1 John 3:10-15 / A Child of God, or a Child of the Devil? (Sermon notes and Audio)

Posted on May 1, 2014

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This is the thirteenth in a series of verse-by-verse expositions of the book of 1 John. This message was delivered at Hillcrest Baptist Church on the evening of April 27, 2014. This message deals with the proof of knowing that you belong to God. This post contains an audio recording of my message, along with my sermon notes. Please note that the sermon notes are not a full transcript.

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1jon3_10-15

SERMON NOTES:

1 John 3:10-15

vv.10-11:
Once again, John emphasizes two families, God’s and the devil’s.

This isn’t surprising, since John records similar words from Jesus, in the gospel that he wrote.

John 8:44

The great concern here seems to be how the children of God will be recognized and how the children of the devil will be discerned?

Though your family is chosen by faith, or a lack thereof, it is your works that tell on you.

This isn’t stressing sinlessness, because that is impossible.

What is being stressed is love for a fellow Christian, hence the word “brother”.

If one has no love for his brethren, he is not one of the brethren.

This type of love, is nothing new, it what has been taught from the beginning.

Again, its no wonder that John writes this, as it was recorded in his gospel.

John 13:34-35

v.12:
This love is contrasted with Cain, and serves to prove the point that our works tell the real story.

Outwardly, Cain appeared to worship God, he even made offerings to Him.

Genesis 4:3-5

However, his works proved him to be a child of the devil.

Jealousy was at the heart of Abel’s murder.

Evil is always jealous of righteousness, just as satan is jealous of Christ.

v.13:
History is filled with the stories of persecuted saints, and there is no reason to believe that it will stop now.

We shouldn’t always expect a warm reception from the world, in fact the world will often treat us very badly.

What we need to understand, is that Christ gives us the power to withstand such trials.

He has overcome the world.

John 16:33

The world will always be jealous, because the true believer is different.

Many in the church today seek to blend in, but this is the wrong approach.

The true believer certainly is different, and we should be intent on being seen as different. Even if it provokes jealousy.

Romans 11:13

If we aren’t any different from the world, what does that say about our faith? Our works are the proof whether or not our faith is genuine.

James 2:18

v.14:
The end result of our faith, is passing from death to life.

Meanwhile, the unsaved will bear a bitter fruit, they never pass from their dead state, they abide in it.

They only death in hell to look forward to. They are truly living their best life now.

v.15:
This verse doesn’t mean that a murderer cannot be forgiven of their sins and be saved, for “whosoever calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved”.

What this does mean is that the one who harbors a murderous attitude is not saved.

King David was a murderer, but he did not stay that way, he repented.

Even so, God called David a man after His own heart.

Murder is as forgivable as any other sin, as long as we are willing to let God change us.

In the following verse, we see a contrast of how a murdering attitude is different from a Christ-like attitude.

1 John 3:16

In this verse, we see that God’s love is displayed in a person’s self-sacrificial attitude toward others, specifically the brethren.

Godly love dictates that we would give our life for another, rather than take another’s life.

This clearly shows how a murdering heart is incompatible with Christ.

To esteem others better than himself, is indeed, a Christ-like attitude that all believers should demonstrate.

So, to say that no murderer has eternal life abiding in Him, means that anyone who unrepentantly harbors this type of attitude, simply cannot be a true Christian.

John is again echoes Jesus’ teaching that whoever hates another person is a murderer at heart.

Matthew 5:21-22

In Matthew, Jesus emphasizes the Kingdom. In this passage, He is demonstrating the absolute purity of God’s kingdom. . . even the hearts (minds) are pure.

It’s important to note, that Jesus may have been emphasizing Kingdom characteristics, but He expect an immediate response.

It’s not enough to say “I’ll be perfected in the end, so why worry about it now?”

God is trying to transform us in the here and now, and we shouldn’t resist that.

Christianity is a religion of the heart; outward compliance alone is not enough.

Bitterness against someone who has wronged you is an evil cancer, and will eventually destroy you.

Don’t let a “poisonous root of bitterness” grow in you.

Hebrews 12:15

Dare to be different.

Dare to reflect Christ.

Resist the temptation to blend in.

Be that light on the hill and the salt of the earth.

Be who God has created you to be, not who the world wants you to be.

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