Chapter 2, Verse 25-29
1 John 2:24) [GNB] Be sure, then, to keep in your hearts the message you heard from the beginning. If you keep that message, then you will always live in union with the Son and the Father.
1 John 2:7, 10) [GNB] My dear friends, this command I am writing you is not new; it is the old command, the one you have had from the very beginning. The old command is the message you have already heard.
10) [GNB] If we love others, we live in the light, and so there is nothing in us that will cause someone else to sin.
1 John 3:22-23) [GNB] We receive from him whatever we ask, because we obey his commands and do what pleases him.
23) [GNB] What he commands is that we believe in his Son Jesus Christ and love one another, just as Christ commanded us.
QUESTION: What was “the message you heard from the beginning”?
ANSWER: We need to love others the way Jesus loves us. We’re walking in the light if we do that; we’re walking in the darkness if we don’t.
John 3:34-35) [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 was “the beginning” John is referring to?
ANSWER: He was referring to “the beginning” of a new order; which required the giving of a new law.
On To This Week’s Lesson:
1 John 2:25) [GNB] And this is what Christ himself promised to give us—eternal life.
John 10:27-30) [GNB] My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me.
28) [GNB] I give them eternal life, and they shall never die. No one can snatch them away from me.
29) [GNB] What my Father has given me is greater than everything, and no one can snatch them away from the Father’s care.
30) [GNB] The Father and I are one.
1 John 5:11-13) [GNB] The testimony is this: God has given us eternal life, and this life has its source in his Son.
12) [GNB] Whoever has the Son has this life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life.
13) [GNB] I am writing this to you so that you may know that you have eternal life—you that believe in the Son of God.
QUESTION: What has Christ promised you?
ANSWER: Eternal life.
QUESTION: Can someone receive eternal life, and then lose it?
ANSWER: No! If you could lose it, then it wouldn’t be eternal.
QUESTION: Who has Christ given this eternal life to, according to John 10:27-28?
ANSWER: He gives eternal life to His sheep; He gives eternal life to those He knows.
1 John 2:26) [GNB] I am writing this to you about those who are trying to deceive you.
QUESTION: What deceptive lie is John referring to?
ANSWER: Most commentators believe this verse is referring to either, the entire letter, or verses 18-25. The entire letter is composed of encouragement to believers, and warnings to them of the danger of the false teaching of the Gnostics.
Acts 20:27-30) [GNB] For I have not held back from announcing to you the whole purpose of God.
28) [GNB] So keep watch over yourselves and over all the flock which the Holy Spirit has placed in your care. Be shepherds of the church of God, which he made his own through the blood of his Son.
29) [GNB] I know that after I leave, fierce wolves will come among you, and they will not spare the flock.
30) [GNB] The time will come when some men from your own group will tell lies to lead the believers away after them.
NOTE: Paul warns the Ephesian elders [vs. 17] to protect their flock from false teachers.
ANOTHER NOTE: The majority of the epistles are written to correct error.
QUESTION: What can you and I do to avoid error?
ANSWER: We need to 1) keep the Word of God ever before us, and 2) we need to keep the message that was given by Christ in the very beginning of the N.T. age in our hearts. That message is that we love each other the very way that Christ Jesus loves us.
STILL ANOTHER NOTE: The commandments that John speaks about at the end of chapter 3 of this letter are: faith in Christ and love for one another. If you’re a Christian you already have faith in Christ, so now the emphasis is on loving one another.
1 John 2:27) [GNB] But as for you, Christ has poured out his Spirit on you. As long as his Spirit remains in you, you do not need anyone to teach you. For his Spirit teaches you about everything, and what he teaches is true, not false. Obey the Spirit’s teaching, then, and remain in union with Christ.
QUESTION: Is John suggesting that the church doesn’t need teachers?
ANSWER: That can’t be, because John is teaching them throughout this letter.
Ephesians 4:11-12) [GNB] It was he who “gave gifts to people”; he appointed some to be apostles, others to be prophets, others to be evangelists, others to be pastors and teachers.
12) [GNB] He did this to prepare all God’s people for the work of Christian service, in order to build up the body of Christ.
Hebrews 5:12) [GNB] There has been enough time for you to be teachers—yet you still need someone to teach you the first lessons of God’s message. Instead of eating solid food, you still have to drink milk.
QUESTION: If John isn’t telling us that we don’t need teachers, then what is he telling us?
ANSWER: “If you want to know what it’s talking about, then see what it’s talking about. What’s the context? The Gnostics had brought in a new doctrine. It was something that hadn’t been taught by the Lord Jesus, or by any of his apostles. We have the Word of God; we don’t need a new revelation!
QUESTION: What does “his Spirit teaches you about everything” mean?
ANSWER: It was the Holy Spirit who inspired the writers of Scripture.
II Timothy 3:16) [GNB] All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching the truth, rebuking error, correcting faults, and giving instruction for right living,
II Peter 1:21) [GNB] For no prophetic message ever came just from the human will, but people were under the control of the Holy Spirit as they spoke the message that came from God.
QUESTION: The Holy Spirit inspired the writers of Scripture. Why is that truth important to this discussion?
ANSWER: Any new “truth” that contradicts the first Truth is not of God. Paul’s words were a harsh warning to such men.
Galatians 1:6-9) [GNB] I am surprised at you! In no time at all you are deserting the one who called you by the grace of Christ, and are accepting another gospel.
7) [GNB] Actually, there is no “other gospel,” but I say this because there are some people who are upsetting you and trying to change the gospel of Christ.
8) [GNB] But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel that is different from the one we preached to you, may he be condemned to hell!
9) [GNB] We have said it before, and now I say it again: if anyone preaches to you a gospel that is different from the one you accepted, may he be condemned to hell!
1 John 2:28) [GNB] Yes, my children, remain in union with him, so that when he appears we may be full of courage and need not hide in shame from him on the Day he comes.
QUESTION: How do we remain in union with God?
ANSWER: Let the “message you heard from the beginning” guide your heart. That message, as we explained in the review of verse 24, is the command to love others the very way God loves us.
1 John 2:29) [GNB] You know that Christ is righteous; you should know, then, that everyone who does what is right is God’s child.
NOTE: This verse is a precursor of the next chapter. I will leave the discussion of this verse to the discussion of the passage in chapter 3 that it refers to.
Walk of Grace Chapel, Council Bluffs Church