Contact: David Parham 940-322-4343

Website: Internet Bible Studies

I John Menu

















Ball23A0.gif (3556 bytes)


I John Chapter 5

Memory verses for this week:   Josh 1:9  Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the LORD thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest. 

Introduction:  Last week, in Chapter 4, we learned that we are to try the spirits, whether they be of God or not.   The spirit of anti-Christ was prevalent in John’s day, and how much more today as we enter the close of the Gentile age.  This week we talk about the new birth that every believer experiences when they accept Christ as Lord and Savior. 

I.  The Believer is Born of God  

1 John 5:1  Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: and every one that loveth him that begat loveth him also that is begotten of him.

1 John 5:2  By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments.

When we talk about salvation, you have to talk about being born again.   There is no way around the fact that there is a new birth the day that a person accepts Jesus Christ as their personal Lord and Savior.  Verse 1 tells us that we receive this new birth when we believe on Jesus Christ.  Everyone that has ever been saved since the beginning of time have done it by putting their faith and trust in God and looking to Jesus for forgiveness of sins.  The people of the Old Testament trusted God that one day that Savior would be born… we in turn look back knowing He has already come and paid the price for our sins on Calvary.   Perhaps the clearest teachings on the second birth came when Jesus spoke with Nicodemus that night and explained how a person is ‘born again.’

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.

The new birth changes a person, and it changes our wants and desires.  The places we used to want to go have no allure to us when we are walking by faith, and now we desire to live for the honor and glory of Christ.  The new birth makes us have love for God and for the people of the Lord.  And it makes you missionary minded, and you want to tell others about what Jesus has done for you so that they too may experience to power of His salvation.   When we truly are saved, and we are walking in God’s will, we will keep the commandments of our Lord.

J. Vernon McGee said this about being born again.

Once you have been born again, how do you know that you have been born again? Do you have some great, overwhelming experience? Do you enter some ecstatic state? Not necessarily; some people do I am told, but that is not the usual procedure. “Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: and every one that loveth him that begat loveth him also that is begotten of him.” When you trust the Lord Jesus Christ, you are born again, and God becomes your heavenly Father. He is God the Father, and He becomes your heavenly Father. If He is your heavenly Father and you are begotten of Him, then you will love Him. But it doesn’t stop there—you are also going to love the one who is begotten of Him. In other words, you are going to love other of God’s little children. John has said this before, and he has said that it is not something new with him. In 1 John 3:11 we read, “For this is the message that ye heard from the beginning, that we should love one another.” And the Lord Jesus said, “By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if you have love one to another” (John 13:35).

This expression, “born of God,” is very, very important. Being born of God hasn’t anything to do with the fact that you have joined a church or gone through a ceremony. If you are born of God, I hope you have joined a church and that you take part in the ordinances of your church, but following certain rituals does not make you a child of God. The important thing is: Are you born of God? Have you been born again? You are born again when you trust the Lord Jesus Christ as your Savior, and the proof of it is that you love God. You love your Father—He begot you—and you are going to love His other children because they are your brothers and sisters. This cannot be confined to a certain denomination, church, race, clique, or group. The one who is born again will love others who are born again. [1]

1 John 5:3  For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.

1 John 5:4  For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.

1 John 5:5  Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?

Verse 3 is really important verse.  So many think that one of the limitations of being a Christian is having to live with all the ‘thou shalt not’s, but verse 3 clearly indicates that there are NO grievous commandments.   What does that mean?  It means they are ALL for our good.   Sin has pleasure, but it is short lived.  And sin has a price that must be paid.   Thank God, we that know Christ have our sin debt paid for by Jesus Christ.  And when we follow the rules and commandments written in the bible, we find the path to greatest success and happiness.   You don’t have to try God to prove it.   This verse tells us that they are all for our good, and God can not lie.   Praise the Lord that we are not left down here like the people of the world without a road map to a successful life.  If you try to live by the prevailing standards of the world, you will never reach that plateau.   Every day the standards keep getting lowered, and Satan takes those into Hell everyday that perish without Christ.   God help us to believe these verses, and to realize that God has given us these warnings and commandments to help us.   Verse 4 says that by our faith, we have overcome the world.   Faith is such an important bible doctrine, and yet this instance of the word ‘faith’ is the only time that John penned it in any of his books.  (John, I John, II John, III John).

