1 John ~ Chapter 3

1 John ~ Chapter 3

1 John 3:1-3, Children of God:

1 John 3:1-3, “See how great a love the Father has bestowed upon us, that we should be called children of God, and such we are. For this reason the world does not know us, because it did not know Him. 2Beloved, now we are children of God, and it has not appeared yet what we shall be.  We know that when He appears, we shall be like Him, because we shall see Him just as He is. 3And everyone who has this hope, fixed on Him purifies himself, just as He is pure.”

So far in our Study of 1 John, we have noted the various Greek words John has used to address his readers as “children”.

He used the word TEKNION, “Children” in verses 2:1, 12, and 28; and will use it again in 3:7, 18; 4:4 and 5:21.

As we have noted, the word TEKNION is an endearing term used by a teacher to his students. In fact, TEKNION is a diminutive of the root work TEKNON. A diminutive is basically a nickname or pet name for someone and indicates the state or quality of being familiarly known by the addresser.

For example, my formal name is James but most people who know me call me Jimmy. But remember that Jimmy doesn’t like to be called Jimmy. Jimmy prefers Jim.

So, as a diminutive of TEKNON, TEKNION tells us of the close relationship between John and his readers and John’s affection for them, including you and I.

Then John used the word PAIDION, “little children”, in verses 2:13 and 18. This word was used for the understanding of someone’s stage of spiritual growth. A PAIDON or child is someone new into the Word of God or someone who has refused to grow in the knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Now in Chapter 3 John employees the root word for “children”, TEKNON, for the first time. Why? Because in chapter three the relationship is changed from John to God. We are the children of God. We are the students of God. We are the affectionate disciples of God who is our teacher. John is pointing to the fact of our relationship with God, and is therefore not addressing us from his own personal standpoint. He is addressing us correctly as God’s Children.

Joseph Thayer states about TEKNON, “In the NT, pupils or disciples are called children of their teachers, because the latter by their instruction nourish the minds of their pupils and mold their characters.”

He goes on to state, “Children of God: in the OT of “the people of Israel” as especially dear to God, in the NT, in Paul’s writings, all who are led by the Spirit of God and thus closely related to God.”

So TEKNON is employed in verses 1, 2 and 10 of Chapter 3, indicating our relationship with God as also stated in verse 9 (read). In verse 9 the term “Born of God” uses the Greek word GENNAO, which is from the root word GENOS. This word is used in Acts 17:29 telling us that the Family of God is not of human creation but is divine. This was Paul’s sermon at Aeropagus on Mars Hill in Greece.

Acts 17:28-29, “For in Him we live and move and exist, as even some of your own poets have said, ‘For we also are His children.’ 29“Being then the children of God, we ought not to think that the Divine Nature is like gold or silver or stone, an image formed by the art and thought of man.”

Here the word Children or Offspring is the Greek word GENOS – γενοσ, which means family, race, nation, people; offspring, descendants; sort or kind.

As offspring of God, we are part of a spiritual family.

So, John has established that the one who believes in Christ is a child of God. The KJV uses the word “son or sons of God”. The Greek word for son(s) is HUIOS. The NASB is consistent in its translation of TEKNON as “children” and HUIOS as “son(s)”, but the KJV isn’t and interchanges the two. But the Greek shows us a distinction and specific emphasis in each word.

Let’s see how this phrase “Children of God” is applied elsewhere in the New Testament.

1) John 1:12A Privilege and a Right. Read 1-16

John 1:12-13, “But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, (as a result of) to those who believe in His name, 13who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.”

Being a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ qualifies you for being a “Child of God”. It is like receiving your Driver’s License. Having a Driver’s license gives you the privilege to operate a motor vehicle on the highways of this country.

  • To get your license there is a test you must pass first.

To be a Child of God, Jesus Christ took the test for you and passed it by being judged for your sins without having any sins of His own. Our non-meritorious act of faith in Christ’s passing the test qualifies us as a “Child of God”.

  • Once you pass the test, the Registry of Motor Vehicles gives you a license to drive.

At your moment of faith, the Sovereignty of God the Father gives you the status of a “Child of God”.

  • With your license, you can operate a motor vehicle

Being a “Child of God” you can operate your new unique spiritual life.

  • You operate your motor vehicle in the country of origin.

In your unique spiritual life, you are a heavenly citizen. Phil 3:20-21;

  • Having a license to drive is a privilege and not a right. It can be revoked at any time if you break the rules.

Being a “Child of God: has given you the right to be a child of God and no one can take that away from you. Compare our verse with John 10:28-30

A “Child of God” is born of God who is spirit. Therefore, we are to live in our “Child of God” status spiritually as a new spiritual species and not materialistically.

2 Cor 5:17, “ Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.”

So, in His sovereignty God the Father gives each believer in the Lord Jesus Christ the right to be called a “Child of God” and to operate in your new heavenly spiritual status.

Phil 1:21, “For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.”

2) John 11:52To Establish the Family of God:

John 11:51-52, “Now he (Caiaphas) did not say this on his own initiative, but being high priest that year, he prophesied that Jesus was going to die for the nation, 52and not for the nation only, but in order that He might also gather together into one the children of God who are scattered abroad.”

Jesus Christ’s work on the Cross was the intended purpose of God to gather His flock or Children together. All peoples throughout all of human history who believe on Jesus Christ as their Savior will be gathered into the family of God as His Children. This will ultimately be realized at the end of Human history.

For you and I who believe during the church age, we have a special status among God’s Children. We are called the Royal Family of God.

Jesus Christ won the strategic victory of the angelic conflict at the cross. With that victory, God the Father bestowed on Him the title King of kings and Lord of lords. This was Christ’s third royal patent. (Son of God and Son of David are the other two.)

Yet unlike His other two royal titles, with the third He did not have a royal family to accompany it. So, God the Father is calling out a royal family for Jesus Christ during the Church Age Dispensation.

Being a “Child of God” in the Church Age gives you the status as a member of the royal family of God.

Whatever we were before, we are now royal family of God. This is a permanent royalty that will last forever. Our royalty is eternal and secure since it is related to our regeneration. This means all Church Age believers are in full time royal service for Christ as royal priests and royal ambassadors. 1 Peter 2:9; Eph 6:20; 2 Cor 5:20

1 Pet 2:9, “But you are an elect race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God’s own possession, that you may proclaim the virtues of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.”

At salvation, the Holy Spirit enters us into union with Christ, which makes us royal family. The baptism of the Spirit is identification with Christ as royalty, John 14:20; Acts 1:5; 2:3-4; 11:15 17; 1 Cor 12:13; Gal 3:26-28; Col 2:12.

Documentation for the royal family of God is found in the entire books of Ephesians, Hebrews, Romans, and Colossians.

  • Ephesians emphasizes the position of the royal family forever.
  • Hebrews emphasizes the priesthood of the royal family forever.
  • Romans emphasizes the objectives of the royal family.
  • Colossians emphasizes the lifestyle of the royal family.

Jesus Christ’s work on the Cross results in the gathering of the Children of God into one family, yet we (Church Age believers) are privileged to also be part of the royal family of God.

3) Rom 8:16As Family Members We are Heirs of God through Adoption. Read verses 14-17

Rom 8:14-17, “For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God. 15For you have not received a spirit of slavery leading to fear again, but you have received a spirit of adoption as sons by which we cry out, “Abba! Father!” 16The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God, 17and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him so that we may also be glorified with Him.”

Covered in these verses are: Sons of God, Adoption, God our Father, Heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, who is the Son of God, suffer with him.

The Biblical connotation of adoption, which is based on the Roman aristocratic function of adoption in the time when the New Testament was written, is not the same as our twenty-first century practice.

In scripture adoption means to be recognized by God as an adult son positionally at salvation. (At the same time, we begin our spiritual life experientially as children and grow to be adult sons experientially at maturity).  Rom 8:23: Gal 4:5; Eph 1:5

“Our position is one of full privilege; our practice involves growth in grace”, Charles Ryrie.

All believers become adopted as sons at salvation. Being in union with Christ, we are joint heirs with Christ, and are therefore adopted at the moment of salvation, Gal 3:26.

Gal 3:26-27, “For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. 27For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ.”

Adoption is defined as the fulfillment of the Father’s plan to appoint a legal adult son. Believers at the point of salvation become legally adopted sons of God.

Paul uses the word adoption in Eph 1:5 to show that God the Father selected each believer personally at the moment of salvation and adopted him. You are the legitimate heir of God the Father.

Eph 1:5, “He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will.”

Paul goes on to point out in Romans that we are “joint heirs with the Son of God.”

Adoption anticipates blessing in time, Rom 8:15.

Rom 8:15 “But you have received the Spirit of adoption through whom we keep on shouting, ‘my Father.’”

When God adopted us, He gave His Holy Spirit and the divine power system which gives us the greatest spiritual opportunity. You have to learn to think in terms of your adoption, which requires knowledge and application of Bible doctrine.

Adoption anticipates great blessing for eternity, Rom 8:23.

Mature believers eagerly await the great blessing imputed to their resurrection body. There is another adoption which occurs in the future. At the rapture, we receive a resurrection body which is our potential for blessing in eternity.

With adoption, we are qualified for an inheritance from God, 1 Peter 1:3-5.

The Lord is the heir of all things, and we share in all He has. Gal 3:26.

All of the heirs of God have been justified by grace via imputed perfect righteousness from the justice of God, Titus 3:7.

Titus 3:7, “So that being justified by His grace we would be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.”

Therefore, salvation adjustment to the justice of God is the qualification for this inheritance, Col 1:12.

Col 1:12, “Giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified us to share in the inheritance of the saints in Light.”

The indwelling of the Holy Spirit is a down payment and a guarantee of the existence of the inheritance of the royal family, Eph 1:13 14.

Eph 1:13-14, “In Him, you also, after listening to the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation—having also believed, you were sealed in Him with the Holy Spirit of promise, 14who is given as a pledge of our inheritance, with a view to the redemption of God’s own possession, to the praise of His glory.”

So, becoming a “Child of God” means we are adopted into the family of God and made heirs to the blessings of Christ and God.

4) Rom 8:21Freedom from the Slave Market of Sin. Read verses 19-21

Rom 8:19-21, “For the anxious longing of the creation waits eagerly for the revealing of the sons of God. 20For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it, in hope 21that the creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God.”

Slavery is a legitimate Biblically based enterprise. In the United States slavery ended with the Civil War. Today we consider ourselves free, but in reality, we are born into an inescapable slavery, bondage to sin.

As members of the human race, we are brought into this world and exist as slaves to sin and the sin nature. That means we are separated from God and are helpless and powerless to redeem ourselves and establish a relationship with Him.

We inherit depravity and have no means to emancipate ourselves from it. But in God’s grace plan, He provided a Savior, Redeemer to free us from the slave market of sin.

John 8:34, “Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is the slave of sin.”

We are born with a Sin Nature passed down from Adam through the male, generation after generation. At the moment of our physical birth, God imputes Adam’s original sin to our sin nature and we die spiritually. From that point forward, we are spiritually dead, separate from God, and can do nothing from our own power to change our status.

We were slaves to sin. But God found a way to free us from the bondage of the sin nature.

