Living a Balanced Life
(An In-Depth Study of First John)
1 John 2:1-2
We have learned so far from John’s letter that life balance and truth are inseparable. The truth about Jesus is… ‘he is the Christ’; God made manifest. This is a strong Gospel statement that implies that every person on earth has a very serious sin problem that leads to death. However, John declares that a proper name for Jesus is the Word of Life. Jesus alone leads each person who places their faith, in him alone, into fellowship with God and other believers.
Jesus’ message about God is this: “God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.” The application of that statement in John’s letter is for all believers to walk in the light. Balance occurs in the life of the believer when we are walking in the light and confessing our sin.
John has now made two key statements that purpose the central theme of his letter—“God is light; in him there is no darkness at all” (1:5), and “he is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world” (2:2) To follow John’s thinking is to say that God is ultimate. He is only light, no darkness. He is only truth, no falsehood. Therefore God is the only source of balance in life. God has also made a way to experience his light and truth. In order to have perfect fellowship with him one must receive the eternal life God has revealed in Jesus. This Jesus is the only Savior for all, the only One who satisfies the wrath of God by taking on the guilt and punishment for sins.
In between these statements, John rules out falsehoods. One must not claim personal sinlessness. This is a direct warning not to forsake Jesus. John also declares the only way to meet the condition necessary for fellowship with God: the confession of our sins through believing in Jesus. In addition, Christians who confess their sins need not fear disqualification from fellowship with God. Jesus is now their Advocate who appears before the Father on their behalf. The basis of his advocacy (his propitiation for sins) is his once-for-all sacrifice that is all-sufficient.
As we focus on chapter 2, verses 1 and 2, the main idea is to call every believer to balance their life. This will be the focus of this week’s study.
John gets personal
Vs 1 “My Little Children”
- those in fellowship (1:3-4)
- those who believe and are cleansed by the Blood (1:7)
“I am writing these things to you”
– so the Word (Truth) is in us (1:8)
“so that you may not sin”
– Christ-likeness is the goal
Perfectionism (leads away from the Gospel)
Christ-likeness (relies totally on the Gospel)
Call to Balance Life
- Don’t sin (vs 1)
- If you do sin, don’t despair (vs 2)
- Share the Good News (vs 2)
Christians that are soft – get tough!
Christians that are severe – know grace!
What does it mean for Jesus to be our Advocate?
- Advocate (Gr. – “Paraclete”)
- With the Father
- Title – Jesus Christ the Righteous
Take serious sin and the call to walk in the light
This news is for you AND the whole world