A Walk through 1 John
1 John 1:5-10 (ESV)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. 8 If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.
Pastor Chris shares this second in a new series of messages from the book of 1 John. It centers on the fact that the darkness of sin is in us, but we can be cleansed from it when we walk in the Light of God. Finding Light in Dark Times helps us understand the darkness waging war within us, and the power God gives us through His Son to dispel the night with His glorious light.
God’s Light is greater than sin’s darkness. These are not equal, but they are opposing forces:
- Joy Comes from Walking in the Light (vv. 4-5) – “…our joy may be complete….God is light…”
- Christians Walk in the Light (v. 6) – “If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie.”
- Darkness is Cleansed by the Light (v. 7) – “…if we walk in the light,…the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin..” See also, Romans 5:20, Galatians 6:7, Numbers 32:23
All humanity have a path available from the Father to walk from darkness into light. This path is the forgiveness of sin through the Son, Jesus Christ. To start on this way, scripture poses two questions that every person must answer:
- Do you want to be forgiven and made clean? – “9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9 (see also, Ecclesiastes 7:20)
Confession is the access code that gets a sinner past the gate and on the narrow path. Confession is marked by:
- Being lovingly honest
- Humble when exposed
- Ownership of our sin
- Quick to admit our wrongs
- Listening and examining
- Greeting feedback with confession and encouragement
- Patience and gentleness in the face of wrong
- Not returning to the past
- Putting our hope in Christ
“He who conceals his sins does not prosper, but whoever confesses and renounces them finds mercy.” Proverbs 28:13
- Whose opinion do you agree with over you? – will you trust the lying words of your flesh and the Accuser (Satan), or the words of truth from God?
“10 If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.” 1 John 1:10
- Why do you suppose John chose Darkness and Light as metaphors for Sin and Forgiveness:
- How does it feel to walk in the Light? What do people feel who walk in Darkness?
- What’s your reaction to the idea that Light and Darkness, in this context, are not equal, but they are opposite forces?
- How have you experienced the freedom that comes from genuine confession? What did it take to get you to the point of confession?
- Make it personal. Ask yourself, “Do I want to be forgiven and made clean?” Remember that God does not condemn us of sin, rather He lovingly convicts us, so that Jesus can will free us.
- Now, ask the other question of yourself in daily life, “Whose opinion do you agree with over you?” The answer may seem obvious, but the deeper response reveals your true identity. God has called you “His own,” do you believe it?