Light and Darkness
1 John 1:5-6 ESV
“This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth.”
Light is truth. It is Jesus Christ. It is righteousness, holiness, godliness, purity, honesty, and uprightness. And it is obedience to our Lord Jesus, and submission to his Lordship (ownership) over our lives. And it is the forsaking of our sins and walking according to the Spirit and not according to the flesh.
Darkness is the opposite of light, and it opposes the light. So, it is wickedness, evil, immorality, adultery, unfaithfulness, lying, cheating, stealing, impurity, disobedience, rebellion, disloyalty, and the devil. It is all that is against the light, and that which keeps people from coming into the light, including pride, selfishness, bitterness, and hatred.
So, if we claim that we are followers of Jesus Christ, and that our fellowship is with him, and with God the Father, and yet what we practice is sin, we are liars, and we do not practice the truth. Yet, this isn’t saying that we will never sin, but that sin should no longer have mastery over our lives. We should not be addicted to sin, repeating the same sins over and over.
We should not be living in sin, deliberately and habitually and even premeditatedly sinning against God as a matter of habit, of practice, and of lifestyle. We should not be plotting evil on our beds and willfully doing what we know is going to bring harm to others. That is not love for God, and it is not love for others. And those who practice sin will not inherit eternal life.
Walking in the Light
1 John 1:7 ESV
“But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin.”
Our walk is our conduct, and it is what we practice, our lifestyle. It is how we think, believe, act, and speak day in and day out, day after day after day. It represents who we are, for we are what we do. We can call ourselves Christians but that doesn’t make us Christians unless we are living like we are Christians. For, actions speak louder than words.
As followers of Jesus Christ, we are to walk (in conduct, in practice) according to the Spirit of God and not according to the flesh. And we are to walk in the light (in truth, righteousness, and holiness) and not in darkness (sin, wickedness, immorality).
If we walk (in conduct, in practice) in the light (truth, righteousness), as God is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, which is the fellowship we have with Jesus Christ, for that is what unites us together. And the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin.
So, how does that work exactly? Weren’t we cleansed from all sin when we believed in Jesus for salvation? Yes! But believing in Jesus is every day. And belief is shown to be genuine by what we do in heart response to what our Lord Jesus did for us in dying on the cross for our sins.
For, Jesus died that we might die with him to sin and live to him and to his righteousness. He died that we might no longer live for ourselves but for him who gave his life up for us. He shed his blood for us on that cross to buy us back for God (to redeem us) so that we would now honor God with our lives.
And the righteous requirement of the law is fulfilled in us who walk according to the Spirit and not according to the flesh. And we are all going to reap what we sow. If we sow to please the flesh, from the flesh we will reap destruction. But if we sow to please the Spirit, from the Spirit we will reap eternal life.
Do you see where this is going? We aren’t saved and going to heaven based on a one-time decision we made to believe in Jesus Christ for salvation. Our salvation is continuous, and it won’t be completed until Jesus returns. So, if we don’t continue with Christ, and if we go back to living in sin, when Jesus returns we won’t go to be with him. We will die in our sins.
So, if sin is what we practice, we won’t go to heaven when we die. But if righteousness is what we practice, by God’s Spirit, then we have eternal life with God. We must walk the walk and not just talk it if we want to be saved from our sins and to have eternal life with God.
So, walking in the light means living according to the word of God, obeying our Lord and his commands (New Covenant), forsaking our sinful practices, and honoring our Lord by how we live our lives for him and not for ourselves. For, our lives are no longer our own to be lived however we want for we now belong to God, he owns us, and we are to serve him with our lives.
If We Confess
1 John 1:8-10 ESV
“If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.”
To confess our sins means that we voice the same conclusion as, that we agree with, that we align with, and that we speak the same thing as God about our sins, not just that we sinned, but that we agree with God’s view of sin and its impact on our lives.
If we agree with God about our sins, this means we will turn from our sins, and we will follow our Lord in obedience. We will submit to him as Lord, and we will walk in his ways and in his truth, and righteousness will now be what we practice, not sin and wickedness and immorality.
So, those who confess sin as just a mere acknowledgment of sin but nothing changes, but they go on in their sinful practices confessing, and sinning, confessing, and sinning, doing the same things, telling the same lies, making all the same excuses over and over again for why they are still addicted to sin and for why they are not walking in victory, they are not forgiven.
For forgiveness does not take place when confession is lip service only or when it is a mere acknowledgement of sin, or when one confesses some sins but then lies about other sins. For, agreeing with God is not a mere intellectual exercise. It means we have the same heart and mind about our sin as God does and thus we repent (turn from our sins), and we now follow Jesus in obedience to his ways.
And this cleansing from all unrighteousness is the same cleansing that occurs when we walk in the light as God is in the light. It is a continuous cleansing based on continuous walks of faith and genuine repentance and agreement (alignment) with Almighty God.
For, if we walk according to the flesh, and we make sin our practice, we will die in our sins. But if we walk according to the Spirit, eternal life is ours.
[Lu 9:23-26; Jn 6:35-58; Jn 15:1-11; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-17; Eph 4:17-24; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Pet 2:24; 1 Co 6:9-10, 19-20; 2 Co 5:10, 15; Gal 5:16-21; Eph 5:3-6; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 2:6-8; Tit 2:11-14; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Rom 12:1-8; 1 Co 12:1-31; Eph 4:1-16; Jn 6:44; Eph 2:8-10; Heb 12:1-2]
A Believer’s Prayer
An Original Work / July 31, 2012
With my whole heart, Lord, I pray
To be Yours, and Yours always.
Lead me in Your truth today.
May I love You, and obey.
Lead me in Your righteousness.
When I sin, may I confess;
Bow before You when I pray;
Live for You and You always.
Love You, Jesus, You’re my friend.
Life with You will never end.
You are with me through each day,
Giving love and peace always.
You will ne’er abandon me.
From my sin You set me free.
You died on that cruel tree,
So I’d live eternally.
Soon You’re coming back for me;
From this world to set me free;
Live with You eternally.
Oh, what joy that brings to me.
I will walk with You in white;
A pure bride, I’ve been made right
By the blood of Jesus Christ;
Pardoned by His sacrifice.