHT OF MEN.  5 AND.THE LIGHT SHINES IN THE DARKNESS, AND THE DARKNESS DID NOT OVERTAKE IT.
C)   JOHN HAD SEEN HIM; TOUCHED HIM, ATE WITH HIM AND TESTIFIED OF HIM.  THE WORD THAT WAS WITH THE FATHER FROM ETERNITY PAST APPEARED ONTO THEM AND TO US.

D)   JOHN HAD LEANED ON THE BOSOM OF JESUS AND BROKEN BREAD WITH HIM – YET HE DID NOT CONSIDER HIMSELF A PEER OR AN EQUAL BUT HE LIVED IN AWE AND REVERENCE OF CHRIST, THE ANOINTED ONE, THE WORD MADE FLESH, THE ONE THAT HE WAS PRIVILEGED TO KNOW AND TO TOUCH AND TO LIVE FOR.

E)   HE SAW HIM WALK ON THE WATER, CALM THE TEMPESTUOUS SEA, RAISE LAZARUS FROM THE DEAD, OPEN THE EYES OF THE BLIND, TURN THE WATER INTO WINE, COMMAND DEMONS TO LEAVE, RISE FROM THE GRAVE, ASCEND INTO HEAVEN.  HE WOULD LIVE OR DIE FOR THE WORD THAT WAS MADE FLESH.

F)    THE ONE THAT PROPHETS WROTE ABOUT AND MARVELED OVER FINALLY APPEARED ON THE LANDSCAPE OF HUMAN HISTORY – HE APPEARED IN THE FULLNESS OF TIME – THAT IS IN GOD’S PERFECT TIMING.

G)   HE BECAME ONE OF US!  THE ONE THAT THE ANGELS BOWED DOWN TO, IN THE HALLS OF HEAVEN, CAME AS A BABY IN A MANAGER AND GREW UP A CARPENTER’S SON.

H)   JOHN PROCLAIMS THE MESSAGE FROM THE ONE HE HAS SEEN, HEARD AND TOUCHED – THE WHO RESTORED FELLOWSHIP (KOINONIA) WITH THE FATHER.  JOHN WAS GIVEN A MESSAGE FROM GOD TO US – MARKED URGENT. A MESSAGE REGARDING 1ST THE ESSENTIAL NATURE OF GOD.   A MESSAGE REGARDING THE BASIS OF OUR FELLOWSHIP WITH GOD AND THE NECESSITY OF DEPARTING FROM SIN.
III)   THE 1ST PART OF THE MESSAGE IS: THAT GOD IS LIGHT AND IN HIM IS NO DARKNESS AT ALL – NONE WHATSOEVER. (5 – 10)
1)    WHAT A STRANGE MESSAGE!  WHAT DOES THAT MEAN? WHY WAS THIS SO IMPORTANT? LIGHT AND DARKNESS HERE RELATES TO THE OPPOSITES OF SPIRITUAL & MORAL GOODNESS.  GOOD VS EVIL.

2)    JOHN IS SAYING THAT WE SERVE A HOLY GOD.  HOLY BEYOND ALL HUMAN COMPREHENSION.  NOT LIKE THE MYTHOLOGICAL GODS OF THE EGYPTIANS, THE GREEKS, THE PERSIANS OR THE ROMANS WHO WERE POWERFUL, BUT PRIDEFUL AND IMMORAL.

3)    WE WERE CREATED IN HIS IMAGE BUT GOD IS NOT LIKE US; HIS IMAGE WAS MARRED BECAUSE OF SIN.  HE IS A HOLY GOD AND TO BE FEARED AND WORSHIPPED.

(a)  ASK LOT’S WIFE WHO WAS TURNED INTO A PILLAR OF SALT FOR LOOKING BACK ON SODOM AND GOMORRAH AS THE JUDGMENT OF GOD FELL FROM HEAVEN IN THE FORM OF FIRE AND MOLTEN SULFUR,

(b)  ASK MOSES WHO HAD LED THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL TO THE FOOT OF THE MOUNTAIN TO MEET GOD AS THE MOUNTAIN TREMBLED, COVERED WITH SMOKE AND THE LORD DESCENDED ON IT IN A FIERY DISPLAY.

