How do I know if I’m really a Christian?
That’s an eternally important question, and yet, sadly, it’s one that many Christians struggle to answer. They may not realize that it’s possible to have assurance, or perhaps they’re looking for assurance in the wrong places or in the wrong ways. Thankfully, God doesn’t leave us in the dark when it comes to our standing before Him. He wants His children to know that they belong to Him, which is one of the reasons He gave us the book of 1 John.
I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life. (1 Jn 5:13)
This brief yet penetrating book gives us evidences of eternal life to look for in our lives. Seeing these evidences should bring assurance and joy to God’s children. At the same time, 1 John offers a much-needed warning to those who lack these evidences. It is entirely possible to think that things are okay between you and God when, in reality, you don’t actually have eternal life. There are likely many people in our churches today who fit that description. (Is that you?) Of all the things to be deceived about, nothing could be worse than being deceived about where you will spend eternity.
For these reasons and more, we need to hear what God is saying in the book of 1 John. We want to avoid the deadly deception of false teaching and instead rest assured that we have eternal life in Jesus Christ. What could be more important than that?
This eight-week study of 1 John can be used by an individual or a group. The only other thing you will need is a Bible. Each week includes a Scripture reading from 1 John, some brief comments on the passage, an explanation of an important term or concept, and some questions to reflect on and discuss. As a supplement to each week’s study, we’ve also provided a link to a video that contains a sermon excerpt based on the passage for the week.
This study of 1 John is based on a sermon series by David Platt titled “Love Made Known.” Participants are encouraged to view or listen to these sermons as a supplement to this study. The sermons can be accessed for free at https://radical.net/series/love-made-known/.