The Expository Files


The First Epistle of John

Several years ago I decided to write a brief outline of First John.  I wanted to show another brother how John had emphasized the need to obey the commandments of Jesus Christ.  This is important because it relates to whether we really know Christ or not. Below is the outline I used in my discussion with the brother.  

I John 1:1-4 - Affirmation that Jesus, the Word of Life was here; that He was tangible; and that the things written are for the purpose of allowing others to enter  into fellowship with Him. 

I John 1:5-10 - Cannot walk in darkness and have fellowship with God. Instructions to those in the light about being cleansed of sin. 

I John 2:1-6 - Those who say they know Him but do not keep His commandments are liars. It is the one who keeps His word that are in Him. 

I John 2:7-11 - Remember the old commandment, to love  your brothers.  

I John 2:12-17 - Encouragement to be strong in the word  and to not love the world. 

I John 2:18-29 - Warning about the antichrists who deny the Son. Must continue to abide in what was heard from the beginning (cf 1:1) and not be deceived. Those who truly are of God practice righteousness. 

I John 3:1-12 - Children of God purify themselves. Those who practice sin are of the devil. Sin is lawlessness.  Those who practice righteousness are of God.  The  antichrists had claimed that what one practiced did not  effect his spirit (see first post). 

I John 3:13-24 - The child of God lives by a different standard that the world, therefore the world hates him.  True love is that which is in deed, not just words. It is  the one who keeps His commandments that abides in Him. 

I John 4:1-6 - The spirit of the antichrist has gone into the world. Must listen to the teachings of the apostles, for they are of God, and this is the only way to distinguish between truth and error. 

I John 4:7-21. Love; love of God; love for one another; and God's love for us. Love of brethren is a commandment of God. 

I John 5:1-12 - Those who love God's children love God and observe His commandments, which are not burdensome. It is by this active faith in Christ we overcome the world.  It is in the Son we have eternal life. 

I John 5:13-17 - We know we have eternal life through the things written. We have confidence to ask according to His will. All unrighteousness is sin. 

I John 5:18-21 We know that we are of God.

By Jon W. Quinn
The Final Page
From Expository Files 15.3; March 2008