Ministry Resources

NT Fire Starters – Day 336: 1 John 5:1-21

READ: 1 John 5:1-21

THINK: Most religions involve people attempting to appease “god” or to attain some kind of enlightenment through rules, rituals and routines. But Christianity is about knowing God through a personal relationship with His Son, Jesus Christ. Another major difference between true Christianity and nearly all other religions is that with religion, people are never sure of where they stand with “god” or where they are in some cycle of life. But Christ offers real hope and assurance of spiritual salvation. In other words, you can know beyond any doubt that your sins are forgiven and that you have eternal life with God. That hope provides all the motivation Christ’s followers need to experience true peace, fulfill His purposes, share His love and be all He created them to be.

RESPOND: How will genuine faith in Jesus express itself? (See 5:1 note.) How and why are faith and love connected? How can we know that our love for others is true Christian love? (See 5:2 note.) How can we know that our love for God is authentic? (See 5:3 note.) How will true children of God view His commands (v. 3)? What enables God’s people to overcome the corrupt influences of the world and avoid the judgment in store for it? (See 5:4 note.) What does it mean that Jesus Christ “came by water and blood”? (See 5:6 note.) Why is this significant in regard to the false teaching John was refuting? In what ways has the Holy Spirit testified to the truth of Christ (v. 6)? What is significant about there being “three that testify” to the truth of Christ? (See 5:7 note.) What is the essence of eternal life, both now and for the future? (See 5:11 and 5:12 notes and John 17:3 note.) What was one of John’s primary reasons for writing this letter? (See 5:13 note.) In what way does all of God’s Word serve this same purpose? (See article on Assurance of Salvation, p. 1889.) According to verses 14-15, how can we gain confidence regarding our prayers? (See 5:14 note.) What does it mean to ask according to God’s will (v. 14), and how can we know we’re doing that? What should you do if you know a fellow Christian who is not deliberately defying God but is struggling with sin because of spiritual weakness? (See 5:16 note.) How can your prayers help a person in this situation? What’s the distinction between “a sin that leads to death” (v. 16) and “a sin that does not lead to death” (v. 16-17)? (See 5:17 note.) Why and in what way is the whole world “under control of the evil one”? (See 5:19 note.) How does this correspond to God’s ultimate power and authority and with people’s free will? (See 5:19 note, sub point 2.) Why has Jesus given us understanding (v. 20)?

PRAY: Pray that your love for God and others will always be sincere, purely motivated and backed by obedience. Ask God to strengthen your faith to overcome worldly influences as you depend on the Holy Spirit. Thank Jesus for the hope of eternal life with Him, and for the opportunity to develop that relationship now. Ask God to help you discern His will so that your prayers can agree with His plans and desires.

ACT: Pray for and personally encourage anyone you know who is struggling in their relationship with Jesus but still desires to serve Him. As you go through the day, stay aware of Jesus’ presence and take every opportunity to interact with Him through prayer–not only speaking, but also listening to Him. Practice this constantly and on a daily basis as a way of developing your relationship with Jesus and truly experiencing the life He gives.

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