Gal 3:13, “Christ redeemed us from the curse of the Law (sin), having become a curse for us—for it is written, “CURSED IS EVERYONE WHO HANGS ON A TREE”.”

A principle of slavery is that only a free man can purchase you. Jesus Christ was born of the virgin Mary and had no sin nature; therefore, He could not receive the imputation of Adam’s original sin at His birth.

During His life, He never sinned. He was impeccable; therefore, He is a free man and the only one qualified to purchase you from the slave market of sin. And that is what He did.

God the Father judiciously imputed all of our sins onto Jesus. Jesus paid the price for our sins, which was spiritual separation from the Father.

2 Cor 5:21, “He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”

1 Tim 2:5-6, “For there is one God, and one mediator also between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, 6who gave Himself as a ransom for all, the testimony given at the proper time.”

1 Peter 1:18-19, “Knowing that you were not redeemed with perishable things like silver or gold from your futile way of life inherited from your forefathers, 19but with precious blood, as of a lamb unblemished and spotless, the blood of Christ.”

Since the price is now paid and by means of our non-meritorious act of faith in Him, we are purchased from the slave market of sin and are set free from it.

John 8:31-32, “Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If you continue in my word, then are you my disciples indeed; 32And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”

John 8:36, “So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed.”

Rom 6:16-23 – Read

At the moment of our salvation, one of the 40+ things we received from God was His perfect righteousness or +R.

As believers in the Lord Jesus Christ, we have been freed from sin and entered into the righteousness that is God.

We have turned the table of verse 20.

We are no longer slaves to sin and free from righteousness, we are now free from sin and slaves to righteousness.

We have been made holy and we are sanctified. That is our new status. We are no longer under the bondage of sin but are made holy.

In our new-found freedom, we must honor the giver of our freedom and live as slaves to righteousness.

2 Cor 5:14-15 For the love of Christ controls us, having concluded this, that one died for all, therefore all died; 15and He died for all, so that they who live might no longer live for themselves, but for Him who died and rose again on their behalf.

Every aspect of our lives should involve righteousness. When we do not live in our righteousness, we are living in our old nature as slaves to sin.

1 Peter 2:24-25, “He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross, so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds you were healed. 25For you were continually straying like sheep, but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Guardian of your souls.”

To live in our righteousness, we need strength and power. God has provided that in His Word and Spirit. When we are filled with the Spirit, Eph 5:18; 1 John 1:9, we are living unto Christ.

At our salvation, we were placed in union with Christ.
This is called positional sanctification.

When we live in the righteousness of God, we are living unto Christ.
This is called experiential sanctification.

At the resurrection of the Church, we receive our resurrection bodies and are face-to-face with Christ.
This is called ultimate sanctification.

2 Cor 5:18-19, “Now all these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation, 19namely, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and He has committed to us the word of reconciliation.”

Through the saving work of Christ, we have been freed from the slave market of sin and have been sanctified. God does not hold your past, present, or future sins against you. They have been paid for and you have been set free. With that freedom, we are to honor the giver of our freedom by living as slaves to righteousness, experiencing the sanctification God has given to us.

We are free and we should not abuse our freedom by turning back to sin, but instead freely honor God with our lives.

Gal 5:1, “It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery.”

5) Rom 9:8As Children of God We are Part of a Spiritual Family. Read verses 1-8

Rom 9:1-8, “I am telling the truth in Christ, I am not lying, my conscience testifies with me in the Holy Spirit, 2that I have great sorrow and unceasing grief in my heart. 3For I could wish that I myself were accursed, separated from Christ for the sake of my brethren, my kinsmen according to the flesh, 4who are Israelites, to whom belongs the adoption as sons, and the glory and the covenants and the giving of the Law and the temple service and the promises, 5whose are the fathers, and from whom is the Christ according to the flesh, who is over all, God blessed forever. Amen. 6But it is not as though the word of God has failed. For they are not all Israel who are descended from Israel; 7nor are they all children because they are Abraham’s descendants, but: “THROUGH ISAAC YOUR DESCENDANTS WILL BE NAMED.” 8That is, it is not the children of the flesh who are children of God, but the children of the promise are regarded as descendants.””

In this passage, which is directed to the Jews, we understand that our life in Christ is not based on our flesh or our heritage. It is based on the new unique life that God has promised, and subsequently gave to us at our salvation, when He also formed us into a New Spiritual Species.

This is further emphasized in vs 24-26, 30-33 and 10:12-13. In those passages, it is saying that both Jew and Gentile are part of the family of God, which during the Church Age is classified as being a new spiritual species. The Jew is part of a new racial species found in Abraham, but both Jew and Gentile can be part of the New Spiritual Species based on our non-meritorious faith in Christ and God’s regeneration.

So, we are a New Creation, a New Spiritual Species, 2 Cor 5:17: Gal 6:15.

Gal 6:15-16, “For neither is circumcision anything, nor uncircumcision, but a new creation. 16And those who will walk by this rule, peace and mercy be upon them, and upon the Israel of God (God’s spiritual family).”

What Does it Mean to be a New Spiritual Species?

Characteristics of the New Spiritual Species.

  • The New Spiritual Species is created by the baptism of the Spirit at salvation. This positional sanctification constitutes the equal privilege of predestination.
  • The New Spiritual Species is forever protected from liability at the last judgment; you cannot lose your salvation, Rom 8:1.
  • The New Spiritual Species possesses eternal life, 1 John 5:11-12.
  • The New Spiritual Species possesses a double divine righteousness: the imputed perfect righteousness of God the Father, Rom 3:22, and the perfect righteousness we share with Jesus Christ through positional sanctification, 1 Cor 1:30.
  • The New Spiritual Species has an inheritance protected by the omnipotence of God.

1 Pet 1:5, “We are guarded by the omnipotence of God through faith at the moment of salvation.”

  • Being a New Spiritual Species is not progressive. It cannot be improved in time or in eternity. It is a gift of God and originates from His sovereignty; therefore, we cannot improve it by anything we do.
  • Being a New Spiritual Species is not an emotion or an experience. It is not an empirical function. Emotion is a normal part of life, a normal soul function, but it has no part in the Christian life; it is not part of the spiritual life. You can be filled with the Holy Spirit and be emotional about something, but emotion is not a sign of spirituality; it is not a function of the filling of the Holy Spirit.
  • Being a New Spiritual Species is not related to any form of human works or human merit.
  • The New Spiritual Species of the Church Age is both justified and sanctified. We are justified as New Spiritual Species, Rom 3:24. (Old Testament believers were also justified upon receiving the imputation of God’s perfect righteousness.) We are sanctified (entered into union with Christ) as New Spiritual Species, 1 Cor 1:2, 30; Heb 10:10, 14. (No Old Testament believer was ever entered into union with Christ.)
  • Old Testament believers were justified after the pattern of Abraham. Gen 15:6, “Abraham believed in the Lord and it was credited to his account for righteousness.” But it was not until the great power experiment of the hypostatic union was extended into the Church Age that a New Spiritual Species was created.
  • The New Spiritual Species is unique to the Church Age, never existed in any previous dispensation, nor will it exist in any future dispensation.
  • With our status, as unique spiritual creatures, we are to live as Children of God and walk as children of the Light, Eph 5:6-15

Eph 5:6-16, “Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience. 7Therefore do not be partakers with them; 8for you were formerly darkness, but now you are Light in the Lord; walk as children of Light 9(for the fruit of the Light consists in all goodness and righteousness and truth), 10trying to learn what is pleasing to the Lord. 11Do not participate in the unfruitful deeds of darkness, but instead even expose them; 12for it is disgraceful even to speak of the things which are done by them in secret. 13But all things become visible when they are exposed by the light, for everything that becomes visible is light. 14For this reason it says, “Awake, sleeper, and arise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you.” 15Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men but as wise, 16making the most of your time, because the days are evil.

6) Phil 2:15Responsibilities of the Children of God. Read verses 12-16

Phil 2:14-16, “Do all things without grumbling or disputing; 15So that you will prove yourselves to be blameless and innocent, children of God above reproach in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you appear as lights in the world, 16holding fast the word of life, so that in the day of Christ I will have reason to glory because I did not run in vain nor toil in vain.”

(See the doctrine of the Royal Family Honor Code {RFHC})

Summary thus far:

We recall that in 1 John 3, John employs the root word for children, TEKNON, for the first time. Prior to this in his epistle, he used the diminutive of TEKNON TEKNION as an address of affection.

But here he uses TEKNON. Why? Because in chapter three the address of our relationship is changed from John to God.

We are the children of God. We are the students of God. We are the disciples of God who is our teacher. John is pointing to the fact of our relationship with God, and is therefore not addressing us from his own personal standpoint. He is addressing us correctly as God’s Children.

Joseph Thayer states about TEKNON, “In the NT, pupils or disciples are called children of their teachers, because the latter by their instruction nourish the minds of their pupils and mold their characters.”

That is what God is doing with us; nourishing our minds. He does so for our spiritual growth and benefit in both time and eternity. He is preparing us for greater works not only in this world, but also for the life we will enjoy in heaven.

Remember that we are going to rule angels …

1 Cor 6:3, “Do you not know that we will judge angels? How much more matters of this life?”

… and God is trying to prepare us for great responsibilities in the eternal state.

The question is, “Are you letting Him prepare you?”

That is the main emphasis as we study the progression of this phrase “children of God”.

In God’s progressive preparation of His children we have already noted:

1) John 1:12Being a Child of God is a Right Given to Us by God. Read verses 1-16

John 1:12-13, “But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, (as a result of) to those who believe in His name, 13who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.”

Having this right means that no one can take it away from you!

2) John 11:52We are God’s Children to Establish His Family:

John 11:51-52, “Now he (Caiaphas) did not say this on his own initiative, but being high priest that year, he prophesied that Jesus was going to die for the nation, 52and not for the nation only, but in order that He might also gather together into one the children of God who are scattered abroad.”

3) Rom 8:16As Family Members We are Heirs of God through Adoption.

Rom 8:14-17, “For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God. 15For you have not received a spirit of slavery leading to fear again, but you have received a spirit of adoption as sons by which we cry out, “Abba! Father!” 16The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God, 17and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him so that we may also be glorified with Him.”

4) Rom 8:21As Children of God We have been Freed from the Slave Market of Sin. Read verses 19-21

Rom 8:19-21, “For the anxious longing of the creation waits eagerly for the revealing of the sons of God. 20For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it, in hope 21that the creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God.”

5) Rom 9:8As Children of God we are part of a spiritual family. Read verses 1-8

Rom 9:6-8, “But it is not as though the word of God has failed. For they are not all Israel who are descended from Israel; 7nor are they all children because they are Abraham’s descendants, but: “THROUGH ISAAC YOUR DESCENDANTS WILL BE NAMED.” 8That is, it is not the children of the flesh who are children of God, but the children of the promise are regarded as descendants.””

In this passage, which is directed first to the Jews, we understand that our life in Christ is not based on our flesh or our heritage. It is based on the new unique life that God has promised and subsequently gave to us at our salvation, when He also formed us into a new creature, a new creation a new spiritual species. 2 Cor 5:17; Gal 6:15

2 Cor 5:17, “Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.”

6) Phil 2:15Responsibilities of the Children of God. Read verses 12-16

Phil 2:14-16, “Do all things without grumbling or disputing; 15So that you will prove yourselves to be blameless and innocent, children of God above reproach in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you appear as lights in the world, 16holding fast the word of life…”

Here we studied the principles of the “Royal Family Honor Code” as noted throughout the New Testament with the anthem found in James 2:8.

