If We Share God’s Nature We Will Remain Loyal To The True Leaders And The True Teaching; We Will Not Be Led Astray By Antichrists; We Will Be Righteous; We Will Not Continue To Sin; We Will Be Greatly Loved By God But Disliked By The World
John wrote to believers, to followers of Messiah, to Christians and Messianic Jews, to encourage them have fellowship, a sharing of values and life, with the Father and with the Son. To have fellowship with God, we need to have fellowship with God’s true spiritual leaders, like John. We must not follow any of the antichrists, the enemies of God the Father and Messiah the Son, the false spiritual leaders who oppose the Messiah – the false teachers, false prophets and false messiahs. They destroy the possibility of having fellowship with God.
Some background to understand this section: Satan and the fallen angels are real. They are in rebellion against God. They oppose God. And humanity joined their rebellion and opposes God. In the last days, the final period of time before the Son of God returns to Earth, the antichrist, the final world ruler who opposes God the most, will come to power. However, there are antichrists who are at work now, and as we get closer to Messiah’s return and the rise of the antichrist, there will more and more antichrists. The opposition to God, and the deceptions and the lies will become more intense than ever.
Dear children, this is the last hour; and as you have heard that the antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have come. This is how we know it is the last hour. The proliferation of false spiritual leaders who oppose God will let us know we are getting close to the rise of the antichrist the return of the Messiah.
We must be able to distinguish between the servants of Christ and the antichrists, the enemies of Christ. John gave us a way to do that. They went out from us, but they did not really belong to us. For if they had belonged to us, they would have remained with us; but their going showed that none of them belonged to us. Those who remain in Messiah’s Community which is led by true leaders who give the true teaching reveal that they belong with the Father and the Son. Those who leave reveal that they were never really belonged. All along, they were tares, not wheat; they were Judases, not Johns and Peters and Matthews and Pauls.
Individuals will be part of us, and then will leave us. I’ve known quite a few. And groups of people will be part of Messiah’s Community, and then leave us – like the Mormons, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Christian Scientists and Seventh Day Adventists.
It’s essential to believe the truth and not believe a lie. John wrote to believers who knew the truth, to encourage them to remain loyal to the truth; and he was confident they would. But you have an anointing from the Holy One, and all of you know the truth. I do not write to you because you do not know the truth, but because you do know it and because no lie comes from the truth. Under the Sinai Covenant, prophets, priests and kings were anointed with oil. Under Messiah’s New Covenant, each child of God is anointed with the Holy Spirit. That means the Spirit of God lives in us, teaching us the truth and empowering us to live according to the truth.
How does the Spirit of God teach us the truth? He communicates directly to our minds and hearts. My sheep hear My voice. He helps us understand the Word of God and live according to it. Your Word is truth. And He teaches us the truth by giving us God-ordained leaders who teach us the truth.
The sons and daughters of God have the anointing of the Spirit. We know the truth and therefore know what is true and what is a lie, and will not listen to the antichrists who lie about the truth. Thanks be to God for the anointing and teaching ministry of the Holy Spirit!
To be in fellowship with the Father and with the Son, we must believe the truth – not just any truth, like two plus two equals four, or the sky is blue and water is wet, but specifically the truth that Yeshua is the Messiah and the Son of God: Who is the liar? It is whoever denies that Yeshua is the Messiah. Such a person is the antichrist – denying the Father and the Son. No one who denies the Son has the Father; whoever acknowledges the Son has the Father also. The truth is Yeshua is the Messiah: He that descendant of David who is the ultimate prophet, priest and king over Israel and the nations. And the truth is Yeshua is the Son of God: the unique Son of God who shares the Father’s divine and eternal nature. Whoever believes that Yeshua is the Messiah and the Son of God believes the truth. Whoever denies that Yeshua is the Messiah and the Son of God is a liar and an antichrist.
And, now that the Father and sent His Son as the Messiah, to acknowledge the Son is to have the Father; to deny the Son is to deny the Father.
Who denies that Yeshua is the Messiah and the Son of God?
The followers of non-Messianic Judaism deny that Yeshua is the Messiah and the Son. They don’t have the Father.
The followers of Islam acknowledge that Yeshua is the Messiah but deny He is the Son. They don’t have the Father.
Most of the followers of the world’s religions and philosophies deny the Son. They don’t have the Father.
Agnostics and atheists deny the Father and the Son. They don’t have the Father or the Son.
Those to whom John was writing must not follow those who were trying to lead them astray. They must remain with the true leaders who had the true teaching. As for you, see that what you have heard from the beginning remains in you. If it does, you also will remain in the Son and in the Father. And this is what he promised us – eternal life. I am writing these things to you about those who are trying to lead you astray. If those to whom John was writing remained with the true spiritual leaders, like John, and remained with the true teaching they first heard, the teaching which John was repeating in this letter, they would remain in the fellowship of the Son and the Father. And God promised eternal life to them – and God will never break a promise. This also means that we can know we are saved; we can know we have eternal life.
