We Know Him
Passed From Death To Life Series
1 John 2:3-6
This book of the Bible provides instruction about the Christian life. Someone has said that we are not surrounded by God as His children; we are en-sphered by Him. A circle would mean that we are covered only on one level. A sphere would mean that we are completely surrounded in every way. God loves us equally, but He also loves us individually. 1 John 2:3-6 says, “And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments…He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him…But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him…He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked.”
The writer says, “We know him.” On what level do you know Jesus Christ?
There’s an old Arab proverb which says, “There are four kinds of people, three of which are to be avoided and the fourth cultivated: There are those who don’t know that they don’t know (these are the most dangerous); There are those who know that they don’t know (it’s a sad state in which to be, but at least they’re teachable); There are those who don’t know that they know (they have the knowledge, but they don’t realize it, so they don’t do anything at all); and finally, there are those who know that they know – these are the true experts, who are a true help in a time of need. The question is: How do we get to the point where we know that we know? How do we become true experts who are truly helpful? How do we develop such knowledge and confidence in the Lord?
John, the human penman for this epistle, knew the Lord Jesus. Their mothers were sisters. There is no doubt that they had an acquaintance because of that relationship, but there was more to it than that earthly acquaintance. John 1:35-41 says, “Again the next day after John stood, and two of his disciples;…And looking upon Jesus as he walked, he saith, Behold the Lamb of God!…And the two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus…Then Jesus turned, and saw them following, and saith unto them, What seek ye? They said unto him, Rabbi, (which is to say, being interpreted, Master,) where dwellest thou?…He saith unto them, Come and see. They came and saw where he dwelt, and abode with him that day: for it was about the tenth hour…One of the two which heard John speak, and followed him, was Andrew, Simon Peter's brother…He first findeth his own brother Simon, and saith unto him, We have found the Messias, which is, being interpreted, the Christ.”
We believe that John was the other disciple who, along with Andrew, followed after Christ and abode with Him that day. John came to know Christ as his personal Saviour; he came to know Him as the promised Messiah. In what way do you know Him?
In Philippians 3:10-11, Paul pens these words, “That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death;…If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead.”
I. The Claim Made
The Word of God says in 1 John 2:3, “And hereby we do know that we know him.” We claim that we know Him. The Bible says at the beginning of verse four, “He that saith, I know him…”
So many people who claim they know Him give absolutely no evidence that they know Him. Does it ever trouble you that so many people say that they know Him, yet He seems to have made little or no difference in their lives? They hardly are moved in any way by the name of Jesus Christ. He is the Creator God, by whom all things consist—yet if you press them, they have little to say.
It is unfortunate that churches and Bible classes have been invaded by insincere people, people whose lives cannot stand to be tested by God’s light. Remember chapter one? “God is light,” and when we walk in the light, there is nothing we can hide. It is refreshing to meet a Christian who is open and sincere and is not trying to masquerade!
Jesus Christ Himself said that many are going to come in that day, claiming they know Him, and He is going to say, “Depart from me, ye that work iniquity.” They are going to respond by saying, “Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name?” But He will say, “I never knew you” (Matthew 7:21-13).
II. The Conditions Met
Obedience to His commands provides evidence that we know Him. 1 John 2:3 states, “And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments.” This does not mean that we are perfect people, but it does mean that we are going to have heart yielded to obey the Lord. How can you claim to be God’s child if you have no desire to live in obedience to Him? It is one thing to say, “We know Him,” but God says, “Here is the condition that must be met if you are to truly know Him. You know Him if you keep His commandments.
Although a great many people believe in the security of the believer, they don't have the assurance of salvation, and the reason is obvious. We cannot know that we are children of God if we are disobedient to Him. Obedience to Christ is essential and is the very basis of assurance. You cannot have that assurance (oh, you can bluff your way through, but you cannot have that deep, down-in-your-heart assurance) unless you keep His commandments.
“And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him” Hebrews 5:9