James 2:8, “If, however, you are fulfilling the royal law according to the Scripture, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself,” you are doing well.”

See the doctrines regarding of the Royal Family Honor Code.

Now we turn to our next point:

7) 1 John 3:1The Father has Great Love for His Children.

Here John is expressing his excitement and joy about the Love of the Father as he thinks about all that he just wrote in Chapters 1 and 2 about God’s provisions for His Children.

“See how great a love the Father has bestow on us,”

ιδετε ποταπεν αγαπεν δεδοκεν
IDETE POTAPEN AGAPEN DEDOKEN

“English” – Greek Text Word – Greek Root Word = Meaning

“See” – IDETE – HORAO = Aorist, Active, Imperative; see, perceive, discern.

This is a command or exhortation to the reader to gather together in his mind what he has just read about God, which results in understanding His love for us.

“how great” – POTAPEN – POTAPOS = an interrogative which asks a question; from what country, that is of what sort or kind; what wonderful (Mark 13:1; 1 John 3:1). This is an exclamation as to what makes up the love of God.

“love” – AGEPEN – AGAPE = Love. God’s so great a love for us.

“has bestowed” – DEDOKEN – DIDOMI = Perfect, Active, Indicative; give, grant, allow, permit, place, put, appoint, or establish.

The perfect tense tells us that the love God has for us was completed in eternity past and continues today.

So, we could say something like, “Based on what I just told you, you should understand what kind of love God has given to us!”

Now we have recently studied the Love of God so we won’t reiterate those points. But what we should do is note the points that led John to express his excitement, which prompted him to exhort us to “see how great a love the Father has bestowed on us”.

  • God has given us eternal life as seen through His Son. 1 John 1:1-2
  • We can have fellowship with His Son Jesus Christ. 1 John 1:3-7
  • We can have healing from our post salvation sins. 1 John 1:8-10
  • When we are accused (Rev 12:10), we have an advocate in Christ because of His completed work upon the Cross. 1 John 2:1-2
  • We can have an intimate relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ if we apply His word in faith, i.e. the Royal Family Honor Code – “Love your neighbor”. 1 John 2:3-11
  • God has provided and is providing, (written and writing), for our spiritual growth and success. 1 John 2:12-15
  • God has given us His Word in order to avoid the traps and snares of Satan’s cosmos. 1 John 2:15-17
  • God has given us His Word, His Spirit and eternal life so that false teachers and false doctrines do not deceive us and lead us astray. 1 John 2:18-27
  • God has given us everything to have confidence when we stand before Him at the BEMA seat of Jesus Christ. 1 John 2:18-29

That is what prompts John to call our attention to see the greatness of God’s love for us, His Children.

8) 1 John 3:2-3The Promise of Resurrection for the Children of God at the Second Coming of Jesus Christ.

In the continuing progression of being a child of God, in 1 John 3:2 we have the promise of resurrection to our new resurrection bodies, which will be like Christ’s resurrected body.

Phil 3:21, “Jesus Christ, who will transform this body of our humiliation so that it will be like the body of His glory on the basis of the power that also enables Him to bring into subjection all creation to Himself.”

Phil 3:10-11, “That I may know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death; 11in order that I may attain to the resurrection from the dead.”

Tit 2:13, “Looking for that blessed hope [the hope of blessing, hope 3] and the appearing of the glory of our great God and savior, Jesus Christ.”

1 Cor 6:14, “Now God has not only resurrected the Lord, but He will raise us up through His power.”

Read: 1 Thes 4:13-18

1 Thes 4:13, “But we do not want you to be ignorant, brethren, about those who are asleep that you may not grieve, as do the rest of the world who have no hope.”

  • The worst thing that can happen to you is to be ignorant of Bible doctrine.
  • The Thessalonians believers were very confused. They had learned about the imminency of the Rapture very early. Yet people were dying before the Rapture occurred, causing them to conclude that those who died wouldn’t be included in the Rapture. Their ignorance led to distortion.
  • Being asleep is an analogy to the body sleeping in the grave, waiting for the resurrection, but remember that the soul and spirit of the believer goes directly to heaven upon death.
  • The unbeliever has no hope, for after death there is nothing for him but the Lake of Fire.

1 Thes 4:14-16, “If we believe that Jesus died and rose again [and we do], even so God [omnipotence of God the Father] will bring with Him those who have fallen asleep (death of believers). 15For this doctrine we communicate to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord [Rapture] shall not precede those who have fallen asleep. 16For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God; in fact, the dead in Christ shall rise first.”

  • In the angelic order of battle, two archangels or army commanders of angels are mentioned in the Bible: Michael and Gabriel.
  • Since Michael is called the “prince of Israel” in Dan 10:21 and seems to be associated with Israel in Dan 12:1 and Jude 9, this must be a reference to the voice of the other archangel, the voice command of Gabriel.
  • Gabriel seems to be associated with the Church. He makes the announcement of the great power experiment of the hypostatic union in Luke 1:19 and 26.
  • There were two sources of command for military activity in the ancient world: the voice command and the trumpet command. The trumpet command assembles the dead in Christ at the Rapture.
  • The omnipotence of God the Father raises the dead in Christ by replacing their former bodies of corruption with resurrection bodies of incorruption (1 Cor 15:53 54), because their soul and spirit are in heaven with God the Father.

1 Thes 4:17, “Then we who are living who remain on the earth shall be caught up together with them [dead believers] in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so shall we ever be with the Lord.”

  • The omnipotence of the Holy Spirit provides a resurrection body for the living believers at the Rapture, replacing their bodies of mortality with resurrection bodies of immortality (1 Cor 15:53 54), Because their soul and spirit are on earth with the indwelling of God the Holy Spirit.

We obtain our understanding of these things through the example of our Lord’s resurrection. Eph 1:20; Col 2:12; 1 Thes 1:10; 1 Peter 1:21; Heb 13:20 with Acts 2:24; Rom 1:4; 8:11; 1 Peter 3:18.

Compare this to 1 Cor 15:20-23.

1 Cor 15:20-23, “But now Christ has been raised from the dead, the first fruits of those who are asleep. 21For since by a man came death, by a man also came the resurrection of the dead. 22For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all will be made alive. 23But each in his own order: Christ the first fruits, after that those who are Christ’s at His coming.”

These verses include the resurrection of all believers, Old Testament, New Testament, Tribulation, and Millennial saints. This includes four groups being resurrected.

There are two general resurrections:

For believers only: Resurrection to eternal life. The resurrection body is eternal and permanent, superior to that of angelic creatures, Dan 12:2; John 5:24-29; 1 Cor 15:20-22; Rev 20:6. This resurrection is called the “first resurrection.”

For unbelievers only: Resurrection and cast into the lake of fire forever, Mat 25:41; 1 Cor 15:24; Rev 20:5, 11-15. This is called the “second resurrection” or the last judgment.

The first resurrection is pictured as a battalion pass-in-review, and therefore is divided into four echelons, 1 Cor 15:20 24.

Alpha Company: The resurrection of Christ at the end of the great power experiment of the Hypostatic Union, for He is “the first fruits of them that slept.” Mat 28; Mark 16; Luke 24; John 20 21; Acts 2:31-34.

Bravo Company: The resurrection of the royal family of God at the end of the great power experiment of the Church Age, John 14:1-3; Phil 3:20-21; 1 Cor 15:51-57; 1 Thes 4:13-18; 1 John 3:1-2.

Charlie Company: The resurrection of the Old Testament believers and Tribulational martyrs at the end of the Tribulation and the Second Advent, Dan 12:13; Isa 26:19-20; Mt 24:31; Rev 20:4.

Delta Company: The resurrection of the millennial saints at the end of the Millennium.

1 Thes 4:18, “Therefore, comfort each other with these doctrines.”

These doctrines are a source of comfort when you have lost a loved one.

These doctrines are a source of blessing as you face the adversities of life and realize that there’s something far beyond this life, and that God has given you, an eternal state in a permanent body that will never experience pain or deterioration in any possible way.

Rev 3:11, “I will be coming soon; seize [grasp, become the master of] what you have [Bible doctrine], so that no one may take away your crown.”

The present active imperative of the verb KRATEO tells you what you should be doing if the Rapture occurs. The word means: to seize, to grasp, to get possession of, and to become the master of something. You should be consistently learning and applying, in faith, the Word of God in preparation for the Rapture.

Seizing, grasping, or becoming masters of what you have is a reference to perception, cognition, and application of Bible doctrine on a consistent basis. This is how you prepare for the Rapture, as well as how you keep other people from distracting you from attaining your escrow blessings for eternity. Compare with 1 Cor 3:10-15; 2 Cor 5:10. On the other hand losers participate in the resurrection of the Church but lose their escrow blessings for eternity.

Cognizance and application of the doctrine of the Rapture provides stability for the Royal Family in phase two of the Plan of God, 1 Cor 15:58.

1 Cor 15:58, “Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your toil is not in vain in the Lord.”

The Rapture is imminent, because no prophecy must be fulfilled before it occurs. The Rapture of the Church is strictly the grace of God, and therefore God’s victory.

The Rapture takes the sting out of death.

1 Cor 15:54 57, “O death where is your victory, o death, where is your sting?”

The Rapture removes hysteria and the hopelessness of bereavement, 1 Thes 4:13 14.

The Rapture is a source of comfort in time of bereavement, 1 Thes 4:15-18; Phil 1:6.

Phil 1:6, “For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.”

The Rapture is the basis for confidence.

The metabolization of doctrine and resultant growth to maturity results in Occupation with Christ, whereby the believer waits with keen anticipation for the Rapture, Tit 2:13; 1 Pet 1:3-4.

Titus 2:13, “Looking for the blessed hope and the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Christ Jesus.”

1 Peter 1:3-4, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you.”

Principles

  • The contingency element of the potential subjunctive mood is the completion of the body of Christ or the royal family of God, not historical events which seem to anticipate the Tribulation.
  • Historically, events which anticipate the Tribulation have existed many times in history. So, the events of the Middle East, the existence of the Jewish nation, or the line-up of Western European nations, or a king of the north as in Russia, or kings of the east as today in Communist China, does not imply that any given generation of believers are the Rapture generation. These conditions have existed before many times in history. They do not imply Rapture generation.
  • No one knows the day or the hour. That is God’s business, not ours.
  • The Rapture is immanent and could occur at any time.
  • However, the immanency of the Rapture does not change our modus operandi, for even if you knew that the Rapture would occur tomorrow, you should carry on as usual inside God’s power system for your life. The key is to live the plan of God, to continue your momentum right up until the day you die or the Rapture occurs, whichever comes first.
  • Therefore, our responsibility is not to do the idiotic thing but to reside and function inside of the divine dynasphere.

The Differences Between the Rapture and Second Coming are as Follows.

