Chapter 2, Verses 6-11
I John 2:5) [KJV] But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him.
(BBE) But in every man who keeps his word, the love of God is made complete. By this we may be certain that we are in him:
(GW) But whoever obeys what Christ says is the kind of person in whom God’s love is perfected. That’s how we know we are in Christ.
(MSG) But the one who keeps God’s word is the person in whom we see God’s mature love. This is the only way to be sure we’re in God.
QUESTION: What truth is John conveying to us in today’s lesson?
ANSWER: If we have faith in God, and therefore in His Word, which presupposes loving Him, trusting Him, and obeying Him, and we also have a love for one another, we are mature Christians.
NOTE: If we get these two things right, the rest will fall in place. When we struggle with sin we are struggling with one of these two commandments; or perhaps, we are struggling with both.
QUESTION: According to the above passages why do we struggle to live victoriously?
ANSWER: Please note:
1) If we don’t trust what God says, then we CAN’T live victorious Christian lives.
2) If we don’t love others, then we WON’T live victorious Christian lives.
Matthew 22:36-40) [GNB] “Teacher,” he asked, “which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”
37) [GNB] Jesus answered, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’
38) [GNB] This is the greatest and the most important commandment.
39) [GNB] The second most important commandment is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as you love yourself.’
40) [GNB] The whole Law of Moses and the teachings of the prophets depend on these two commandments.”
On To This Week’s Lesson:
I John 2:6-11) [KJV] He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked.
Note the Difference:
3) [KJV] And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments.
5) [KJV] But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him.
6) [KJV] He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked.
Concerning these three verses,
“Bengel notes the gradation in the three phrases ‘to know Him, to be in Him, to abide in Him; knowledge, fellowship, constancy’” [Vincent].
(BBE) He who says that he is living in him, will do as he did.
(CEV) If we say we are his, we must follow the example of Christ.
7) [KJV] Brethren, I write no new commandment unto you, but an old commandment which ye had from the beginning. The old commandment is the word which ye have heard from the beginning.
8) [KJV] Again, a new commandment I write unto you, which thing is true in him and in you: because the darkness is past, and the true light now shineth.
QUESTION: In what way is the commandment John refers to “old”?
ANSWER: It had been around since the founding of Christianity. It began decades earlier in Jesus.
QUESTION: In what way is the commandment John refers to “new”?
ANSWER: It replaced the old economy of the Law. It introduced the “new” economy of grace with its own Law, the royal Law, which was the commandment to love as we are loved.
QUESTION: Has darkness truly passed away?
ANSWER: Please note:
In regards to “because the darkness is past,”
“The passing is not represented as accomplished, but as in progress” [Vincent].
NOTE: Darkness has been defeated at the cross! Its demise began that day! Darkness will completely disappear for believers “when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is”
[I John 3:2].
9) [KJV] He that saith he is in the light, and hateth his brother, is in darkness even until now.
10) [KJV] He that loveth his brother abideth in the light, and there is none occasion of stumbling in him.
11) [KJV] But he that hateth his brother is in darkness, and walketh in darkness, and knoweth not whither he goeth, because that darkness hath blinded his eyes.
QUESTION: Does a Christian have the option to hate someone?
Matthew 5:44, 46) [KJV] But I say unto you, Love your enemies,
46) [KJV] For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same?
NOTE: Many N.T. verses teaching Christian love are referring to loving Christian brothers/sisters. However, the N.T. also teaches loving the unchurched. In the above verse we’re to love our enemies.
What Command Is Being Referred To In These Verses?
Vs. 7) It’s the command that Christians had heard from “the beginning.”
Vs. 8) It’s the command whose truth was seen in Christ first, and now in believers.
Vs. 9) It’s the command that forbids hating others.
Vs. 10) It’s the command to love others.
QUESTION: What specific command is John referring to?
ANSWER: It’s the “new commandment” that Jesus gave the disciples in John 13:34-35.
John 13:34-35) [GNB] And now I give you a new commandment: love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.
35) [GNB] If you have love for one another, then everyone will know that you are my disciples.
QUESTION: What is John reminding us Christians about?
ANSWER: This is an actual command that Christians are to obey. This is what verse six is telling us to do; we are to love others the way Jesus loved us.
QUESTION: What else does this verse point out?
ANSWER: HATRED IS NOT AN OPTION FOR BELIEVERS!
QUESTION: How does the N.T. command to love differ from the O.T. command to love?
1) The O.T. command tells me to love you the way I love myself.
The N.T. command tells me to love you the way Christ loves me.
2) There was no perfect example of loving someone the way you love yourself in the O.T.
Jesus is the perfect example of walking in love.
NOTE: The example Jesus set for us is what gives us understanding of what genuine love/agape is.
1 John 3:16) [GNB] This is how we know what love is: Christ gave his life for us. We too, then, ought to give our lives for others!
John 15:13) [GNB] The greatest love you can have for your friends is to give your life for them.
QUESTION: Is loving the way we are loved a command, or a suggestion?
ANSWER: IT’S A COMMAND! We need to understand that walking in love is walking in the Light! Walking in hatred is walking in darkness!
1 John 2:11) [KJV] But he that hateth his brother is in darkness, and walketh in darkness, and knoweth not whither he goeth, because that darkness hath blinded his eyes.
QUESTIONS: Can we be obnoxious? Can we be irritating? Can we disappoint? Can we cause pain? Does God/Jesus love us when we do these things?
ANSWER: THAT’S THE LOVE WE’RE CALLED TO IMITATE! THAT’S THE LOVE THAT WILL CAUSE THE UNCHURCHED TO KNOW THAT WE’RE THE REAL DEAL; WE ARE DISCIPLES/FOLLOWERS OF CHRIST!
Walk of Grace Chapel, Council Bluffs Church