1 John Test Presented by Brad Bennett
Do you consider yourself to be a born-again Christian?
The issue of your relationship with God is so important that you cannot afford to be deceived or have any doubt.
A Tree and Its Fruit – bad tree vs. good tree scenario
You can tell a lot about someone by the fruit their life produces
15“Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. 16By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? 17Likewise every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. 18A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. 19Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them. 21“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?’ 23Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’
1 Samuel 16:7
We are to be fruit inspectors
Within the book of 1 John we have been given a series of tests that every person can use to be sure that they have eternal life.
1 John 5:13
“I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life…”
Test 1: A true Christian cannot ignore sin
1 John 1:6-10
6If we claim to have fellowship with him yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live by the truth. 7But 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, purifies us from allsin. 8If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. 9If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. 10If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word has no place in our lives.
These verses tell us that everyone sins, but a true Christian cannot continually sin – he must confess it (agree with God about it). Any person who practices sin, refuses to agree with God about sin, and refuses to turn from sin is not a true Christian.
Test 2: A true Christian has a desire to obey Christ’s commands
1 John 2:3-6
3We know that we have come to know him if we obey his commands. 4The man who says, “I know him,” but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in him. 5But if anyone obeys his word, God’s love is truly made complete in him. This is how we know we are in him: 6Whoever claims to live in him must walk as Jesus did.
As we see, a true Christian has a deep desire to obey Christ. Obedience to Him is a pattern of a true Christian’s life.
There must be a deep desire and love for God’s word.
Test 3: A true Christian does not love the world
1 John 2:15
15Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.
The “world” is a value system that leaves God out and is controlled by Satan (2 Corinthians 4:4). A true Christian does not find joy in the world’s value system. A person who leaves God out of their decisions and daily life – and whose efforts are to find joy in those things that leave God out would indicate they are not a true Christian.
Test 4: A true Christian continues faithful in fellowship
1 John 2:19
19They went out from us, but they did not really belong to us. For if they had belonged to us, they would have remained with us; but their going showed that none of them belonged to us.
A person who has forsaken the church – making a final turning away from it – is a person who lacked genuineness from the beginning.
Test 5: A true Christian truly loves people.
1 John 3:14-15
14We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love our brothers. Anyone who does not love remains in death. 15Anyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life in him.
12 My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. 13 Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.
The heart of a true Christian cannot be a permanent dwelling place for hate. The above verses are not referring to a momentary flare up, but an attitude of hate as a pattern of life.