1 John 2:28-3:3
The Assurance That We Are Children of God
And now, little children, abide in him, so that when he appears we may have confidence and not shrink from him in shame at his coming. If you know that he is righteous, you may be sure that everyone who practices righteousness has been born of him.
See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is. And everyone who thus hopes in him purifies himself as he is pure.
Our Question for today is: How do you balance the danger of losing assurance of salvation and the danger of presuming that you are born again when you may not be?
Likeness is the proof of the relationship. Just like how our physical genetic makeup makes us look like our parents, our spiritual relationship with our heavenly Father should also prove our relationship with Him.
The privileges of God’s children (3.1-3)
God has adopted us into His family.
Rightly, to understand this concept of adoption, we have to remember that the choice lay entirely with the Father and was motivated only by his nature of love. Adoption is a legal action by which a person takes into his family a child who is not his own, who has no rights within that family, in order to give that child all the privileges of his own children. In Roman law, as in ours, an adopted child was entitled to all the rights and privileges of a natural-born child.
So why did God adopt you all that have accepted Christ as your Lord, Savior, and Treasure?
Was it perhaps because of something attractive in you? Or, that there might be something that you did to earn the Father’s love? I would argue that there was nothing attractive in us that would cause God to want to love us so much that he would kill His only begotten Son, to pay the ransom so that He could adopt us. God chose to love us, because he is love, not because of anything we did to receive it.
However, in verse 3, And everyone who thus hopes in him purifies himself as he is pure.
We do see that this free love does come with a responsibility to purify ourselves because God is pure. However, this is not a contradiction saying that you cannot do anything to earn God just to turn around and say that you have to purify yourselves. This is saying that if you are one of God’s Children you will purify yourself because you are like Christ, who is pure.