to obey is better than sacrifice / obedience is better than sacrifice *
January 06, 2020 – Monday
1 John 2:3-6 NIV
3 We know that we have come to know Him if we keep His commands.
4 Whoever says, “I know Him,” but does not do what He commands is a liar, and the truth is not in that person.
5 But if anyone obeys His word, love for God is truly made complete in them. This is how we know we are in Him:
6 Whoever claims to live in Him must live as Jesus did.
In verse three above, the work keep means not only to follow them, but to hold them close especially in our heart and mind so that we may persistently meditate on them out of love for His word and what He has done for us. For this to be so requires that we keep His commands or are seriously undertaking to do so.
What about those who do not seriously undertake to keep His commands? John answers that directly in the next verse (four) when he writes Whoever says, “I know Him,” but does not do what He commands is a liar, and the truth is not in that person. They are liars! They say they know Him, but they do not as revealed by their actions, how they are living, walking in the darkness of a life of sin. As a result they clearly do not know Him or have His truth in them. Notice John goes from we -plural to whoever and liar – singular which separates him and his fellow believers from them.
However in verse five, if anyone obeys His word, love for God is truly made complete in them. This is how we know we are in Him. What a clear cut difference. Obeying His word, obeying what Jesus has said we are to do is real evidence the love of God has entered their (our) lives. Doing so results in the love for God is truly made complete in them. Made complete is the idea of growing and maturing resulting in a real shift in our relationship with sin as David Guzik notes saying when one becomes a Christian, there is a change in his relationship with sin. Sin is not eliminated in the believer until he comes to glory, but his relationship to sin is changed when he truly become a Christian.
- A Christian no longer loves sin as he once did.
- A Christian no longer brags about his sin as he once did.
- A Christian no longer plans to sin as he once did.
- A Christian no longer fondly remembers his sin as he once did.
- A Christian never fully enjoys his sin as he once did.
- A Christian no longer is comfortable in habitual sin as he once was.
Doubting where you stand in your obedience and your salvation? Don’t, instead, simply (!) openly admit your sin to God bringing yourself to the light and walk in it. Always remember God is faithful and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9). As a result one can begin (or continue) to live as Jesus did as we keep His commands by abiding in Him and letting Him abide in one’s self. Do so by studying His life and teachings at home, in bible studies, and in church.
Always remember this is a lifelong process where we keep on keeping on. It is easy to become distracted by the world, so we must make time for God in our lives daily to maintain our walk with our Lord and Savior who died on the cross for our sins – Jesus the Christ.
(to obey is better than sacrifice /obedience is better than sacrifice)
* To obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed is better than the fat of rams. (1 Samuel 15:22)