As we continue in our study of 1 John, the theme we will see over and over is the power of God’s love. His love is amazing in the fact that it is broad enough to encompass everyone, but the nature of that love is specific enough that we don’t have to seek it out or have to guess about how it works.
The Father’s love is “lavished” on us. Some people describe lavish as someone trying to take a drink from a firehose. So this more than we could handle love that is poured over us. So much that we are children of God. We are being talked to as if we are family. And just like we would do anything for family, that is the source of our obedience.
The John adds maybe a strange sounding statement with this by saying the reason the world does not know us is that they don’t know Him. That they are contrary to each other.
As children of God, when we stand before Christ, we will be like him. We don’t know the details, or how that works, but what we do know is that when that happens we will be like Jesus.
What does it look like to be as pure as Christ? Am I willing to risk being an open book with the goal of Christ-like purity? That purity happens in our heads and hearts so that the reflection in the world will be pure. Not that we are perfect, but purity means that we recognize when purity needs to happen. We make mistakes, but purity is knowing our mistakes, confessing to God our mistakes, and then repenting and turnning away from those mistakes.
Why did Jesus come to die on the cross?
One reason is to break the grip of sin. God has put into place parameters and laws that reflect the nature of God himself. One thing to be clear is that “sin” in this context does not mean “unsaved.” While we are to be obedience, we will still fail. Sin is the violation of God’s standard. Missing the mark on target set before us by God. Everyone who sins is a prideful statement saying, “I don’t like God’s standard.” Even more subtle are those who try to change God’s standard or moving the target placed by God, but that doesn’t work.
What John is saying is naturally supernatural statement. God word is supernatural, but it is a natural understand is that if someone is no longer strugging with sin while still sinning, they have lost sight of God’s standard for their lives.
Have you ever tried to justify choices and decisions you have made that are contrary to God’s standard? Struggling with sin is something all Chrstians deal with throughout their life. But to not struggle and still be in sin is a very dangerous postion to be in.
We have a problem with achknowledging sin. If you have sin in your life and you ask, “Why do I keep doing this?” That should tell you that you are living in the context of struggling and purification. But if you ever stop struggling with the sin in your life, at this point you should take a hard look at whether you are distancing yourself from God.
Be careful of the day you stop struggling. It doesn’t mean God’s love is less, but it is our love for God that is in question. All the more the Father will lead us back to his Son.
Just as Paul wrote in , there are many people who are separated from God. Dramatically devious or evil, but selfish and worldly and seeking after things instead of seeking after God. We do not want to live in lawlessness. Let us put our trust in God. Let us accept Jesus and the reasons he came to live, die, and live once more. And let us desire to be a child of God.
3:1 See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him. (ESV)
2 Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is. (ESV)
3 And everyone who thus hopes in him purifies himself as he is pure. (ESV)
4 Everyone who makes a practice of sinning also practices lawlessness; sin is lawlessness. 5 You know that he appeared to take away sins, and in him there is no sin. (ESV)
6 No one who abides in him keeps on sinning; no one who keeps on sinning has either seen him or known him. (ESV)
18 For many, of whom I have often told you and now tell you even with tears, walk as enemies of the cross of Christ. 19 Their end is destruction, their god is their belly, and they glory in their shame, with minds set on earthly things. (ESV)