Summary: Is John the Apostle talking about individual sin or the sin of the world that came with rejection of God in the Garden.
1 We proclaim to you the one who existed from the beginning, whom we have heard and seen. We saw him with our own eyes and touched him with our own hands. He is the Word of life. 2 This one who is life itself was revealed to us, and we have seen him. And now we testify and proclaim to you that he is the one who is eternal life. He was with the Father, and then he was revealed to us. 3 We proclaim to you what we ourselves have actually seen and heard so that you may have fellowship with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son, Jesus Christ. 4 We are writing these things so that you may fully share our joy.[b]
Living in the Light
5 This is the message we heard from Jesus[c] and now declare to you: God is light, and there is no darkness in him at all. 6 So we are lying if we say we have fellowship with God but go on living in spiritual darkness; we are not practicing the truth. 7 But if we are living in the light, as God is in the light, then we have fellowship with each other, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, cleanses us from all sin.
8 If we claim we have no sin, we are only fooling ourselves and not living in the truth. 9 But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness. 10 If we claim we have not sinned, we are calling God a liar and showing that his word has no place in our hearts.
2 My dear children, I am writing this to you so that you will not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate who pleads our case before the Father. He is Jesus Christ, the one who is truly righteous. 2 He himself is the sacrifice that atones for our sins—and not only our sins but the sins of all the world.
John is trying to correct two things in this book. One is Gnostic (nostic) beliefs that were becoming predominant in a small group but was spreading out to the general public. Most likely one person in particular one named Cerinthus (Sir-rin-thus), that said Jesus was only a spiritual aspiration; that Jesus wasn’t a real person with flesh, bone and blood. That Jesus didn’t have a physical body. With them believing and teaching this John believes they took away the actual cleansing of sin on the cross by Jesus born of a human mother and the Holy Spirit which means a human physical death on the Cross.
Thesis of the Apostle John's message:
Gnostic beliefs saw no cleansing of sin because if no human part of Jesus actually died then there is no forgiveness of sin (no actual sacrifice).
Christian beliefs the Apostle John was trying to reveal to them: Just because we are cleans from our sin by Jesus Christ and no record to hold us accountable nothing will stop us from entering into eternal glory with our Perfect God. The Apostle John was saying we still sin and its all around us.
There is forgiveness and cleansing and no guilt as a Christian. You get to God by faith in a human Jesus that died for us. There is no forgiveness as a Gnostic. You take your dirt with you as you learned supposedly secrets to get to God.
Could it be John is talking more about sin in the world and around us than on accountability on just an individual bases. Gnostic beliefs just won’t work as forgiveness for the world as did Jesus.
-If it is individual forgiveness then it could be conceivable that we are killing Jesus on the Cross all over again if we aren't careful. Sinning on purpose or without thought about what we are doing to us and to other people. But if it is for the whole world that Jesus died then there is a new perspective here.
-Romans 10:9 If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.
*We can't sin in the eyes of God (so killing Jesus over and over isn’t possible) but we do sin and won't suffer for it.
-I John 2:2 (KJV) and He Himself is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for those of the whole world.
*propitiation-Jesus was the only worthy one that could died for us. He had no sin.
-Hebrews 10:12 but He, having offered one sacrifice for sins for all time, sat down at the right hand of God.
-There is a continual war in us and around us in every form conceivable between the flesh and the spirit.