Receive and Believe

Today we are rounding out our study of 1 John with chapter 5. And, as always, you can find all of mine and Daniel’s 1 John posts here.

We’ve been talking a lot about loving our siblings. John has made it pretty clear how God wants us to treat one another (because remember, love is an action). 1 John 5:1 says if we love the One who gives life, you will also love the one who is given life. In verse 3, “His orders are not heavy.” It’s not hard to love one another if we have the love of God within us. If we are filled with His love, it will flow out of us into each other, causing us to care for one another and show compassion to each other.

Verses 4 & 5 tell us that those who trust and have been given life have conquered the Kosmos, or the world. If we trust in Jesus, if we trust He is God’s Son, that gives us power over the world and the one who is in it (1 John 4:4). And we can trust in Him, because we have been given the witnessers, which are the Spirit, the water, and the blood. “The one who trusts in God has the witness in oneself,” we read in 5:10. We have that witness when we trust in Him and receive His Spirit through the water of baptism that connects us to the blood of His sacrifice. As if that wasn’t enough, God the Father has also witnessed to us about the Son. Looking back at John’s gospel, 5:36-40 show us that the works that Jesus did were proof of who He was, and the Father testified about who Jesus was, and the Scriptures pointed to who He was. All we have to do is receive it and believe it. If we don’t we are calling God a liar, making Him a falsifier, and rejecting the life that He offers us through Christ (5:11).

So many verses John’s gospel point us in that same direction. John 17:3 says that having eternal life is to know God and Christ. John 3:15 and 36 both tell us that trusting in the Son gives us eternal life. Same in John 5:24. In John 14:6, Jesus says, “I am the Path and the Truth and the Life. No now comes to the Father except through Me.” The way to eternal life is trusting and following Jesus.

You ever heard the expression, “It’s not what you do but who you know”? We don’t inherit life based on what we do. We all are imperfect. We all sin and fall short. But if we know the Father, we trust in Christ, and we receive the Spirit, that’s how we inherit life. 1 John 5:20 – “We know that God’s Son has come and has given to us understanding so that we may know the truthfulness, and we are in the truthfulness [v.6 – the Spirit is the truth], in Jesus Christ His Son.” Not what we do, but Who we know. Yes, we have to obey His commands to love one another and live as righteously as possible. But if we know Him, we don’t have to worry about that, because His Spirit in us, His Truth in us, His love in us, carries us through and He works through us. If we believe in Christ, we will walk in His path – or as 1 John 2:6 said, “walk around just as that one walked around.” If we receive His Spirit of Truth, we will walk in truth. If we receive His love, we will love.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *