" Freely you have received, freely give " (Matthew 10:8)

HOME  |  SITEMAP  |  CONTACT US  |  HELP    
Bible Studies Free Christian Books Free Christian eBooks About Us
 



 Sermons on important subjects by Rev. Paul C. Jong

 

Who Are the Enemies of Christ?


<1 John 2:18-29>

“Little children, it is the last hour; and as you have heard that the Antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have come, by which we know that it is the last hour. They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us; but they went out that they might be made manifest, that none of them were of us. But you have an anointing from the Holy One, and you know all things. I have not written to you because you do not know the truth, but because you know it, and that no lie is of the truth. Who is a liar but he who denies that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist who denies the Father and the Son. Whoever denies the Son does not have the Father either; he who acknowledges the Son has the Father also. Therefore let that abide in you which you heard from the beginning. If what you heard from the beginning abides in you, you also will abide in the Son and in the Father. And this is the promise that He has promised us--eternal life. These things I have written to you concerning those who try to deceive you. But the anointing which you have received from Him abides in you, and you do not need that anyone teach you; but as the same anointing teaches you concerning all things, and is true, and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you will abide in Him. And now, little children, abide in Him, that when He appears, we may have confidence and not be ashamed before Him at His coming. If you know that He is righteous, you know that everyone who practices righteousness is born of Him.”

 

The Apostle John said, “Who is a liar but he who denies that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist who denies the Father and the Son” (1 John 2:22). That is to say, “The one who denies that Jesus is Christ is the very antichrist who denies the Father and the Son.”

Jesus is the King of kings, the Creator of the whole universe. And He especially made us and saved us from all our sins. To do so, He came to this world in the likeness of sinful flesh, was baptized, died on the Cross, and resurrected from the dead. Therefore, the one who denies this salvation is the one who doesn’t believe that Jesus is God, our Lord, and our Savior. And such a person is the very enemy of Christ. Jesus is the King of kings, the Creator of the entire universe, the Prophet, and the High Priest of Heaven. The one who doesn’t believe in this Truth is the enemy of God. The Apostle John said that such people had left God’s Church.

1 John 2:19 states, “They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us; but they went out that they might be made manifest, that none of them were of us.” In John’s day, there were people who once professing to believe, went out in a group from God’s Church. John declared that they might be made manifest by doing so, that none of them were of God’s people. They were liars and the enemies of God, for they didn’t believe that Jesus was Christ. Jesus is the Lord of all creation, the Prophet, the High Priest, and the Savior who has delivered us from all our sins through the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Those who didn’t believe in this Truth went out from the saints in his day. He said that they would have continued with the saints if they had truly believed in the Truth.

Those who have received the remission of sins love to stay together with the saints, even though they are insufficient. Staying together doesn’t make them tired. If someone were to feel tired while staying together, it would mean that he does not love God and that he is pursuing his own lusts of flesh, not being in unity with God’s people.

God’s people also feel tired when they are with those who only seek their own desires of flesh, apart from God’s plan. How pleasant is it when we share one mind? We eat together, chat together, and outwardly reveal our joys, angers, sorrows and pleasures. Where else can you find such a good and happy relationship in this secular world? Because we are of one mind, we, the born-again feel comfortable and happy whenever we gather together. We can freely speak against people who are against God, and we comfort each other by realizing other’s insufficiencies when we are disappointed at our own insufficiencies. However, it is so difficult for the born-again to stay with those who don’t believe, for they are His enemies who try to destroy Him.

Through his Epistles, the Apostle John expressed his heartache over the loss of some who had gone out from God’s Church. Even though they are manifested as the enemies of God, the antichrists, he had a pang of sorrow because they were once with him. We also feel heartache, pain and sorrow when we find unbelievers in God’s Church while all its other members are born again of water and the Spirit, and are pleased with each other for their salvations and eternal lives.

John spoke to the saints about the Truth once again. They knew the Truth already, but he wanted to remind them with the Truth so as not to become God’s enemies by standing firm on it. And he preached the Truth again so that if there had been some unbelievers, they would have turned around from their evil ways. And the last reason why he reiterated the Truth again and again was that he wanted to distinguish the believers from the unbelievers with the Truth. All these are the main contents of his Epistles.

In I John chapter 1, he mentioned the light and the darkness. He clearly declared, “God is light and in Him is no darkness at all” (1 John 1:5). However, there were some church members who abode in the darkness. They did wrong, hated and fought each other while seeking their own personal desires. Therefore, John admonished them to admit and confess their wrongdoings. He said that it was a great evil for them not to confess their wrongdoings before God and their fellow believers.

From chapter 2 to 4, John talks about love: What true love is and why we have to love each other. And then, he talks about the unbelievers, the antichrists, and the enemies of God in the perspective of love. In chapter 5, John the Apostle mentioned what the true gospel was and that he had preached it from the beginning. The gospel that he had preached from the beginning is the gospel of the water and the Spirit. He declared that Jesus Christ was the Savior who came not only by water or blood, but by water, blood, and the Holy Spirit (1 John 5:6-8). And he said this was Truth that came from God.

In short, he says that true believers must love each other and confess their wrongdoings, and that they come to know the love of God by doing so. On the other hand, he teaches us that there are enemies of Christ, the antichrists, and he talks about who they are.

John knew Jesus Christ in detail for he followed Jesus most closely. This is why from the early days of the church, John’s Gospel acquired the symbol of “the eagle” among the four creatures seen by Ezekiel in vision (Ezekiel 1 and 10). Matthew, the Gospel writer, says, “Jesus is King.” Mark describes Jesus as the Son of God and the Savior who came to this world to serve mankind. The Gospel writer Luke puts an emphasis on the humanity of Jesus: “Jesus, though He is the benevolent God, came to this world as the Son of Man. He emblazes all humans by sympathizing with our weaknesses.” On the other hand, the Gospel according to John is called as “the Gospel of the eagle” because it shows a keen description and highly spiritual level of God’s will. Through his Gospel and the Epistles, John wrote the gospel of the water and the Spirit in detail, explained sin in an intense argument, and let us clearly know the difference between the children of God and those of the devil.

 The Apostle John said, “Who is a liar but he who denies that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist who denies the Father and the Son. Whoever denies the Son does not have the Father either; he who acknowledges the Son has the Father also” (1 John 2:22-23). He said, “Whoever denies that Jesus is the Christ is God’s enemy and the antichrist.” So, he continued, “Whoever denies the Son does not have the Father either; he who acknowledges the Son has the Father also. Therefore let that abide in you which you heard from the beginning. If what you heard from the beginning abides in you, you also will abide in the Son and in the Father” (1 John 2:23-24).

There rose so many heretic groups in the Early Church Christianity who were the groups of antichrist, the enemies of God. This proves that there were many servants of Satan even in the church of the Apostolic Age. This is why the Apostle John warned in today’s scripture passage that “he who denies that Jesus is the Christ is the very antichrist.” Paul the Apostle also indicated that there were false brethren who came into the church secretly (Galatians 2:4). They became the antichrists and the enemies of God for they didn’t believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Therefore, God’s servants in the Early Church warned the saints to watch out for them.



