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I John Chapter 2

Memory verses for this week:   Rom 8:2  For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death. 

Introduction:  Last week, in Chapter 1, John pointed out how that Jesus is life, and he was life from the very beginning.   And this was not a chance thing for John to know, since he was one of the apostles and had looked upon Christ as he was with them in his 3 Ĺ year ministry.   The apostles were eyewitnesses of the resurrection of Christ.  This week we cover how Christ is our advocate with the Father, and how keeping the commandments are proof of our salvation.    When we are saved, our desire should be to reach towards perfection in Christ.   We ourselves will never be sinless in our human bodies, but our desire should be to attain to that point.

I.  Our Advocate with the Father

1 John 2:1  My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous:

1 John 2:2  And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.

John writes to these Christians to encourage them to not sin.   However, when we do fail, we do have one who stands with us, and pleads our cause, and that is our Lord Jesus Christ.  Christ stands as our defender, and when we are accused by Satan, he pleads our cause because he has paid for our sins with His own blood.   Thank God for the great love Jesus had when he died for us.   Verse 2 speaks of how Christ is the propitiation for our sinsÖ not only ours but for the sins of the whole world.  Propitiation means to cause to be favorably disposed, to appease and conciliate.  Christ is the only atoning sacrifice for our sins.  Propitiation in a greater definition means to be an offering, action, or sacrifice that makes the governing power propitious toward the offender.   Propitiation in effect appeases the lawgiver.   No other sacrifice can do that with God.  Christ is the one and only one that can appease the wrath of God for our sins.

J. Vernon McGee said this about propitiation.

ďAnd he is the propitiation for our sins.Ē The word propitiation, as it is used here in Johnís epistle, is a different word from that used in the Epistle to the Romans. In Romans the meaning is ďmercy seatĒóChrist is the propitiation, the mercy seat, the meeting place between God and man. However, here in 1 John propitiation means ďan atonement or an expiation.Ē It means that sins have been paid for by the suffering of Another. Christ is my Advocate, interceding for me, and He Himself is the propitiation.

Notice that John does not say that if anyone repents, he has an Advocate nor if anyone confesses his sins, he has an Advocate. Neither does he say that if anyone goes through a ceremony to get rid of his sins, he has an Advocate. What he does say is that if any man sin, we have an Advocate with the Father. Before we even repent of that cruel or brutal word we said, the very moment we had that evil thought, and the moment we did that wrong act, Jesus Christ was there at the throne of God to represent us as Satan was there accusing us.

Then, because of the faithful advocacy of Christ, the Holy Spirit brings conviction to us, and we confess our sin to the Father. As we said before, to confess means that we get on Godís side and we see our sin from His viewpoint and confess that it is sin.  [1]


II.   Keeping His Commandments

1 John 2:3  And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments.

1 John 2:4  He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.

1 John 2:5  But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him.

1 John 2:6  He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked.

If a person is dedicated to the Lord and keeps the commandments of Christ, it is a good sign that he or she is saved.  Keeping the commandments DOES NOT save a person, but it is a good sign.  One must receive Christ as Savior in order to be saved.  When a person does not keep the commandments, it is a good sign that they may not be saved.   However, some are saved and still do not obey Christís commandments.

Heb 10:26  For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins,

Heb 10:27  But a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries.

Heb 10:28  He that despised Moses' law died without mercy under two or three witnesses:

Heb 10:29  Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who hath trodden under foot the Son of God, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and hath done despite unto the Spirit of grace?

Heb 10:30  For we know him that hath said, Vengeance belongeth unto me, I will recompense, saith the Lord. And again, The Lord shall judge his people.

Heb 10:31  It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.

From these verses we can see that the Lord does not want us to sin after we are saved.  If we do, we can be sure the chastening hand of the Lord will fall upon us.  When a person keeps Godís word, verse 5 tells us we can have the love of God perfected.  We know that perfect love casteth out fear.  If we are in fear of God all the time, we have not reached that perfect level of maturity in Christ that we should have.

One thing is a certainÖ the lost man CAN NOT keep Godís word.  To keep Godís word a person must first repent and come to know Christ as Lord and Savior.  The second birth is required.