Rapture

Second Advent

Private, Acts 1:11. Public, Rev 1:7; 19:11.
In the air, 1 Thes 4:17. On earth, Zech 14:4.
Judgment of believer’s works, 2 Cor 5:10. Baptism of fire, Mt 25:31 46.
Church goes to heaven, John 14:3. Church returns with Christ, 1 Thes 3:13; 4:17; Rev 19:14.
Holy Spirit is removed, 2 Thes 2:6. Removal of Satan, Rev 20:1 3.
Change in believer’s body Phil 3:21. Earth is changed, Zech 14:10 Rom 8:19-22.
Christ appears as the Groom. He appears as the Messiah.
End of the church age. End of the Jewish age.
Israel under the fifth cycle of discipline. Termination of the fifth cycle of Discipline.
Believers taken from the earth, 1Thes 4:16-18. Unbelievers taken from the Earth, Mt 24:37-43; 25:31-46.
A time of comfort, 1 Thes 4:18. A time of terror, Rev 6:15 17.

Israel was promised 490 years. They only had 483 from Nehemiah rebuilding the temple, until Christ’s rejection. Therefore, there are seven years left which make up the Tribulation. Dan 9:24-26

9) 1 John 3:10The Difference Between the Children of God and the Children of the Devil.

In our next subtopic of the Children of God, we note in verse 10 that our Lord distinguishes between His Children and the children of the devil.

The key to this statement is found in the verses leading up to it, verses 4-9.

There we see the discussion regarding living a righteous life, which indicates to the world that we are a child of God.

We also see that when we do not live a righteous life, we demonstrate to the world that we are not a child of God and are instead considered a child of the devil just as all unbelievers are children of the devil.

Once we complete our topical study of the Children of God, we will see more of this discussion and gain a better understanding as to God’s commands for His Children to demonstrate His righteousness in us.

But for now, we are focusing on some broad comparisons between the Children of God and the children of the devil.

Well, we don’t need to look to far for comparisons, because in verse 5 we see that; 1 John 3:5, “You know that He (The Lord Jesus Christ {TLJC}) appeared in order to take away sins; and in Him there is no sin.”

You see our entrance into the eternal family of God is a direct result of the work of our Lord Jesus Christ upon the cross.

He paid the penalty for our sins and through the easy non-meritorious act of faith, we receive the status of being a Child of God. (I say easy verses simple because it was very difficult for the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit to accomplish the forgiveness of our sins, yet it is easy for us to procure it through non-meritorious faith.)

Eph 2:8-9, “For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; 9not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.”

We also see this in the second part of verse 8; “The Son of God appeared for this purpose, to destroy the works of the devil.”

The works of the devil are sin and evil, and Jesus defeated them at the cross through His strategic victory.

You see, Jesus Christ was made to be our substitute at the Cross, in order that, we might receive the forgiveness of all our sins, with the result of the imputation of God’s righteousness, so that we could walk / live in righteousness, (the image of God).

2 Cor 5:21, “He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”

Romans 4:3, “For what does the Scripture say? ‘ABRAHAM BELIEVED GOD, AND IT WAS CREDITED TO HIM AS RIGHTEOUSNESS.’”

Rom 1:16-17, “For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.”

So, we know that God provided everything necessary for our entrance into His family, and we know from this study what it means to be the children of God:

  • John 1:12 – It is a right given to us by God.
  • John 11:52 – We are part of God’s family.
  • Rom 8:16 – We are heirs of God through adoption.
  • Rom 8:21 – We have been freed from the slave market of Sin.
  • Rom 9:8 – Our Family is an eternal one.
  • Phil 2:15 – We have family responsibilities (RFHC)
  • 1 John 3:1 – Our Father has a great love for us.
  • 1 John 3:2-3 – We have the immutable promise of resurrection.
  • 1 John 3:10 – There is a difference between us and the children of the devil.
  • 1 John 5:2 – We are to love God and His children by keeping His commandments.

Scripture also tells us what it means to be a child of the devil:

  • John 8:44
    a) Want to do the desires of their father (Satan)
    b) Are murders – physically and soulish
    c) Do not stand in truth
    d) Are liars
    e) Speak from their own nature vs wisdom from the Word and Spirit
  • Acts:13:10
    a) Full of deceit and fraud
    b) An enemy of righteousness
    c) They pervert the Word of God
  • 1 John 3:4-18
    a) Practice sin and lawlessness (against God’s Word), vs 4 & 8
    b) Do not practice impersonal / unconditional love, vs 10 & 14
    c) Murders – physically, vs 12
    d) Their works and deeds are from themselves vs from God, vs 12
    e) Haters and murders – soulishly (gossip, malign, slander), vs 15
    f) Does not help others in need, vs 17
    g) Possess pseudo love – all talk and no action, flatterers and hypocrites,
    vs 18 
  • 1 John 3:14b
    a) They live in their spiritually dead state.

The following is an overall brief list of the differences between the children of God and the children of the devil as a result of our Lord’s strategic victory upon the Cross, over sin and evil (i.e. Satan).

Children of God

Children of the Devil

Have the hope of Salvation. Are fearful of death.
Are a new creature. Are spiritually dead in their sins.
Have the power of the Spirit. Have only human power.
Have a spiritual gift. Have only human talents to use.
Have hope of production in time. Spin their wheels with no real production.
Have hope of eternal rewards death. Have nothing to look forward to after.
Receive 40 things at salvation. Receive the second death at the Great White Throne Judgment.

John 15:5, “I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.”

10) 1 John 5:2We are to Love the Children of God by Loving God First by Keeping His Commandments (RFHC). Read verses 1-5

In the 10th and final usage of the phrase “TEKNON THEOS”, we see concluding instructions on what it means to be a Child of God.

First of all, ten is a unique number in general and throughout scripture. In scripture, it signifies the perfection of Divine order, and therefore represents the completeness of order. The number ten implies that nothing is wanting and that the number and order are perfect. It tells us that the whole cycle is complete. For example: the tithe was 10%, the redemption money was 10 gerahs (every male over 20 was to pay this except for the eldest who paid 10 x 10 gerahs), there were 10 plagues against Egypt, there are the 10 virgins with their lamps, There were 10 candle sticks and 10 tables of show bread in Solomon’s temple, Noah was the 10th generation from God, and finally there are 10 commandments given to us by God.

So, we see the uniqueness of this number as perfection of divine order and completeness, with nothing else necessary, as we compare this to the 10 mentions of the Children of God in the New Testament. In other words, we have been given the whole order and complete cycle of what it means to be God’s children.

I find it interesting that in this last and tenth usage of TEKNON THEOS that God relates that status to the one who “observes His commandments”. Is this just another coincidence? I think not.

Now in this series we studied the Ten Commandments in detail under point 6 and our sub topic The Royal Family Honor Code related to Phil 2:14.

Phil 2:14-16, “Do all things without grumbling or disputing; 15So that you will prove yourselves to be blameless and innocent, children of God above reproach in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you appear as lights in the world, 16holding fast the word of life, so that in the day of Christ I will have reason to glory because I did not run in vain nor toil in vain.”

But by way of reminder, regardless of what you have been told, the Ten Commandments are for us today and are a part of the Christian way of life and a living the spiritual life.

Unfortunately, some have divorced the 10 Commandments from being applicable in the Church Age but all you need to do is go to Rom 13:8-14.

Rom 13:8-14, “Owe nothing (Present, Active, Imperative of OPHEILO – [of-i-lo or of-i-leh-o], “Do not be indebted”) to anyone except to love one another; for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law. 9For this, “YOU SHALL NOT COMMIT ADULTERY, YOU SHALL NOT MURDER, YOU SHALL NOT STEAL, YOU SHALL NOT COVET,” and if there is any other commandment, it is summed up in this saying, “YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.” 10Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law. 11Do this, knowing the time, that it is already the hour for you to awaken from sleep; for now salvation is nearer to us than when we believed. 12The night is almost gone, and the day is near. Therefore let us lay aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. 13Let us behave properly as in the day, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual promiscuity and sensuality, not in strife and jealousy. 14But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh in regard to its lusts.”

So, if we are to operate in the “child of God” status we have been given, we need to obey God’s commandments in love.

And you see that that is the lynch pin, L.O.V.E. – love. Because what does it say in verse 8, “Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another; for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law.”

Then in verse 10, “Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.”

You see, the Ten Commandments are not some rigid code of conduct we should be executing to please God and gain His acceptances.

No! The Ten Commandments are God’s instruction manual for His children to:

  • Ensure their freedoms, privacy, and protection.
  • Demonstrate their love to God by seeking Him out to fulfill all their wants, needs, and desires instead of being self-centered and self-gratifying, living in arrogance inside Satan’s Cosmic System.
  • Manifest the Christ-like nature by treating others with dignity and respect in upholding the morality of God.

Turn to 1 John 5:1.

In verse one it states that through faith in the work of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit upon the cross, we are entered into the status of Children of God.

Next it tells us that “Whoever” (The Greek is PAS – all) that love the Father (for granting them salvation is in view), should, in reciprocation, thank Him by loving His other Children (other believers).

You see, this is telling us the same thing that Romans 13:8-10 told us, and the same thing that the Ten Commandments tell us. If we are God’s Children, and we are, we ought to protect one another in love by following what the Ten Commandments and the other commandments in the New Testament say.

As Rom 13:10 tells us, if we simply apply the love of God in our lives, we will not be entering into those immoral sins, living a life of immoral degeneracy.

1 John 5:2 says this clearly, “By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and observe His commandments.”

This is a simple acid test. How do you know if you are applying Impersonal and Unconditional love in your life? Are you following God’s commandments or are you living in the Cosmic System? Unfortunately, a majority of the “Children of God” in our day and age are living in the Cosmic System.

So, what does that say? It says that they do not love God!!!!!

Oh, they may say they love God. They may come to Church, pay attention to the Pastor’s lesson, sing the songs with enthusiasm, drop their offering in the plate, and talk the talk. But when services are over, they are right out the door and back into the Cosmic System, abusing the grace of God and not walking the walk.

Instead, these individuals are characterized by what we noted in 1 John 3:10, they manifest the children of the devil.

1 John 3:10, “By this the children of God and the children of the devil are obvious: anyone who does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor the one who does not love his brother. …14We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we love the brethren. He who does not love abides in death. …18Little children, let us not love with word or with tongue, but in deed and truth.

And finally, 1 John 5:3, “For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not burdensome.”

“Burdensome” is the Greek word BARUS, which means, ‘”heavy, weighty, violent, cruel, or unsparing”. God’s commandments are not a burden for us to live by, meaning we won’t carry the weight and guilt of sin on our souls, because we have avoided them. Nor will we be a burden to others by sinning against others, causing others to sin or owing something to someone because of the sin we have committed against them, as noted in Rom 13:8.

1 John 3:4-10, Living in the Righteousness of God:

1 John 3:4-10, “Everyone who practices sin also practices lawlessness; and sin is lawlessness. 5And you know that He appeared in order to take away sins. 6No one who abides in Him sins; no one who sins has seen Him or knows Him. 7Little children, let no one deceive you; the one who practices righteousness is righteous, just as He is righteous; 8the one who practices sin is of the devil; for the devil has sinned from the beginning. The Son of God appeared for this purpose, that He might destroy the works of the devil. 9No one who is born of God practices sin, because His seed abides in Him; and He cannot sin, because he is born of God. 10By this the children of God and the children of the devil are obvious; anyone who does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor the one who does not love his brother.”

The key to this passage is found in verse 6, “No one who abides in Him sins; no one who sins has seen Him or knows Him.”

In the Greek, it looks like this, “πᾶς ὁ ἐν αὐτῷ μένων οὐχ ἁμαρτάνει· πᾶς ὁ ἁμαρτάνων οὐχ ἑώρακεν αὐτὸν οὐδὲ ἔγνωκεν αὐτόν.”

Literally it reads, “All the in Him that remain not miss the mark (sin); all the miss the mark (sin) have never (and do not presently) see Him nor (ever have or do now) know Him.”

“Abides in Him” are the Greek words MENO EN AUTO.
μενο – MENO is a primary verb in the present tense meaning, “to stay, abide, remain, at this moment in time, right now, etc.” It refers to remaining in fellowship with the Lord Jesus Christ.

John 15:5, “I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.”

Now we have two important words in this verse, “seen” and “know”, HORAO and GINOSKO. They are both in the Perfect Tense.

The Perfect Tense describes a process that took place in the past, with the results continuing to the present. It is the present state of affairs resulting from past action. It also speaks of the continuance of completed action. Technically this is a “Perfect with a Present Force” tense which is used when there is very little distinction between the act and its results.

In other words, abiding in Christ or remaining with Him is the same as seeing and knowing Him.

There are two parts to this. 1) Faith for salvation, 2) Faith in application or living the spiritual life

If we have not accepted Him as our Lord and Savior and have not been consistent in the faith perception and application of His Word, then we will not see Him (in the mind’s eye), nor understand who He is and our relationship with Him.

The phrase “no one who sins has seen Him” means that if we live in sin, then we do not see the Lord Jesus with the eye of faith and are not intimately aware of His presence in our lives.

“No one who sins knows Him” means that if we live in sin, we do not have an experiential knowledge of our Lord, in the sense that we are not personally encountering Him through the process of fellowship, and are therefore not having our character shaped into His image.

The image in which God created us is perfect righteousness as He is perfect righteousness, and the vision God has for all His children is for us to live in His perfect righteousness.

That brings up an interesting point. Did you know that the phrase “image of God” is used only three times in scripture?

  • Speaking of our creation, Gen 1:27
  • God justifying the righteousness of capital punishment for those who murder someone, Gen 9:6
  • In the New Testament telling us of Christ, 2 Cor 4:4.

In all three instances the image of God is related to righteousness. Looking closer at 2 Cor 4:4 ,we see interesting parallels to our verse.

2 Cor 4:4, “In whose case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelieving so that they might not see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.”

So, you see, God is righteous, He created original man in righteousness and desires that all of mankind also be righteous. That is why He sent His Son.

To further develop this linkage as 2 Cor 4:4 tells us, Christ is the epitome of the image of God as The Righteous One. Compare with Isa 53:11; Acts 3:14; 7:52; 22:14.

Isa 53:11 gives us even more parallels to our verse.

Isa 53:11, “As a result of the anguish of His (Jesus Christ’s) soul, He (God the Father) will see it and be satisfied; By His knowledge the Righteous One, My Servant (God’s Son), will justify the many, as He will bear their iniquities.”

So, you see that The Lord Jesus Christ is the righteousness of God, who paid the price for our sins, so that we too could become the righteousness of God.

When we accept Jesus as our Savior, we receive the righteousness of God. But it doesn’t stop there. God desires us to live in the righteousness He gives to us.

So, if we are to live in the image of God, we must have Christ in our lives, for salvation and after our salvation. “Abide in Him.”

2 Cor 5:21, “He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”

1 Cor 1:30, “But by His (God the Father’s) doing you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption.”

Rom 3:22, “Even the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all those who believe.”

Phil 3:9, “And may be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own derived from the Law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which comes from God on the basis of faith.”

Jesus Christ was made to be our substitute at the Cross in order that we might receive the forgiveness of all our sins, with the result of the imputation of God’s righteousness, so that we could walk/live in righteousness (the image of God).

The imputation of God’s righteousness at salvation is our positional sanctification, while living in the righteous of God is our experiential sanctification.

In the gospel, the righteousness of God and Jesus Christ are revealed, Rom. 1:16-17; 4:3; 6:17-18

Rom 4:3, “For what does the Scripture say? ‘Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness.’”

Rom 1:16-17, “For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. 17For in it (the gospel) the righteousness of God is revealed from faith (Pos. Sanct.) to faith (Exp. Sanct.); as it is written, “BUT THE RIGHTEOUS man SHALL LIVE BY FAITH.””

Rom 6:17-18, “But thanks be to God that though you were slaves of sin, you became obedient from the heart to that form of teaching to which you were committed, 18and having been freed from sin, you became slaves of righteousness.”

The Word of God trains the believer to live in the righteousness of God, since it is the mind and thinking of Jesus Christ Himself.

2 Timothy 3:16-17, “All Scripture is God-breathed and is profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; 17so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.” Compare with John 1:1.

Eph 2:8-10, “For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; 9not as a result of works, so that no one may boast. 10For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.”

We see this in the phrase “practices righteousness” in 1 John 3:7.

“Practice” is the Greek word POIEO in the Pres, Act. Ind., which means, “to make, do, accomplish, spend time, celebrate, etc.”

Therefore “practicing righteousness”, refers to spending time living in, celebrating, or experiencing the imputed righteousness of God by apply love to both God and man, as we will see in the upcoming verses. This is also called experiential sanctification.

Next, we have 1 John 3:8, “The one who practices sin is of the devil; for the devil has sinned from the beginning. The Son of God appeared for this purpose, to destroy the works of the devil.”

1 John 3:8 tells us that the one who “practices sin” does not practice the righteousness of Christ and is a child of the devil, fully engrossed in Satan’s Cosmic System.

This describes what the sinful person does in rejection of God’s perfect righteousness. They spend time in and celebrate sin.

When it says, “the devil has sinned from the beginning” is reference to Satan’s work in the Garden of Eden where he tempted the perfect man to sin, thereby destroying the perfect righteousness in man created in the image of God.

To remedy the loss of perfect righteousness in man, God sent His Son, as we have seen and again see in this verse.

For those who have believed in the work of Jesus Christ upon the cross in paying the penalty of sin, they are qualified to once again live in perfect righteous, even though they continue to have an Old Sin Nature. 1 John 1:5-10; Rom 6:6; Eph 4:22; Col 3:9

Eph 4:22, “In reference to your former manner of life, you lay aside the “old self”, which is being corrupted in accordance with the lusts of deceit.”

Gal 2:20,“I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me.”

     “These words mean the breaking and collapse of my independence brought about by my own hands, and the surrendering of my life to the supremacy of the Lord Jesus. No one can do this for me, I must do it myself. God may bring me up to this point three hundred and sixty-five times a year, but He cannot push me through it. It means breaking the hard outer layer of my individual independence from God, and the liberating of myself and my nature into oneness with Him; not following my own ideas, but choosing absolute loyalty to Jesus. Once I am at that point, there is no possibility of misunderstanding. Very few of us know anything about loyalty to Christ or understand what He meant when He said, “… for My sake” (Matthew 5:11). That is what makes a strong saint.

     Has that breaking of my independence come? All the rest is religious fraud. The one point to decide is—will I give up? Will I surrender to Jesus Christ, placing no conditions whatsoever as to how the brokenness will come? I must be broken from my own understanding of myself. When I reach that point, immediately the reality of the supernatural identification with Jesus Christ takes place. And the witness of the Spirit of God is unmistakable—“I have been crucified with Christ ….”

      The passion of Christianity comes from deliberately signing away my own rights and becoming a bondservant of Jesus Christ. Until I do that, I will not begin to be a saint.” Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest.

Now 1 John 3:9 says, “No one who is born of God practices sin, because His seed abides in him; and he cannot sin, because he is born of God.”

This verse also tells us that the one “born of God” has a new regenerated nature and spiritual life found in their Human Spirit. The Human Spirit is a place of perfect divine righteousness and is without sin. Sin is in our bodies and can penetrate our souls if we let it, but sin never penetrates our Human Spirit.

Our new divine nature can “never” sin and is the very righteousness of God.

Eph 4:24, “And put on the new man, which in the likeness of God has been created in righteousness and holiness (HOSIOTES – humbly observing) of the truth.”

The regenerate Human Spirit provides the believer the means by which the Holy Spirit can reproduce the righteousness of God experientially in the soul and body of the believer who is obedient to the Word of righteousness. 1 Cor 2:12-14

1 Cor 2:12-14, “Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may know the things freely given to us by God, 13which things we also speak, not in words taught by human wisdom, but in those taught by the Spirit, combining spiritual with spiritual. (i.e. the Holy Spirit teaching our Human Spirit to live in the righteousness of God.) 14But a natural man (i.e. without the regenerated Human Spirit.) does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually appraised.”

Our new Christ-like nature provides us with the capacity to practice the righteousness of God, which is manifested by obeying the Lord Jesus Christ’s command to love one another as He has loved the believer. 1 John 3:11, 16, 18

If we are living the life that God has given to us, we will avoid sin(s) within our lives. We have the perfect righteousness of God inside of our new perfect nature. With that, plus the righteousness from the indwelling of God the Holy Spirit and the righteousness of the Mind of Christ (Bible Doctrine) in our souls, we should be living unto God, abiding in Christ. Yet many believers do not utilize the righteousness of God in their lives and do not take in the Word of God on a consistent basis. For them it is inevitable that they will be living just as an unbeliever lives, in sin, as a child of the father of sin, the devil himself.

Finally, in verse 10, we then have the expression of contrast, “the children of God verses the children of the devil”. We have already noted this contrast in our study of the children of God several weeks ago, so we won’t go into further explanation here. Nevertheless the discussion above gives us additional commentary on what this contrast is all about.

Therefore, the following is presented as a highlight of the benefits of being the children of God verses the children of the devil.

Children of God

Children of the Devil

Have the hope of Salvation

Are fearful of death
Are a new creature Are spiritually dead in their sins
Have the power of the Spirit Have only human power
Have a spiritual gift Have only human talents to use
Have hope of production in time Spin their wheels with no real progress
Have hope of eternal rewards Have nothing to look forward to after death
Received 40+ things at salvation Receive the second death at the GWTJ.

Obedience or Independence?
By Oswald Chambers

“If you love Me, keep My commandments” (John 14:15).

     “Our Lord never insists on our obedience. He stresses very definitely what we ought to do, but He never forces us to do it. We have to obey Him out of a oneness of spirit with Him. That is why whenever our Lord talked about discipleship, He prefaced it with an “If,” meaning, “You do not need to do this unless you desire to do so.” “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself …” (Luke 9:23). In other words, “To be My disciple, let him give up his right to himself to Me.” Our Lord is not talking about our eternal position, but about our being of value to Him in this life here and now. That is why He sounds so stern (see Luke 14:26). Never try to make sense from these words by separating them from the One who spoke them.