Believers in the Gospel of the Water and the Spirit Are One Family


What should we believe
to become one family with God?
We must know and believe that
Jesus Christ has come by the gospel
of the water and the Spirit.

For us not to love God and not to love man—this is the greatest sin. The Bible says that the love of many will grow cold in the last days. This means that there will be times when we can barely stand to live because of the severity of human relationships. However, there is the gift of God’s grace in His love, which delivers us from all our sins and gives us new lives. And He has given us the righteous, His Church, and allows us to live under His spiritual blessings. God’s grace and the Truth abide in the gospel of the water and the Spirit.

We have become one family with God and the born-again saints. And we love the weaker ones more in God’s Church. How about the parents’ concern over their children? Don’t they take care of their weaker children than the healthy ones? The healthy kids grow well by themselves, but the weaker ones need to be taken care of. Likewise, ministers and workers of God also take care of the weaker members more as God the Father does.

Moreover, we are concerned about not only our brothers and sisters in Christ, but also those who are not yet saved, for we have the love of the gospel that saved us from all the sins of the world. We have come to love them for Jesus has given us His love in our hearts. We are the people who love the Truth, and are to live a life of love in Christ.


Who are the enemies
of Jesus Christ?
They are those who deny God and
the works He has done.

“Little children, it is the last hour; and as you have heard that the Antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have come, by which we know that it is the last hour. They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us; but they went out that they might be made manifest, that none of them were of us. But you have an anointing from the Holy One, and you know all things. I have not written to you because you do not know the truth, but because you know it, and that no lie is of the truth” (1 John 2:18-21).

John the Apostle is now talking to the family of God who are of the same faith, calling them ‘little children,’ ‘young men’ or ‘fathers.’ God’s Church, where the born-again people of God live, is the family of God and His Kingdom.

The Lord warns us that many antichrists have come into this world. They are the enemies of Christ, and do not believe that Jesus is the Son of God. John the Apostle pointed out that they didn’t belong to the Truth, and that they eventually quit the church because they did not believe that Jesus was the Son of God. They left God’s Church without having faith in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and therefore, were not of God from the beginning.

We cannot live together with people who have different faiths from ours. What if we come to live with a stranger? Can we put trust in him unconditionally? We would feel nervous until we have true confidence in him. Likewise, we can’t love God’s enemies who stand against the love of Christ. Even though the Lord told us to love our enemies, this is not the case.

Antichrists are the enemies even to us, the saints. They persecute and ignore the believers in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. We the saints really hope that they will abide in God’s love, and live together with us in the same faith. But, until they return to God’s love and believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, the Truth of salvation, they are no more than the enemies of God and of us. This is why we have to reject them. Those who have received the love of God are our family to be loved. We have to keep in mind that we are one family in the gospel of the water and the Spirit.



Who are the Enemies of Jesus Christ?


Who denies the love of God?
He is the one who doesn't recognize
Jesus as his Lord.

Jesus Christ has saved all believers from all their sins by being baptized and shedding His blood. This is the love of Christ. But there are His enemies who dare reject His unconditional love. They are the people who don’t believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and are the enemies to the believers in Jesus Christ. Therefore, we have to know that the Devil is not the only antichrist; among the Christians, all those who reject the perfect love of Christ and stand against Him are the enemies of Jesus Christ.

Therefore, 1 John 2:18 states, “Little children, it is the last hour; and as you have heard that the Antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have come, by which we know that it is the last hour.” Here, the Antichrist means the enemy of Jesus Christ. It doesn’t refer to the Antichrist in Revelations chapter 13, but refers to all those who do not believe that Jesus is the Son of God, and who don’t accept the gospel of the water and the Spirit.

It seems that there was a group of people who left God’s Church because they didn’t believe that Jesus Christ was the Son of God. This can be deduced from 1 John 2:19 that states, “They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us; but they went out that they might be made manifest, that none of them were of us.” A band of unbelievers, so to speak, left the church where the Apostle John had preached the gospel, and he called them the antichrists. He said that if they had had the same faith as ours, they would have continued with us: but they went out that they might be made manifest, that none of them were of us, and that none of them had our same faith.

The Apostle Paul also continued to speak about the antichrists, that is, the enemies of Jesus Christ. Such people still exist until now. What need would they have had to quit God’s Church if they had the same faith of John the Apostle? If so, they would not have left the Church of God. But it was to manifest the fact that they didn’t share the same faith with John. In this age and time, people who believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit need not quit God’s Church. If there are some who have left His Church, it is just to manifest that their faith is different from our faith that believes in the gospel of the water and the Spirit.



Those Who Lie to God Are the Ones Who Don’t Believe in the Truth


Who are the liars before God?
They are the ones who don't believe in
Jesus as their true Savior.

1 John 2:22 states, “Who is a liar but he who denies that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist who denies the Father and the Son.” Who denies that Jesus is the Christ? He is the one who doesn’t know who Jesus Christ is.

What do the words ‘Jesus Christ’ mean? First of all, ‘Christ’ means ‘the anointed One.’ In the Old Testament, the kings, the priests, and the prophets were to be anointed. Therefore, this means that Jesus is the Savior who has all three duties: Jesus is God, the King of kings, and the Lord of all hosts; He is the Savior and the High Priest of Heaven who has blotted out all our sins with His baptism and His bloodshed on the Cross; He is the Prophet who has taught us all, from the beginning to the end of His will. He was faithful to all these three duties.

Now, we come to know who the antichrists are. They are those who don’t believe that Jesus is the Son of God, who is in charge of these three duties: the King, the High Priest of Heaven, and the Prophet. Such unbelievers who deny the Father and the Son are the enemies of Jesus Christ.

To fulfill the will of God the Father, Jesus Christ had silently received all mockeries, insults and indignities from the people. Thus He gave us His infinite love. True Christians are the ones who believe in God and the works Jesus has done, and share the same faith of His love of salvation in the gospel of the water and the Spirit.

But the Devil and his children not only try to abide in the love of Christ, but also reject and insult it. Those who deny God the Father and reject that Jesus is the Savior are the enemies of Christ. And the people who follow the false teachers who are not born again are the very antichrists. They have become the enemies of Jesus Christ for they don’t believe Jesus who is the Savior, the King of kings, the Alpha and the Omega, and the abundant Giver of love, life, salvation, wisdom, grace and all blessings.


Who are the enemies of
Jesus Christ?
They are the ones who don't believe
in the gospel of the water
and the Spirit.

Today’s scripture passage says that the antichrists are the ones who don’t believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Keep in your mind that they are the enemies of God and the foes to the true Christians. That they don’t stay with us shows that they basically don’t believe in Jesus and are therefore His enemies.

The enemies of Jesus Christ are the ones who don’t believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit in their hearts. People of this world are prone to become Jesus Christ’s enemies if they don’t accept Him as their true Savior through the gospel of the water and the Spirit. The Bible states, “Woe to you when all men speak well of you, for so did their fathers to the false prophets” (Luke 6:26). If the worldly people praise you, you will end up an enemy of the Lord. People of this world would hate us if we believed in His love and followed the Truth. It is natural for them to pay compliments to those who don’t believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Therefore, God clearly tells such unbelievers, “You are the very enemies to Me.”


Who won't unite with
God's Church?
They are those who don't believe
in the gospel of the water and
the Spirit God has given.

In this present age, there are people who have left God’s Church. They might justify their choice for several reasons, but the truth is that there is only one reason when they quit the Church of God, the body of Christ. And it is because they don’t believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, the Truth of salvation that the Lord has given. Those who know they have become one in God’s family by believing in the true gospel can never betray Jesus Christ. Of course, they may sometimes quarrel with each other, but none of them stomps out of God’s Church.

It is because of the problem of their faiths that they depart silently from God’s Church. It is not because they are weak that they do so. Rather, they are so strong in their own wills or thoughts that they don’t believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and stand against it. We see that the weaker and more insufficient saints in God’s Church rely more on Jesus Christ and His Church. As if children rely on their parents, the children of God rely on His Church. It is because they don’t believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit that the unbelievers come to leave God’s Church. How about the state of their spirits? Their souls feel uncomfortable while abiding in God’s Church for they have sins in their hearts even though they profess to believe in Jesus. So, they come to conclude that, “This is not my place to stay and not my home. These people are not my family. My faith is quite different from that of those who believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. I’d rather go to the place where people approve of my faith. It’s too hard to stay here anymore.”

This is how they head out to the world from the Lord’s Church by not submitting their thoughts before His Word. They eventually depart from God’s Church by not believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit that the Bible speaks about. Our Lord, the Prophet has already taught us the true gospel for our salvation. But, they have not been saved from all their sins because they don’t believe in and follow the gospel of the water and the Spirit as it is. Those enemies of God reject the love of Christ and end up running away from God’s Church because they don’t attempt to keep His love in their hearts; because they don’t admit the Word of salvation; and because they don’t believe that Jesus is the Savior. The only reason for them to secede from God’s Church is that they don’t believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. They, as a result, degrade themselves to the servants of Satan, owing to their own faiths that is built on their own thoughts.

They cannot but secede from God’s Church because they are the enemies of God. There is no other reason than that. They became miserable people who could not but stand against God and His saints when they left His Church.

We cannot forget each name and face of our family members no matter how long we haven’t seen them. In Korea, there are two great folk-festivals in which all family members gather together at the head house of a family. So, during those times, it is natural that all Koreans strive to return to their parents’ houses through the overwhelming traffic jams all over the nation. Why do they do so? They miss each other because they love each other by the name of family. There are still so many dispersed families in Korea owing to the Korean War (1950-1953). Half a century has passed, but they don’t give up hope in meeting their dispersed family members again. How they yearn for their families and hometowns again! It is said, “Blood is thicker than water.” All this is because they are one family.

None of the born-again can live alone. They should meet their spiritual families someday and share the God-given joy with each other. Therefore, if someone leaves his family of his own accord, it means that he doesn’t think them as his family anymore. And those who remain in God’s Church must know that the reason why such people could not but secede from His Church is because of their rejection of Christ’s love.


Who are the enemies of Jesus Christ?
They are those who don't believe that
Jesus Christ is the Son of God.

Now, John the Apostle deals with the enemies of Christ in detail. Who are the enemies of Jesus Christ? He answers, “They are those who don’t believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. They are the antichrists and the enemies of Jesus.” He said, in other words, “If one believes that Jesus is the Son of God, he also believes in the Father who sent Him. But if he doesn’t believe so, he doesn’t believe in God the Father for he doesn’t believe in the Son. Therefore, such a person is a liar and an antichrist.” It is written that lots of antichrists will rise in the last days, and this has been realized in Christian communities from the Early Church to today’s Christianity.

You may think, “How dare you say that among Christians, there are those who don’t believe that Jesus is the Son of God! Every Christian believes so.” But, unfortunately, this is not the case. We see that the Christian faith of the Western European countries has already been broken down. They are the countries where Christianity once had its peak during the last four-five centuries. Why did the faith of the Western Christians end up collapsing? If we examine their current faith, we can find that so many of them do not believe that Jesus is the Son of God. They can’t believe all the Word of God because they don’t believe in this basic Truth.

Also in the Early Church, there were many who didn’t believe that Jesus was the Son of God.

Do you believe that He is the Son of God? For the believers, it is easier to believe than to breathe. But, for a distrustful person, nothing can make him believe. Such a person becomes the enemy of Christ owing to his unbelief, and eventually quits the Church of God.


Who created the universe
and this world?
Jesus Christ did. Along with the
Father and the Holy Spirit,
He created the universe with
His Word of power.

In every country, there are Christian denominations or sects that do not believe in Jesus as the Son of God. Their members profess Christianity publicly, even though they don’t actually believe that Jesus is God Himself and the Son of God. They assert, “Jesus is not God, but a human being. He is a son of God, but not the Creator. He is a human being just like us.” They deny His Divinity completely. They say that God is only one Person who is called ‘Jehovah,’ and there is no other God such as the Son or anything. What a wild idea this is! They must be ignorant of the word ‘Jehovah.’

‘Jehovah’ means ‘I am who I am.’ God identified Himself as ‘the One who exists by Himself,’ and therefore, He is not the One made by some other being. Therefore, those who don’t believe in Jesus as the Son of God are the ones who don’t believe in God, the Father of Jesus Christ.

God the Father said, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased” (Matthew 3:17). Therefore, if someone admits Jesus to be God, it means that he admits the Father also. On the other hand, if someone doesn’t believe in the Son, it means that he also denies the Father. But, unfortunately, a lot of pseudo-Christians rose up, who have this sort of weird faith. Therefore, John the Apostle started to explain who the antichrists were in detail.

Let us also think about that: “Do we really believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God?” Yes, we believe so. But it might be impossible for those who don’t have the Holy Spirit in their hearts to believe this Truth. Jesus Christ is our true Savior. He is truly the Son of God. He really is the Creator. However, they can’t believe in Jesus as the Bible says, for the Scripture says, “Now if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he is not His” (Romans 8:9). They might admit that Jesus is the Son of God with their lips, but they might not be able to believe the Truth in their hearts when they don’t know Him to be their Lord, who has blotted out all their sins by the water, the blood, and the Spirit. Most Christians, though they profess Jesus well with their lips, are actually skeptical about the Truth that Jesus died on the Cross and was resurrected again, when they try to believe in this plain Truth in their hearts.

Why is it so hard for them to believe? It is because they have not yet received the remission of their sins by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. When we believe that Jesus has saved us from all our sins by receiving His baptism, dying on the Cross, and resurrecting in three days, we can easily believe that we are dead in union with Jesus and will rise again with Him because we have passed all our sins to Him by faith. But, those who don't believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit cannot believe the fact that they will die and rise again when they try to apply this Truth to themselves. If they try to believe this with their own wills, the more skeptical they become. One who does not have the Spirit of Christ cannot believe that Jesus is the Son of God and God Himself.

In the Early Church Age, the Jews didn't believe that Jesus was the Son of God. They just thought of Him as a respectable person. Most of today's Israelites also think this. They don't accept Jesus as their Savior. This is why they have suffered so many hardships. But, they will believe that He is the Son of God in the last days. They will believe that Jesus is the only Savior who will protect them and lead them to Heaven, when the Antichrist comes and destroys Israel. Then, they will admit that Jesus is the Son of God, God Himself, the Savior, and the very Messiah to come.

In the church where John the Apostle ministered, there were people who didn't have the same faith as he had. They eventually left God's Church. John explained that their deed was to manifest that they didn't share the faith with him. Therefore, he warned his fellow saints to be watchful against the antichrists, that is, the enemies of God, and their faith.

1 John 2:20 states, "But you have an anointing from the Holy One, and you know all things." This passage means that anyone who has receive the remission of sins by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit receives the Holy Spirit, and that with the help of the Holy Spirit, he knows all things-that Jesus is the Son of God and God Himself, that His father is also our Father, and that He became our Savior and Lord by coming to this world, receiving His baptism to take all our sins, shedding His blood to death on the Cross, and rising again from the dead.

Now, you and I have been anointed in our hearts. Christ means 'the anointed One,' and now we are true Christians who have been anointed of the Holy Spirit. We, the born-again Christians, have received the remission of sins. As a result of it, we received the indwelling of the Holy Spirit by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, just like Jesus was anointed by the Holy Spirit. Therefore, we came to know all things: We came to know who Jesus is; who the Father of Jesus Christ is; what the gospel of the water and the Spirit is. We can now discern the true gospel from the false ones.


What is the purpose for the Apostle John
to write his first Epistle?
It is for those who know the Truth
not to be deceived.

Now, John the Apostle is asking what the purpose of his writing in 1 John is: "I have not written to you because you do not know the truth, but because you know it, and that no lie is of the truth" (1 John 2:21). When he says this passage, he implies that there are many unbelievers, in other words, the enemies of God in His Church. So, he warns that the saints should keep watching the enemies of God lest they may not be deceived. In short, the main topic of 1 John is for the true saints not to be deceived by the antichrists who came in God's Church silently and abided among the born-again to deceive them.


We should not become the enemies
of Christ. Then, how can we prevent ourselves
from becoming His enemy?
The only way for us not to become
His enemy is to believe in the gospel
of the water and the Spirit.

1 John 2:22 says, “Who is a liar but he who denies that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist who denies the Father and the Son.” Who, the Bible says, is a liar? It is said that a liar is he who denies the Father and the Son. The one who denies that Jesus is Christ is the very antichrist and the liar.

Jesus, the Son of God and the King of kings, came to this world in the flesh of a man, and taught us all the Truth: He taught us the beginning and the end of the universe; how to receive the remission of sins; and how to be blessed or cursed. He has saved us from all our sins by being baptized by John the Baptist and by shedding His blood on the Cross. Therefore, those who deny that Jesus Christ became our true Savior by being baptized and shedding His blood, are the very antichrists. They are the very ones who deny the Father and the Son.

The Lord said, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16). However, there are those who deny this Truth. The word ‘to deny something’ means ‘not to believe something even though one knows it.’ Such a person is the very antichrist, that is, the enemy of Jesus Christ.

We have to believe in Jesus Christ. We should not stand against Him nor become His enemies. You sometimes may become an enemy of your friend or your family members. But, once you become an enemy of Jesus Christ, then you will receive eternal damnation from Him. There will be no way to recover your fate, and only calamity and curses will await you from the present life to the future life. This is why you should not become an enemy of Jesus Christ, and to prevent yourself from becoming so, you have to believe in Him: You have to believe that Jesus is Christ; that He came as the King, the Prophet, and the High Priest; that He saved us through the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Whoever doesn’t believe this cannot avoid becoming His enemy.

It is also written, “But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name” (John 1:12). ‘To receive Him’ means ‘to believe in Him,’ while ‘to deny Him’ is ‘not believing in Him.’

He had given up His glory in Heaven, and became flesh to save us, mankind, from all our sins. During His 33 years of life on this earth, having sympathized with our weaknesses, He was baptized, crucified and resurrected from the dead to fulfill our salvation. How then, can we not believe in Him? By what reason can we deny Him? By what excellence are you made so arrogant to deny Him? I have no idea why the people of this world are too arrogant to believe in Jesus.

We were doomed to go to hell, but Jesus had pity on us and offered Himself as the propitiation for our sins. To make us sinless and the children of God who will live happily forever with Him in His Kingdom, He came to this world, was baptized and died on the Cross, and resurrected from the dead to give us His perfect salvation. How then, can we not believe in Him? You may not believe in Him if you are so high and mighty that you are able to enter Heaven by yourself, but if not, I hope you believe in Him. This is the only way for you not to become His enemy.


Who denies that Jesus
is the Son of God?
The enemies of Jesus Christ do.
They don't believe
that He is God.

1 John 2:23 says, “Whoever denies the Son does not have the Father either; he who acknowledges the Son has the Father also.”

If you don’t deny and believe that Jesus is the Son of God, and that He has saved us from all our sins by taking all our sins with His baptism, His death on the Cross, and His resurrection from the dead, then, the Father of Jesus becomes your Father. It is written, “He who acknowledges the Son has the Father also.” Therefore, you and I must first acknowledge the Son. Do you acknowledge that the Son of God is the true Savior of you and me? Do you believe that He has saved us by blotting out all our sins through the water, blood, and the Holy Spirit? ―Yes.― If you don’t believe so, then you are an enemy of God and an antichrist.

Among today’s theologians, there are many who argue that Jesus is not God, and that believing in Him is not the only way to enter Heaven. They insist that every religion has its own way to salvation. We call them the religious pluralists in Christianity. The dean of a famous theological seminary in Korea once asserted that Jesus did not actually resurrect. This means that He is not the Son of God and God Himself. Frankly speaking, such people are the ones who do not believe in Him. They think that Jesus was simply a revolutionist. Actually, there are many theologians who think of Jesus as a respectable revolutionist or an honorable philosopher. They are the ones who publicly deny Jesus Christ

Therefore, John the Apostle says in today’s scripture, “We really know the Truth. If there are some people who don’t believe in the Son of God, they are the very antichrists and God’s enemies who also deny the Father. They would go out to make manifest that none of them are of us. Because we know the Truth, we can learn a good lesson from such incidents, and should not be deceived to share their faith by them.” We should know that we also will become the antichrists if we don’t believe in Jesus as the Son of God.

John the Apostle declares later, “For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith. Who is he who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God? This is He who came by water and blood--Jesus Christ; not only by water, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit who bears witness, because the Spirit is truth” (1 John 5:4-6). Therefore, if we don’t believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, in other words, we will become the enemies of God.


Which is the very gospel that
the Apostle heard from the beginning?
It is the gospel that came by the water,
the blood, and the Spirit.

John says, “Therefore let that abide in you which you heard from the beginning. If what you heard from the beginning abides in you, you also will abide in the Son and in the Father” (1 John 2:24). Then, what is the thing that we heard from the beginning? To have the correct answer, we need to examine the passage of 1 John chapter 5 first.

I John 5:4-8 states, “For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith. Who is he who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God? This is He who came by water and blood--Jesus Christ; not only by water, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit who bears witness, because the Spirit is truth. For there are three that bear witness in heaven: the Father, the Word, and the Holy Spirit; and these three are one. And there are three that bear witness on earth: the Spirit, the water, and the blood; and these three agree as one.”

