Easy As 1-2-3: I John 5:10-12

Easy As 1-2-3: I John 5:10-12
Pastor John Weathersby
Sunday May 15, 2022

Draft, Not Transcript

As John is wrapping up, 1 John is coming back to concepts that he has laid down as his premise,
·      The Testimony of a transformed person
·      The Love of God
·      The Trustworthiness of God
Here, in our three verses, he specifically places the trustworthiness of God as a lens through which we see a transformed life.  Honestly, what John depicts is relatively easy.  Not a heavy burden.
If you attend Stephen’s Bible study every other Wednesday, you just studied a similar concept to what we’ll see today in the book of James.  In James 2:14-26
James 2:14–26 (ESV)
14 What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him?
15 If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food,
16 and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what good is that?
17 So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.
18 But someone will say, “You have faith and I have works.” Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show you my faith by my works.
19 You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder!
20 Do you want to be shown, you foolish person, that faith apart from works is useless?
21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered up his son Isaac on the altar?
22 You see that faith was active along with his works, and faith was completed by his works;
23 and the Scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness”—and he was called a friend of God.
24 You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone.
25 And in the same way was not also Rahab the prostitute justified by works when she received the messengers and sent them out by another way?
26 For as the body apart from the spirit is dead, so also faith apart from works is dead.
James is talking about the transformed believer’s life – and as John will lay out today, we’ll see him pit the trustworthiness of God upon the transformed believer’s life if the Bible is what it says it is (the living Word of God). Jesus is what God says He is (His Messiah), then we are:
1)   Aligned with the Gospel and found in Christ,
2)   Lying to ourselves about being in Christ and not bearing fruit, or
3)   Calling God a liar and denying truth.

1 John 5:10–12 (ESV)
10 Whoever believes in the Son of God has the testimony in himself. Whoever does not believe God has made him a liar because he has not believed in the testimony that God has borne concerning his Son.
We said that John is working with two of 3 concepts:
·      The Testimony of a transformed person
·      The Trustworthiness of God
In this book, he uses the idea of testimony 8 times.   Our testimony is to the truth of the Gospel, in Christ.  Denying that Gospel and having no testimony declares your belief that God’s truth is a lie.   A dyer issue indeed.
1 John 1:10 (ESV)
10 If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.
1 John 2:22 (ESV)
22 Who is the liar but he who denies that Jesus is the Christ? This is the antichrist, he who denies the Father and the Son.
Some claim to have fellowship, not denying God’s truth, yet are liars themselves. 
1 John 1:6 (ESV)
6 If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth.
Matthew 7:21–23 (ESV)
21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.
22 On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?
23 And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’
The grave consequence of knowing and being known by Christ is why we are encouraged to see if we’re in the faith:
2 Corinthians 13:5 (ESV)
5 Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test!
Luke 13:27 (ESV)
27 But he will say, ‘I tell you, I do not know where you come from. Depart from me, all you workers of evil!’
Romans 8:9 (ESV)
9 You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him.
Why do I say all that because scripture does?  From front to back:
Isaiah 29:13 (ESV)
13    And the Lord said:
       “Because this people draw near with their mouth
and honor me with their lips,
while their hearts are far from me,
       and their fear of me is a commandment taught by men,
Ecclesiastes 5:1 (ESV)
Guard your steps when you go to the house of God. To draw near to listen is better than to offer the sacrifice of fools, for they do not know that they are doing evil.

1 John 2:28 (ESV)
28 And now, little children, abide in him, so that when he appears we may have confidence and not shrink from him in shame at his coming.
Psalm 23:1–6 (ESV)
1    The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
2        He makes me lie down in green pastures.
       He leads me beside still waters.
3        He restores my soul.
       He leads me in paths of righteousness
for his name’s sake.
4    Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil,
       for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
they comfort me.
5    You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies;
       you anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
6    Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
all the days of my life,
       and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord
Psalm 1:6 (ESV)
6    for the Lord knows the way of the righteous,
but the way of the wicked will perish.
We are called to consider ourselves before a holy, righteous God who brings us near through His promised Christ, Jesus.

