Summary: The importance of purity in our lives.
Purity in the Christian’s Life
1st John 2:28 – 3:3
a. Turn with me in your Bibles to 1st John, Chapter 2, and verse 28.
b. Tonight we are going to look at five verses in the Book of First John, that shed some light as to how important purity is in our walk with Christ. But, if you remember last time we were together we looked at verses 18 through 27 in chapter 2. In these verses, John tells us about how to avoid the dangers of false religion. He goes on to tell us about the anointing of the Holy Spirit given to all believers, to help us discern truth, and finally John briefly touches on how we can remain free from false religion, by abiding in Christ.
c. Tonight’s study continues that same line of thinking, we are going to again look at abiding in Christ, and how we can continue in abiding in Christ, by remaining pure in or walk. Follow along with me starting at verse 28.
d. 28 And now, little children, abide in Him, that when He appears, we may have confidence and not be ashamed before Him at His coming. 29 If you know that He is righteous, you know that everyone who practices righteousness is born of Him. 1 Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! Therefore the world does not know us, because it did not know Him. 2 Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is. 3 And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure.
e. Clearly, God’s Word tells us to keep ourselves pure. One thing that I found interesting while preparing this message was that
a. In the forests of northern Europe and Asia lives little animal called the ermine, known for his snow-white fur in winter. He instinctively protects his white coat against anything that would soil it. Fur hunters take advantage of this unusual trait of the ermine. They don’t set a snare to catch him, but instead they find his home, which is usually a cleft in a rock or a hollow in an old tree. They smear the entrance and interior with grime. Then the hunters set their dogs loose to find and chase the ermine. The frightened animal flees toward home but doesn’t enter because of the filth. Rather than soil his white coat, he is trapped by the dogs and captured while preserving his purity. For the ermine, purity is more precious than life.
b. We serve a thrice-Holy God. As Pastor Ron has noted several times in our study of Revelation, this is the only attribute mentioned three times in a row about the Lord. The Lord hates sin we see this in Proverbs 15:9 - The way of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord, But He loves him who follows righteousness. Again we see in Hebrews 12:14 - Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord. We are going to examine purity in depth tonight in these 5 verses. I pray that each one of us would get a new perspective on purity, and how to live it out in our lives. Let’s find out what God’s Word has for us tonight.
a. The Importance of Abiding in Christ – 2:28 -29
i. 28 And now, little children, abide in Him, that when He appears, we may have confidence and not be ashamed before Him at His coming
ii. We see John again addressing his readers as little children, as we saw earlier. This is an affectionate address of his audience, and not a description of them spiritually. In fact, the Living Bible translates this phrase dear children. John dearly loved his readers just as we should love each other in the body of Christ.
iii. John is urging us to abide in Christ because not only will it give us confidence in our faith in Him, but also that we might not be ashamed when He comes. We saw last time that John told us in verse 18, that this was the last hour at the time he was writing this. How much more so are these scriptures true for us today, with all this Bible prophecy come true, and as I said last time we met, if John was living in the last hour, we must be living in the last minutes or seconds.
iv. Another way to put it is that if we abide in Him, we don’t have to be afraid at Christ’s coming. Many people are afraid of Christ’s coming. I have to admit, I’ve been a little nervous about it especially when I do boneheaded things, but, as we grow closer and closer to the Lord, as we abide in Him, we can have comfort and assurance at His coming, not fear.