Read 360.) the letters of First, Second and Third John. Like Jude and II Peter, First John deals largely with the subject of false teachers in the church. You get the impression that doctrinal purity was a very important matter then. It still should be today. His letter keeps going to “Believe Right, Do Right; Love and Stop Sinning!” Can you see that? It’s everywhere! Put them altogether, and you have great assurance. If there’s one other sure element, it would have to do with the Holy Spirit; the New Birth and His subsequent teaching and sustaining ministries in the life of the believer. Let’s note some of these!
Against the Gnostic heresies of the day, which said only the spiritual was pure, and that the material was evil; we are to know that the Word, Jesus Christ, came in actual human flesh, and not just as a spirit, as they claimed, 1:1-4, 4:1-3. Jesus is the Messiah, 2:22, 5:1. Jesus is the Son of God, 4:15. Jesus is the true God and eternal life, 5:20!
Everywhere, throughout, John admonishes his readers to love one another, 2:7-11, 3:11-18, 23, 4:7-21, 5:2,
He continually encouraged his flock to stop sinning, and do right. 1:6-9, 2:1-6, v.15-17 are especially meaningful, as it means to separate one’s self from today’s “popular culture.” See also, 2:29, 3:3-10, 22, 5:2-5, 18.
See how much John speaks of the Person of the Holy Spirit, as well; especially His role in our new spiritual rebirth, 2:20+27, 3:9, 24, 4:2-7, 13, 5:1+4, 6-8, 18.
But, most encouraging, was the incredible assurances he gave to his children, such as eternal life, 2:25; a fundamental transformation into perfection, 3:2. See also 4:17. But, especially those assurances given in 5:10-13, about eternal life, and v.14+15, concerning prayer. And, how about how that we are kept by God, 5:18+19!
And, we cannot overlook the very most important elements of the Gospel. His Blood purifies us from all sin, 1:7. He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, 2:2, 4:10. He took away our sins, 3:5. We must believe in Jesus Christ, 3:23. The Father has sent His Son to be the Savior of the world, 4:14. Acknowledge that Jesus is the Son of God, 4:15. It’s what the Book is all about!
Harold F Crowell