YouTuber John Stapleton shares on Christian Conduct (Basic Christianity/ Holiness/ 1 John 1:5-10). Be sure to subscribe to John’s Weekly Bible Blog.
This video is also available as an Apple podcast below.
1 John 1:5, NLT
This is the message we heard from Jesus and now declare to you: God is light, and there is no darkness in him at all.
1) God Is Light
I want to introduce you to the Father by looking at who he is and what he does. John reveals him as light and love. Light is significant because this is how John introduced Jesus in John 1:1-4.
John is thematically making the point that whoever has seen Jesus has seen the Father. In John 14:9, one of Jesus’ followers expressed his grief at the thought of not being with Jesus. This was Jesus’ response:
Jesus replied, “Have I been with you all this time, Philip,
and yet you still don’t know who I am? Anyone who has
seen me has seen the Father! So why are you asking me to
show him to you? 10 Don’t you believe that I am in the
Father and the Father is in me?
Also, light is what actively drives out darkness. Darkness is often a euphemism for sin and anything that is anti-God, anti-Jesus. Evil cannot win because “the darkness is disappearing, and the true light is already shining” (2:8). Practically, God is love (1 John 4:8).
1 John 4:9–10 NLT
9 God showed how much he loved us by sending his one
and only Son into the world so that we might have eternal
life through him. 10 This is real love—not that we loved
God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to
take away our sins.
2) God Isn’t Darkness
Since God is light, that means he cannot be darkness. This is important. Some of you have be wrongly taught that God can do everything. But God cannot do anything that is opposed to who he is. God never contradicts his nature. God is never shady and you will never need to worry about finding something in God’s character that is ugly or unrighteous.
1 John 1:6-7, NLT
So we are lying if we say we have fellowship with God but
go on living in spiritual darkness; we are not practicing the
truth. 7 But if we are living in the light, as God is in the
light, then we have fellowship with each other, and the
blood of Jesus, his Son, cleanses us from all sin.
John is combating false teaching in the church that said that you can be a Christian while living in ongoing rebellion against God. He doesn’t name the false teachers, but he alludes to what they taught by the introductory phrase, “if we say/claim” which is contrasted by “if we confess” (1:9).
1 John 1:8-10, NLT
If we claim we have no sin, we are only fooling ourselves
and not living in the truth. 9 But if we confess our sins to
him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to
cleanse us from all wickedness. 10 If we claim we have not
sinned, we are calling God a liar and showing that his word
has no place in our hearts.
There are 3 basic lies being addressed:
- The first lie is that a person can worship Jesus as our Savior and not our Lord.
- The second lie is that we are good people who don’t need a savior.
- The third lie is that we have moral superiority to other people who need a Savior.
The alternative to these false ways of living is to confess our sins so that we can not only be forgiven, but to be healed. We cannot believe the lies about Christian practice because it shows that we are not Christians if we do.
Lord, thank you that you have made it possible to have
fellowship with you. Help us resist living in darkness and
make us aware of the lies we believe about you, ourselves,
and the church. Amen.