Friday, October 4, 2013

1 John. .week 1. .Discussion

Hello Friends!!
Hope you are all enjoying your first week in 1 John. .
Today, I wanted to share what has spoken to my heart so far this 1st week out of 1 John. .
I also wanted to share a little excerpt on John from one of the study bibles that we have here at the house. . 
The letter of 1 John was written by John, one of Jesus’ original 12 disciples. He was probably “the disciple Jesus loved” (John 21:20), and along with Peter and James (Johns brother), he had a special relationship with Jesus. This letter was probably written between AD 85 and 90 from Ephesus (like where the Ephesians lived) before John’s exile to the island of Patmos (Rev 1:9. .this island was where he was given the REVELATION from GOD dealing with the end times). Jerusalem had been destroyed in AD 70 and Christians were scattered throughout the empire. By the time John wrote this letter, Christianity had been around for more than a generation. It had faced and survived severe persecution. The main problem confronting the church at this time was declining commitment (sound familiar with our culture today?) Many believers were conforming to the WORLD’S standards, failing to stand up for Christ, and compromising their faith. False teachers were plentiful, and they were accelerating the church’s downward slide AWAY from the Christian faith. John wrote this letter to put believers back on track, to show the difference between LIGHT and DARKNESS (or truth and error), and to encourage the church to grow in genuine love for God AND one another. He also wrote to assure true believers that they possessed eternal life and to help them know that their faith was genuine-so they could enjoy all the benefits of being God’s children.  (commentary from Chronological Life application study bible NLT translation. .with a couple little added parts courtesy of me)
Some fast facts. .
These books of Johns weren’t addressed to their audience the way Paul did in his writings. .
scholars believe that he was writing to several congregations that he had served throughout the region (which is modern day Turkey).  He wrote the letter to be read TO the churches so everyone knew what he wanted to say. .
because he never told the audience who he was, it was assumed that the churches were so familiar with him that he didn’t need to tell them it was John. .
especially since the one that delivered the letter would have told them. John was quite an old man by this time. He was believed to be the ONLY apostle who died of old age instead of being martyred for his faith (except Judas Iscariot, who ultimately hung himself after betraying Jesus).
For the last 10 years or more, I have read the New Living Translation. .
Jeremy bought one for me after I had tried to read a more original version that I didn’t understand at all. That original bible is all marked up. .
and this summer I decided it was time to try a new version. .
I had bought an English Standard Version study bible last winter on clearance for a great price and thought someone in our house might use it sometime. .
It is closer to the original language, but it is harder to understand. .
That’s what I have been reading this week. .
I am a highlighting, underlining, box or circle drawing, star making, scribble in the margin kind of reader. .
so after I had read the book a couple times. .
I went back and looked at the scriptures that I had underlined and starred. .
and thought that I would share those with you this week. .
Rest assured. .
there are only 4!
Verse 2:5-6 but whoever keeps his word, in him truly the love of God is PERFECTED
(I LOVE that. .God is perfectING us. .we are not, nor ever will be perfect. .EVER. .it’s a process).
By this we may know that we are IN HIM: whoever says he ABIDES in him ought to walk in the SAME WAY in which HE walked.  (emphasis mine)         
My interesting correlation that I spoke of earlier this week stemmed from the word abide in this verse. .
I will offer a longer monologue on that concept later. .
(in the translation I read last night, the word was fellowship rather than abide)
My bible used the word abide some 13 times in the 5 chapters. .
What hit me about this verse, was the fact that. .
if we are claiming to be OF Jesus. .
part of Him and His family. .
we OUGHT to be walking like He did. .
striving to PERFECT the characteristics that HE possessed. .
humility, honesty, loving etc. And the "perfected" word, reminded me that even though we OUGHT to be walking like Jesus. .
we still won’t get it perfect. .
but we should be setting our goal on that. .
and we’ll NEVER get there with the pitiful way WE try as humans. .
but GOD will perfect us to walk like He did if we ask Him/let Him/ABIDE in Him. .
Along the same line 3:9 speaks similarly No one born OF God makes a PRACTICE of sinning, for God’s seed (Jesus) abides in him, and he CANNOT (C-A-N-N-O-T) keep on sinning because he has been born of GOD!!
Awesome, huh??
Probably my favorite verse of the week is 3:18
Little children, let us not love in WORD or TALK BUT in deed and truth. .
I think it is easy for us to SAY we love people. .
but our actions. .
or maybe our LACK of actions. .
tell a different story. .
God is telling us to put our money where our mouth is!! We also need to be aware. .
that we can tell others and ourselves one thing. .
All. Day. Long. .
but at the END of the day. .
God KNOWS our hearts. .
He KNOWS whether we are all talk. .
or not.
Finally. .
4:4 Little children, you are from God and have overcome them, for HE who is IN you, is GREATER than he who is in the world. .
It is always a well needed reminder. .
that no matter who does what to me. .
or what I do to myself with lies I let myself believe. .
God WINS. .
on the last day. .
the day that is THE most important. .
God WINS. .
and as a child of Him. .
so do I!!
 Most of the book of Revelation is spent telling us how God defeats “he who is in the world” Satan!! Our job?. .
confess our role as sinner. .
and hand over our WHOLE life to Jesus. .
learning how to ABIDE in Him. .
He does the rest. .
In fact, we can NOT do it for ourselves. .
he MUST do it and WILL do it!!
We may not be without hardship, loneliness, troubles, sickness. .
but He does spend a lot of time reminding us through His Word, that He will hold onto us. .
and hold us UP!!
we have to TRUST in that!!
So. .
there ya go. .
that was where it was at for me this week. .
Am, hoping that someone will share their hearts from their reading this week. .
I would also be interested in knowing what translation of bible you use regularly. .
and whether you have a bible with study notes at the bottom, or little biblical “things to think about” sections within it’s pages. .
sometimes that helps to understand things. .
but always remember, those notes are someone’s interpretation. .
not from Jesus! Sometimes reading from a different translation will help. .
Looking forward to hearing your thoughts, discussions, and scriptures and how they impacted you this week!!
Talk soon!!


