Others, however, while not denying the eternality of the Son, argue that that is not John’s meaning here. First John 3:11 stands as the thesis for this paragraph: “This is the message that you have heard from the beginning, that we should love one another.”. THE BEGINNING MESSAGE A. His readers will be safe if they hold fast to the message which they heard, and that publicly and openly, from the beginning… In both doctrine and ethics we must go right back to the beginning and enquire what the apostles originally taught and their first converts both had (1Jn 2:7, eichete, aorist) and heard (1Jn 2:24 and 1Jn 3:11, ēkousate, another aorist). (Love: A Matter of Life and Death). 1. ", Piper - The wording of 1 Jn 3:11 is striking. Date of Writing: The Book of 1 John was likely written between A.D. 85-95. John wants us to know this precious truth. We speak that we do know. Divine certainties. The reason I put it like that is because of what 1 John 1:9 says and what Hebrews 12:16 says. We are living with Christ, but are living in darkness, separated from God. And then and only then will we be free to forget about ourselves in order to genuinely love someone else. The reason why Cain killed Abel was because his own actions were evil while Abel’s actions were righteous. John concludes this paragraph by encouraging our hearts and giving us further hope. We know that we have fallen short. Love acts. And any gospel you believe, any gospel you proclaim that does not include both doctrine and ethics is only half a gospel tragically incomplete, radically distorted, hopelessly deficient. And I would add specifically "Life in the family (love of the brethren)! James 2:15). (As we discussed, Jesus is the ultimate example of sacrificing for others. Even after we have done these things, we will sometimes have days where our hearts still condemn us. 1 JOHN 3:11. The character of God, who as light is wholly righteous, true and loving demands and empowers moral responses on the part of his children. Every contemporaneous and collateral witness adds to this assurance. John in this context is speaking about helping our Christian brethren, so we need to bear this in mind. People will come and claim to love God but do not show that love by what they do. [⇑ See verse text ⇑] John begins a new section with a positive reminder about love. "For this is the message which you heard from the beginning, that we should love one another." Previous: 1 John 2:28-3:10, A Purifying Hope First John 3:11 stands as the thesis for this paragraph: “This is the message that you have heard from the beginning, that we should love one another.” The Problem of Hating Our Brother (3:12-15) John turns to the example of Cain and Abel to teach why we must love one another. 2 The life appeared; we have seen it and testify to it, and we proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and has appeared to us. Perhaps we think John is exaggerating or going a little overboard. But God is greater than our hearts. The gospel is incomplete unless it includes both doctrine and ethics. Both doctrine and ethics are at the heart of the gospel because they are so inextricably linked. Ephesians 3:3-5; 2 Peter 1:20-21). John 3:11. Now in our verse today (1 Jn 3:11) the message they had heard from the beginning was equally foundational, but now not in the realm of doctrine, but of ethics. (3) We know that we are living and staying with God (abiding in him) because we are keeping his commands. In the New Testament the world also appears as a hostile environment. The quality of this love is determined by the character of the one who loves, and that of the object loved." In the last 3 verses of this passage John speaks of right relationship between ourselves and other Christians. … This most likely refers to John 15:12 where Jesus said “This is My commandment, that you love one another, just as I have loved you." But it is equally true that the essence of the gospel includes the moral imperatives of repentance and of a new life of love lived under the Lordship of Christ and empowered by his Spirit. Only here in John… 1 John 3:11 For this is the message which you have heard from the beginning, that we should love one another: Greek - Hoti aute estin (3PAI) e aggelia en ekousate (2PAAI) ap arche hina agapomen (1PPAS) allelous, NET - For this is the gospel message that you have heard from the beginning: that we should love one another. But listen to the words of Jesus. John 15:12 "is itself a restatement of the “new commandment” of John 13:34." Picking up in the middle of Paul’s description, “having a reputation for good works: if she has brought up children, has shown hospitality, has washed the feet of the saints, has cared for the afflicted, and has devoted herself to every good work.” (1 Timothy 5:10 ESV) The point I want to make is that we are not talking about people who claim to be Christians but have shown themselves to be Christians. First John 3:11–18 describes the contrast between hate and love, and how love ought to be seen in the life of a Christian believer. Those who hate are of the world. Children of the devil are self-consumed. Cain’s heart was wicked which led to his disobedience. John then makes the point even stronger in verse 15. (1 John 3 Commentary - Daily Study Bible), Harris notes that "This section marks the beginning of the second major part of First John (1John 3:11–5:12)." 