It is written, “Who is he who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?” This passage means that if Jesus is not truly the Son of God, all He had done on this earth for us would be nothing: That He was baptized, was crucified, and resurrected from the dead becomes null, and has nothing to do with us.

However, the true Word of God says that God the Father so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son to save us from all our sins; He made His Son to be baptized, crucified, and resurrected in order to blot out the sins of the world. For thus, He has delivered us from destruction and gave us eternal life. Therefore, we must believe that Jesus is the Son of God.

Jesus is not the Father God. There is the Father to Jesus. Jesus is the Son of God, but He is the Creator. He is the Creator God in His ability and status. However, He abandoned His glorious prestige, came to this world in the flesh of a man, and saved us with the water, the blood, and the Holy Spirit. “This is He who came by water and blood—Jesus Christ.” Jesus Christ has saved us by coming by water and blood.


How did the Son of God
come to you and me?
He came by water and blood.

Then, what does it mean by “He came by water, blood, and the Spirit”? This means that Jesus Christ, the Son of God, was born to this world in the flesh of a man, received the baptism from John the Baptist to take all the sins of the world upon His body, and saved mankind from all our sins by dying on the Cross.

This is the salvation that Jesus has given us by coming by water and blood. Dear fellow Christians, how did Jesus come to us? Did He come by water and blood? Yes, He came by water and blood. Hallelujah!

Jesus Christ is our Savior. He came to us by the water, the blood, and the Spirit. So, the Bible says, “Not only by water, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit who bears witness, because the Spirit is truth…. And there are three that bear witness on earth: the Spirit, the water, and the blood; and these three agree as one.”

What does the Holy Spirit bear witness to? He bears witness to the Truth that Jesus came by water and blood to save us from all our sins. What do the water, the blood, and the Spirit bear witness to with one accord? The three bear witness to the Truth that we have been saved by Jesus’ baptism and His death on the Cross. When we have faith in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, in other words, when we believe in the Son of God who came by water and blood, we are sealed with the right faiths in our hearts by the Holy Spirit.

God the Father sends the gift of the Holy Spirit to those who receive the remission of sins by believing in Jesus, who came by water and blood, as their Savior. Therefore, it is written, “And there are three that bear witness on earth: the Spirit, the water, and the blood.” What is the evidence that bears witness to our salvation? What is the thing that we heard from the beginning? They are “the Spirit, the water, and the blood.” When we believe in Jesus who came by water and blood, we can believe Him as the Son of God and our perfect Savior. When we believe that Jesus was baptized, died on the Cross, and resurrected from the dead to save us from all our sins, the Holy Spirit along with God the Father lets us know we have the right faiths in our hearts.

God the Father gives the gift of the Holy Spirit when we receive the remission of sins by faith. This is the anointing from the Holy Spirit. We are the ones who have been anointed by the Holy Spirit, and therefore, have become God’s children.


What was the gospel that
the Apostles handed down to us?
It was the gospel of the water and the Spirit
that we now believe in.

“Therefore let that abide in you which you heard from the beginning. If what you heard from the beginning abides in you, you also will abide in the Son and in the Father” (1 John 2:24). What is the thing that we heard from the beginning? It is Jesus Christ who came by the water, the blood, and the Holy Spirit. The Apostle John testifies that our salvation has been fulfilled by the water, the blood, and the Spirit. This is the gospel that the Apostle John preached from the beginning.


What does Jesus' baptism
received from John mean?
It means that Jesus took all the sins of the
world onto His body once and for all.

The Apostle Peter also said, “There is also an antitype which now saves us—baptism (not the removal of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God), through the resurrection of Jesus Christ” (1 Peter 3:21). Therefore, we can confirm that the original gospel which the Apostles preached from the beginning is the gospel of the water and the Spirit. It is the gospel of Jesus’ baptism and His blood on the Cross. When we believe this, we come to receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.

In Acts 2:38, the Apostle Peter said, “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” The Jews at that time could receive the remission of sins, therefore, they received the gift of the Holy Spirit when they admitted their wrongdoings, repented their ways of faith, and believed that Jesus the Son of God had taken all their sins with His baptism and paid off all the wages of sins by dying on the Cross. The gospel of the water and the Spirit is the only true gospel that the Apostles preached from the beginning. Blessed are we who also believe in this original gospel. God the Father has sealed us as the true believers in the gospel of the water and the Spirit with the Holy Spirit, and protects us until we get into the Kingdom of Heaven.

Now, John the Apostle sincerely admonishes all of us, “Therefore let that abide in you which you heard from the beginning”(1 John 2:24). You and I must let the true gospel abide in our hearts, which we heard from the beginning. This is the only true gospel that will never be changed or nullified. How do we know that the gospel of the water and the Spirit is the original gospel that the Apostles heard from the beginning? It is because the Apostles John, Peter, and Paul commonly confessed their faiths in this true and original gospel (1 John 5:3-7, 1 Peter 3:21, Romans 6:1-3, Galatians 3:27).

The Apostles received the remission of sins when they heard and believed in none other than the gospel of the water and the Spirit. And we can also receive the Holy Spirit when we are cleansed in our hearts by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. The Holy Spirit does not come along with such a burning hot feeling. He comes down to the hearts of those who believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. God the Father sends the Holy Spirit to the believers’ hearts and seals them with the Holy Spirit. For thus, you and I also came to be sinless and could understand what the Word of God really meant with His help.

John continued, “These things I have written to you concerning those who try to deceive you” (1 John 2:26). He pointed out that there were some people who tried to deceive the Early Church saints. That was why he tried to remind them of the true gospel that was heard from the beginning again and again. It was to let the true gospel of the water and the Spirit stand firm in their hearts, and no liar could deceive them any more. Now, I am sure you might understand why the Apostle John said to his fellow saints, “Therefore let that abide in you which you heard from the beginning. If what you heard from the beginning abides in you, you also will abide in the Son and in the Father. And this is the promise that He has promised us—eternal life.” And he continued to teach them, “But the anointing which you have received from Him abides in you, and you do not need that anyone teach you; but as the same anointing teaches you concerning all things, and is true, and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you will abide in Him” (1 John 2:27). Now, we need one thing to abide in us, and it is the love of God that brought us eternal life.


How did the Lord save us
from our confusion, emptiness,
and darkness?
He saved us from our confusion, emptiness,
and darkness with the water
and the Spirit.

The Bible clearly states that the Lord has saved us from all our sins through the water, the blood, and the Holy Spirit. This Truth is spoken consistently to us from the Creation. The Bible tells us in Genesis 1:1-3 the salvation of Christ: The Light was shining over the earth that was without form, void, and dark. The Light is Jesus Himself and His love (John 1:1-10). God has told us about the true gospel from the beginning.

However, most of us have been taught with the false gospels from the beginning because there have been so many false preachers of wrong faith. Most of us have not even heard that there was a gospel of the water and the Spirit from the beginning. We used to have faith only in the blood of the Cross. But, frankly speaking, such faith could not cleanse all our sins from our hearts. In short, most of us used to have misguided faiths and didn’t know how Jesus had cleansed all our sins with the water, the blood, and the Holy Spirit.

