Moments with God
New Testament Bible Reading Plan
Today’s Reading Assignment – 1 John
“This is the message we heard from Jesus and now declare to you: God is light, and there is no darkness in him at all. So we are lying if we say we have fellowship with God but go on living in spiritual darkness; we are not practicing the truth. But if we are living in the light, as God is in the light, then we have fellowship with each other, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, cleanses us from all sin.” 1 John 1:5-7
Study Questions for 1 John 1 -2:2
The Word of Life (1-4)
What had Apostle John seen and touched? Why did he say that Jesus is “the Word of Life” and that he is that which was from the beginning?
How was it possible for John to have testified about this Word of Life? (2) What did John do as he saw the word of life coming into this world? Why did John say “the Father and Jesus his Son?
What is John’s purpose of writing this letter to the readers after he had seen and heard the eternal life? (3b) What is the characteristics of Christian fellowship? How is it different from human fellowship of the people of the world? What is another purpose from the author to write this letter? (4)
Walking in the Light (5-10)
What is the message John received and declared to them? (5) What do light and darkness stand for? Why do you think that it was necessary for John to declare the message concerning God as we consider the Gnostic crisis and the other circumstances in the Church in John’s time?
What should a Christian first do if he wants to have a right fellowship with God and his Son Jesus? What does he mean by “walk in the light” and “walk in the darkness”?
What is the essential condition for the true Christian fellowship to be established? (6,7) What is the work of Christ that is to be brought forth as true Christian fellowship is established? So what can you learn about the importance of public confession of sins for Christians? (8-10)
Our Defender Jesus Christ (2:1-2)
How can John’s writing this letter help to prevent the readers from falling into sin?
What does the author encourage them to do if in fact they should fall into sin? Why is it important for sinners to be aware of Jesus being their defender? How is it possible for Jesus to defend our cause? How can we make the right circumstances so that Jesus can make a defense on our behalf to the heavenly Father?
“Do not love this world nor the things it offers you, for when you love the world, you do not have the love of the Father in you. For the world offers only a craving for physical pleasure, a craving for everything we see, and pride in our achievements and possessions. These are not from the Father, but are from this world. And this world is fading away, along with everything that people crave. But anyone who does what pleases God will live forever.” 1 John 2:15-17
Study Questions for 1 John 2
This is How We Know We are in Him (3-14)
Why was it important for the author to emphasize knowing God through obedience to his commands? How should we test ourselves regarding whether or not we have a right relationship with God? How does this refute the folly of the intellectualism that was prevalent then and these days too?
How can truth dwell in the heart of a true Christian? What are the sweet consequences of one’s obedience to God’s commands?
What should one practically do if he claims to live in God and to have a right relationship with him? (6)
Who does “our brother” refer to? How does our love or hate toward our brothers show whether we are in the true light that is already shining or in the darkness that is passing? What are the terrible consequences in one’s spirit life if he hates his brother?
In what way can the Christian family, the family of faith, be referred to in terms of “children, father, and young men” as we consider the qualities found in each of them?
Why was it important for the author to point out that the readers already have forgiveness of sins, the knowledge of God, the word of God dwelling in them, and the victory over the evil one? Why should believers in Jesus always be aware of possessing these qualities? And how should they develop them?
Do Not Love the World (15-17)
What does the world in verse 15 stand for? (16, James 4:4) (It is not the world of people as in John 3:16 or the created world in John 17:24) In what way are the love of the world and the love of the Father the two conflicting forces in a Christian?
What are some of the cravings of sinful man who you know of? Why are the lust of sinful man and the boasting of what he has and does easily attracting and motivate the people of the world? What is the original of these?
Anointing For the Holy One (18-27)
How does John label the followers of the agnostics and those who failed the test of discipleship which he mentioned? (10) Why?
Why is their coming the evidence of the last hour? (2 Thes. 2:3, Rev. 13:1-10) Why shouldn’t true believers fear?
What are the characteristics of the Antichrist (19, 22-23) How should the believers in Jesus view them and their origins? How have they pulled people away from the truth? (i.e. think of the parable of the sower.)
What are the characteristics of the way in which the truth is revealed to Christians?
What are the things the believers of Jesus should be reminded of to avoid being mislead by the false teachers?
II. The Children of God (28-29)
What are the most important things a believer in Jesus should do to not be ashamed when Christ returns (28, 24, 27)
What kind of life-style does this imply for the children of God who are born of God?
Review what Jesus told John to write to the seven churches in Revelation chapters 1-3. How do those letters help in understanding this passage?
“And this is his commandment: We must believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ, and love one another, just as he commanded us. Those who obey God’s commandments remain in fellowship with him, and he with them. And we know he lives in us because the Spirit he gave us lives in us.” 1 John 3:23-24
The Love of the Father (1-10)
Why is it the great love of God that we should be called children of God? How did they come to be born of God? What are the privileges and blessings they received from God? (John 1:12)
In what way are the children of God contrasted to the children of the world? (1)
What is the ultimate hope of the children of God? How does this also give children of God unshakable confidence concerning their future? What is the consistent inner life of those wo have such hope? (3)
How does the author define “sin”? What are the reasons for “those who live in Christ” or “those who have seen or have known him” not to keep on sinning? How are the lives of the believers and the unbelievers each characterized?
What are the marks of the devil? Why? What is the standard by which one can be tested whether he is a child of God or a child of the devil? How do the children of God overcome the devil and his work?