     The Lord does not give me rules, but He makes His standard very clear. If my relationship to Him is that of love, I will do what He says without hesitation. If I hesitate, it is because I love someone I have placed in competition with Him, namely, myself. Jesus Christ will not force me to obey Him, but I must. And as soon as I obey Him, I fulfill my spiritual destiny. My personal life may be crowded with small, petty happenings, altogether insignificant. But if I obey Jesus Christ in the seemingly random circumstances of life, they become pinholes through which I see the face of God. Then, when I stand face to face with God, I will discover that through my obedience thousands were blessed. When God’s redemption brings a human soul to the point of obedience, it always produces. If I obey Jesus Christ, the redemption of God will flow through me to the lives of others, because behind the deed of obedience is the reality of Almighty God.”

1 John 3:11-18, Applying the Love of God:

1 John 3:11-18, “For this is the message which you have heard from the beginning, that we should love one another; 12not as Cain, who was of the evil one, and slew his brother. And for what reason did he slay him? Because his deeds were evil, and his brother’s were righteous. 13Do not marvel, brethren, if the world hates you. 14We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we love the brethren. He who does not love abides in death. 15Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer; and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him. 16And we know love by this, that He laid down His life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. 17But whoever has the world’s goods, and beholds his brother in need and closes his heart against him, how does the love of God abide in him? 18Little children, let us not love with word or with tongue, but in deed and truth.”

As we have previously noted in the preceding verses, the manifestation of the righteousness of God is to apply love towards our brethren, as Christ has loved us.

John continues this theme throughout his epistle, including 1 John 4:19, where he tells us that, “We love, because He (God) first loved us.”

This then is the theme throughout the rest of this epistle, and throughout John teaches us many doctrinal principles, yet they all come back to the central theme, applying love.

Paul also recognized this fact in Rom 13:8-10, “Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another; for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law. 9For this, “YOU SHALL NOT COMMIT ADULTERY, YOU SHALL NOT MURDER, YOU SHALL NOT STEAL, YOU SHALL NOT COVET,” and if there is any other commandment, it is summed up in this saying, “YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.” 10Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.”

As noted in these scriptures the love of God is linked to the righteousness of God via His commands, which we must apply in our lives.

So we see through both John and Paul, excluding George and Ringo (haha), that these two Doctrines are inseparable, the Righteousness and Love of God. This is what we need to understand and apply, if we are going to grow spiritually and glorify God.

To date in our study of 1 John, we have noted both the Love and Righteousness of God separately. Now we need to combine them.

So we have the foundation which we will utilize throughout the remainder of our study of this epistle. As we progress in the book of 1 John, we will see various other doctrines that are all woven in righteousness and love.

At this point, we need to understand the application of love and righteousness to our spiritual growth. We see this in two ways.

  • The Edification Complex of the Soul.
  • The Problem Solving Devices.

The Edification Complex of the Soul

We will begin with the Edification Complex of the Soul. That is a fancy boy way of saying, building up your soul through the Word of God or simpler yet, “spiritual growth.”

The abbreviation I will be using for the Edification Complex of the Soul is ECS.

Now the ECS is built upon that new nature, which God regenerated inside of you at the moment of your spiritual birth. That new nature is called your Human Spirit. The Human Spirit is the foundation for your ECS and that foundation is built on the Foundation of Christ crucified and raised on the third day.

Once you accept Christ as your personal Savior, God creates your new nature: the Human Spirit. Built on top of your Human Spirit is the ECS with its five floors of Spiritual Growth.

The First Floor of the ECS is “Doctrinal Orientation“. This is when you perceive in faith the Word of God and apply in faith the Word of God, faith perception and application. Once you have accepted Christ as your Savior, the first thing you need to do is dive into His Word. When you do, you will begin to learn His principles and precepts and apply them to your life. You will be orientated to God’s word and will begin to “walk in Christ”.

The Second Floor of the ECS is “Mastery of Details of Life“. At this stage of spiritual growth you will no longer be chasing your tail around all day long. At this stage you are placing God and His Word first in priority and the details of Life become secondary. At this stage you will be applying faith to more and more situations in your life. You stop being worried about the details of life and instead put them in their proper perspective and order within your life. You will start to learn that you cannot please everyone, and the only One you should be concerned with is pleasing God. In my High School yearbook the caption under my picture reads, “I cannot give the formula for success, but I can give you the formula for failure, which is: try to please everybody.” Well that was when I was in High school and was only half true. Today I can tell you the formula for success, “believe on the Lord Jesus Christ (Acts 16:31) and grow in His grace and knowledge (2 Peter 3:18).” When you are mastering the details of life, the details become your servants and you are master over them, verses being a slave to the details.

The Third Floor of the ECS is having a “Relaxed Mental Attitude” (RMA). A RMA is the epitome of the Faith Rest Life. At this stage of spiritual growth, you are trusting in God via His Word and Spirit, and you are resting in Him. Instead of being like Jo-Jo the circus boy who is all tied up in knots because of the details of life, you are comfortably resting in the Lord. You are trusting in His promises, and you are waiting on the timing of the Lord verses trying to do things your own way and in your own time. This is not an outward appearance of a smooth operator. To the contrary, it is an inner peace and happiness that only comes through faith application of the Word of God towards the details of life. You are resting in God and His logistical grace provisions for your life.

Now we arrive at the Fourth Floor of the ECS, which is applying the “Three Categories of Love“. At this stage of spiritual growth, you are applying love to the three groups God has commanded us to love; 1) Love towards God, 2) Love towards your right man or right woman, 3) Love towards mankind.

  • Love towards God is your motivational virtue, where you love God for who and what He is and what He has done for you. You are motivated through love to want to build a closer and closer relationship with Him.
  • Love towards your right man or right woman. This is part of your functional virtue, where you honor and respect the man or woman God has given to you. This includes honoring and respecting the man or woman you are dating. This means keeping him or her undefiled for his or her eventual right man or woman. God’s plan was designed for one man and one woman to join together. Not five men and five women to join together to see if there is a fit.
  • Love toward Mankind. This is also part of your functional virtue. This is applying impersonal and unconditional love toward every member of the human race whether they are antagonistic or friendly towards you. We don’t have to like everyone, but we do need to apply impersonal love towards everyone. This love is like category two love where you honor and respect one another by honoring their freedoms and privacy. By applying Romans 13:8-10, we are manifesting love toward mankind. You see when we take what belongs to someone else for our own pleasure and use, we are not abiding in love.

All three categories of Love are achieved by being oriented to Bible Doctrine, Mastering the Details of Life, and having a Relaxed Mental Attitude regarding all situations in life. When you operate in the first 3 floors of your ECS, you can and most likely will be applying love in all three categories as commanded by God.

And finally, we have the Fifth Floor which is “Sharing the Happiness of God” or +H. At this point in your spiritual growth, you have maximum inner peace, contentment, and happiness from the results of operating in the previous four floors of your ECS. +H is not having what you want, but rather accepting what you have, and coming to a point of contentment. Phi 4:11-13.

Phil 4:11-13, “Not that I speak from want, for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am. 12I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need. 13I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.”

John 15:11, “These things I have spoken to you so that My joy may be in you, and that your joy may be made full.”

Unhappy people are involved in egotism, selfishness, evil, or ignorance. The only way to true happiness is to cease worrying about things that are beyond the power of our will and control. Instead trust in God in all situations, being satisfied with what He has provided for you. Phil 2:1-5, 17-18

You will never realize how much of God’s happiness you have in your life until you go through certain problems and find out that your happiness has not been taken away. 1 Peter 1:3-8.

1 Peter 1:3-8, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, 5who are protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. 6In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials, 7so that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ; 8and though you have not seen Him, you love Him, and though you do not see Him now, but believe in Him, you greatly rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory.”

Phil 4:8-9, “Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things. 9The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.”

The Problem Solving Devices.

1 John 3:14, “He who does not love abides in death.” Is the Present Active Indicative of MENO which means to stay, abide, continue, dwell, remain (in a given place, state, relation, or expectancy), etc. So “abides in death” means to dwell or live in the status of spiritual death at this time.

Remember that this book is written to believers for application. Many have misinterpreted the meaning of many verses in this book, because they thought it was written to unbelievers. Yet we must look at it in the light of the many things God gives to the believer at the moment of salvation, which cannot be lost or taken away. For example, once we have entered into eternal life it cannot be taken away, John 10:28-30.

So, in that light, this verse means that the believer who is not living in the love of God is presently living as a spiritually dead person (unbeliever) lives. The spiritually dead live only one way, under the control of the Sin Nature. So this refers to the believer who is born again and has spiritual life, (that cannot be taken away or lost), yet because of their negative volition, they are perpetually living under the control of the Sin Nature just as the unbeliever (spiritually dead) lives.

1 John 3:15, “Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer; and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him.”

In this verse “abiding” is the same root word as in verse 14 (MENO), but here it is a Participle in the Present tense and Active voice. A particle means the verb can also function like a noun. This tells us that the action of abiding is also a state or status of living. So we understand that the unbeliever’s status is that of being without eternal life. They are not born again, they are not regenerated children of God, they do not have eternal life, and they are certainly not living inside the Plan of God.

This reference to the unbeliever is used to warn the believer about how they are living their life, if they are living in sin verses living in the Love of God. In other words, in reference to believers, “abiding” means living as an unbeliever lives even though they have eternal life in them. You see they live as an unbeliever lives, living in sin verses living as the child of God should live. The Child of God should be living in righteousness and love. When we are living in the love and righteousness of God, we are abiding in eternal life, the life that God has given to the believer only. This means we do not live under the control of our Sin Nature as the unbeliever always lives.

David had this problem in his life. He was a strong, spiritually mature believer. He walked with God from his childhood and teens. Yet he became arrogant in his life and was influence by Satan and his own Sin Nature. He got lazy with his application of the Word of God and let his lusts, desires, and emotion take over. That led him to take another man’s wife for his own. It got even worse in that he tried to cover up his sin by eventually having the husband murdered.

Now, did David lose his salvation? He did not! But he did receive discipline from the Father, because he was living as an unbeliever lives; in sin verses living in love and righteousness. He also did much harm to the ministry of God. This is seen in 2 Samuel 12:1-14.

2 Sam 12:1-14, “Then the LORD sent Nathan to David. And he came to him and said, “There were two men in one city, the one rich and the other poor. 2 “The rich man had a great many flocks and herds. 3 “But the poor man had nothing except one little ewe lamb Which he bought and nourished; And it grew up together with him and his children. It would eat of his bread and drink of his cup and lie in his bosom, And was like a daughter to him. 4“Now a traveler came to the rich man, And he was unwilling to take from his own flock or his own herd, To prepare for the wayfarer who had come to him; Rather he took the poor man’s ewe lamb and prepared it for the man who had come to him. 5Then David’s anger burned greatly against the man, and he said to Nathan, “As the LORD lives, surely the man who has done this deserves to die. 6“He must make restitution for the lamb fourfold, because he did this thing and had no compassion.” 7Nathan then said to David, “You are the man! Thus says the LORD God of Israel, ‘It is I who anointed you king over Israel and it is I who delivered you from the hand of Saul. 8‘I also gave you your master’s house and your master’s wives into your care, and I gave you the house of Israel and Judah; and if that had been too little, I would have added to you many more things like these! 9‘Why have you despised the word of the LORD by doing evil in His sight? You have struck down Uriah the Hittite with the sword, have taken his wife to be your wife, and have killed him with the sword of the sons of Ammon. 10‘Now therefore, the sword shall never depart from your house, because you have despised Me and have taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be your wife.’ 11“Thus says the LORD, ‘Behold, I will raise up evil against you from your own household; I will even take your wives before your eyes and give them to your companion, and he will lie with your wives in broad daylight. 12‘Indeed you did it secretly, but I will do this thing before all Israel, and under the sun.’” 13Then David said to Nathan, “I have sinned against the LORD.” And Nathan said to David, “The LORD also has taken away your sin; you shall not die. 14“However, because by this deed you have given occasion to the enemies of the LORD to blaspheme, the child also that is born to you shall surely die.”

