I John 5:17 All unrighteousness is sin: and there is a sin not unto death.
18 We know that whosoever is born of God sinneth not; but he that is begotten of God keepeth himself, and that wicked one toucheth him not.
19 And we know that we are of God, and the whole world lieth in wickedness.
20 And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding, that we may know him that is true, and we are in him that is true, even in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God, and eternal life.
21 Little children, keep yourselves from idols. Amen.
We looked at what John is saying here before already. God reminds us here that all unrighteousness is sin. God does not excuse any sin. There is no “white lie”. There is no such a thing as a “mercy killing”. As we noted earlier in I John 3:4, all sin is a transgression of God’s law. In verse 16 God did not say there were some sins that did not matter. He was saying there was a sin unto death.
Every born again Christian will sin. However, a born again Christian cannot lose their salvation. They are commanded to deal with their sin. I John 1:9 tells us “If we confess our sin”. That little word “if” is important. A Christian that does not want to confess his sin, will be chastened of the Lord. God does not allow Christians to live in sin. We also know that God can remove a Christian from this world if that person does not want to humble themselves and confess their sin and turn from it.
As we look at verse 17 of our text, John was reminded to tell saved people that they cannot lose their salvation. That is not suggesting that sin does not matter. He has already stated that it does matter. It needs to be confessed, forgiven and forsaken.
In verse 18 John reminds us that a true Christian knows that a born again Christian cannot live in sin. This is consistent with all that God says. Modern day Christianity has tried hard to muddy the waters. Many people are living very carelessly because they have been lied to and they like the lie because it allows them to carry on with it.
We had a visitor in our church a few weeks ago. After the service I spoke with him and wanted to know who he was and what he believed. He stated some things that suggested he might be saved. He then brought up the fact that he was divorced and remarried. He also stated that he was from a church that taught that this was acceptable. He understood there are churches that do not accept this, but he just shrugged his shoulders about this. He was being deceived by another church and he was willing to be deceived because it allowed him to live in adultery, rather than deal with his sin.
John tells us that “we know that whosoever is born of God sinneth not”. Christians need to know this. Pastors need to know this. Pastors are held accountable before God for what they teach and what they refuse to teach. Pastors are not little gods. A pastor’s words do not supersede God’s Word. Do what God says and know His peace and blessing.
Verse 18 continues on by reminding us that saved people keep themselves in God’s love. The saved person needs to draw nigh to God.
James 4:7 Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
God cannot affect the child of God when he is walking in submission to God’s Word and will. It is when the child of God rebels, and yields to temptation, that he will fall. When he falls, he needs to submit to God and confess his sin to God and be forgiven and be restored to right fellowship with God.
We are in a war. We can win if we are saved and dressed for the war. In verse 19 John reminds us that Christians can know they are saved. It is not a guessing game. We already noted in verse13 that God has written the truth and we can have confidence in what He has written. Those religions that want to threaten that “Christians” can lose their salvation, are lying. It is not possible for a born again Christian to lose their salvation. John wrote in I John 2:19 that those who leave the faith were never saved. They were pretenders. They were antichrists. John tells us that the world lieth in wickedness. We have come through three years of this and we are being reminded of this during the month of June. There is a concerted effort to pervert the minds of children and adults. Far too many adults are fools. They have rejected God and thus they cannot discern truth from error. There are parades being held to promote the sin of sodomy. God says this is an abomination to Him. Politicians of all stripes are pandering to this evil. A born again Christian does not compromise on God’s truth. A born again Christian stands for God’s truth and declares that openly. A born again Christian gets his convictions from the God Who saved him.
In verse 20 we are again reminded that we know something. We know that the Son of God is come. This is not mythology. He is come. He has given us an understanding. Saved people understand Biblical truth. We can know Jesus Christ. He is true. We are in Him that is true. God is true and so is Jesus Christ, the Son of God.
John continued by reminding us that this is the true God and eternal life. You cannot have eternal life, if you do not believe in the true God. If you are saved you have eternal life.
In verse 21 Christians are commanded to keep themselves from idols. Christians need to choose to follow God. Christians need to follow the truth and reject the lie. We can do that if we are saved.
John shows us that the truth is not complicated. Saved people do not walk around in a fog. Saved people have the Holy Spirit dwelling in them. They know what is true and what is right. The confusion comes when a saved person walks around like a double minded person. That person will be unstable in all his ways. The solution for the disobedient Christian is to confess the sin and be forgiven and then to walk in obedience to God. Those who want to fight against God demonstrate they are not saved.
Today is the Lord’s Day. You have nothing better to do than to go to a good church today. If you are a doctor or a nurse or a policeman, then you need to fulfil your duties. Other than that, you need to be in a good church. That is what God wants for you. You need to be fed and you need the fellowship of other saints. Don’t fight against the truth. Submit to the truth and be blessed of God. If you are not saved, you need to go to a good church where you can be taught the truth and be saved. God’s Word is what will bring Godly conviction to your heart. There is much confusion in the world. There will be no confusion in a good church. You will stand before God one day. Turn to Him and be saved today and start to walk with Him faithfully.