II.  The Three Witnesses

1 John 5:6  This is he that came by water and blood, even Jesus Christ; not by water only, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit that beareth witness, because the Spirit is truth.

Jesus came not in just the natural birth to man, but came and shed his blood that we might have salvation.   Water sometimes speaks of the Living Word of God, and we know the Old Testament had many mentions of washings before the sacrifices.  

Matthew Henry said this about the ‘water and blood.’

Jesus Christ came with water and blood, as the notes and signatures of the true effectual Saviour of the world; and he came by water and blood as the means by which he would heal and save us. That he must and did thus come in his saving office may appear by our remembering these things:—

1. We are inwardly and outwardly defiled. (1.) Inwardly, by the power and pollution off sin and in our nature. For our cleansing from this we need spiritual water; such as can reach the soul and the powers of it. Accordingly, there is in and by Christ Jesus the washing of regeneration and the renewing of the Holy Ghost. And this was intimated to the apostles by our Lord, when he washed their feet, and said to Peter, who refused to be washed, Except I wash thee, thou hast no part in me. (2.) We are defiled outwardly, by the guilt and condemning power of sin upon our persons. By this we are separated from God, and banished from his favorable, gracious, beatific presence for ever. From this we must be purged by atoning blood. It is the law or determination in the court of heaven that without shedding of blood there shall be no remission, Heb. 9:22. The Saviour from sin therefore must come with blood.

2. Both these ways of cleansing were represented in the old ceremonial institutions of God. Persons and things must be purified by water and blood. There were divers washings and carnal ordinances imposed till the time of reformation, Heb. 9:10. The ashes of a heifer, mixed with water, sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh, Heb. 9:13; Num. 19:9. And likewise almost all things are, by the law, purged with blood, Heb. 9:22. As those show us our double defilement, so they indicate the Saviour’s two-fold purgation.

3. At and upon the death of Jesus Christ, his side being pierced with a soldier’s spear, out of the wound there immediately issued water and blood. This the beloved apostle saw, and he seems to have been affected with the sight; he alone records it, and seems to reckon himself obliged to record it, and seems to reckon himself obliged to record it, as containing something mysterious in it: And he that saw it bore record, and his record is true. And he knoweth, being an eye-witness, that he saith true, that you might believe, and that you might believe this particularly, that out of his pierced side forthwith there came water and blood, Jn. 19:34, 35.   [2]

1 John 5:7  For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.

1 John 5:8  And there are three that bear witness in earth, the Spirit, and the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one.

There are three that bear witness here on earth of Christ being the Son of God.

The Water has several possible references, and certainly one of them is baptism. 

Mat 3:16  And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him:

Mat 3:17  And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.


John 1:29  The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.

John 1:30  This is he of whom I said, After me cometh a man which is preferred before me: for he was before me.

John 1:31  And I knew him not: but that he should be made manifest to Israel, therefore am I come baptizing with water.

John 1:32  And John bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him.

John 1:33  And I knew him not: but he that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is he which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost.

John 1:34  And I saw, and bare record that this is the Son of God.

The blood – This has reference to the blood Christ shed for us on Calvary at his crucifixiation. 

Mat 27:51  And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent;

Mat 27:52  And the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose,

Mat 27:53  And came out of the graves after his resurrection, and went into the holy city, and appeared unto many.

Mat 27:54  Now when the centurion, and they that were with him, watching Jesus, saw the earthquake, and those things that were done, they feared greatly, saying, Truly this was the Son of God.

The Spirit – The Holy Spirit bears witness that Jesus is the Son of God.  The water, the blood, and the Spirit are in agreement concerning Jesus being the Messiah, the one sent from God.

In verse 7, it says there are three who bear record in heaven that Jesus is the Son of God.  Note that all three are one.. the perfect Holy Trinity of God.

The Father – On two occasions He said that Jesus was His son.  Matt. 3:17 listed above and Matt. 17:1-5.

Mat 17:1  And after six days Jesus taketh Peter, James, and John his brother, and bringeth them up into an high mountain apart,

Mat 17:2  And was transfigured before them: and his face did shine as the sun, and his raiment was white as the light.

Mat 17:3  And, behold, there appeared unto them Moses and Elias talking with him.

Mat 17:4  Then answered Peter, and said unto Jesus, Lord, it is good for us to be here: if thou wilt, let us make here three tabernacles; one for thee, and one for Moses, and one for Elias.

Mat 17:5  While he yet spake, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them: and behold a voice out of the cloud, which said, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear ye him.

The Word – The word is Jesus Christ. 

John 10:36  Say ye of him, whom the Father hath sanctified, and sent into the world, Thou blasphemest; because I said, I am the Son of God?

John 10:37  If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not.

John 10:38  But if I do, though ye believe not me, believe the works: that ye may know, and believe, that the Father is in me, and I in him.


John 1:1  In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

John 1:2  The same was in the beginning with God.

John 1:3  All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.

The Holy Ghost – The Holy Spirit bears record that Jesus is the Son of God.

John 15:26  But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me:

John 15:27  And ye also shall bear witness, because ye have been with me from the beginning.

The Holy Ghost testified of Christ, and it also testifies to us that we are the sons of God.

Rom 8:13  For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.

Rom 8:14  For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.

Rom 8:15  For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.

Rom 8:16  The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:

Rom 8:17  And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.

III.  God’s Witness is Greater than that of Man

1 John 5:9  If we receive the witness of men, the witness of God is greater: for this is the witness of God which he hath testified of his Son.

1 John 5:10  He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself: he that believeth not God hath made him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son.

1 John 5:11  And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.

I guess that we are just born to be trusting people.   If someone tells you something, you tend to believe them.   If someone came in and said there was a wreck up at the intersection, most likely we would all believe that person.  If a doctor gives us the news that we have cancer and only have three months to live, we most likely are going to believe him.   The scriptures ask us a good question.  If we will receive the testimony of men, why do we not believe the testimony of God.  I mentioned earlier that God can not lie.  It simply is not within his nature to be able to lie.  So when God testifies of something, we can definitely believe Him.   God’s witness is greater than the witness of man.   The person who believes on Christ has the witness in himself.  Like we read over in Romans Chapter 8, the Holy Spirit bears witness with our spirit that we are the sons of God.  Verse 10 tells us that a person who does not believe God’s witness about His Son is saying that God is a liar.

Titus 1:1  Paul, a servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of God's elect, and the acknowledging of the truth which is after godliness;

Titus 1:2  In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began;

Titus 1:3  But hath in due times manifested his word through preaching, which is committed unto me according to the commandment of God our Saviour;

Titus 1:4  To Titus, mine own son after the common faith: Grace, mercy, and peace, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ our Saviour.

Verse 11 gives us God’s record, and his record is that God is the one who gives eternal life, and that life is in His Son.    Many teach other things, but church membership, baptism, good works, traditions, living a good life, none of these can give eternal life.

1 John 5:12  He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.

How much simpler can things be expressed than what verse 12 says.  If we know Christ, we have eternal life.  Without Christ, there is no eternal life.

IV.  How We Can KNOW We Have Eternal Life

1 John 5:13  These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.

Have you had people say, well you can’t really know until you die whether you will go to heaven or not.   I beg to differ.   Verse 13 is in the PRESENT TENSE.   YE MAY KNOW that ye have eternal life.   No waiting required.  If you believe on Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior by faith, you are one of God’s elect and you are going to heaven.   A person comes to God in faith and repentance, and that is the moment God grants that individual eternal life.   Faith and repentance are inseparable graces of God, and all of salvation is of God.  It is a gift of God as it says in Ephesians.

We can know by two ways that we have eternal life.  By God’s Spirit bearing witness with our spirit as we read about in Romans chapter 8, and the second is the authority of the scriptures.  Verse 13 is one verse.  Some of the others are: 

John 5:24  Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.


John 6:40  And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.


John 10:27  My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:

John 10:28  And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.

John 10:29  My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father's hand.

John 10:30  I and my Father are one.


John 11:23  Jesus saith unto her, Thy brother shall rise again.

John 11:24  Martha saith unto him, I know that he shall rise again in the resurrection at the last day.

John 11:25  Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live:

John 11:26  And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this?

John 11:27  She saith unto him, Yea, Lord: I believe that thou art the Christ, the Son of God, which should come into the world.

1 John 5:14  And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us:

1 John 5:15  And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him.

God promises that if we ask anything according to his will, he heareth us and will answer our prayers.   I think we don’t realize the power we have within our reach with prayer.

Being serious about prayer and effectively pursuing the Lord are key elements.  And we need to come believing God will answer the prayers.

Mark 11:24  Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.

V.  All Unrighteousness is Sin

1 John 5:16  If any man see his brother sin a sin which is not unto death, he shall ask, and he shall give him life for them that sin not unto death. There is a sin unto death: I do not say that he shall pray for it.

1 John 5:17  All unrighteousness is sin: and there is a sin not unto death.

We are told to pray for those we see who are sinning.   The spiritual brother and sister in Christ needs to work towards restoring the weaker brother.

Gal 6:1  Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.

Gal 6:2  Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.

What is this sin unto death that is mentioned in verse 16?  It is when we blaspheme the Holy Spirit.  In other words,  when we hear the gospel, the Holy Spirit convicts us of sin, and then we reject the call, that is an unforgivable sin.   And it says we are not to pray for one who commits a sin unto death.

Mark 3:28  Verily I say unto you, All sins shall be forgiven unto the sons of men, and blasphemies wherewith soever they shall blaspheme:

Mark 3:29  But he that shall blaspheme against the Holy Ghost hath never forgiveness, but is in danger of eternal damnation:

I am thankful that there is a sin not unto death.  I would that everyone who hears the gospel would turn from their sins and be saved.

1 John 5:18  We know that whosoever is born of God sinneth not; but he that is begotten of God keepeth himself, and that wicked one toucheth him not.

1 John 5:19  And we know that we are of God, and the whole world lieth in wickedness.

1 John 5:20  And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding, that we may know him that is true, and we are in him that is true, even in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God, and eternal life.

1 John 5:21  Little children, keep yourselves from idols. Amen. 

The soul that is born of God does not sin.   The moment we experience the new birth, we have a new man inside of us, and it is sealed with the Holy Spirit until the day of redemption.   Does that mean the fleshly man will never sin again.   Absolutely not… it will be a battle from the day of salvation until we receive our glorified bodies when Christ returns for us.   But once a soul experiences salvation, that soul is secure and will live with God eternally.  The whole world lies in darkness, which is so true.  The world does not understand God, and wants no part of him.   We are warned in the last verse to keep ourselves from idols.  This is a lot more than just little gold or brass statues.  It could be a fishing pole, or a car, or golf clubs.  Might even be your own family or your job.  Anything that stands between you and your service to the Lord is an idol.  John says to keep yourself away from them.

Rom 7:25  I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin.

Rom 8:1  There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.

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.

Rom 8:3  For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh:

Rom 8:4  That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.

Rom 8:5  For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit.

Rom 8:6  For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.

Rom 8:7  Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.

Rom 8:8  So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God.

Rom 8:9  But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.

Rom 8:10  And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness.



Internet Bible Studies are prepared and distributed free of charge.  The lessons may not be sold without consent.   If you have questions or wish to discuss the lessons, or possibly need help in finding Jesus Christ as your Personal Lord and Savior, contact David Parham at 940-322-4343.


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


e-mail at:



Practice Random Acts of Kindness.  Each act spreads, and many will be blessed.