1 John 4:1-19
Wednesday, 30 June 2021
"Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God…” -1 John 4:1
This epistle by the Apostle John was written to counter the heresies infiltrating the early Christian church. The false doctrine that was being propagated was Gnosticism. These false teachers, although attributing some form of deity to Christ, denied his true humanity to preserve Him from evil. This heresy had two basic forms:
First, some asserted that Jesus’ physical body was not real but only “seemed” to be physical.
The second set contended that Christ’s “spirit” descended on the human Jesus at His baptism but left Him just before His crucifixion.
Are we living in a world any different from the first century Christians? Absolutely not!!! Even today the deity and the humanity of Jesus Christ is a “bone of contention.” How will you and I lead others to the truth and also remain in it? Apostle John clearly lays down the witness of the Spirit in a believer’s life that will help each of us to live in the truth.
Test yourself today if what you believe is of God or not!
Evidence 1: Confession & Denial of Christ (Vs.2&3)
If you believe that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh, then you are of God and the Spirit of God is in you. If not, it’s the spirit of Anti-Christ. Why is this so important? Paul writes it very clearly in Romans 8:3& 4
“For what the law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh, God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, on account of sin: He condemned sin in the flesh, that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.”
Evidence 2: Spiritual Hearing & Spiritual Deafness (Vs.5&6)
When we belong to God and know God, we hear what the Spirit has to say, because He is the Spirit of truth. But he who is not of God does not hear the truth. The question is not “What is Truth but Who is Truth?” This is where the Spirit does His work. As Jesus clearly states in John 15:26: ”But when the Helper comes, whom I shall send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify of Me”
Evidence 3: Brotherly Love (Vs. 7-11)
The first ingredient in the fruit of the Spirit as stated in Gal 5:22 is ‘Love.’ This love is from God and can be received in us only when we are born of Him. As Jesus in His discourse with Nicodemus states – “born not of the flesh but of the Spirit.” When we declare that we are born of God, His Spirit in us will birth within us a deep love for others. This is because God who lives in us is love! Check if this is the testimony you have.
Evidence 4:Abide in God (Vs.12-16)
The indwelling presence of the Spirit is the proof for every believer that God dwells in us—1 John 3:24. Because of His presence in us, the Holy Spirit enables us to understand 3 important truths:
The Father has sent the Son as the Savior of the world (V.14)
Helps us to confess that Jesus is the Son of God (V.15)
Helps us to grow in spiritual knowledge as we grown in love and faith in God(V.16)
The Apostle John has laid out the truth very clearly. So beware that we are not gullible to every wind and doctrine presented to us. Any doctrine that denies the deity, humanity and the saving work of Jesus Christ is of the Antichrist. Stay Alert!
QUOTE FOR THE DAY:
“The indwelling Spirit shall teach him what is of God and what is not. This is why sometimes we can conjure up no logical reason for opposing a certain teaching, yet in the very depth of our being arises a resistance.” -Watchman Nee
Listen: ‘The Hymn of the Holy Spirit’