November 27–December 3 1 John; Jude “God Is Love”

November 27–December 3 1 John; Jude “God Is Love”
The Calling of the Sons of Zebedee, Marco Basaiti Venezia, 1470/75 - post 1530

1 John

I decided to focus most on 1 John, as the other two epistles mainly repeat the same message and don’t have as much meat in them. Then in Jude.

1:1-10

All have sinned. It is arrogance to think otherwise. How often do you repent (confess your sins as John says)? What sin might you have that you refuse to acknowledge that is keeping you from walking in the light?

2:3-6 

If you claim to be of Christ, then you must obey Him. The claim to faith is nothing without righteous actions.

2:9-11

What ways do you fail to love your brothers and sisters? How can you protect yourself from evil men, but refrain from hating them?

2:26-27

When you abide in Christ, you cannot be deceived by antichrists. The Spirit of God will teach you the things of God while you abide in Him. Learn the voice of the spirit and you will not be deceived.

3:1

The world does not understand us because it does not understand God.

3:4-6

When we are abiding in Christ, we do not sin. When we sin we are no longer abiding in Him. In that moment we no longer know Him, nor see Him. If we continue to sin, we will not abide in Him at all.

3:11-18

A reiteration of two things: the world hates the believers because they do evil and evil hates righteousness, and we cannot be a true believer in Christ if we close our hearts to our brothers and sisters.

3:24

Do you obey God’s commandments, so others know that you abide in Christ?

4:4-6

Do you listen to the teachings of the Apostles and the Prophets? They are of God because they teach the truths of Jesus Christ. If we do not listen to them, we are not of God. By their teachings and their testimonies we can know the spirit of truth from the spirit of deceit.

4:12-21

In verse 12, for seemingly no reason John says no one has seen God at any time. But later he calls back to this statement to prove a point about his audience, and also clarifies what he meant. If you do not love those you see, you cannot possibly love God, who you haven’t seen. Because no one reading that letter from John had seen God. It is part of John’s argument about testing spirits and not being deceived by antichrists. You can know a man claiming to have seen God, has certainly not seen God because of how he fails to love his brothers and sisters.

Jude

Jude is mostly focused on sexual impropriety and the attitudes of those who indulge in this grievous sin without shame.

1:3-7

This seems to be an indication of the coming apostasy. Men slipped into the early church for the purpose of conspiring against it. How do you recognize those like that in our current day?

1:8-10

When we contend with those who wish to slander us, do we bring to them a slanderous judgement, or do we do as Michael and let the Lord do the rebuking?

1:10-16

Jude answers the above question and gives a list of actions and traits of those who seek to condemn God.

1:17-25

Do you have mercy coupled with respect to those who separate from us? Though they defile, condemn, and hate us, we are taught to act with charity, love, and compassion to our enemies. We should not act as they act to us, but we should rely on the power of Christ to guard us from them and do what we can to snatch them from the fire.