  1. (no fair counting my typos :-) )
    Week 1 – 1 John thoughts

    1:6, 8 “If we say we have fellowship with Him but still walk in darkness we lie and do not practice the truth…” “If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us”

    I have never been shy about admitting that I sin… ask my SS class, I can be very transparent. But what came to me this time was this… am I willing to admit that my chronic sinning, you know those everyday sins that seem to go unnoticed, are keeping me in darkness? Those little sins that are accepted by everyone as harmless, no biggies… do they matter? I want to be convicted of anything that would keep me from walking in the light! That includes too much time on Facebook, too much idle time, too much idol time!

    2:9-11 He who says he is in the light, and hates his brother, is in darkness until now. He who loves his brother abides in the light, and there is no cause for stumbling in him. But he who hates his brother is in darkness and walks in darkness, and does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded his eyes”

    The word brothers means fellow believers… there are fellow believers who I do not like being around (I’m sure that doesn’t shock anyone!). Some of those believers are also family members (again, not a shocker). Because of my unloving feelings for them (I don’t hate them but I also don’t love them) I am wandering around in the darkness…. That darkness has blinded me from seeing them how God sees them and is keeping me from having a really good relationship with them.. I have built up walls that I thought were protecting me but are actually hurting me..

    Further thoughts on loving others… The sin of not loving them is also preventing me from having a victorious life in Christ…. I cannot love with my own power; I have proved that. Only through Christ will I have victory… Oh Lord how I need YOU!

    2:15-16 “Do not love the world or the things in the world………. For all that is in the world – the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life – is not of the Father but is of the world”

    In SS, we are studying the book of Genesis. Last week we went through the temptation of Eve in Genesis chapter 3. The serpent and Eve carried on a conversation…
    Eve speaking… God said ‘You shall not eat it, nor shall you touch it, lest you die.’ (Which was stretching what God actually said)
    Slimy serpent said… “You will not surely die, for God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”
    “So the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that is was pleasant to the eyes and a tree desirable to make one wise, she took of it’s fruit and ate”…
    She saw that the tree was good…. The lust of the flesh v16
    That is was pleasant to the eyes…. The lust of the eyes v16
    It was desirable to make one wise… The pride of life v16

    From the very beginning the slimy serpent has been tickling our fancy with
    Sins of the flesh… For me that’s food, body image or my desire to be liked
    Sins of the eyes… Body image… wanting to look like “her”… “if I were more like_______ maybe I would have more friends”
    Sins of pride… Body image and friendships/desire to be liked
    (trust me.. this is a very condensed list, I could go on and on)

    Those things we long for the most will be the things the slimy one uses against us, to lure us, to keep us in defeat…. And that’s” NOT of the Father but of this world”
    That’s only the first 2 chapters!! All of these verses I have read and re-read over the years but this week they hit me like upside the head. I was using the Word as a mirror into my heart (instead of pointing my finger at someone else “oh Lord she really needs that verse, can I tell her☺), some of the things I saw were good, some were bad… Praise the Lord I am being Perfected!!!

  2. P.S. I usually use an ESV MacArthur Study Bible but my 1 John is marked up in that one so I am using a New King James MacArthur Study Bible with this study...

  3. LOVE your thoughts Connie!! We often are eager to fess up to SOME of our shortcomings. .but some of them are too close to be comfortable! We will be looking for those soon!! Thanks for sharing!