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The Love that Casts out Fear (1 John 3,4)


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1 John 3

Children of God
Look what manner of love the Father has bestowed upon us, that we should be called children of God. And we are! For this cause the world does not know us, because it did not know Him. 2 Beloved, now are we children of God; and it is not yet revealed what we shall be. We know that, when He shall be manifested, we shall be like Him; for we shall see Him even as He is. 3 And everyone that has this hope purifies himself, even as He is pure.
   4 Everyone that keeps on committing sin commits lawlessness, for sin is lawlessness. 5 And you know that he was manifested to take away sins; because in him is no sin. 6 Whoever abides in him does not keep on in sin. Whoever keeps on in sin has not seen him, nor truly knows him.

Overcoming sin
   7 My little children, let no one lead you astray. He that does righteousness is righteous, even as he is righteous. 8 He that keeps on in sin is of the devil. For the devil sins from the beginning. To this end was the Son of God manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil.
   9 Whoever is begotten of God does not keep on in sin, because his seed abides in him, and he cannot keep on in sin, because he is begotten of God. 10 In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the devil. Whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor is he that does not love his brother. 11 For this is the message which you heard from the beginning, that we should love one another. 12 Not as Cain, who was of the evil one, who killed his brother. And why did he kill him? Because his works were evil and his brother's righteous.

True love
   13 Marvel not brothers if the world hates you. 14 We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we love the brothers. He that does not love abides in death. 15 Whoever hates his brothers is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him. 16 Hereby know we love, because he laid down his life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers. 17 But whosoever has the world's goods and sees his brothers in need, and shuts up his compassion from him, how does the love of God abide in him?
   18 Little children, let us not love in word, nor with the tongue, but in deed and truth. 19 Hereby shall we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our heart before him. 20 Because if our heart condemns us, God is greater than our heart, and knows all things.
   21 Beloved, if our heart does not condemn us, we have boldness toward God. 22 And whatever we ask we receive from Him, because we keep His commandments, and do the things that are pleasing in His sight. 23 And this is His commandment: that we should believe in the name of His Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, even as He gave us commandment. 24 And he that keeps His commandments abides in Him and He in him. And hereby we know that He abides in us, by the Spirit which He gave us.



3:2 It is not just the eternity of the Kingdom life which we should look forward to; the greatest thing is that we shall be like Jesus, perfect, 24/7.

3:3 If we really believe we will be in the Kingdom, this hope will lead us to practical changes and purity in this life- quite naturally.

3:16 Jesus’ life wasn’t taken from Him, but He “laid it down” (Jn. 10:17). He gave His last breath as an act of the will, a consciously controlled outgiving of life rather than dying because men took His life from Him by murder. This intense level of self-giving is applied to us. When Jesus died for us in this way, we were far away in understanding, appreciation and spirituality. And so it will be with our fellow believers for whom we are to likewise die.

3:21 Although our conscience isn’t always reliable (1 Cor. 4:4), we should aim like Paul to live every moment in good conscience before Him (Acts 23:1).