Verse 6 says that if we abide in Christ, we should walk as Christ walked.  And we know that was a perfect walk where he did the perfect Will of the Father.

III.  John Writes the Old and New  Commandment

1 John 2:7  Brethren, I write no new commandment unto you, but an old commandment which ye had from the beginning. The old commandment is the word which ye have heard from the beginning.

1 John 2:8  Again, a new commandment I write unto you, which thing is true in him and in you: because the darkness is past, and the true light now shineth.

The Old commandment John mentions was a commandment to love one another.

1 John 3:11  For this is the message that ye heard from the beginning, that we should love one another.


2 John 1:6  And this is love, that we walk after his commandments. This is the commandment, That, as ye have heard from the beginning, ye should walk in it.

II John says the old commandment was the word they had heard from the beginning.   Godís desire for all people was that they show love one towards another.  Jesus spoke of this new commandment to love one another in the book of John in chapter 13.

John 13:34    A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.

We know the light speaks of righteousness and God.  And Jesus is the true light.

John 1:9  That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world.

John 1:10  He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not.

John 1:11  He came unto his own, and his own received him not.

John 1:12  But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:

John 1:13  Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.

John 1:14  And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.


John 8:12  Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.


John 12:35  Then Jesus said unto them, Yet a little while is the light with you. Walk while ye have the light, lest darkness come upon you: for he that walketh in darkness knoweth not whither he goeth.

John 12:36  While ye have light, believe in the light, that ye may be the children of lightÖ


1 John 2:9  He that saith he is in the light, and hateth his brother, is in darkness even until now.

1 John 2:10  He that loveth his brother abideth in the light, and there is none occasion of stumbling in him.

1 John 2:11  But he that hateth his brother is in darkness, and walketh in darkness, and knoweth not whither he goeth, because that darkness hath blinded his eyes.

When a person hates his brother or sister in Christ, it is a good sign that he is in darkness.  A person who is in darkness walks in the darkness and doesnít know where he goes.  Darkness blinds a person to spiritual things.   A person who loves his brother is in the light, and he doesnít cause others to stumble.   When we donít walk after the pattern of Christ, others look at our lives and question our authenticity.   We need to be real peopleÖ not just a false image of Christ.  We need to strive to be more like Him, and grow like Him more and more each day.

IV.  Why John Wrote unto the Children

1 John 2:12  I write unto you, little children, because your sins are forgiven you for his name's sake.

1 John 2:13  I write unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I write unto you, young men, because ye have overcome the wicked one. I write unto you, little children, because ye have known the Father.

1 John 2:14  I have written unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I have written unto you, young men, because ye are strong, and the word of God abideth in you, and ye have overcome the wicked one.

Our sins are forgiven for Godís name sake.  Only the saved person has this forgiveness.  While Christís offering for sin at Calvary was enough to cover the sins of the whole world, only those who come unto Him experience salvation.

Rev 22:17  And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.

Verse 13 says the fathers have know God from the beginning.  The same God of Abraham, of Jacob and Moses, of David and Solomon is the God that we serve today.   And Christ and God and the Holy Spirit are all one.   Three separate entities, but one God.

The Godhead is a mystery to us for sure.    John encourages the young men and tells them that through Christ they have overcome the wicked one.   They were strong because they knew Christ and had the word of God abiding in them.  To be spiritually strong, we must have the word of God abiding in us.

V.  The Love of the World is not of the Father

1 John 2:15  Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.

1 John 2:16  For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.

1 John 2:17  And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.

Our love should be for the spiritual things, and not the world.  If our heartís desire is to seek the world and the things of the world, we are carnal and walk as men.   All of these things that are against God are the very things that Eve fell for in the garden of Eden.  The lust of the eye (she saw the apple and found it desirable), the lust of the flesh (desire to eat of the apple to be wise), and the pride of life.  (She wanted to be like God.)

Matthew Henry said this about the lusts we face.

"Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world, v. 15. Be crucified to the world, be mortified to the things, to the affairs and enticements, of it.íí The several degrees of Christians should unite in this, in being dead to the world. Were they thus united, they would soon unite upon other accounts: their love should be reserved for God; throw it not away upon the world. Now here we see the reasons of this dissuasion and caution. They are several, and had need to be so; it is hard to dispute or dissuade disciples themselves from the love of the world. These reasons are taken,

1. From the inconsistency of this love with the love of God: If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him, v. 15. The heart of man is narrow, and cannot contain both loves. The world draws down the heart from God; and so the more the love of the world prevails the more the love of God dwindles and decays.

