I think it’s interesting as we press on in John’s letter today that twice in the last few verses, he’s used the word liar. The first time was to say that we lie if we say we have no sin, and this time if we say we know God but do not follow his commands. Listen to how he says it:
This is how we know that we know him: if we keep his commands. The one who says, “I have come to know him,” and yet doesn’t keep his commands, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoever keeps his word, truly in him the love of God is made complete. This is how we know we are in him: The one who says he remains in him should walk just as he walked.1 John 2:3-6 CSB
These hard words are centered around a spiritual test we can give ourselves: How do we show we know God? By keeping his commands.
We should not judge others on what we think they should be doing.
This is a point I want to draw from this, because Christians can be very judgmental of their own. It’s not about what we think a good Christian looks like that matters, it’s about what God’s Word says. The way I walk in love and live in the light may look different from the way you do, but we should both be living in line with what God says. John’s going to get more into that in the coming verses, but for now, I just wanted to throw that out there, because, while it’s a litmus test for us as believers, we need to be careful how we apply it to each other.
Keeping God’s word keeps us in his love.
As we keep or live by God’s word, and remain obedient to his commands, we are built up and held firm in God’s love. This short letter is full of confirmation of each and every sentence he writes, for later in the fifth chapter, John writes:
It is a blessing to keep God’s commands because they are not too heavy that we cannot bear them. In his love for us, he makes following him, obeying him, and even serving him, a blessing and joy.
Have you ever done something you know God led you to do, even if it was hard, and once you obeyed, a deep, abiding love and joy filled your heart? That’s the blessing of knowing God.
T. B. Maston wrote an amazing book entitled, To Walk as He Walked, based on verse six in this second chapter of John’s letter:
The Christian life is about proclamation.
Not only do we proclaim Christ crucified and share the good news of that atoning sacrifice, but we also proclaim our allegiance to Christ through our day-to-day living. T. B. Maston laid that out perfectly in his book by illustrating the many ways Jesus walked on this earth. You can get a taste of what I mean when you see these chapter titles:
- He Revealed God
- He Dignified Humanity
- He Included Samaria
- He Emphasized a Distinctive Life-style
- He Magnified Service
- He Was Compassionate
- He Touched People
- He Separated the Sinner and His Sin
Do you claim to know Christ? Live as he lived, walking in his way of light and love.
Grace and Peace