Friday, February 28, 2014

Bible Study: Live A Life Of Love - 1 John - Chapter 5

Please forgive this rough draft format, as these are my raw study notes on the epistle of 1 John. I feel a great sense of urgency to publish them because I’m not sure how much time we have left on this big, blue marble. Thank you for reading them. I pray that God blesses and encourages you through this material. I’m not sure of the condition of the world at the time of this publication. But at the time of its writing, mid to late summer 2010, things are still looking pretty bleak with the economy and unemployment, BP finally thinks they’ve stopped the oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico, and many people I know personally are experiencing difficulties of mega-crisis proportions – including my own diagnosis of breast cancer. Are these the first stages of birth pains? The last? God only knows. And He is very busy these days. Seek His wisdom. Encourage each other. Pray. Jesus is coming to deliver His people and judge the wicked…

Stacey


Take a few minutes to pray and savor chapter 5 of 1 John. Then return here and ponder the thoughts, answer the questions, and be sure to leave comments about your own revelations…

5:1 – Believing that Jesus is the Christ is a gift of enlightenment from the Holy Spirit.

5:2 – How do you think obedience to God’s commands reveals that we love the children of God? Can you think of something other than the fact that one of God’s commands is that we love each other?

5:3 – Our obedience to God reveals our love for Him. Does your obedience reflect your love?

I love the part of this verse that says His commands are not burdensome. Can you identify God’s commands in scripture? Do you realize that everything He commands us to do, He also empowers us to do? That’s why His commands aren’t a burden. What a blessing!

5:4-5 – How does everyone born of God overcome the world? Our faith in Christ - because Christ conquered death. Why do you think this only applies to those who believe that Jesus is the Son of God?

5:5 – see Revelation 2-3.

5:6-8 – What do you think it means that Christ “came by water and blood”? What is the significance of coming “by water only”? The Spirit is mentioned in conjunction with these elements because all three testify to the truth and are in agreement. How do you think the water and the blood provide testimony?

5:9-11 – God’s puts His own testimony about Jesus into our hearts when we believe. His testimony is that He has given us eternal life through Jesus. Praise Him!

Anyone who doesn’t believe this testimony calls God a liar. Does this change the urgency you feel to share the gospel with others? Does it change how you will pray for others to be open to receiving the gospel message?

5:12 – This verse is plain and simple: whoever has Jesus has life; whoever doesn’t have Jesus doesn’t have life. Do you have Jesus?

5:13 – John wants to give believers assurance and confidence in their eternal life.

5:14 – Do you have confidence in approaching God? According to this verse, we can be confident “that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us.” How can we ask anything according to His will? Look up some of God’s promises and start praying them back to Him. The results are surprising. You may begin praying one way and He will change your heart as you pray so that you are more aligned with Him.

When I learned that I had breast cancer, I prayed to God that I know He has plans for me, to prosper me and not harm me. He wants me to have hope and a future. What began as a prayer of pleading for my earthly life became a realization that this life is not the end – I have an eternal future. This disease cannot really harm me – even if it does end my earthly life – because it cannot take away my relationship with Jesus.

5:15 – So the confidence comes in knowing that He has heard us and that we will have what we have asked for.

5:16 – We can pray for our brothers’ deliverance from sin. But, we cannot pray for their deliverance from the “sin that leads to death”. What do you think this sin is? Rejecting Jesus and calling God a liar, maybe? Absolutely.

5:17 – All wrongdoing is sin. But all sin doesn’t lead to death. Any questions?

5:18 – Anyone born of God doesn’t continue to sin. Can you see changes in yourself since you came to Christ? Do you see areas of sinful behavior that you know need to stop? Pray for God to take away the desire for that particular behavior.

5:19 – Do you know that you are a child of God? Are you aware that the “whole world is under the control of the evil one”?

5:20 – Jesus gives us understanding so that we may know Him. Isn’t this a wonderful blessing? How has He helped you to know Him recently?

5:21 – Where did this warning to stay away from idols come from? Are there any identifiable “idols” in your life? Ask Jesus to break them down. Can’t recognize them (or don’t think you have any)? Ask Him to reveal them to you. Then ask Him to break them down.



• First John instructs us in how to live a life of love. Like First Peter, it also llustrates several life lessons and warnings for Christians. What is God teaching you in this chapter of scripture? How will you apply it to your life this week?
• What attributes of God do you see in this book?
• What verse of scripture seemed to be God speaking directly to you? What is He teaching you in these verses? How does He want you to respond?

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