Reading through 1 John has made realize how overly simple what John is calling us to is…yet how much we struggle with it. We want to personalize Christianity and make it about whether or not I do “Christian things” and do them correctly. John places the Christian walk in community and gives the simple commands of “love” and “quit sinning.” As God’s Children, those who have faith, we are called to love God and to love our siblings. In addition to this, God wins. We are his children; we win. In faith, because of Jesus, we now live out our lives fully. We relive our baptism daily. We live in love. We live in obedience. The victory has been one…so act like it!
John reemphasizes the importance that Jesus came both in water and in blood. He did come in the flesh, as man. He did humble himself to become like us in every way. Jesus had to become human. He became like us and showed us how to live. He demonstrates what it looks like to live out the love that John has called us to in this letter. We follow him, not just in salvation, but in life.
The letter ends in an odd way but it ends with a strong message that we need to continually remember: “Dear children, keep yourselves from idols.” I like the way Kent captured this command last time we were in 1 John: “Dear Children, keep away from anything that might take God’s place in your hearts.” In a world that bombards us with things we “need” and images they want us to take one, we have to constantly examine our hearts and see who/what is sitting on the throne. When something else has been placed on the throne it is time to do some cleaning. Dear children, keep yourselves from idols.