So, you see David, a believer failed in two areas. First, he did not live righteously because he let the lust of his sin nature take control of his soul, which led him to take another man’s wife and commit murder. Secondly, he did not express love in all three categories. He did not love the Lord by keeping his commandments. He did not express love towards Bathsheba by having sex with her, “you shall not commit adultery”. He did not express love towards Uriah, “you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife” and “you shall not murder”, Ex 20:13-17; Rom 13:8-9.

If David had applied either divine love or righteousness in his life, this mess and subsequent divine discipline would have been avoided. He would have continued to be a fantastic witness of the Lord to the surrounding unbelieving countries, “you have given occasion to the enemies of the LORD to blaspheme”, and most likely in God’s timing, he would have given Bathsheba to David freely and righteously. But because he did not apply the grace of God in the Problem Solving Devices available to him, he brought about a huge mess in his life and robbed glory from God.

Instead he became an adulterer and murderer, amongst other things, because he did not rely upon the Lord’s power in time of temptation. He did not lose his salvation, but he did receive the Lord’s discipline.

A quote from my friend Pastor Bill Wenstrom from his teachings on 1 John 3 in June of 2005 states, “Church age believers experience the righteousness of God by appropriating by faith the imputed righteousness they received at salvation and the believer expresses his faith by being obedient to the teaching that he has died with Christ and has been raised with Him. The Word of God trains the believer to live in the righteousness of Christ since it is the mind and thinking of Christ.”

So the question is, are you living in the love and righteousness of God?

We also see that under the grace plan of God, David used the first Problem Solving Device by confessing his sins and repenting, which means he stopped living in sin and turned back to the Lord. This leads us to a further application of the Love and Righteousness of God.

God has provided everything for our every need. He provided for our salvation, just the same as He has provided for our daily walk in His Love and Righteousness. There is a doctrine called the Eleven Problem Solving Devices, which encapsulates God’s provisions for His children to overcome sin temptations and evil. These Problem Solving Devices are found in His word and tell us that we can take every thought captive unto the Lord so that we can operate in His love and righteousness.

2 Cor 10:5, “We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ.”

We have studied the Eleven Problem Solving Devices in detail in the past, which you can request and study, so this time we will just give an overview in relation to our study of 1 John 3:11-18.

Briefly the Eleven Problem Solving Devices (PSD) include:

  • Naming your sins to God the Father (Rebound)
  • Filling of God the Holy Spirit
  • Doctrinal Orientation
  • Faith Rest Drill
  • Grace Orientation
  • Authority Orientation
  • Personal Sense of Destiny
  • Personal Love for God the Father
  • Impersonal, Unconditional Love for Mankind
  • Sharing the Happiness of God (+H)
  • Occupation with the Lord Jesus Christ

As you can see there is some overlap to what we discussed in the Edification Complex of the Soul. Those overlaps not only indicate to us where we are in our spiritual growth, but they are also problem solvers for everyday life. As a result of utilizing the PSDs, we will achieve spiritual growth.

You also may have noticed that two of the ten PSD have to do with the application of Love. Personal love toward God and Impersonal Unconditional Love towards Mankind.

Now let’s take them one by one to better understand God’s provisions for us to walk in His righteousness and love.

Unless you put Bible doctrine first in your life, you will have unsolvable problems in your life. Using God’s PSD, you will have real solutions to the problems of life not just temporary bandages.

Rebound
This is the act of confessing to God the Father, and God the Father only, the personal sins that you have committed. This is a post salvation act. It is not an act for salvation as some wrongly teach. When we sin, we lose the filling of God the Holy Spirit, Eph 5:18, and therefore lose a major portion of the power of God from working in us. When we confess our sins, we receive the cleansing of those sins, (i.e. washing the feet analogy of John 13), and regain the filling of the Spirit which is PSD number 2. So the first PSD is to name our sins to God so that we can regain the power of the filling of God the Holy Spirit, and be able to apply rightly the other PSDs.

See notes for more detail on: (click on the links below)

“Confessing Our Sins”   &  the “Filling of God the Holy Spirit”

Psa 32:5b, “I (David) said, `I will acknowledge my transgression to the Lord,’ and You forgave the iniquity of my sin.”

2 Sam 12:13, “Then David said to Nathan, “I have sinned against the LORD.” And Nathan said to David, “The LORD also has taken away your sin.”

John 13:10, “Jesus said to him, “He who has bathed (salvation) needs only to wash his feet (rebound), but is completely clean [KATHAROS] (eternally secure); and you are clean (believers), but not all of you, (Judas Iscariot).””

James 4:8, “Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse [KATHARIZO] your hands, you sinners (Rebound); and purify your hearts, you double-minded (via the Grace Apparatus for Perception).”

1 John 1:9, “If we acknowledge our sins, He is faithful and righteous/just, with the result that He forgives our sins, and He cleanses [KATHARIZO] us from all unrighteousness.”

“Confess” is the Greek word HOMOLEGEO, which is a compound word from HOMOU meaning, “together or same,” and LOGOS meaning, “ a word, speech, statement, or account.” So HOMOLOGEO means, “to speak the same, to agree, acknowledge, confess, admit, declare, say plainly, promise; proclaim.”

It is in the Present Tense, Active voice and Subjunctive mood, which says, maybe you will or maybe you won’t acknowledge your sins to God. The subjunctive is connected with some supposed or desired action.

This word is used as a legal term for someone that is on the witness stand during a trial. So we note the judicial nature of confessing our sins to God. When we acknowledge our sins, God is just and right to forgive them because of the judicial payment of our sins by Jesus Christ upon the Cross.

When we confess our sins we are, in the non-meritorious act of faith, remembering Christ’s work on the Cross, plus God’s promise of cleansing with the result of the filling of the Holy Spirit.

“All Unrighteousness” is the Greek words PAS and ADIKIA in the Genitive case. The genitive makes this personal, so it is speaking about “all of our unrighteousness”.

PAS means, “all or every.”

ADIKIA can be translated into the English to mean, “injustice, unrighteousness, doing wrong, evildoers, iniquity(ies), wickedness, or wrong.” It comes from the word DIKE, which means, “righteous or just,” with the negative prefix A. It means, “unrighteousness with reference to our personal sins.”

Because of the word PAS, this tells us that when we name to God the Father known sins we have committed, we also receive cleansing of any and every unknown sin(s) we may have committed.

Remember too that we confess our sins to the Father, not Jesus, not the Holy Spirit, not to Mary, or any other so called “saint”, not even to the Pastor, Minister, or Priest. This is one of the basic principles of prayer. You only pray to the Father and no one else.

See my doctrines on prayer.

Mat 6:9, Jesus himself said, “Pray, then, in this way: ‘Our Father who is in heaven, Hallowed be Your name.”

This is all part of the Grace Plan of God to provide daily washing or cleansing from sin so that we can walk in the Spirit, in the light of God, in His righteousness and love.

When we are out of fellowship with the Spirit because of sin, we will not be able to solve the problems of life. Instead we will try to apply temporary human/cosmic solutions. Rebound gets you back on the right track with God to provide real, permanent, and lasting solutions to the problems of life. In fact, rebounding solves the first problem of sin and that is being out of fellowship with the Holy Spirit who empowers us to do God’s will and apply the other PSD’s.

Filling of God the Holy Spirit

John 14:26; 16:12-14; Eph 5:18; Gal 5:16 (walk in)

Eph 5:18, “And do not get drunk with wine (sin or sinning), for that is dissipation (a waste of time), but be filled with the Spirit.”

“Dissipation” is the Greek word ASOTIA [ασοτια] meaning, “unsavedness, i.e. wastefulness, dissipation.”

It comes from two Greek words SOZO, which means, “save,” and the negative prefix A. Generically it means, “unsafe living.”

Thayer defines this as: an abandoned, dissolute life, profligacy (wickedness or a person given to wildly extravagant and usually grossly self-indulgent expenditure), prodigality (recklessly extravagant characterized by wasteful expenditure).

Webster’s says: dissipation is the action or process of dissipating: the state of being dissipated: dispersion, diffusion, dissolution, disintegration, wasteful expenditure, intemperate living; excessive drinking, and an act of self-indulgence.

This is how God describes our life when we are out of fellowship because of sin in our lives. It is a waste of time without any divine good produced or glory given to God with the result of no eternal rewards gained, 1 Cor 3:10-15.

Eph 4:30, “Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.”

This was a wake-up call to get back on track and start living inside your spiritual life again.

1 Thes 5:18-19 says, “In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God for your benefit in Christ Jesus. Stop quenching the Spirit. Do not despise prophetic utterances.”

That’s why it is so important to be filled with the Spirit.

When you quench the Holy Spirit by the sin nature controlling the soul, by stress in the soul producing sin, by false doctrine in the soul, or by using defensive mechanisms instead of the Problem Solving Devices, you have no divine power at your disposal. Therefore we again see the importance of the recovery of the power of the Holy Spirit.

The filling of the Spirit is the first power option in the Christian life (the second power option is doctrinal orientation to life) and the second PSD for the execution of the Predesigned Protocol Plan of God.

Spirituality or the filling of the Holy Spirit links salvation adjustment to the justice of God, to maturity adjustment to the justice of God.

To grow spiritually requires the filling of the Holy Spirit and the daily intake of the Word of God.

Descriptions of the filling of the Holy Spirit include:

  • Walking in the Spirit, Gal 5:16
  • Walking in the light, 1 John 1:7
  • Imitating Christ, Eph 5:1
  • A letter of Christ, 2 Cor 3:3
  • Partakers of the divine nature, 2 Pet 1:4
  • Be filled with the Spirit, Eph 5:18

Carnality is loss of the filling of the Holy Spirit. Carnality is neglect of rebound, causing sin to multiply. Sin minus rebound equals carnality. The filling of the Holy Spirit is recovery through rebound adjustment to the justice of God, Prov 1:23; 1 John 1:9.

Prov 1:23, “Turn to My reproof, behold, I will pour out My Spirit on you; I will make My words known to you.”

The objective of the indwelling of the Holy Spirit is to break the sovereignty of the Old Sin Nature’s rule over human life experientially. The Baptism of the Spirit breaks it positionally. Gal 5:13-18

The indwelling of the Holy Spirit is the principle of victory over the Old Sin Nature, while the filling of the Holy Spirit is the function of victory over the Old Sin Nature.

Eph 5:18, “Stop being intoxicated with wine by which is dissipation [a lifestyle of self-absorption to try and solve the problems of life], but keep on being filled with the Holy Spirit.”