1 Jn 1:5. These sinful decisions can weigh our hearts down. Now that we have zeroed in on who John is talking about, let’s allow the strength of God’s word convict our hearts. 1Jn 3:11 and 1Jn 1:5 are the only NT uses of aggelia. Wuest - Because this is the message which you heard from the beginning, to the effect that we should habitually be loving one another with a divine love. When he appears, we shall be like him and we will see him as he is. 10b-11) • Why can John say what he does at the end of verse 10? Those who abide in Christ have confidence and will not shrink back when Christ returns. This teaching comes to us in the form of two contrasting pictures, a negative and a positive example, if you will. Jerome informs us that toward the close of the apostle’s life, after he had become too infirm to preach, he still continued constantly to give the exhortation, “Little children, love one another.” He tells us how he remarked. What manner of (ποταπὴν) The word is of infrequent occurrence in the New Testament, but is found in all the Synoptists and in 2 Peter 3:11. Our actions tell everything about who are truly God’s and who are not. What are some of the signs of genuine saving faith? Our love for one another is demanded by the character of God but it is also empowered by the brightness of the God who is light and love, with whom there is no small print. Our love for one another is demanded by the character of God, but it is also empowered by the brightness of the God who is light and love, with whom there is no small print. 1John 1:5 And this is the message (aggelia) we have heard from Him and announce to you, that God is light, and in Him there is no darkness at all. Footnotes. John has already told us in 1 John 1:8 If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. We are staying in the place of being spiritually dead, separated from God and not in a relationship with God. We know that we are murderers because we have not sacrificed ourselves for each other. As John Calvin said "John reminds us that he was teaching nothing but what had been heard by the faithful concerning love from the beginning and had become old through long usage. “You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not murder; and whoever murders will be liable to judgment.’ But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment; whoever insults his brother will be liable to the council; and whoever says, ‘You fool!’ will be liable to the hell of fire.” (Matthew 5:21–22 ESV). As in this case, it will usually force you to examine the context. Jerome informs us that toward the close of the apostle’s life, after he had become too infirm to preach, he still continued constantly to give the exhortation, “Little children, love one another.” He tells us how he remarked. We are to lay down our lives for one another. After all of this discussion about helping others, why does John say "His command" is "to believe in the name of His Son?" How we treat each other and deal with each reveals where we stand in our salvation. Since we are God’s children now, and since we hope in the day when we shall be […] If we do not love one another, we are murderers. (Harris) Earlier John had said, Beloved, I am not writing a new commandment to you, but an old commandment which you have had from the beginning; the old commandment is the word which you have heard. They were the ones with the new revelations. Only when we see and believe and cherish the brightness of God, will we be free to entrust ourselves and our futures into his hands. “It is the Lord’s command, and if this is done, it is enough.”. John's command in 1Jn 2:24 applies to us in terms of ethics as well as doctrine 'Let what you heard from the beginning abide in you.'" John lays it down that anyone who does not do what is right is by that fact shown not to be of God." We must clean out the filth in our lives and stop practicing sins because we see the amazing love the Father has given us so that we can be called children of God. Cain murdered his brother Abel, as recorded in Genesis 4. For (hoti) serves here as a marker of an explanatory clause, "drawing an inference based upon all that has preceded." From the outset of their Christian life, John's readers had been taught the importance of love for one another. –Gabriel Zepeda-Rolón 4th Sunday of Easter (White or Gold) Acts 4:5-12 Psalm 23 1 John 3:16-24 John 10:11-18 1 John 3:11-24-Love One Another (New Revised Standard Version) 11 For this is the message you have heard from the beginning, that we should love one another. And then and only then will we be free to forget about ourselves in order to genuinely love someone else. Read 1 John 3:11-12. 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