by Pastor Ayo Sparks
JESUS IS THE CHRIST!
1 John 5:
Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: and every one that loveth him that begat loveth him also that is begotten of him.
By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God, and keep his commandments.
For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.
In this first Epistle John is clear about his themes: Jesus is eternal life personified. It is not that He has life but, He is the Life!
Jesus is the God Who was from the beginning, manifested in the flesh. This debunked the gnostic teaching that Christ is just an influence that comes on people and leaves. John assiduously emphasized that Jesus is not a lucky or one great man that had Christ dwelling in Him but He Himself is the Christ! To believe that Jesus is the Christ and that He manifested in the flesh is to be sure you’re truly born of God. By that, you are declare an overcomer. In a world where we have all sorts of teachings that give wrong ideologies and dissuade men from the faith that is in Christ. That you heard the gospel and you believe is in itself victory that calls for celebration. That is why Paul was fond of giving thanks in the behalf of those that newly got born again as believing in Jesus means that you have escape the corruption that is in the world and the eternal damnation to come. In a world where many believe that Jesus was just a man that had Christ, you believe that Jesus is the Christ. That’s how to be sure you’re born again!
Being born again (or born of God), a family relationship is established between us and the Father. We are called to fellowship! To have Jesus is to have eternal life, as He is the life that manifested. It is not enough to have eternal life but to know that you have it! Some think it’s something that is promised and will be given as a reward in heaven. But Jesus states clearly that He came to give eternal life and that live is already in us. Christ in you is eternal life in you; given to you!
Love knows no loads! As children of God, beneficiaries of God’s love, we are to demonstrate our love for God through delightsome obedience to His commandment which is centered on love. Our professed love for God is expected to reflect in our relationship with one another as members of the same family. We cannot truly love He that begat us without loving others who are as begotten as we are.
Our oneness is so important to God and it is the heartbeat of apostolic callings. Paul write about *”love for all saints”.* If you cannot love your fellow brothers and sisters in the faith, irrespective of denomination, your professed love for God is mere hypocrisy. It is by loving ourselves unreservedly that we prove that we are truly of God and do love God.
No one born of God lives in sin or sins as a lifestyle. The seed of God in him propels him in the right direction and unto repentance when he misses it. Before the Father, his sin is not counted against him because the blood of Jesus already atoned for our sins and on that note, Jesus takes on the responsibility of an Advocate, if anyone that belongs to Him perchance falls into sin.
In this chapter 5, John brings up a dimension that remains a subject of debate among theologians as to what he means when he speaks of sin into death and sin not into death.
1 John 5:
If any man see his brother sin a sin which is not unto death, he shall ask, and he shall give him life for them that sin not unto death. There is a sin unto death: I do not say that he shall pray for it.
All unrighteousness is sin: and there is a sin not unto death.
We know that whosoever is born of God sinneth not; but he that is begotten of God keepeth himself, and that wicked one toucheth him not.
First of all, our disposition to a fellow brother or sister in Christ found in error should not be of condemnation but intercession. No one who believes Jesus is the Christ will be cast away on the last day or miss his or her place in eternity because of sin He already paid for. The sin into death is outright rejection Jesus as the Christ (the Messiah) and blasphemy against the Holy Spirit. Those who are yet to surrender to the Lordship of Christ are on the path that leads to eternal death. On the other hand, he that believes that Jesus is the Christ has passed from death to life and shall not come to judgment. There’s no amount of prayer that can suffice to guarantee eternal life for whoever rejects Christ but one who recognises Jesus has the Christ can be prayed for to outgrow his weaknesses.
In the days of the apostles, there are cases of people who committed the sin into death and diligent study shows that these were people whose salvation was questionable. When you heartily recognize Jesus as the Christ you hardly can be found blaspheming against the Holy Ghost. Hence, he that is born of God cannot commit the sin into death. Keeping faith in and focus on Jesus is the only way to triumphantly live in this world. We must believe and keep believing.
John 5:21 little children, keep yourselves from idols. Amen.
Many things are calling for attention in the place of Christ. Several transient objects in the world are demanding for our time, talent and treasure rather than channeling them towards kingdom building. Lies are all around to take the place of the truth in our hearts. Whatever succeeds to gain our attention as a matter of necessity and priority, and redirect our faith and focus away from Jesus is an idol. But, has John already told us, being in fellowship with God guides us against walking in darkness. When we stop being found in the place of fellowship, we gradually starts losing focus and when we start losing focus, we start losing faith. It is important as individuals to regard fellowshipping with God and fellow brethren as a daily necessity. With that, we can only grow stronger in the faith. Grace for grace!