The First Epistle of JOHN
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 The Western Wall in Jerusalem


 Walking in Fellowship with Christ so as to Not be Drawn into False Beliefs

 "That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life; (For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and shew unto you that eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested unto us;)

That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ. And these things write we unto you, that your joy may be full.

This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth:

But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin. If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us." (1 John 1:1-10 Kjv)

The First Epistle of JOHN

The similarities between this epistle and the Gospel of John provide conclusive evidence that the author of 1 John was the Apostle John (see introduction to the Gospel of John), The usage of words like "truth," "light," and phrases like "in the light," and "born of God' in 1 John reveal the significant resemblances in structure, style, and vocabulary to John's Gospel.
It is also significant that John's anonymity is evident in his epistles as it was in his Gospel (see introduction to John). He never uses his authority as an apostle in substantiating his message, but begins this first epistle much the same way as with the Gospel of John (1John 1:1, 2, cf. John 1:1, 2, 14). This differs from both Paul's and Peter's writings where they use their authority as apostles of Christ to give weight to their message.

John was writing this epistle to believers, namely to those who were members of the churches of Asia Minor. Because the letter addresses such broad moral topics, it is clear that John's goal was to provide direction for those Christians who faced new challenges to their faith. At this time, there was an emergence of various groups whose teachings opposed Christianity. These people infiltrated the church, and there were many who gave in to their denial of the key fundamentals of Christianity (e.g., Christ's deity and resurrection).
As opposition to the believers' faith arose, they were encouraged to continue walking in fellowship with Christ so as to not be drawn into false beliefs (1 John 1:5 - 2:2).

The Book of 1 John is believed to have been written in approximately A.D. 90. There are several ways that this date can be substantiated. First, there are no references by John to any persecutions of believers. From an examination of church history during the first century A.D., one may observe that there were no significant persecutions on Christians until the reign of the Roman emperor Trajan (A.D. 98 -117).
Secondly, if the date were closer to A.D. 70, John would certainly have had reason to refer to the catastrophic events surrounding the destruction of the city of Jerusalem and the temple. However, an examination of the focus of John's epistle makes it obvious that he is instructing believers concerning the heretics that were being spread among them, not concerning some disaster that had come as a result of political events.
Hence, the infiltration of these corrupt ideas that the church was experiencing was most likely from gentile influences, not Jewish opposition. Thus, this would most certainly place the date of writing much later than A.D. 70.

It has been suggested that this Book of 1 John is divided into four major sections. John seeks first to warn believers concerning indifference to morality and sin (1 John 1:1 -2:11) Next, he admonishes concerning a love for the things of the world as opposed to a love for the things of Christ (1 John 2:12 - 28). A third section deals with importance of the believer exhibiting a pure and righteous love, especially when relating to another brother in Christ (1 John 2:29 -3:22).
Finally, John reveals that a true faith in Christ as the Son of God is
[Source for Introduction of chapter: Hebrew Greek Key Study Bible KJV edited by Spiros Zodhiates, Th.D. AMG Publishers, Chattanooga, TN 37422]

1 John 1
1 John 2
1 John 3
1 John 4
1 John 5
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