Since knowing and remaining in the truth is so important, I would think that every Christian and Messianic Jew would want to make sure they know the truth and remain in the truth; that they would exert great effort to know the truth and remain in the truth; that they would study the Word of God until they really understood it; that if they had any questions, they would talk to their spiritual leaders to make sure they remain in the truth.
John wanted them to know that he was confident that the Spirit of God lived in them, and had taught them the things he was writing to them about, and would teach them everything they needed to know. And John wanted them to remain united to Messiah. As for you, the anointing you received from him remains in you, and you do not need anyone to teach you. But as his anointing teaches you about all things and as that anointing is real, not counterfeit – just as it has taught you, remain in him.
John knew that this world will not continue as it is forever. A day is coming when the Son of God will return. When He does, He will reward those who were loyal and united to Him and punish those who were disloyal and not connected to Him. John encouraged them to remain loyal to Yeshua so they would be confident and unashamed when He returned. And now, dear children, continue in him, so that when he appears we may be confident and unashamed before him at his coming. I want to confident and unashamed before Yeshua when He appears. Therefore I want to make sure that I please Him and continue in Him. How about you?
That brings us to the last verse of chapter 2 and the beginning of chapter 3. To have fellowship with God, it’s essential for us to consistently do what is right. If you know that he is righteous, you know that everyone who does what is right has been born of him. God is righteous, perfectly righteous. He always does what is right. He never does anything that is wrong. When we are saved we are born again. We receive a new nature, a nature like God’s nature – a righteous nature. Because we have that righteous nature, we will know what is right. We will want to do the right things. We will feel bad when we do the wrong things. We will confess our sins and start doing the right things again. Therefore, we will consistently do what is right. Is that you? If we consistently do what is right, which includes believing the right things, we can know that we have been born of God. Do you have that new nature? Do you know that God has given you a new birth? That you are a born again child of God?
John expanded on the theme of being born again as a child of God and the need to be righteous. See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when Messiah appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. All who have this hope in him purify themselves, just as he is pure.
If I like someone, I will do good things for him. If I love someone, I will do even more good things for him. If I love someone with great love, I will lavish good things on him. I will give him the very best things. I may even adopt him; give him my name; make him my heir; give him everything I have. That kind of great love is the love the Father has for us. See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! If we are true believers, real followers of Yeshua the Messiah, we have been born again. God has given us a new birth. God has given us a new nature – like His nature. And by having His nature, He has made us His children. And being a child of God is an amazingly blessed thing!
The eternal God is our Father. The Son of God is our elder brother. We share a vast and eternal inheritance with Him. We are wealthier than the richest man who has ever lived, more honorable and glorious than the greatest king or president. The children of God should revel in God’s great love which He has lavished on us. Do you? See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!
However, even though we are known and greatly loved and honored by God, we will not be known or honored or loved by the world. Why? The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Makes sense. If the people of the world did not know who Yeshua is, or love or honor Him, and we share His nature and are like Him, the world will not know us, love us or honor us. Do not expect the world’s approval. Do not seek the world’s approval. In fact, we should rejoice in the world’s disapproval. That shows we are not part of a rebellious and corrupt and dying world.
We become the children of God at the moment of salvation. And we become like the Son of God in this life – but only to a degree. There are things in us that are not like Him, things we need to eliminate. Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when Messiah appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. All who have this hope in him purify themselves, just as he is pure. During our life on Earth, our transformation into the likeness of Messiah starts but will not be completed. It will only be completed when our lives in this world are over. Then, anything that is not like Him will be eliminated. Then we will be completely like Him.
Beings that are like each other are able to understand each other. Because we will be like Him, we will be able to know Him and understand Him – as much as the finite can understand the infinite. If we believe this is true, then we will want to be like Him as much as possible – now. Since He is holy and pure, we will want to be holy and pure like He is – now. All who have this hope in him purify themselves, just as he is pure. Do you believe that one day you will be like Him? If so, are you trying to remove the impurities from your life – now? If you aren’t, you may not really be a true believer.
Yeshua is sinless. Those who are united to Him and share His life will not continue to sin. Everyone who sins breaks the law; in fact, sin is lawlessness. But you know that he appeared so that he might take away our sins. And in him is no sin. No one who lives in him keeps on sinning. No one who continues to sin has either seen him or known him.
There are various ways to understand sin. One way to understand sin is breaking God’s law. Everyone who sins breaks the law; in fact, sin is lawlessness. If a person was living under the laws of the Sinai Covenant, any violation of those laws was a sin. John was writing, not to those who were under the Sinai Covenant, but to people who were under Messiah’s New Covenant. Like the Sinai Covenant, it has its laws: Live like Yeshua lived. Love God with all your heart and soul. Love people. Be kind and gracious and forgiving. Be holy. Be pure. Know the Gospel, live the Gospel, proclaim the Gospel. This is how Yeshua lived. This is how He commanded us to live. These are His laws for us. Are you keeping His commands?
