Read - 1 John 2:24-25
Message - Alan Burke
Did you hear the news last week, not the stuff about the U.S. election I imagine we will hear about that for a while yet. The other big story was the news of a possible Covid-19 vaccine, it was greeted with great excitement, stock markets rallied, and Boris put a downer on it all telling us the The breakthrough of a coronavirus vaccine has "cleared one significant hurdle but there are several more to go", then Robin Swann welcomed the news but reminded us that “we are in for a hard slog this winter”. But what does a vaccine do, it stimulates the production of antibodies and provide immunity. The hope of many is that one will prove effective for Covid-19 sooner rather than later.
Well in these verses John reminds us that as believers we all need to Remain in God’s truth. Having just spoke of the antichrist, the many antichrists who under the influence of the antichrist John writes this to them to encourage them in what they face because remaining in God’s truth is will help us in all that we face. Effectively doing this will act as a vaccine against their attacks, their lies and nonsense is the truth. John wants his readers, he wants us, all of us to know that the Christian message, that life itself, is to be found in the Word, that is Jesus Christ, the good news that Holy Spirit applied to our lives remains in us, for this is what will protect us, returning to what we know to be true, seeing that what we have heard from the beginning remains in us. This teaching runs thought the Pastoral Epistles, the letter to 1 Timothy 6:3, 2 Timothy 1:13, 43, Titus 1:9, 2 Peter 3:2, Jude 17, 20. All of them are encouraging those whom the write to to remember what they have been taught and hold fast to it, don’t let it go, it’s the truth, it’s sound doctrine, the faith that God has once for all entrusted to the saints, his people (Jude 3). Listen to the word of Christ and let it dwell in you richly, (Col 3:16). This is what we need to do.
What we need as in every generation is to pass down the truth that has been given to us, the true unchanged, unchanging word of God.
What do we learn that the early church did in Acts 42 They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. What is John encouraging these believers to do, devote themselves to the same things so that they may be able to stand firm. I always marvel how quick we are to forget this truth, yet this is what we are to do, devote ourselves to the word of God, letting it dwell richly in us. And if we do this, remain in the truth we will remain in the Son and the Father (24).
And for those whom the Word remains in, who remain in the Son and the Father they have a reward, what has been promised to us, what Jesus has promised us, even eternal life. Let not the significance of that pass us by, this is a promise to you in faith, a promise that is not like the promises that we make to another because we all have failed to keep our word. Yet here the promise of God is sure, for if we have faith in the Father though the Son, if we have remained in the Son and Father then we have this confident hope. This promise can be traced back to Jesus himself (Jn 10:10, 28), it is available here and now, for in the here and now we begin to enjoy it, with a hope that is not like this world that is perishing (17).
Q17 Into what estate did the fall bring mankind?
The fall brought mankind into an estate of sin and misery. (Rom. 5:12)