We must not keep such false gospels in our hearts. Dear fellow Christians, the passage “let that abide in you which you heard from the beginning” does not mean that you must keep the false gospel that you heard from the beginning. The only way you can get new life and abide in God the Father is to dwell in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. If you heard the true gospel that let you abide in the Father and the Son, then you must keep it in your mind from the time you first listened to it. We have been able to dwell in Christ’s love from the very moment we were truly born again of the water and the Spirit. “Let that abide in you which you heard from the beginning” means, therefore, we should keep the gospel of the water and the Spirit from the very first time we heard it and truly received the remission of sins by believing in it with our hearts.

The Apostle John eventually talked about the love of Christ that had come by the gospel of the water and the Spirit, even though he used various expressions. In the love of Christ, God has given us eternal life, His perfect salvation, and made us His family and His people. He has given us all these blessings within the love of Jesus Christ.

There are many liars who try to deceive you with their false teachings. They are of the secret power of lawlessness (2 Thessalonians 2:7) that tries to drag you into the ways of destruction. You must refuse them and their teachings by faith lest you should be deceived. If we truly abide in the love of Christ by having faith in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, then we can reject all sorts of lies in this world; we can discern all the lies from the Truth, what is wrong and right, when we examine them from the perspective of Christ’s love that has come by the gospel of the water and the Spirit.

However, we can’t discern between the Truth and the lies with our own wills or thoughts apart from the love of Jesus Christ. If the love of God does not dwell in our hearts, we cannot but rely on our own thoughts, and discriminate the lies from the Truth. In the love of Christ are the Truth, the salvation, eternal life, and all the other blessings of Heaven.


What do the deceivers
mislead people with?
They mislead people with the false gospels,
which is not of the Truth.

John the Apostle says, “These things I have written to you concerning those who try to deceive you” (1 John 2:26). The deceivers are preaching the false gospels apart from the true gospel of the water and the Spirit. Actually, the false gospels they preach have nothing to do with the gospel. They advocate their hypothesis in their own way. They have developed their own logic with their thoughts apart from the will of God and the love of Christ.

However, those who dwell in the love of Christ do not insist on their own righteousness, but preach the love of God and spread God’s Word of Truth. In His love, the Lord has given us eternal remission of sins and the authentic love between brothers and sisters. In the love of Christ, we must discern the Truth, the true love, and the true gospel, and believe so as to unite with Christ and with each other.

If we have all we need, but don’t have the love of God that came by the gospel of the water and the Spirit, then, this means that we have nothing. No matter how well one memorizes the passages in the Bible, how well he preaches the Word of God, if he doesn’t know how Jesus Christ has loved and saved him with the gospel of the water and the Spirit, the true work of salvation will not happen to him.

When we love the lost souls as well as the brothers and sisters in Christ with His love, we can share true fellowship with each other, unite with each other, and receive the blessings from God. But for the love of Christ, it profits us nothing. To us, the gospel of the water and the Spirit itself is the love of Jesus Christ. Truth, salvation and the love of Christ are not three different things. In His love, all have been fulfilled.


Then, the one who has received
the Holy Spirit need not to be
taught any more?
No. He must learn from and be taught
by the predecessors in faith.

The Apostle John continues in 1 John 2:27-28, “But the anointing which you have received from Him abides in you, and you do not need that anyone teach you; but as the same anointing teaches you concerning all things, and is true, and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you will abide in Him. And now, little children, abide in Him, that when He appears, we may have confidence and not be ashamed before Him at His coming.” This passage means, “Only the anointing, which is true and is not a lie, teaches you concerning all things, therefore, you have to abide in the Lord, just as it has taught you.” The One who anoints us is the Holy Spirit. He comes into the hearts of those who are born again of the water and the Spirit, and teaches and leads us concerning all things. His teaching is not a lie, but is true; therefore, we have to abide in the Lord as we have been taught.

Then, some might think, “Now the Holy Spirit dwells in the hearts of us, the born-again, and teaches all things to us, therefore, we do not have to learn from anyone anymore! Learning something from others only makes me go astray!” Such is not the case. Of course, each one of the born-again has received the Holy Spirit. But because the spiritually young ones still cannot distinguish the spiritual things from the carnal things, they must learn from the predecessors in Christ. They can learn from and teach each other for they have the Holy Spirit in their hearts. But they cannot teach those who don’t know the love of Christ and whose hearts are deceived by the false teachers. And the born-again cannot learn anything true from those who are not born again yet.

A long time ago, I met a pastor who was working for IVF, a college ministry, and shared God’s Word with him at Pastor Samuel Kim’s house. He was not born again. When Pastor Kim and his wife testified how they had been born again of the water and the Spirit before the pastor, he challenged me with the above passage, saying, “The Bible here says that the anointed need not be taught. Then, you have nothing to teach these two, right?” He meant that I had no need to teach and share fellowship with Pastor Kim and his wife anymore.

But the passage of 1 John 2:27 does not mean that. Those who are born again need not learn the lies from the false teachers anymore, but now it is imperative for the newly born-again to learn the Truth in detail from the predecessors who have been born again prior to them.

This passage explains that we should learn the Word of Truth after coming into the love of Christ. But we don’t need to learn the lies anymore. We have to learn every single detail concerning the Truth in the gospel of the water and the Spirit from the time we came to know the love of Christ. But we have nothing to learn from the deceivers who don’t know Christ’s love. In other words, the born-again have nothing to learn from those who are not born again, and these sinners have nothing to teach the righteous who have received the Holy Spirit.

Some narcissists, who are not born-again, don’t even realize why they cannot teach anyone and do nothing but speak ill of us, saying, “What nonsense! There is no curriculum, no faculty! What do they teach and learn at a place where they don’t even teach the history of Christianity?” I can tell those people firmly and boldly that the reason why we don’t teach such rubbish of the “so-called” great figures in Christianity, like Calvin, Luther, Matthew Henry, Darby, or Spurgeon, is because their teachings and doctrines are utterly meaningless and are filled with lies.

Only the Word of Truth that leads us to be born again is worth learning and teaching. We ought to teach it. Not teaching it is committing a great evil before God. That’s why I have never taught such rubbish from this world to the born-again. I just open the Bible and share the Word of God that leads us to be born again, makes us free from all our sins, and anoints us with the Holy Spirit.


Where does
the Holy Spirit dwell?
He dwells in the hearts of those who
have concretely received
the remission of sin.

The Holy Spirit of God dwells in the hearts of those who have received the remission of sins. He works only within the Word of God. He also works in the faiths of those who deliver the love of Christ, that is, who testify God’s salvation revealed in the love of Christ. Abiding in our hearts, He helps us to understand the Word of God when we listen to it, and encourages us to preach the Word to other souls. He wants us to understand the will of God fully and correctly.

The Holy Spirit teaches us the Word of Truth written in the Bible, and makes us understand it. For thus, He saves us by believing in it and tells us to preach the Word of Truth by faith. He makes us live according to the Word, and to reject what we have to reject according to the Truth. He works every good thing within according to the Word of God.