Yeshua Himself was and is sinless. In him is no sin. And His mission was to take away the sins of His people. He appeared so that he might take away our sins. Therefore if we are born again; if we have a new, godly nature; if we are united to Yeshua; if He is living in us by means of His Spirit; if we share His life, we be like Him. Sin will not characterize our lives. Righteousness will. If we continue to sin; if sin characterizes our lives, it shows we’ve never really known Him.
No one who lives in him keeps on sinning. No one who continues to sin has either seen him or known him. This does not mean we will never sin. We will sin. Overcoming our weaknesses and areas of temptation is a difficult, life-long battle. We will make mistakes. We will miss the mark. We will fall short of the glory of God. We will do things we shouldn’t do and not do things we should do. We will not reach a state of sinless perfection in this life. What makes the born again, new natured children of God different from the people of the world is that, when we sin, we feel bad about our sins. We confess our sins and ask God to help us turn from our sins. He seek His help to overcome our sins. We put safeguards in place so we won’t repeat our sins.
One of the reasons this letter was written was to encourage believers to stay with the true spiritual leaders who had the true teaching, and warn them from being led astray by the growing numbers of false teachers, false prophets and false messiahs. Dear children, do not let anyone lead you astray. Some of these antichrists may have been leading people astray by teaching that this is a good world, and there’s no such thing as sin. Sin doesn’t exist. Therefore we can do whatever we want. They may have been teaching that we are sinless and our problem is that we don’t realize we are sinless. They may have been teaching that God’s grace is greater than our ability to sin, so it doesn’t matter how we live. We can sin as much as we want because all will be forgiven. They may have been teaching that the soul is more important than the body, and we can do whatever we want with our bodies. We can have sex with whomever we want and it doesn’t matter. These false teachings, if believed, will lead people astray and help destroy them. It matters very much what we believe; if we live according to the truth or according to a lie. We must listen to the true teachers who have the true teaching who have fellowship with the Father and the Son. We must not be led astray by false teachers, false prophets, false messiahs.
God the Father, Messiah the Son and the good angels are real. Satan and the fallen angels are real. Each human being is either a child of God or a child of the devil. And we can know which one we are. John told us how we can know who is who. The one who does what is right is righteous, just as he is righteous. The one who does what is sinful is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devil’s work. No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God’s seed remains in them; they cannot go on sinning, because they have been born of God. This is how we know who the children of God are and who the children of the devil are: Anyone who does not do what is right is not God’s child, nor is anyone who does not love their brother and sister. God is righteous – perfectly righteous. He always does what is right. He never does anything that is wrong. The born again, new natured child of God, who has received a new, godly nature, will be like God. It’s natural for him to do what is right. Doing what is right comes from his new nature. He will consistently do what is right and resist doing what is wrong.
He will be like the Son of God, who appeared to destroy the devil’s work. Everyone who shares the nature of the Son of God will try to destroy the devil’s work, starting in their own lives.
In contrast to God who is righteous and always does what is right, is the Devil, who has been sinning from the beginning. Those who have not been born again share his devilish nature. It’s natural for them to sin. Sinning comes from their nature. They have a sin nature. It’s their nature to sin and keep on sinning.
Each human being is either a child of God or a child of the devil. His life will reveal who he belongs to. If he is righteous – if he consistently does the right things, which includes believes the right things, we know he is a child of God. If he doesn’t believe the right things, doesn’t consistently do the right things, which includes loving our brothers and sisters, he is a child of the devil. Whose your daddy? Whose child are you?
If the truth sets us free and saves us, then rejecting the truth keeps us enslaved and damned. Help us know the truth and remain in the truth so that we remain in You and Your Son.
Father, we want to have fellowship, a sharing of values and life, with You and Your Son. Help us submit to the true spiritual leaders who teach the truth.
Keeps us away from the antichrists, the enemies of You and Your Son, the false teachers and false prophets and false messiahs who teach lies that lead to destruction.
Thank You for the anointing, the teaching and empowering ministry of the Holy Spirit! Fill us with Your Spirit. Help us walk in Your Spirit, living in Your Spirit.
Father, we know that Your children are born again; and because they have a new nature, a nature like Your nature, will be like You. Help us be like You – full of love, holy, pure, righteous, resistant to sin. Help us truly be Your born again, new natured children.
Father, the world hates You and Your Son. Help us to not expect the world’s approval, not seek the world’s approval, rejoice in the world’s disapproval.
Thank You for Your great love which You have lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are! Help us live and act as Your children.