1 John 2:22-25

In 1 John 2:22-25 John exposes the greatest of liars – those who deny Jesus as Savior and Lord.  While we may think of the Antichrist as one individual who will lead the charge against Christ and his church, John makes it clear that anyone who denies Jesus is an antichrist.  The spirit of antichrist identifies itself by its denial of Jesus and its denial of the Father.  “And who is the greatest liar? The one who says that Jesus is not Christ. Such a person is antichrist, for he does not believe in God the Father and in his Son.” We can deny Jesus while praising Him with our words; we can deny Him by offering a substitute Jesus or by ministering in a manner that denies the character of Jesus.

Belief in Jesus is directly connected to believing in God.  You can’t have one without the other.  They are connected as part of the Trinity and there is no separating them.  “For a person who doesn’t believe in Christ, God’s Son, can’t have God the Father either. But he who has Christ, God’s Son, has God the Father also.”  If we believe in one, we have the other. There are many people who seem rather spiritual or religious, yet reject Jesus Christ. While their religion or spirituality may seem to serve them well in this life – giving them a basis for morality and good behavior – it does them nothing before God, because in rejecting Jesus they reject God.  When they stand before God at judgment day, they will come up short.

So how do we respond to this pressure to deny Christ?  John makes it simple – we need to keep on believing the Word of God and the core message of salvation through the shed blood of Jesus.  “So keep on believing what you have been taught from the beginning. If you do, you will always be in close fellowship with both God the Father and his Son.”  Humans, by nature, are almost always attracted to something just because it is new. We almost always think of new as better. But when it comes to truth, new is not better. That which you heard from the beginning is better. We need to cling to truth and not be swayed by a different view or approach to our relationship with Jesus.

Knowing about Jesus is not enough though.  We need to live in close fellowship with Him.  This doesn’t mean just knowing it, but living in it. When we are living in the simplicity of the truth of Jesus Christ, then we will abide in the Son and in the Father. Why does it matter?  John gives us the amazing answer. “And he himself has promised us this: eternal life.” It’s pretty straight forward.  If we have a relationship with Christ, we have eternal life.  This is not mere immortality. Every human being, made in the image of God, is immortal, in the sense that our souls will live forever, either in heaven or in hell. So, eternal life doesn’t just mean a life that lasts for eternity. It describes the kind of life that God, the Eternal One, has in Himself. Spurgeon summarized it this way: “You must be in a living, loving, lasting union with the Son of God, or else you are not in a state of salvation.”  Are you sure of your eternal life?

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