Dear fellow saints, have you been born again by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit? Then, you have to learn more about all the passages of the Bible, be led more in detail, be loved more in His Church, and receive more admonitions and reprimands. So, I am teaching my fellow believers, workers, and ministers with a two-sided orientation. One is the love of Christ, and the other is the strict instruction.

When my fellow believers need to be taught with strict edification, then I do it strictly without hesitation. With God’s word, I reprimand them as severely as I can. Whenever I meet a spiritually stubborn believer in my congregation, I reprimand him to make him humble before God. It is not because I hate him, but just to let him know the love of Christ. I can be severe to such disciples because my chastening is based on the love of Christ. Therefore, when we need to discipline our disciples and want to let them know the Truth, we, the leaders, must practice this dual-sided discipline.

When my disciples are dead tired, and are going to quit their lives of faith, I do not face them with a strict look. In such cases, I feel and say sorry to them, even though I have nothing to do with their situations or weaknesses. I console their grievances and difficulties in order for them to stand firm again on the love of Christ, and to proceed strongly and brightly while being encouraged by the love of Christ. I cannot do this with my own feeling or will, but with the power of His love that leads and teaches us to live by His Word. Didn’t He sacrifice Himself to save us because He so loved us? We now believe that He showed His love to us to make us reconcile with God the Father; that He was baptized and died on the Cross vicariously to let us know His love and to return thanks to God forever. Therefore, sometimes the leaders face their followers with a kind look, and sometimes with a severe chastening for their souls, because the leaders believe that this is the heart of Christ and His love, and that by doing this, we can unite with His will toward us, the born-again.

The Apostle John knows that the Holy Spirit abides in the hearts of the saints and the servants of God. Therefore, he says that they need not be taught from the worldly people, for the Holy Spirit teaches us all things concerning the Truth.

And the Holy Spirit is true and does not lie. He bears witness to our faiths as right when we believe in the Word of God as it is. He lets us know whether we are right or wrong, or when we believe correctly or mistakenly. He makes us feel uncomfortable when we go astray from our faiths. That’s why we sometimes feel so uncomfortable. But, He gives us peace and joy in our hearts when we turn around from our mistaken faiths and believe correctly. He really does so.

Dear fellow saints, we have to abide in the love of Christ. Our ministers, brothers and sisters, that is, all the righteous, should abide in the love of Jesus Christ. What distinguished elements are there in us? Is it beneficial for us to competitively show off to each other?

We have become one family, regardless of our own wills, by receiving the remission of sins in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. And this new family relationship of faith is more beautiful than any other kinships of this world. We, who belong to one family in the love of Christ, are woven with trust, love and pure friendship. Without His love, we cannot become one. We became brothers and sisters by the love of Christ. But without His love, we would have nothing to do with each other; we are nothing devoid of His salvation. We have to abide in the love of Christ as John told us, “Abide in Him.” This is the authentic faith, and the faith we should keep especially during these last days.


How should we, who have
the Holy Spirit, live?
We should live our lives of faith by
loving each other and preaching
the Truth of salvation.

In these concluding times, even though knowledge and technology shall increase, there are not many who preach the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Therefore, we must preach more effectively by using the knowledge and technology for evangelism.

Now, all the people of this world have a thirst for the love of Christ. There is no such thing as true love anywhere. Many Christians, who profess to be born again, but actually are not, hurt those who have the true gospel with their false gospels. I sometimes get angry with them, but have decided to be indifferent to them from now on. All their evildoings spring from their darkness: They are thoroughly in darkness because they do not abide in the love of Christ. We know why they do such things, and therefore, we need not argue the pros and cons of their strange behaviors.

If we are in the love of Christ, we can live harmoniously with the other saints by loving and understanding each other. We are not willing to live so, but we know that such a life is the most beautiful and abundantly blessed life in the world. We have true faith for we have received the love of Christ; we can forgive each other’s mistakes for we have received the remission of sins by the love of Christ, the gospel of the water and the Spirit; and we can live the most worthy and benevolent lives that preach the true gospel and take care of other souls. We must first have the love of Christ in order to walk in Christ and stay dwelling in Him.

We must have the love of Christ. We must ruminate everyday the love of Jesus, who offered His own body, to show us His unconditional love: We must imagine again the figure of Jesus who was baptized in the Jordan River; we must imagine again His figure who suffered hardships beyond description on the Cross; we must meditate again on the faith that the resurrected Jesus will lead us to the Kingdom of Heaven.

Whenever we commit sins because of our weaknesses, we cannot but be more thankful for His love of salvation, which is revealed in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. We experience that the sprout of love is growing in our hearts when we know, believe, and accept the love of Christ in heart. And we will see the big tree of love in us when we live our lives while preaching His love. If we do so, we will never be ashamed before Him at His coming. We will not live disgraceful lives as long as we have His love. This is why John the Apostle admonishes us to abide in Jesus’ love.

We must abide in love, which is none other than the love of Christ. This love does not refer to the carnal love or the humanistic love. We have to stay in His love: We have to work in His love, love each other in His love, and preach the gospel in His love. We are actually serving the Lord in His love. We make much of our brothers and sisters, and love then in His love. Therefore, when we do all things in the love of Christ, we come to receive God’s blessing more abundantly, plan to do the greater spiritual works, and devote ourselves to spread the great love of Jesus. That’s why the Apostle John advises us to live in Christ’s love. Hallelujah!

In John’s days, some people in his church tried to deceive the born-again, who believed in the gospel of the water and the Spirit and abided in the Lord. In the days of the Apostle Paul, there were also some who troubled the saints and wanted to pervert the gospel of Christ (Galatians 1:7). They made and preached the other gospels, which stated, “We must say prayers of repentance whenever we sin, cleanse ourselves with such prayers, and therefore, must sanctify ourselves by getting rid of the filth from our lives immediately.”

John the Apostle called such people the enemies of God who were trying to deceive the saints. Actually, their doctrines have confused and destroyed our concrete faiths until now. Therefore, John reminded and warned us that such antichrists would be very dangerous to our faiths, saying, “You have to abide in the Lord as I teach you from the beginning.”


Who can abide in the Lord?
They are the ones who believe
in the gospel of the water
and the Spirit.

1 John 2:28 says, “And now, little children, abide in Him, that when He appears, we may have confidence and not be ashamed before Him at His coming.” John says that if we abide in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, we will have great confidence and not be ashamed before the Lord when He comes again. On the other hand, those who do not abide in Him will end up as the enemies of God.

Whoever believes that Jesus is the Son of God and the Savior is one who has already received the perfect salvation by faith. They are the owners of the infinitely valuable and strong faith.

Of course, we sometimes fall into darkness. But, if we abide in the Lord, the darkness soon withdraws from our hearts. We may fall into errors, or sometimes repeat the same error again and again, but the key point is whether we abide in Him or not. It is written in John 15:7, “If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you.” God promises to answer all our prayers if we abide in Jesus Christ and to ask for His help by having faith in His Word in our hearts. God has answered me until now, if my request was not for an evil purpose, and He will hear my prayers continuously.