2. From the prohibition of worldly love or lust; it is not ordained of God: It is not of the Father, but is of the world, v. 16. This love or lust is not appointed of God (he calls us from it), but it intrudes itself from the world; the world is a usurper of our affection. Now here we have the due consideration and notion of the world, according to which it is to be crucified and renounced. The world, physically considered, is good, and is to be admired as the work of God and a glass in which his perfections shine; but it is to be considered in its relation to us now in our corrupted state, and as it works upon our weakness and instigates and inflames our vile affections. There is great affinity and alliance between this world and the flesh, and this world intrudes and encroaches upon the flesh, and thereby makes a party against God. [2]

VI.  Children Warned Against Those who Deny Christís Deity

1 John 2:18  Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist shall come, even now are there many antichrists; whereby we know that it is the last time.

1 John 2:19  They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us: but they went out, that they might be made manifest that they were not all of us.

1 John 2:20  But ye have an unction from the Holy One, and ye know all things.

1 John 2:21  I have not written unto you because ye know not the truth, but because ye know it, and that no lie is of the truth.

Even in the days of John, there were antichrists.   And there are many against Christ in our day.   The actual ďAnti-ChristĒ we read about that will arise during the 7 years of tribulation may very well be alive today.   If I read prophecy correctly, I donít see how he could not be alive today since all things point to the soon coming of Jesus Christ.

Verse 19 says that many departed from the faith in Johnís day because they were not saved.   When we have people come and say they have found Christ as Savior, and they are baptized and walk away and never come back to church, we can be relatively sure that they did not truly get saved.  I think Godís word burns inside the Christian, and while we may fall away at times, our desire will bring us back to God.  If not, the saved man will be taken out early if he rebels against God.   Those John was writing to were saved peopleÖ he says they had an anointing from the Holy One.  We writes these things since they did not know the truth, and he wanted them to come to that knowledge.

1 John 2:22  Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son.

1 John 2:23  Whosoever denieth the Son, the same hath not the Father: (but) he that acknowledgeth the Son hath the Father also.

1 John 2:24  Let that therefore abide in you, which ye have heard from the beginning. If that which ye have heard from the beginning shall remain in you, ye also shall continue in the Son, and in the Father.

A person who denies that Jesus was the Christ sent from God is an anti-christ.  Anyone who denies the virgin birth of Christ is an anti-christ, as well as those who claim God is dead.   God is not dead, but men are dead in their sins and will not come to the knowledge of the truth.   Jesus warned the apostles that not all were of the Father.  And he told them the way to tell who was preaching the truth.

Mark 9:38  And John answered him, saying, Master, we saw one casting out devils in thy name, and he followeth not us: and we forbad him, because he followeth not us.

Mark 9:39  But Jesus said, Forbid him not: for there is no man which shall do a miracle in my name, that can lightly speak evil of me.

Mark 9:40  For he that is not against us is on our part.


1 John 4:2  Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God:

1 John 4:3  And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world.


1 John 2:25  And this is the promise that he hath promised us, even eternal life.

1 John 2:26  These things have I written unto you concerning them that seduce you.

1 John 2:27  But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him.

1 John 2:28  And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming.

1 John 2:29  If ye know that he is righteous, ye know that every one that doeth righteousness is born of him.

We need to let the truth that we have received abide in us, and grow in grace each day.   Our hearts beckoning call should be to learn more about our Savior.   We do the things of God because we have been born again.   Jesus told Nicodemus that the second birth is like the wind.  You donít see it, but you can feel it.   When you are born again, you know the change has happened.

John 3:1  There was a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews:

John 3:2  The same came to Jesus by night, and said unto him, Rabbi, we know that thou art a teacher come from God: for no man can do these miracles that thou doest, except God be with him.

John 3:3  Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.

John 3:4  Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother's womb, and be born?

John 3:5  Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.

John 3:6  That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.

John 3:7  Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.

John 3:8  The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.


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Prov 4:18  But the path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day.


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