(c)  ASK THE SONS OF KORAH WHO HAD REBELLED AGAINST GOD’S SERVANT MOSES AND THE GROUND OPENED UP AND SWALLOWED THEM AND THEIR FAMILIES,

(d)  ASK MIRIAM WHO HAD DECIDED THAT SHE AND AARON DID NOT NEED MOSES, BUT THAT THEY COULD LEAD ISRAEL AND SPOKE AGAINST MOSES – SHE BECAME LEPROUS FROM THE TOP OF HER HEAD TO THE SOLES OF HER FEET.

(e)  ASK KING SOLOMON AFTER HE PRAYED HIS PRAYER OF DEDICATION FOR THE TEMPLE AND THE GLORY OF THE LORD FILLED THE TEMPLE AND FIRE CAME DOWN FROM HEAVEN AND CONSUMED THE BURNT OFFERING AND THE SACRIFICES.

(f)   ASK USSIAH WHO HAD INNOCENTLY REACHED OUT TO STEADY THE ARK OF GOD WHEN DAVID WAS BRINGING IT TO JERUSALEM AND HE WAS STUCK DOWN DEAD.

(g)  ASK ELIJAH AFTER GOD SENT FIRE TO CONSUME THE PROPHETS OF BAAL,  IN ANSWER TO ELIJAH’S PRAYER.

(h)  ASK ISAIAH WHO HAD THE VISION OF GOD,  HIGH AND LIFTED UP AND THE GLORY OF THE LORD FILLED THE HOUSE.

(i)    ASK KING BELSHAZZAR WHO WAS HAVING A PARTY WITH HIS FRIENDS WHEN SUDDENLY THE FINGER OF GOD APPEARED AND WROTE ON THE PALACE WALL TELLING HIM THAT HIS KINGDOM AND HIS LIFE WOULD END THAT VERY NIGHT,

(j)     ASK ANANIAS & SAPPHIRA WHO CONSPIRED TO LIE TO THE HOLY SPIRIT AND THEY WERE STRUCK DOWN DEAD.

IV)  THE 2ND PART OF THE MESSAGE IS:  IF WE CLAIM TO HAVE FELLOWSHIP WITH HIM AND CONTINUE TO WALK IN DARKNESS WE ARE LIVING A LIE. (6)

A)   REMEMBER GOD IS LIGHT AND IN HIM IS NO DARKNESS AT ALL.  THERE IS NO FELLOWSHIP BETWEEN LIGHT AND DARKNESS.

B)   GOD FORGIVES SIN BUT HE DOES NOT WINK AT SIN – IF WE CONFESS OUR SIN HE WILL FORGIVE OUR SIN, BUT WE ARE NOT TO CONTINUE TO SIN WILLFULLY AND INTENTIONALLY. THERE IS A DIFFERENCE BETWEEN SIN AND INIQUITY: INIQUITY IS A CONDITION OF THE HEART THAT CAUSES US TO SIN WILLINGLY AND BLATANTLY AND THEN DENY OR JUSTIFY THE SIN. THE BIBLE SAYS THAT THE FEAR OF THE LORD IS THE BEGINNING OF WISDOM.  THE FEAR AND REVERENCE OF GOD IS THE FOUNDATION OF ALL WISDOM, ALL KNOWLEDGE AND ALL UNDERSTANDING – WE ARE FOOLS NOT TO FEAR AND REVERENCE OUR CREATOR.

C)   Mat 6:23 BUT if your eye is evil, your whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in you is darkness, how great is that darkness!

D)   2Co 6:14  be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?

E)   WE CANNOT HAVE FELLOWSHIP WITH GOD AND CONTINUE TO PRACTICE A LIFESTYLE OF DELIBERATE INTENTIONAL SIN.    Eph 5:8 –13 FOR you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord; walk as children of light 9  (for the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth), 10  proving what is acceptable to the Lord. 11  And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them. 12  For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done by them in secret. 13  But all things that are reproved are made manifest by the light, for whatever makes manifest is light.

F)    1Jo 1:7 BUT if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin.  Light illuminates, light exposes, light vanquishes darkness.  Walking in the light means to walk in God’s revealed truth.

