Passage: 1 John 3
2:28-3:3 - Being a Christian means that you are "born of Christ (2:29)" and are a "child of God (3:1)." Just as little children grow up, you too will grow up in Christ, and we look forward to what we will become in Him.
v4-10 - Because you are a child of God, you should not desire to live sinfully. Do not let the world lead you astray (v7), because no one who's been born of God will continue living a sinful lifestyle. We can recognize people who are not children of God because they are happy to keep living in sin. NOTE: this does not mean that because you continue to sin means you're not a Christian. What John is talking about is people who know they're living sinfully but don't really care. True Christians certainly will stumble in sins, but after doing so will repent and strive to put that sin to death within themselves.
v11-24 - Living as a child of God will cause the world to hate you (v13), but instead of retaliating for being hated, you are to respond by loving one another even more. This follows the example Jesus set in laying His life down for you. Knowing that you are born of Christ gives you confidence before God (v21). As a Christian, you have only one key command to follow:
This is God's command: to believe in the name of His Son, Jesus Christ and to love one another as He commanded.
Old Testament Reference -
Ezekiel 18:5-9 gives a good picture of how a God fearing person will live. Read the rest of the chapter to see how the cycle of one generation passing their sins down to the next generation can be broken.
Use the comment box below to discuss one or more of these questions. For every comment or reply you post, you will receive an entry for this month's prize: a gift certificate to Seed & Stem 12:27
v7-10 talk about being on guard from things that lead us astray. What are some of those things in our society today?
As our society rapidly changes, hate for Christians is becoming more common and easier to see. Re-read v13. Why are so many Christians today surprised to see that the world hates the children of God?
If it’s true that “you become what you think,” then what are the most important thoughts from this chapter to plant firmly in your mind?
Follow the AAA Prayer Pattern:
ACKNOWLEDGE WHO GOD IS: God is your heavenly Father who loved you first so that you would love Him
ALIGN YOUR LIFE WITH GOD'S WILL: Pray that God will strengthen you to not just love with words or speech, but with actions and in truth (v18)
ASK GOD FOR WHAT YOU NEED: