Summary: Sermon series on 1 John
Series: 1 John
Passage: 1 John 2:3-2:6
Title: 3 Basic Principles of Knowing God
Focus: Furthering Fellowship
1 John Chapter One in Review
• Week 1 - PURPOSE: 1 John is writing to oppose three popular ways of thinking in his culture and time of His writing. (1) Gnostics [the world is fundamentally evil but the Spirit is fundamentally good] (2) Docetism [taught that Jesus only appeared to have a body/new age thought] (3) Cerinthus [Gnostic heretic against creation and Jesus].
• Week 2 - FELLOWSHIP W/ GOD: (1) Fellowship in existence (2) Fellowship in Knowledge (3) Fellowship in love.
• Week 3 – PROBLEMS (Get Back Into Fellowship): (1) Get in the right light (2) Get Devoted (3) Get Restored.
• Week 4 – PROBLEMS (Repentance): (1) Recognize your own personal sin (2) Confess Sin (3)
TITLE: Basic Principles of Knowing God the Father (2:3-2:6)
INTRODUCTION: There is an old unethical selling technique still used today called the bait-and-switch. In this selling scheme, a merchant lures customers into his store by advertising a well-known product at a very low price. When the buyer asks to purchase it he is told that it is out of stock. The salesperson then tries to sell him a low-grade line of merchandise, hoping to pocket a bigger profit. The brand name was used just to get potential customers to step inside.
In a similar way, much like those false teachers that John opposed used biblical words to capture interest and gain a hearing. False prophets and teachers may talk about Christ, redemption, the cross, and the resurrection, but these "trusted terms" amount to nothing more than a come-on. The "seller" (often disguised as pastors) use terminology to advertise truths that, as far as he is concerned, are "out of stock." When an interested person responds, he is confronted by beliefs that are completely contrary to God's Word.
John writes so that we would know the truth, have the access to the actual product and be able to use it in order to live a life that is truly enriching. His emphasis in chapter two is outlining how to know God. He writes (1 John 2:1-2:6),
“My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. 2He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world. And by this we know that we have come to know him, if we keep his commandments. 4Whoever says “I know him” but does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him, 5but whoever keeps his word, in him truly the love of God is perfected. By this we may know that we are in him: 6whoever says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he walked.”
TITLE: Basic principles of knowing God (2:3-2:6) (i.e. Why do we obey?)
Point #1: Know God the Father if You Keep His Commandments (1 John 2:3-4)
• Explanation: John writes that “we” (Christians – those who have come to know Christ through faith) can be SURE (having feelings of complete certainty with no hesitation) that we know him (Christ) if we obey his commands.
o Obey: John lays the importance of following the commands of God with complete compliance. His stress is not fully in the mind but more in the behavior of the Christian. The church should have complete compliance to God’s Word so that they would experience the fellowship previously discussed in chapter one.
o His: As often in John’s usage, the word “Him” might refer either to God or to Christ. For John, Jesus is so closely linked with the Father that a precise distinction between the Persons of the Godhead sometimes seems irrelevant. To know Jesus is to know God and to know God is to know Jesus.
o Commandments: The commandments are ultimately referring back to the ‘ten words’ written down by God by the divine voice from Sinai in the hearing of all Israel (Ex. 19:16–20:17). Afterwards, they were TWICE written by the finger of God on both sides of two tables of stone (Ex. 31:18; 32:15–16; 34:1, 28; Dt. 10:4). Moses shattered the first pair, symbolizing Israel’s breaking of the covenant by the sin of the golden calf (Ex. 32:19). The second pair were deposited in the ark (Ex. 25:16; 40:20). Later, Moses republished the Ten Commandments in slightly modified form (Dt. 5:6-21).
• The commands are as follows (Exodus 20:1-17):
• ONE: 'You shall have no other gods before Me.'
• TWO: 'You shall not make for yourself a carved image--any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth.'