G)   1Jo 1:8 – 9  (Msg) IF we claim that we’re free of sin, we’re only fooling ourselves. A claim like that is errant nonsense. 9 ON the other hand, if we admit our sins–make a clean breast of them–he won’t let us down; he’ll be true to himself. He’ll forgive our sins and purge us of all wrongdoing.  EVEN CHRISTIANS HAVE TO ADMIT THAT WE SIN. THANK GOD THERE IS AN ONGOING CLEANSING FOR SIN PURCHASED FOR US BY THE BLOOD OF CHRIST BUT WE MUST ACKNOWLEDGE AND CONFESS OUR SIN AND WRONG DOING AND ASK GOD’S FORGIVENESS.  1Jo 1:10 IF we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His Word is not in us.

V)   CONCLUSION – IN VERSE 4 JOHN WROTE “And we write these things to you so that your joy may be full.”  THERE IS NO PEACE, NO JOY IN LIVING A LIE.  IT IS ROTTENNESS IN OUR BONES.  DAVID WROTE IN Psa 32:1- 5 Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered. 2 BLESSED is the man unto whom the LORD imputeth not iniquity, and in whose spirit there is no guile. 3 WHEN I kept silence, my bones waxed old through my roaring all the day long. 4 FOR day and night thy hand was heavy upon me: my moisture is turned into the drought of summer. Selah. 5 I acknowledged my sin unto thee, and mine iniquity have I not hid. I said, I will confess my transgressions unto the LORD; and thou forgavest the iniquity of my sin. Selah.  WE MUST HUMBLE OURSELVES AND CONFESS OUR SINS AND ASK GOD’S FORGIVENESS EACH EVERY TIME WE SIN.  THERE WILL BE A PRACTICAL EFFECT ON US.  WE BECOME INCREASING AWARE OF OUR SIN.  WE BEGIN TO SEE OUR SIN AS GOD SEES IT.  WE WILL BE TO LOATHE OUR SINFUL BEHAVIOR AND WE WILL BEGIN TO CHANGE.  WE WILL BEGIN ENJOY AND LONG FOR THE PRESENCE OF GOD AND FELLOWSHIP WITH GOD.  WE WILL BECOME CHILDREN OF THE LIGHT! JESUS PRAYED IN Joh 17:23  I in them, and You in Me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that You have sent Me and have loved them as You have loved Me.

John the Apostle was the son of Zebedee, and the brother of St. James the Greater. The Eastern Orthodox tradition gives his mother’s name asSalome. They originally were fishermen and fished with their father in theLake of Genesareth. He was first a disciple of John the Baptist and later one of the twelve apostles of Jesus.

John held a prominent position in the Apostolic body. Peter, James and John were the only witnesses of the raising of Jairus’ daughter,[Mk. 5:37] of the Transfiguration[Mt. 17:1] and of the Agony in Gethsemane.[Mt 26:37] Only he and Peter were sent into the city to make the preparation for the finalPassover meal (the Last Supper).[Lk 22:8] [4] At the meal itself, his place may have been next to Jesus on whose chest he leaned if he is indeed the “disciple whom Jesus loved.” However, this can not be concluded with certainty.[Jn 13:23-25] According to the general interpretation, John was also that “other disciple” who with Peter followed Jesus after the arrest into the palace of the high-priest.[Jn 18:15] John alone remained near Jesus at the foot of the cross on Calvary with Jesus’ mother, Mary, and the pious womenand took Mary into his care as the last legacy of Jesus.[Jn 19:25-27] According to the Bible, after the Resurrection, John and Peter were the first of the disciples to run towards the tomb and John was the first of the apostles to believe that Jesus had truly risen.[John 20:2-10] The author of the Gospel of John was accustomed to identifying himself as “the disciple whom Jesus loved”. After Jesus’ Ascension and the descent of the Holy Spirit onPentecost, John, together with Peter, took a prominent part in the founding and guidance of the church. He is with Peter at the healing of the lame man in the Temple.[Ac 3:1 et seq.] With Peter he is also thrown into prison.[Acts 4:3] He is also with Peter visiting the newly converted in Samaria.[Acts 8:14]

Rom 3:12  They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one.

Rom 3:13  Their throat is an open sepulcher; with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips:

Rom 3:14  Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness:

Rom 3:15  Their feet are swift to shed blood:

Rom 3:16  Destruction and misery are in their ways:

Rom 3:17  And the way of peace have they not known:

Rom 3:18  There is no fear of God before their eyes.

Rom 3:19  Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God.

Rom 3:20  Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin.

Rom 3:21  But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets;

Rom 3:22  Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference:

Rom 3:23  For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;

Rom 3:24  Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:

Rom 3:25  Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;

 

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