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1 John Unit Notes
Author: John the Apostle (whom Jesus loved)
Time: 85-95 AD
Recipients: circular letter to churches in Ephesus
Content: 1) Essentials of the gospel
2) Warnings against heresies creeping into the church
After the destruction of Jerusalem, John moved to Ephesus. John grew to an old age and wrote a gospel account as well as his 3 epistles along with his Revelation.
-John had pupils (students) such as Polycarp, Papias, and Ignatius; all of which became the early church Fathers- early teachers of the Christian faith.
John's Goal in Writing:
Joy- “And we are writing these things so that our joy may be complete.” -1:4
Holiness- “My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin.” -2:1
Assurance- “ I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God that you may know that you have eternal life.” - 5:13
John's Purpose in Writing:
Before you do something, you have to know something
Grand Theme: True doctrine--------> Obedient Living--------> Fervent Devotion
John’s purpose in writing:
John desires that believers would grow in their theological understanding- not mere facts but rather “who”
2. John desires that believers would grow in their devotion to God/ Lord Jesus Christ------------------> Communion is the ultimate goal and reality
-Growth in FAITH-------------------> trusting dependence on Jesus Christ alone in all of life
- Growth in OBEDIENCE----------> devotion manifests in action according to the will of God
- Growth in LOVE-------------------> devotion to Christ which in will lead to love toward others, that is, true unconditional, self-sacrificing, self-denying love
Devotion grows in meditating on the person and work of Jesus Christ
The more you focus on Christ your love grows and you want to know more about him.
Doctrine and practice in the Christian life cannot be separated- the more you focus on Christ your love grows and you want to know more about him.
1 John’s letter is not linear but rather circular in the nature of its content. These themes/ principles are mentioned again throughout the subsequent chapters of the epistle.
Key Themes and Principles:
The great God of the Universe manifests himself in the flesh through his Son Jesus Christ who is “true God” and “eternal life”
Key Passages: [1:1-3, 4:2, 5:20]
*To know God is to view the person and work of Jesus Christ
2. Since all mankind is sinful, Christians are able now to have fellowship with the Father and Son along with fellow believers through continual faith/ repentance in Jesus Christ
Key Verse: [1:3-10]
3. Christ Jesus is our Advocate with the Father and the Propitiation for our sins.
Key Verses: [2:1-2, 4:10]
4. The Christian who truly knows Jesus Christ forsakes sin and keeps the commandments of God, thus fulfilling the greatest Commandments
Key Verses: [2:3-11, 3:4-24, 4:7-21]
5. The person who denies Jesus as the Son of God (divinity) [in consequence] denies God the Father
Key Verse: [2:22-23, 4:2-3, 5:10-12]
6. The Result of faith in Jesus is forgiveness of sin, eternal life, confidence to pray, protection from the devil, and knowing God
Key Verses: 5:12-21
John declares the manifestation of the God of Life who is Jesus Christ the righteous
John testifies to the reality of God coming in the flesh
John declares that Jesus is the Word of Life and the Word of Light
John proclaims Christ so that believers would have fellowship with other believers and that his joy would be complete
The true believer can have assurance of eternal life and will walk the same way in which Jesus walked. [v5]
The true believer does not love the world nor the things of the world. [v.15]
Characteristics of the world are: 1)desires of the flesh, 2)desire of the eyes, and 3) the pride of life
The one who hates his brother possesses no eternal life. [v.15]
True believers love in deed and in truth, and not in empty words. [v.18]
The commandment the believer follows is to “believe in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, and love one another.” [v.23]
The one is who born of God possess the Holy Spirit. Therefore, one who dwells in the believer is greater than the evil one who dwells in the World. [v. 4]
By the Spirit we overcome 1)sin, 2)temptation, and 3)the things of the world----> 2:17
The one who claims to know God will manifest a life of love to HIM and those around them. [v.7-11]
Those who love God have confidence on the day of judgment that they will inherit eternal life rather than eternal punishment
God hears the prayers of those who ask Him for things according to his will
The love of God is defined as one who keeps his commandments
The Christian believer not only possesses forgiveness of sin but in chapter 5, John says that God protects them from the evil one.
The man/woman who is truly born of God does not keep on sinning
John urges above all that Christian believers would keep themselves from idols.u do something, you have to know something
The commandment the believer follows is to “believe in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, and lo