1 John 5
Wednesday, October 19, 2022
One more song this week – 1 John 5:4-5 “for everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith. 5 Who is it that overcomes the world? Only he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God.”
Those two verses are the song, but verse 4 picks up in the middle of a sentence & thought, so backing up a couple verses:
This is how we know that we love the children of God: by loving God and carrying out his commands. 3 In fact, this is love for God: to keep his commands. And his commands are not burdensome, 4 for everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith. 5 Who is it that overcomes the world? Only the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God.
When we have faith, we can overcome this world. Our faith that Jesus is the son of God gives us victory and makes God’s commands not burdensome thereby helping us to keep His commands. And by keeping His commands, we can love one another – the children of God.
Verse five is also a reminder that the victory is exclusionary. Who overcomes the world? Only those that believe that Jesus is the Son of God. We have to strike a balance in our love for others. Because if we love based on the world’s terms, we accept anything. But to do that would not be love. Because only those who believe that Jesus is God’s son overcome this world. So if we in our “love” just leave our friends alone because we don’t want to make them feel uncomfortable, or we don’t want to feel uncomfortable, we put them in a position of not having that victory. That isn’t real love.
We give a lot of reasons not to share the love of God with other people and I think fear forms the basis of a lot of it – fear of rejection, fear of being ostracized, fear of losing money/power, etc…
But when we read verses like this, we should be reminded that we have to push through that fear. To show our love in actions (chapter 3), we need to share with others that while we have been separated from God, God provided an atoning sacrifice for our sins (chapter 4), and with this sacrifice, if we believe, we can overcome and have the victory (chapter 5).
And what is that victory? As he wraps up his letter, John tells his audience – 13 I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life.
We need to believe in Jesus as the Son of God to be a part of that eternal life, and if we are loving others, we should be telling them so they can have that victory too.
1.”Who is it that overcomes the world?” (1 John 5:5a – see 5b for the correct answer). Who thinks they are overcoming the world? What are they missing? Do you fall into the overcoming category?
2. Who do you know who does not believe that Jesus is the Son of God? How can you truly love them?
3. What is the victory that you have to share? How would you explain it? How will you share it?