Summary: We know how Christians ought to behave, we know it won’t always be easy, but victory is assured because the Son of God has come.
Three Things I Know for Sure I John 5:18-21
INTRO.: There is a story in the ninth chapter of John’s Gospel of a man born blind who was given sight by Jesus. He became the center of great controversy. No one wanted to believe Jesus had done this. They called the man in to question and he told them Jesus had put mud on his eyes. They accused Jesus of Sabbath breaking. Still they refused to believe and called in his parents.
The parents were afraid to get involved and said, "ask him. He is of age."
They brought him back and put their demand to him, "Give glory to God, " they said. "We know this man is a sinner." Exasperated, he replied to them, "Whether he is a sinner or not, I don’t know. One thing I do know. I was blind but now I see!"
This man had found one thing about which he was absolutely certain and he was basing his entire case upon that one thing. That’s logical. If there’s something we don’t know, we want to work from the known to try to understand the unknown. For example, we can’t know what the weather will be an hour from now. If there is a strong wind, low barometer, dense clouds, and high humidity, we may conclude from these known, measurable indicators it will rain soon.
The reason we try to predict the weather and other things is because we hate uncertainty. We want to be sure about things if we can. If a doctor says he thinks we may have cancer, diabetes, or heart disease, we want to know for sure. We want more tests made until there is absolute certainty.
I want to share with you today three things about which I am certain. Every Christian should hold these truths as absolute certainties.
I. We know how we ought to behave: I John 5:18
A. Let’s review John’s teaching about sin:
1. One group of passages teaches we all sin. 1:8-10, 2:1, 5:16, 17
2. Another seems to teach we can’t sin. 3:6, 3:9, 5:18
3. These passage don’t contradict. This is God’s Word.
4. The answer is found in the original language and rightly translated in the NIV. A Christian may sin (one time act) but he cannot continually practice sin and remain a Christian. 2:6
B. So, the key to proper behavior is simple: avoid sin and do good.
1. We must do what God commands. 2:4-6
2. Do not love the world or anything in the world. 2:15
3. Purity and righteousness are required. 3:3, 7
4. Selflessness, generosity. 3:17
5. Obey God’s commands. 5:3
C. So, indeed we do know how we are expected to behave.
1. You know God expects you to be honest when others lie and slander.
2. You know He expects you to be straight when others are cheating and stealing.
3. You know He has rules against drugs, alcohol, and illicit sex, even if "everyone does it."
4. You know He hates when married people cheat on their spouse, no matter what the excuse or how strong the temptation.
II. This brings us to the second certainty: We know we are children of God and whole world is controlled by Satan. V. 19
A. There will always be opposition and temptation. Look at Jesus’ example:
1. In infancy, attempts were made on His life. His family fled to Egypt.
2. His fleshly brothers ridiculed Him. John 7:1-5
3. His own apostles sometimes opposed Him. Matt. 16:22, 23
4. The entire population of towns sometimes demanded He leave. Matt. 8:34
5. All this opposition finally led to execution. I doubt a day went by when He didn’t face some enemy or some temptation to give up.
B. Never forget, in this life we are behind enemy lines:
1. The whole world is under the control of the evil one. To be forewarned is to be forearmed.
2. Satan is real and is unalterably opposed to the Christian living for God.
3. Don’t be surprised by opposition or lack of acceptance for the Gospel message.
4. But don’t give up, either. There will be victories if we persist in our efforts to serve God.
III. The third thing of which I am sure: the Son of God has come: v. 20
A. John had first hand evidence of the reality of His coming: II Peter 1:16-19
1. He, along with James and Peter, were eyewitnesses of His majesty.
2. We have the word of the prophets, the testimony of eyewitnesses, and the witness of God Himself.
3. Some today, as then, say the Bible is a book full of myth. Peter says "We did not follow cleverly invented stories."
4. Jesus is completely unique. No one like Him was ever born. "The Son of God" has come.