II. Love One Another (11-24)
What is the heart of the Christian message? (11) In what way is the illustration of Cain its antithesis? (Mt. 5:21)
How does the motivation of Cain’s murdering his brother give us a clue as to the human nature of those who belong to the evil one? (12) How does this explain the reason for the world’s hating followers of Jesus for no reason? (13, Jn. 15:19)
What is the test by which a believer knows that he is in the spiritual state “having passed from death to life”? (14, Jn. 5:24) How does John emphatically declare the spiritual meaning of hate? Why do you think one who hates remains in the spiritual condition of death? (15, 2:11)
How do Christians come to know what love is? What are the motivations and reasons why Christians ought to love their brothers? What does this teach us about the quality of Christian love?
What illustration does John give to teach us that brotherly love is a practical thing? How does this teach us that love demands action?
How does brotherly love bring rest and assurance in our hearts? Why are God’s approval and condemnation more important that of our own hearts?
What other confidence does one have before God as he obeys God’s commands of love? What are the two most important commands? How do we know that we live in God and God in us?
“But you belong to God, my dear children. You have already won a victory over those people, because the Spirit who lives in you is greater than the spirit who lives in the world.” 1 John 4:4
Study Questions for 1 John 4
Test the Spirits (1-6)
Who do the false prophets refer to ? (2:19) How can we test a spirit whether it is from God or not?
Why don’t the believers need to be afraid of the false prophets? What assurance and encouragement does the author give to the readers by contrasting them to the false prophets?
How do we recognize the spirit of truth and the spirit of falsehood?
This is Love (7-12)
Where does “love for one’s brother” come from? (7) What do we have to do to draw love from God as we realize that it is not an innate virtue nor a learned behavior? In what sense does one who loves show that he has been born of God and knows God?
Why does the author say that one who fails to love not only has no knowledge of God but is also not born in God? (8) What does the statement, “god is love” tell us about the essential nature and the motivation of all activities of God? Find the verses in the letter of 1 John where it is written: “God is…” (1:5, 2:29) What do they have to do with “God is love”?
How is God’s love manifested in human history? (9) What is the purpose of loving? (Jn. 3:16) How does this tell us that God’s love involves concrete and objective acts? And that we ought to show our love for one another in deeds?
In the Hellenic world (the time of the writing of this letter) love was defined as “a cosmic principle, and the mystical craving for union with the eternal, or the insatiable craving of man for god.” How is John’s teaching about love different from the claims of the false teachers? How does God’s presenting his Son as “an atoning sacrifice for our sins” tell us about the nature of his love?
How can we see god in the fullest manner – even more clearly that one sees him in a vision? (Ex. 24:11) How is god’s love made complete in us?
Living in God and Living in Love (13-21)
How is “the reciprocal abiding” or “mutual indwelling of God and the believer” possible for Jesus’ followers? (2:24, 4:13, 15) Who does John refer to when he says, “We” in verse 14?
How is it possible for us to have fellowship with God? What does this teach about faith being the only way for us to know God and his love?
How is it possible for us to have confidence on the day of judgement? Why do believers have no need to fear? What does the author say about the nature of gear in verse 18?
What does John say about the source of genuine love? How is it possible for this love to become our own?
Why is love for God and love for neighbor inseparable How is this related to our perfect love relationship with God – God’s love for us and our own obedience to him? (20-21, Mk. 12:30-31, Jn. 13:34)
“Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ has become a child of God. And everyone who loves the Father loves his children, too. We know we love God’s children if we love God and obey his commandments. Loving God means keeping his commandments, and his commandments are not burdensome. For every child of God defeats this evil world, and we achieve this victory through our faith. And who can win this battle against the world? Only those who believe that Jesus is the Son of God.” 1 John 5:1-5
Study Questions for 1 John 5
This is the Victory (1-5)
Besides loving one’s brother, what is the sign of being born again? (1) How does the illustration of a family (closely united under the love of the Father) tell us that everyone who loves God the Father will naturally love God’s children? What kind of people do you suppose would love the children of God with his love? (2)
Why are God’s commandments not burdensome? How does this emphasize that God’s children obey God’s commands and seek after righteousness out of great delight and joy instead of an oppressive sense of duty?
Why does the author say that obedience to God is equated with overcoming the world, or with gaining the victory over the world? (4) How is such victory possible for believers? (4a; 3:24; 1 Co. 12:3) How does the author speak of two different aspects of victory for believers by using the different terms “overcoming” and “has overcome”?
For believers, how is such victory over the world gained ?(4a,b) How is it culminated? (5:1,2) What does this victory assure us? (3, Romans 8:37) (So, in this way, John completes the analysis of the marks of new birth for God’s children in terms of love, obedience, and faith.)
The Spirit, the Water, and the Blood, the Witnesses to the Son (6-12)
What does ‘water’ and ‘blood’ in verse 6 symbolize? (Mark 1:10,11; 14:24) How does this tell us about the beginning and the end of Jesus’ ministry as well as the historical Jesus being the Son of God throughout his ministry? Who testifies that Jesus is the Christ and the Son of God? (6) How does he verify this truth to us? (John 1:32-34; 2:27; 1 Co. 12:3)
Why was the author presenting three witnesses that testify that Jesus is the Christ? (Deut. 19:15) What is the significance of each witness in terms of the counterpart ministry in the hearts of the believers?
Why is God’s own testimony greater than any other witness? (11,12) How is it possible for this testimony to be planted in the heart of a believer? (10) Why is believing in the Son of god through God’s testimony so important?
Concluding Remarks (13-21)
What was John’s purpose in writing this letter to the Christians?
What is the confidence which believers in fellowship with God may enjoy? (14; 3:21) What is the condition for powerful prayer fellowship? How does this confidence affect the prayer life of Christians?
What does ‘sin that leads to death’ refer to? What kind of petition are we sure God will answer? What is the outcome of this prayer.
What are the three certainties that Christians know? With which did John conclude his letter? (18,19,20) What is the author’s final affectionate admonition?