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1 JOHN Date A.D. 85-95
The first Book of John is written by the disciple, beloved of Jesus, John, the son of Zebedee and earthly first cousin of Jesus, nicknamed 'son of thunder'.
John means God has been gracious
The first Book of John, The Elder, is a sermon and teaches that special knowledge of enlightenment is taught by antichrists. This letter attacks one of the most dangerous heresies, Gnosticism, which taught them and today that salvation was not achieved by belief in Jesus Christ, Son of God who rose from the dead in the flesh and returned to heaven, but by knowledge. The heresy was also libertine and the disregarding moral restraints.
The text also assures believers of their salvation in Christ. It begins and ends with the theme of Eternal Life; the key theme being fellowship with God is life. The work lists the criteria, the characteristics of fellowship with God, and the basis of the fellowship. It exhorts believers to love one another, and love for God arises out of obedience. Love is to be practiced in self-sacrifice.
The work is made up of brief statements of simple words. The word 'know' is used over thirty times to make an impact as does the word 'believe'. It brings Christians back to the basic truth.
The First Book of John is the fourth of seven Church Letters. This universal work is also considered a Book containing teaching. It is also the twenty-third of twenty-seven Books of The New Testament.
Ethical and Moral Living
Love for Fellow Believers
The Person of Christ
The Source of Love
1 JOHN 5:12(a)
" WHOEVER HAS GOD'S SON HAS LIFE "
The nature of spiritual life with Christ is a new life, abundant life, eternal life and true freedom. This life unites believers to Jesus Christ as children of God and brings people to seek after the things of God. A new life has been made possible. Life is in Jesus; He is the source of Eternal Life. He is the Living One who has life in Himself. He is the source of life and is the Sovereign over life.
When someone accepts The Truth of Jesus Christ, that He came from heaven and is The Son of God, who came to the earth for the salvation of mankind, that person receives Life. Human beings have true spiritual life only because of the redeeming work done in Jesus Christ, and is a foretaste of life that believers will enjoy in the new heaven and earth. Christ out of Christianity leaves nothing, Christianity is Christ-centred.
This Gift of Eternal Life, through Jesus Christ, The Lord is a present privilege and ownership, not a possession to receive at sometime later. A believer possesses eternal life now, which is life of the highest quality. To have life in Jesus means victory over spiritual death and ultimately physical death. Those without Jesus as their Lord are without life; He is a person who lives in believers who are to enable His love to stay in them. Spiritual life begins with spiritual birth.
CHRIST AS SEEN IN THE FIRST BOOK OF JOHN
Jesus is The Believer's Life and He is seen in His Present Day Ministry as The Righteous Advocate.
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