Monday, June 30, 2008

1 John, Chapter 1

I have long stated that this blog is merely thoughts from the ultimate source of Truth. That source is the Bible, the Word of Life. In 1 John, the apostle John tries to instruct us on the love of God and the Word of Life. This word is centered in God’s love, which is the crux of John’s message throughout this book. I wanted to write about this book this week because I think the world does not focus on God’s love as much as it needs to. God’s love is at the center of His word. His love is the reason why Christ came to earth to die for us. I feel that, as a society, we sometimes lose sight of that love as we try to bash people over the head with truth and what we view is right. The love then gets lost in our desire to present a slightly distorted view of the truth.

2The life appeared; we have seen it and testify to it, and we proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and has appeared to us. 3We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard, so that you also may have fellowship with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son, Jesus Christ. – 1 John 1:2-3

This is the basis of our faith. Here John testifies in a couple of short sentences his experience with Jesus. Remember, John was one of the original 12 apostles. He had firsthand knowledge of Christ’s ministry. This is someone that was constantly with Christ and therefore was prepared to spread the gospel out into the world. This book was also likely written very late in John’s life, and he was the last apostle to die because he was the only one that reached old age. In these words he simply states that he is proclaiming what he saw so that others may know. It is a simple plea from a man that knew the time was drawing short to complete his mission.

5This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all. 6If we claim to have fellowship with him yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live by the truth. 7But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin. – 1 John 1:5-7

This passage brings about an interesting debate on freedom from sin. There are some that believe a sinless life can be lived once we accept Christ. Others believe that accepting Christ’s gift frees us from the penalty of sin, but a sinless life cannot be achieved as long as we live in this fallen and broken world. I used to believe in the former, but as I have matured I have come to believe in the latter.

I have no doubt that the blood of Christ paid the price for all sin, past, present, and future. This is the promise we are given and John reiterates it here. I have accepted this gift, but I am still far from perfect. To me, living a sinless life is perfection, and I don’t think it can be attained in this world. As human creatures it is our nature that we will always fall short of the glory of God based on our own merits. This is why we need the blood of Christ. Saying we can achieve a sinless life in this world is almost like saying we can reach a point where the blood is no longer necessary. John goes on to state in verse 8 that claiming to be without sin means we deceive ourselves. To me, this shows that it will always be a part of us because we are human. The only way we can be totally be dependent on God and His grace is to recognize this fact.

No comments: