HOW SHALL WE THEN LIVE PART 7
Lets start with a passage out of the Johns 1st Letter
1 John 2:18 (NASB95)
18 Children, it is the last hour; ...
Pastor Ben spoke last week about john and the early church bringing to light .
Words like syncretism
and Political Correctness
We are not going to veer off from Bens introduction we are going to look at what John has to say.
Immediately when the church was formed there came opposition to it.
Why? - Because we have a very real enemy and his intent is to lie to you , steal from you and kill you.
He spends his time attacking those who are against him.
We also have heresy's coming against the church
The letters of the NT writers speak to many of them.
A question that one must answer is this
“Does Christian faith require Christian conduct?
Jesus came and gave us light in a dark world
He gave us Joy in a world full of sadness
He gave us truth when much of what is around us is a lie.
He gave us eternal life instead of eternal judgement
5 This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. 6 If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. 7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin.
This answers the question, Does Christian faith require Christian conduct . What does that look like.
How shall we then live?
We have to live in the Light - not some mystic enlightenment.
In Christ there is no evil - no darkness
For us to live with him we have to change from Darkness to light
Ephesians 5:8 (NASB95)
8 for you were formerly darkness, but now you are Light in the Lord; walk as children of Light
We cannot live a double life - dark and light.
Bible says alot about light - starting in the book of Genesis - Study it
God himself is clothed with light
2 covering yourself with light as with a garment, stretching out the heavens like a tent.
Think about it - do a study on it.
Lets move to the the main points I will be making today by reading Chapter 2 of 1st John
If you have your bibles lets turn to Chapter 2 and read from verse 1 to verse 17
1 John 2:1–17 (ESV)
1 My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.
2 He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world.
3 And by this we know that we have come to know him, if we keep his commandments.
4 Whoever says “I know him” but does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him,
5 but whoever keeps his word, in him truly the love of God is perfected. By this we may know that we are in him:
6 whoever says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he walked.
7 Beloved, I am writing you no new commandment, but an old commandment that you had from the beginning. The old commandment is the word that you have heard.
8 At the same time, it is a new commandment that I am writing to you, which is true in him and in you, because the darkness is passing away and the true light is already shining.
9 Whoever says he is in the light and hates his brother is still in darkness.
10 Whoever loves his brother abides in the light, and in him there is no cause for stumbling.
11 But whoever hates his brother is in the darkness and walks in the darkness, and does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded his eyes.
12 I am writing to you, little children, because your sins are forgiven for his name’s sake.
13 I am writing to you, fathers, because you know him who is from the beginning. I am writing to you, young men, because you have overcome the evil one. I write to you, children, because you know the Father.
14 I write to you, fathers, because you know him who is from the beginning. I write to you, young men, because you are strong, and the word of God abides in you, and you have overcome the evil one.
15 Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.
16 For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride of life—is not from the Father but is from the world.
17 And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever.
if you study the passage you will find keys to a successful walk
It starts with Jesus and ends with Jesus
Without Jesus you don't have a leg to stand on
He is our propitiation - Our ransom payment - the removal of wrath by offering his son. You cant make it into heaven without the gift
Not your good works - Not your good looks - Not being nice - Not trying to be a basically good person.
Many today go through life without Jesus - What will happen? Jesus says on judgement day - I DONT KNOW YOU
Or some start with Jesus and end without him. How - unrepentance? Jesus isn’t a ticket into heaven - He owns it.
It is all about relationship.. We walk with Him
What helps me is to ask questions. If your not walking with Jesus , who are you walking with?
Your on journey and you are never alone - you might feel alone at times but you are not.
We have in heaven a great cloud of witnesses. Look at all the scriptures. God notices even when a sparrow falls.
2. Keep His Commandments ( Word)
John unites these two words
How do you know you keep his word - the word keep means you are being conformed to it
A divine revelation
You cherish it - You desire it and you protect it.
Christs work is complete and perfect - we can trust him - we can walk in his word
3. Abide in Him
4 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me.
Abide - It means to continue in him - to stand for him and to endure with him - It is a word that is full of action - it is not static.
He is worthy to abide with.
Psalm 9:7–10 (ESV)
7 But the Lord sits enthroned forever; he has established his throne for justice,
8 and he judges the world with righteousness; he judges the peoples with uprightness.
9 The Lord is a stronghold for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble.
10 And those who know your name put their trust in you, for you, O Lord, have not forsaken those who seek you.
In our broken world - people dont want to put their trust in anything. Everything changes - everything seems to be in flux
everything seems unreliable.
How shall we then live ? By putting all of our eggs into one basket. Christs Basket
4. Walk the same way Jesus walked
Read the gospels to get the answer
What did he do? He healed, He provided, He encouraged, He cast out demons, He gives purpose to life and the next, He was loving and caring ......
He proved His love by dying on the cross and being raised from the dead.
Illustration Remember when we lived in a world of craftsman - it has been so long I doubt most youg people would know what a craftsman is.
The best craftsman were called master craftsman. All the newbees were called apprentices.
You were always on one of the three tracts of a craftsman
1. I do it you watch
2. You do it with me
3. You do it I watch
This could take years - In fact some might not even make it to number three
5. Walk in Love
This might sound simple - but some of the meanest , crankiest people i have met were Christians. Sometimes the church can be a hates paradise.
Jesus was always on the case of the Sadducee and Pharisees - Calling them brood of vipers and white washed sepulchers.
Love is the litmus test. ( Today we confuse love with tolerance) We think if we tolerate everything we are being loving - obviously that doesn't work out even when raising children does it .
Some times love is not easy or convenient.
43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven. For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. 46 For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? 47 And if you greet only your brothers, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? 48 You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.
Perfect in what - LOVE - Why because while we were yet sinners - Christ loved us.
God is amazing and he has a special word for us who love -do you know what that word is?
You become like him
You overcome the evil one , just like Jesus
33 “These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world.”
Life is a test. - It is a love test and a faith test. You have to pass them both - 1 Corinthians 13 tells us that