7567 - Kept by Jesus

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We are approaching the end of our study of 1 John. As John brings his letter to a close he gives three final affirmations, then concludes with an exhortation.

Today we will consider the first of these three affirmations. 1 John 5:18 tells us, “We know that anyone born of God does not continue to sin; the one who was born of God keeps him safe, and the evil one cannot harm him.”

“We know”; these words express the idea of the Greek, that we have positive, absolute knowledge. There can be no doubt. The thought of this verse as well as the next two, represent a final, authoritative summary statement of the truths that have been shared and reviewed in these five chapters. John wants every believer who reads this letter to have a positive, forever assurance regarding the riches that the Christian has by abiding in Christ and having Him live in and through each Christian.

Now, what’s the content of this first assurance? No less than the truth that anyone born of God does not continue to sin.

The one born of God in that first phrase speaks of each individual believer in Jesus Christ. It took the mighty power of God to transfer one sinner from the pit of sin, death and darkness into the glorious life and light of Jesus Christ.

Then it says that such a person does not continue to sin. The very tense here speaks of habitual sin, of persisting in sin. The statement declares that the new life and nature is of such character that it cannot tolerate habitual, or chronic sin any longer. The new birth results in new behavior. Sinfulness and the child of God are incompatible. They may occasionally meet, but it is impossible that they can live together in harmony.

The reason why the Christian does not continue, as a habitual sinner is that there is a new guardian force watching over him. In fact this guardian has taken up residence within each Christian. The guardian is none other than the Son of God, Jesus Christ, Savior and Lord of every believer; and he keeps us safe.

Oh friend, this new separated lifestyle is not one lived by self-effort. I’m so glad that our integrity depends upon our faithful big Brother, the indwelling Christ.

John discussed this truth back in 3, verse 6 when he wrote: “No one who lives in him keeps on sinning. No one who continues to sin has either seen him or known him.” And in 3:9 the same thought is reinforced along with the added truth that God’s seed remains in him so he cannot go on sinning.

God’s Word assures us in many places that the Lord watches over and guards the children of God.

In 1 Cor. 1:8 we read: “He will keep you strong to the end, so that you will be blameless on the day of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Then in Jude, verses 1 and 24, we find: “To those...who are kept by Jesus Christ...” and then follows, “To him who is able to keep you from falling and to present you before his glorious presence without fault and with great joy.”

2 Thes. 3:3 tells us: “But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen and protect you from the evil one.”

In 1 John 4:4 we are told: “You dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.”

Finally, the evil one is identified as the enemy. He it is who is in active opposition to the Lord and His kingdom; however, this verse tells us that the evil one does not touch us because we are protected by the Triune God.