< What I Learned Teaching Sunday School: 1st John 3:10-18

Sunday, June 03, 2007

1st John 3:10-18

1 John 3:10-18 “This is how we know who the children of God are and who the children of the devil are: Anyone who does not do what is right is not a child of God; nor is anyone who does not love his brother.

This is the message you heard from the beginning: We should love one another. Do not be like Cain, who belonged to the evil one and murdered his brother. And why did he murder him? Because his own actions were evil and his brother's were righteous. Do not be surprised, my brothers, if the world hates you. We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love our brothers. Anyone who does not love remains in death. Anyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life in him.

This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers. If anyone has material possessions and sees his brother in need but has no pity on him, how can the love of God be in him? Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth.”

You can tell what a person is by their conduct.

We are told you should love one another. If you want to know how to do that, look to Christ for example. He laid down His life for us. (1 Peter 2:21) No man can see Christ and say he doesn’t know what a Christian life should be.

If we argue that the opportunity to die for someone else doesn’t come along that often, John tells us that when we see our brother in need and we have enough, we should give to him. To shut your heart and to refuse to give is to show that the love of God, which was in Jesus, isn’t in you. Any time we show self-denial or self-sacrifice for another person, we show this kind of love.

The little insert story about Cain and Abel is there to explain why bad people hate good people and why non-Christians hate Christians. Good people are a walking rebuke to evil people. The evil person will always show his flaws in comparison. And wherever a Christian is, if he’s living right – he acts as the conscience of society. That’s why Jesus was hated and why He warned Christians they would be hated.

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