THREE TESTS OF CHRISTIANITY
(I John 5:1-5)
January 11, 2009
It would be well to make mention of the fact that when John wrote his Gospel, the object of writing it was that one might believe and therefore “have” eternal life John 20:30-31. In his Epistle, John’s objective is that one may “know” they have eternal life I John 5:13. To “have” means to (obtain, to possess, or to receive). To “know” is (to perceive directly, or to understand). In order to have confidence and boldness in what we have received, it is important to not only have done what is expected of us to do, but also to fully understand the evidence and results of what has been done.
In these five verses of scripture, John gives us three tests whereby we may know that we have eternal life: (1) The Test of Belief, (2) The Test of Love, (3) The Test of Obedience.
I. THE TEST OF BELIEF
I John 5:1a Belief in Jesus as the Christ of God.
I John 5:5a Belief in Jesus as the Son of God.
I John 4:2 Belief that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh.
I John 4:4 We can overcome the world only by Him who lives within us.
Hebrews 11:6; John 8:24 Just as faith in God is necessary to please Him, so then faith in Jesus Christ necessary to have our sins forgiven.
I John 2:22; 4:3 To deny Jesus as the Christ, the Son of God is to make one a liar and an antichrist.
I John 2:22-23; II John 7-9 Those that deny Jesus Christ make fellowship with Him and God the Father impossible.
II. THE TEST OF LOVE
John 13:34-35 Jesus had made brotherly love a mark of discipleship.
John 15:12-14, 17 Jesus had also made brotherly love a commandment to prove we are His friends.
I John 2:10 John wrote that brotherly love was the evidence of our “abiding (reside, remain) in the Light”.
I John 3:10-14 John also wrote that there is evidence in the believer and non-believer regarding our love for the brethren, see John 8:42-44.
I John 4:7-8 God is love. If we are truly born of God, His character will show up in our daily lives.
I John 5:1a John writes that if we love God who brings forth children, then we must love those children that come from Him.
III. THE TEST OF OBEDIENCE
I John 1:6-7 Obedience is essential to having fellowship with God the Father.
I John 2:3-4 Obedience is also essential to knowing the Savior Jesus Christ.
I John 2:5-6 Obedience is needed in order to love God and abide in Jesus Christ.
I John 3:22 Obedience is needed in order to have our prayers answered from God.
I John 5:2 Obedience is essential to being able to love our brothers and sisters in Christ.
I John 5:3 John says that the love of God makes it easy, “not grievous” (oppressive, sorrowful) to keep the commandments of God.Psalm 19:7-11 King David’s attitude toward the commandments of God should be our daily desire in our own hearts and lives.