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Summary: 5th message in the series. John gives 3 tests to ensure our walk will please God.

TEXT: 1st John 2:3-11

TITLE: Walk as Jesus Walked

SERIES: Letters from John

TOPIC: tests of faithfulness

OCCASION: Burnside Christian Church, January 9, 2011

PROP.: John gives three tests to prove if your walk is pleasing to God.

INTRODUCTION: Good morning! We are continuing in our sermon series through the letters of John. Today’s text is 1st John 2:3-11. Please be opening up your Bible there.

As you’re turning there, let me ask you a question: What are you goals for 2011? Have you looked ahead and made some personal goals? Have you made some movement toward where you would like to be?

Maybe some of you are like: “I want to lose 20 pounds this year…and keep it off!”

Or… “I want to be more financially secure this year. Or responsible!”

Students: “I want to make the honor roll…”

or “I want to quit smoking!”

Let me ask you another question: Would you like to please God this year?

T.S.: This morning, John’s aim is to please God. And he gives us 3 tests to determine if our Spiritual walk is pleasing to God!

Let’s read our text this morning.

3 We know that we have come to know him if we obey his commands. 4 The man who says, “I know him,” but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in him. 5 But if anyone obeys his word, God’s love[b] is truly made complete in him. This is how we know we are in him: 6 Whoever claims to live in him must walk as Jesus did.

Let’s stop right there for a moment!

As a Christian, your aim should be to have a…

I. Faithful Obedience (vs. 3-6)

I’ve said it once…I’ll say it again…BECOMING a Christian is easy! BEING a Christian is hard. And notice I said FAITHFUL obedience. Not a casual obedience. Not an obedience that is convenient or an obedience that “I’ll obey God in THIS area of my life because it’s easy and I’m good at it.” FAITHFUL OBEDIENCE.

Is it easy to be faithful? To do something day in and day out. 24 hours a day. 7 days a week. 4 weeks a month. 12 months a year. Is that easy?

You tell me! Look around at the divorce rate. It’s too high! People have difficulty following through with the vow that was made to the love of their life. It’s true in marriage and it’s true in Christianity. And what you and I need to know is God is pleased with a FAITHFUL obedience.

How are you doing? Are you obedient? Listen to me…we can’t even show up to church faithfully! And not that church attendance is what saves you…but faithfully showing up to church IS a good indication of what might be going on inside your heart.

The message of this first point is really this:

A. Don’t drift away! Don’t backslide!

The majority of us in this room made a commitment to Christ. We marched down an aisle or we came forward at a week of church camp, or revival. And we boldly proclaimed that Jesus is going to be the boss of my life! I will follow Him! I will love Him. I will grow IN him.

How’s that working out for you?

Just because a person got wet doesn’t mean that they are saved. Salvation doesn’t stop when a person a gets baptized. Baptism is NOT fire insurance. “Well I’m not sure if I believe in baptism or salvation or God for that matter…but I’ll just “buy” the policy just in case…”

It’s TRUE. Salvation occurs at Baptism. But it doesn’t stop at baptism! One must have faithful obedience to God. And this is what John is saying in verse 3: “We know that we have come to know Him…if we OBEY his commands!”

Wow! My obedience to God’s commands is the proof that I am a saved person! The NIV and KJV both translate it: “we know that we have come to know Him…if we KEEP his commands.” The word keep is Tay-reh-O which is a military term. To prevent from escaping.

I like that idea. We need to keep a close eye on God’s commands and make sure they don’t escape from my life! Keep them!

Why? Because

B. Salvation is a treasure!

ILLUSTRATION: Imagine for a moment that I have something in my pocket. Something very secretive. It’s a great treasure. It’s very precious to me. But you can’t see what’s in my pocket so you don’t know if I really have great treasure in my pocket or not, right? But you say, “Yeah, but we’ll be able to tell over time if you have great treasure. Because it will weigh you down as you walk and you won’t be worried about your future if you have great treasure. And you will have a lot of joyfulness all the time if you have great treasure.” You see, you can’t see if I have it, but over time, you are going to be able to tell if I have it.

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