To claim Christ and wink of sin by our manner of living isn’t living before a holy God living in a testimony of Christ.
To deny Jesus is the Christ of God, and having no conviction over God’s holiness, and continue living in rebellion against God, is to declare His truth is a lie.
1 John 5:10–12 (ESV)
10 Whoever believes in the Son of God has the testimony in himself. Whoever does not believe God has made him a liar because he has not believed in the testimony that God has borne concerning his Son.
This is John’s point.
John will make plain what it means to “believe in the Son of God and have the testimony in ourselves. 
11 And this is the testimony, that God gave us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.
John moves from saying V10, whoever has, whoever does not, he has not believed, to V11, God gave us.  The giving of Jesus at the cross, is historical and true, it’s implications are the Gospel’s truth of salvation and we have that testimony, the spirit of God aligns with our own through faith when believe in faith.
Romans 8:16 (ESV)
16 The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God,
We are children of God, energized by the Spirit of God, as we come to know the son of God.
12 Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life.
The NASB preserves the definite article, the, before life.  This is important as whoever has the son doesn’t have some non-specific life.  We all generally have life, until we don’t.  So what is the life that is granted to those who “have the son”, from V9 blood and water, V10/11, the testimony of that belief now in V12 we have LIFE. 
The testimony of the believer who has eternal life secured is found in the son; having the Son is the litmus test.  
John demonstrated that Jesus is absolutely everything for the believer’s redemption to the unapproachable Holy God:
1 John 1:1 (ESV)
That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we looked upon and have touched with our hands, concerning the word of life—
The Word of Life is Jesus.
1 John 1:2 (ESV)
2 the life was made manifest, and we have seen it, and testify to it and proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and was made manifest to us—
The Life made manifest was Jesus’.  It was made manifest, not created – because it was the co-eternal from the beginning.
1 John 3:14 (ESV)
14 We know that we have passed out of death into life because we love the brothers. Whoever does not love abides in death.
1 John 4:9 (ESV)
9 In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him.
In Jesus, the VERY love of God was made manifest.
1 John 4:10 (ESV)
10 In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.
So why is Jesus central? 
In Him, the fullness of God (Colossians 1:9) exists.
Consider this:
Acts 4:1–9 (ESV)
1 And as they were speaking to the people, the priests and the captain of the temple and the Sadducees came upon them,
2 greatly annoyed because they were teaching the people and proclaiming in Jesus the resurrection from the dead.
3 And they arrested them and put them in custody until the next day, for it was already evening.
4 But many of those who had heard the word believed, and the number of the men came to about five thousand.
5 On the next day their rulers and elders and scribes gathered together in Jerusalem,
6 with Annas the high priest and Caiaphas and John and Alexander, and all who were of the high-priestly family.
7 And when they had set them in the midst, they inquired, “By what power or by what name did you do this?”
Peter will respond about Jesus, quoting from Psalm 118:
Psalm 118:20–24 (ESV)
20    This is the gate of the Lord;
the righteous shall enter through it.
21    I thank you that you have answered me
and have become my salvation.
22    The stone that the builders rejected
has become the cornerstone.
23    This is the Lord’s doing;
it is marvelous in our eyes.
24    This is the day that the Lord has made;
let us rejoice and be glad in it.
When we look upon Christ Jesus, we see the fullness of God, the Spirit convicts us of our sin before God’s holiness, and when we a spiritually convicted and repent of that Sin, trusting Christ as our Lord and way to God, by faith in the future salvation after this life, we’re God’s – secured in Christ, held by the Spirit, and we are transformed and renewed (See Romans 12)

We’re justified in a moment and sanctified over a lifetime, and upon death, those, as John describes here, who are in Christ, have the promise of eternal unification with God in Christ.
Romans 5:16 (ESV)
16 And the free gift is not like the result of that one man’s sin. For the judgment following one trespass brought condemnation, but the free gift following many trespasses brought justification.

Romans 5:18 (ESV)
18 Therefore, as one trespass led to condemnation for all men, so one act of righteousness leads to justification and life for all men.

2 Corinthians 5:21 (ESV)
21 For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
By faith, we are to receive Jesus’ Righteousness – THIS is why John makes that so prominent:
Romans 4:4–5 (ESV)
4 Now to the one who works, his wages are not counted as a gift but as his due.
5 And to the one who does not work but believes in him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted as righteousness,
This is celebrated today in Baptism, the symbol of unification with God in Christ and movement from death to renewed, washed, clean life and new birth into a living soul within a dying world. 
Church, examine your testimony.  Are you in Christ?  Look to your works, examine your source of truth, and do they pass the test? 
Maybe you don’t like that I said that, perhaps you don’t like the Bible – read 2 Corinthians 13:5

2 Corinthians 13:5 (ESV)
5 Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test!
6 I hope you will find out that we have not failed the test.

John is focused on two points:
·      The Testimony of a transformed person
·      The trustworthiness of God
And knowing our position before holy God in Christ is as easy as 1-2-3 we’re either:
1)      Aligned with the Gospel and found in Christ,
2)      Lying to ourselves about being in Christ and not bearing fruit, or
3)      Calling God a liar and denying truth

Pray, Observe, Apply.

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