What makes us have unashamed faiths is to abide in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. It is, in other words, to abide in Christ. Believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit is the faith that makes us abide in the Lord, and this faith is the wisdom that prevents us from becoming His enemies. If we do not abide in Jesus Christ, we surely become His enemies. Who are the enemies of Christ? They are none other than the people who don’t recognize Jesus as their true Savior, who is the Son of God; was baptized to take all our sins; died on the Cross; and resurrected from the dead to give us His perfect salvation. They are the ones who don’t receive Him.

We must not deny Him. We must accept Jesus Christ along with the gospel of the water and the Spirit, the Word of God. What excellences in you make you so arrogant and reject His perfect love? Are you too smart to admit this true gospel at once? Do you think you are so intelligent that you can reason out all the answers to all the questions? Do you think that you can meet God only within the realm of your understanding?

We must accept God’s Word of Truth as it is. If He says that He created the universe, the only way of wisdom we can go is to just accept the Truth saying, “Yes, You did. Amen.” No one knows everything of the universe. A famous scientist once said, “We must be humble before the Creator. Humans are now very proud of their knowledge and technology, and many of them think that humans will conquer the entire universe. But remember this truth! All the knowledge about the universe we have accumulated is smaller than a dust of the globe, when we liken the universe to this planet.”

Doctors say, “Of course, I operate. But I am not the real operator in a patient’s life. He who gives life or death to us is God.” So, even a few non-Christian doctors are known to pray before they perform operations upon the fatal patients: “God, please help this patient to live again.” Even an atheist says the same prayer when he is lying on the operating table: Please, God, save me from death! I will believe in You from now on, if You do so.”

We the creations are to seek the Creator, who exists from the beginning. The very Creator is Jesus Christ. And He says that He visited us and has cleansed us from all our sins. What’s the reason for you to deny His love, then? We should not stand against God, pretending to be smart before Him. We should rather believe in His Word and admit our insufficiencies. Do you know how many servants of God had to die for the Bible so that you could have one? Jesus says, “I sent you to reap that for which you have not labored; others have labored, and you have entered into their labors” (John 4:38). Now, we are reaping the fruits from their labors. Most of all, Jesus Christ has labored extremely for our salvation. We have received salvation that He has fulfilled thoroughly. We are receiving eternal lives just by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit that He has completed for Himself. Whoever believes so receives the eternal life. Do you believe?

Is there anyone who is ashamed of himself for his sins before God, and is unable to stand in front of Him at this point? I am not ashamed of myself before Him. It is not because of my arrogance, but just because I now abide in the Lord. I am not ashamed of myself by faith in Him because He has taken all the sins of the world, including mine, by being baptized, dying on the Cross, and resurrecting from the dead to complete our salvation. At least, I need not be ashamed of myself because I have received the remission of sins by faith.

I don’t know how He will reward you and me. Some of you might be rewarded more than me. But, as far as the issue of salvation is concerned, I will not be ashamed of my faith at His coming. I am not ashamed of my faith because I now abide in the Lord because I believe that He has blotted out all our sins with His gospel of the water and the Spirit, and because I have received it with my heart. We who have such faiths have no reason to be ashamed of ourselves.

Therefore, John the Apostle says, “If you know that He is righteous, you know that everyone who practices righteousness is born of Him” (1 John 2:29). This passage means, “You come to practice righteous works, if you know and believe that Jesus Christ has blotted out all the sins of the world by doing righteous work. And you come to know that this righteousness is His, and that all righteousness belongs to Him

When Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist, He said to him, “Permit it to be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness” (Matthew 3:15). Jesus came to this earth in the likeness of sinful flesh, on account of our sins (Romans 8:3). And He took all our sins by being baptized by John the Baptist. He showed His love not by His lips only, but He actually was baptized to fulfill all the righteousness of God with His body. For thus, He took all the sins of the world to be the valid Lamb of God. And He carried all these sins to the Cross, and died on it to atone for them. On the verge of His vicarious death, He cried out, “It is finished!” (John 19:30) He rose again from the dead to be the Savior of mankind.

Thus He has fulfilled all righteousness, and makes all believers righteous. If you really believe that Jesus has saved you and me from all our sins according to the will of God the Father, you then become a righteous person and can practice righteousness. Fundamentally, the born-again yearn to serve the gospel of God. Even though their deeds may be insufficient, they are pleased to live for righteousness by faith. So, the Apostle John makes us aware that we, who try to live for righteousness by preaching the gospel, are the servants of God and His people.

He is telling us in order for us not to become the enemies of Jesus. Do you practice the righteousness of God? Are you born of Christ? We once are born of our parents, but are born again as the righteous by believing in Jesus Christ. We are born again as sinless people, God’s people who are not ashamed of themselves.

Have you ever been to India? I haven’t been to India, but have seen its land and people. Hinduism is the dominant religion of this country, and it has something to do with the doctrine of the transmigration of souls of Buddhism. This religion is deeply related with the caste system, the social system of this country. People of Hinduism believe that they can be born into a family that belongs to a better social status in their future lives if they live virtuously during the present age. Hindus believe that they will be born again to a low-class as an animal, or even as a snake, if they do not live virtuously in this life. In short, their future lives are absolutely dependent upon their present lives.

However, they also believe that there is one way for them to escape from such an inevitable cycle of metempsychosis. It is to cremate the body. You might have seen on TV that they were burning the corpses to ashes at the riverside of the Ganges. They believe that the souls of the dead will be born into a better status by doing so. What a foolish idea this is! How silly they are to believe so! I think they came to develop such doctrines because they could never be freed from their sense of guilt.

But, we have received God’s blessing that actually makes us free from all our sins. We now became the righteous, who can practice righteousness and live a righteous life. And we know that all these are from the power of Jesus Christ. As is written in the Scripture, “A tree is known by its fruit,” whoever lives a righteous life, that is, whoever lives for the gospel is a born-again saint who lives a new life.

Want to read more sermons on the First Epistle of John? Please click the banner below to get your free book on the First Epistle of John.
The First Epistle of John

Do you think that you are so excellent that you can now serve the Lord well? We are able to live a righteous life only by believing the Truth that the Lord has done for us as it is. We come to be saved by faith, and do the righteous works because the Lord has actually delivered us from all our sins and made us His children. And we became His workers, who do the righteous works of saving other souls, serve the Church of God and its members, and deal well with necessary tasks in His Church. Even though we differ from each other in our gifts and duties, we serve the same gospel in different ways and positions.

In the days of John, there were some people who went out from God’s Church because of their disbeliefs. Therefore, he reiterates the gospel of the water and the Spirit continuously. He goes on through chapter 3 and 4 with the same theme, and finally draws a conclusion in chapter 5.

Now, you and I are serving the gospel in God’s Church. It is because we believe in Him that we can do so. We must remember that we are able to serve Him because we are born of Him. I believe in this. From now on, we must not regard Christ from a worldly point of view (1 Corinthians 5:16). We must know Him in spirit and in Truth. And we should remain faithful to Him so that we may please Him.

Back

 


Printable version   |  

 
Bible studies
    Sermons
    Statement of faith
    What's the gospel?
    Biblical terms
    FAQ on the Christian Faith
 

register as a coworker
Partner's Zone
   
Copyright © 2001 - 2014 The New Life Mission. All Rights Reserved.