Christ helps us
1My children, I am writing this so that you won't sin. But if you do sin, Jesus Christ always does the right thing, and he will speak to the Father for us. 2Christ is the sacrifice that takes away our sins and the sins of all the world's people.
3When we obey God, we are sure that we know him. 4But if we claim to know him and don't obey him, we are lying and the truth isn't in our hearts. 5We truly love God only when we obey him as we should, and then we know that we belong to him. 6If we say we are his, we must follow the example of Christ.
The new commandment
7 # John 13.34 My dear friends, I am not writing to give you a new commandment. It is the same one that you were first given, and it is the message you heard. 8But it really is a new commandment, and you know its true meaning, just as Christ does. You can see the darkness fading away and the true light already shining.
9If we claim to be in the light and hate someone, we are still in the dark. 10But if we love others, we are in the light, and we don't cause problems for them.#2.10 and we don't cause problems for them: Or “and we can see anything that might make us fall.” 11If we hate others, we are living and walking in the dark. We don't know where we are going, because we can't see in the dark.
12Children, I am writing to you,
because your sins
have been forgiven
in the name of Christ.
13Parents, I am writing to you,
because you have known
the one who was there
from the beginning.
Young people, I am writing to you,
because you have defeated
the evil one.
14Children, I am writing to you,
because you have known
the Father.
Parents, I am writing to you,
because you have known
the one who was there
from the beginning.
Young people, I am writing to you,
because you are strong.
God's message is firm
in your hearts,
and you have defeated
the evil one.
15Don't love the world or anything that belongs to the world. If you love the world, you cannot love the Father. 16Our foolish pride comes from this world, and so do our selfish desires and our desire to have everything we see. None of this comes from the Father. 17The world and the desires it causes are disappearing. But if we obey God, we will live for ever.
The enemies of Christ and God's children
The enemy of Christ
18Children, this is the last hour. You heard that the enemy of Christ would appear at this time, and many of Christ's enemies have already appeared. So we know that the last hour is here. 19These people came from our own group, yet they were not part of us. If they had been part of us, they would have stayed with us. But they left, which proves that they did not belong to our group.
20Christ, the Holy One,#2.20 Christ, the Holy One: The Greek text has “the Holy One” which may refer either to Christ or to God the Father. has blessed#2.20 blessed: This translates a word which means “to pour olive oil on (someone's head)”. In Old Testament times it was the custom to pour olive oil on a person's head when that person was chosen to be a priest or a king. Here the meaning is not clear. It may refer to the ceremony of pouring olive oil on the followers of the Lord just before they were baptized or it may refer to the gift of the Holy Spirit which they were given at baptism (see verse 27). you, and now all of you understand.#2.20 now all of you understand: Some manuscripts have “you understand all things.” 21I did not need to write to you about the truth, since you already know it. You also know that liars do not belong to the truth. 22And a liar is anyone who says that Jesus isn't truly Christ. Anyone who says this is an enemy of Christ and rejects both the Father and the Son. 23If we reject the Son, we reject the Father. But if we say that we accept the Son, we have the Father. 24Keep thinking about the message you first heard, and you will always be one in your heart with the Son and with the Father. 25The Son#2.25 The Son: The Greek text has “he” and may refer to God the Father. has promised us#2.25 us: Some manuscripts have “you”. eternal life.
26I am writing to warn you about those people who are misleading you. 27But Christ has blessed you with the Holy Spirit.#2.27 Christ has blessed you with the Holy Spirit: The Greek text has “You received a pouring on of olive oil from him” (see verse 20). The “pouring on of olive oil” is here taken to refer to the gift of the Holy Spirit, and “he” may refer either to Christ or to the Father. Now the Spirit stays in you, and you don't need any teachers. The Spirit is truthful and teaches you everything. So stay united in your heart with Christ, just as the Spirit has taught you to do.
Children of God
28Children, stay united in your hearts with Christ. Then when he returns, we will have confidence and won't have to hide in shame. 29You know that Christ always does right and that everyone who does right is a child of God.
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