Gal 5:13-18, “For you were called to freedom, brethren; do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh [sin nature], but through virtue-love serve one another. For the entire law has been summed up in one doctrine, in the statement, `you shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ But if you bite and devour one another, take care lest you be consumed by one another. Therefore, I command you, keep walking by means of the Spirit, and you will not carry out the lust patterns of the sin nature. For while the flesh [sin nature] desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit is totally opposed to the sin nature; for these two are constantly opposed to each other, so that you do not do the things you wish. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.”

Doctrinal Orientation:

Doctrinal Orientation is the Perception, Metabolization and Application (PMA) of the Word of God, with the result of having confidence in your spiritual life today and into the future, including your eternal life.

Heb 11:1, “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.”

The Greek word for “faith” is the noun PISTIS – πιστισ. This word has the connotation of a belief in something or “what is believed”. For the believer, “what he believes in” is the Word of God, a.k.a. Bible Doctrine. Therefore, we understand the noun “faith” or PISTIS to mean being oriented to Bible doctrinal, i.e. Doctrinal Orientation.

Joseph Thayer defines PISTIS as:

  • The conviction of the truth of anything, belief; in the NT of a conviction or belief respecting man’s relationship to God and divine things, generally with the included idea of trust and holy fervor born of faith and joined with it.
  • Relating to God, the conviction that God exists and is the creator and ruler of all things, the provider and bestower of eternal salvation through Christ.
  • Relating to Christ, a strong and welcome conviction or belief that Jesus is the Messiah, through whom we obtain eternal salvation in the kingdom of God.
  • PISTIS means the religious beliefs of Christians, belief with the predominate idea of trust (or confidence) whether in God or in Christ, springing from faith in the same.

We know that God has not only revealed Himself through the Lord Jesus Christ but also through His Word which is the mind of Jesus Christ. John 1:1, 14; 12:38; 1 Sam 3:7; Titus 1:3

PISTIS then means the state or status of trust and confidence in something, which for the believer is the Word of God, that by which we stand. Therefore, the noun “faith” is analogous to Doctrinal Orientation, standing in the Word of God.

As we will see in our next PSD, “the Faith Rest Drill”, the verb PISTEUO is in view there, which is the action of applying what you believe in to your life. But here we are dealing with the means by which we live, which is Bible Doctrine, the Word of God.

In order to be “saved”, born again, the unbeliever must believe in the gospel message. Again we see that the Gospel is the Word of God. So Doctrinal Orientation begins at salvation but it does not stop there. As believers in the Lord Jesus Christ, we need to continue to be oriented to His Word so we can better understand our relationship with Him and the Plan the Father has designed for our lives.

Five stages to achieve Doctrinal Orientation for the believer:

  • The Pastor teaches the Mystery Doctrine of the Church Age to his congregation by means of the filling of God the Holy Spirit.
  • The Word of God is received in the left lobe of the soul, the NOUS, where it becomes GNOSIS doctrine (data or knowledge). In the left lobe of the soul, this information is academically understood. In psychological terms, this is called receptive comprehension.
  • The enabling power and ministry of the Holy Spirit takes GNOSIS doctrine and teaches the believer’s human spirit the Word he has received.

This is accomplished by means of the Grace Apparatus for Perception (GAP). GAP is when the believer is filled with God the Holy Spirit so that the Spirit is able to teach his human spirit the Word of God. When you have positive volition towards what you have heard, the Holy Spirit turns GNOSIS data into PNEUMATIKOS, which means spiritual phenomena understood.

  • PNEUMATIKOS is transferred to the right lobe or KARDIA (heart) of the soul where it becomes EPIGNOSIS doctrine (wisdom). This is the equivalent to the metabolization of Bible doctrine, the only doctrine beneficial to the life.

GNOSIS must be converted into EPIGNOSIS before it has any spiritual value. It is your faith perception that accepts the academically understood information as spiritual phenomena, which the Holy Spirit converts into EPIGNOSIS. In psychological terms, this is called retention.

  • Through the enabling power of God the Holy Spirit, EPIGNOSIS Bible Doctrine retained in the heart of your soul is recalled for application in life.

For example, when you deploy the Eleven Problem Solving Devices on the FLOT line of your soul, you are utilizing God’s Word to reach permanent solutions to the problems and details of life. That is why Doctrinal Orientation is so important. Without an understanding of the Word of God, you will not have the means to solve the problems of life and effectively live the spiritual life God has designed for you.

1 Cor 2:13-14, “Which things we also speak, not in words taught by human wisdom, but in those taught by the Spirit, combining spiritual thoughts with spiritual words. 14But a natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually appraised.”

1 John 2:27 (NLT), “But you have received the Holy Spirit (anointing), and he lives within you, so you don’t need anyone to teach you what is true. For the Spirit teaches you all things, and what he teaches is true—it is not a lie. So continue in what he has taught you, and continue to live in Christ.”

Essentially, Doctrinal Orientation is the consistent perception, metabolization, and application of the Word of God through the GAP, which always results in confidence within your soul.

Heb 11:1, “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.”

This confidence can be classified in the Bible in several ways.

  • Confidence can be classified as spiritual adulthood in its three stages of Spiritual Self-Esteem, Spiritual Autonomy, and Spiritual Maturity.
  • Confidence can also be referred to by the technical Greek word ELPIS. It is always translated hope, but in the English language today hope implies doubt and uncertainty. However, ELPIS means confident expectation.

(1) Plato used ELPIS for confidence or expectation about the future. From the time of Plato in the fifth century B.C. until the time of our Lord, ELPIS generally held this connotation.

(2) In fact, ELPIS is considered synonymous with the Greek word PROSDOKIA, which means confidence.

Therefore, hope is an expression for Doctrinal Orientation, an extension of faith or confidence into future things, whether near future or distant future.

So ELPIS in the New Testament means to have confidence in something in either the near future or the distant future.

The unbeliever is described in Eph 2:12 as “Having no hope and without God in the world.”

When the believer faces the death of a loved one, 1 Thes 4:13 describes his attitude as follows, “We do not grieve as others who have no hope.”

For when our loved ones die, if they are believers, we know we will see them again. That is confidence in something in the future.

Rom 15:4, “For many doctrines as have been written before [in the Old Testament canon] were written for our instruction in order that, through perseverance and encouragement from the Scriptures, we [Church Age believers] might have hope.”

In other words, hope as a result of Doctrinal Orientation has always been a Problem-Solving Device for believers in every dispensation.

Lam 3:21-25, “This I recall to mind; therefore, I have hope. The Lord’s gracious functions never cease [Grace Orientation, PSD #5]; His compassions never fail. They are new every morning. Great is Your faithfulness. `The Lord is my portion,’ says my soul, `therefore I have hope in Him [Occupation with Christ, PSD #11].’ The Lord is good to those who trust in Him [Faith-Rest Drill, PSD #4], to the soul who seeks Him [Doctrinal Orientation, PSD #3].”

Notice that as a result of recall or the application of metabolized doctrine, the believer has confidence. Being “new every morning” means we are to live one day at a time as a part of God’s plan for our lives. The only way you can seek God after salvation is through the perception and metabolization of His Word.

Jer 17:7, “Blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD and whose confidence is the LORD.”

Psa 71:5, “For You are my hope, O Lord God, my confidence from my youth.”

Rom 15:13, “Now may the God of hope [confidence] fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”

Job 4:6, “Is not your fear [reverence, awe, love] of God your confidence, and the integrity of your ways your hope?”

Rom 5:5, “And hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.”

Authority Orientation

Respect for all systems of authority and those in authority over you, especially the authority of God and His Word in your life, Rom 13:1-7; Eph 6:5-9; 5:22-33; 6:1-4.

Faith Rest Drill (FRD)

Psalm 11:1-7, “In the LORD I take refuge; How can you say to my soul, ‘Flee as a bird to your mountain.’ For, behold, the wicked bend the bow, they make ready their arrow upon the string to shoot in darkness at the upright in heart. If the foundations are destroyed, what can the righteous do? The LORD is in His holy temple; the LORD’S throne is in heaven; His eyes behold, His eyelids test the sons of men. The LORD tests the righteous and the wicked, and the one who loves violence His soul hates. Upon the wicked He will rain snares; Fire and brimstone and burning wind will be the portion of their cup. For the LORD is righteous, He loves righteousness; The upright will behold His face.”

The Faith Rest Drill is one of the key Problem Solving Devices (PSD’s) designed by God for all generations to overcome the adversities and pressures of life before they become stress within our soul.

Heb 11:1, “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.”

As new believers, we learned the grace principle of salvation and rebound; this is our grace orientation. When we have this grace orientation, we realize there are things we have to believe, and when we do, we make those things a part of our soul. Those “things” are found in the Word of God. As we learn more and more of His Word, we receive more and more ammunition to function under the Faith-Rest Drill.

The beginning of the Faith-Rest Drill is to believe God when He makes promises to us, such as:

Prov 3:5-6, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, lean not to your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.”

Psa 37:4-5, “Delight yourself in the LORD; and He will give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the LORD, trust also in Him, and He will do it.”

1 Pet 5:7, “Casting all your anxieties on Him; for He cares for you.”

As we grow spiritually, we reach out with our faith towards God and claim His promises.

Psa 4:8, “In peace I will both lie down and sleep, For You alone, O LORD, make me to dwell in safety.”

Psa 34:19, “Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the Lord delivers him out of all of them.”

Psa 55:22, “Cast all your burdens upon the Lord and He shall sustain you; He shall never suffer the righteous to be moved.”

Psa 56:11, “In God I put my trust. I will not be afraid of what man can do to me.”

Deut 31:8, “And the Lord, He it is who goes before you; He will not fail you or forsake you. Fear not, neither be confused.”

The function of the Faith-Rest Drill is to provide cohesion and coordination of all the Problem Solving Devices so that your focus is on God in times of difficulty or prosperity. When your focus is on God and His Word, the outside pressures of life don’t become stress within your soul.

There is a definite relationship between stress and thinking within your soul. Stress makes you forgetful and impairs your memory, it impairs your ability to learn, and it affects your perception of reality.

When stress is removed, your thinking abilities can be restored. If you remain in stress too long, all of your thinking ability is destroyed and you enter into a psychotic state.

  • Stress is the inside pressure on your soul; adversity is the outside pressures of life.
  • Stress is what you do to yourself; adversity is what circumstances do to you.
  • Stress is optional; adversity is inevitable.
  • Stress in the soul contradicts the Plan of God for the Church and destroys the spiritual life of the believer.

The alternative to dealing with pressure and catastrophe in life is the total carnal breakdown of the believer, also known as self-fragmentation. (Self-fragmentation results in both Christian moral and immoral degeneracy and involvement in the cosmic system so that the believer cannot be distinguished from his unbeliever counterpart in mental attitude, sin nature function, and his overall way of life.)

The solution to this is conversion of GNOSIS Bible doctrine to EPIGNOSIS doctrine through faith perception, which prevents the conversion of the outside pressures of adversity into the inside pressures of stress in your soul. Stress in the soul is synonymous with saying the sin nature controls your soul.

When you have EPIGNOSIS Bible doctrine circulating in your soul, it creates real solutions to the problems of life, which results in making good decisions from a position of strength, this includes the PSD’s.

With God’s Word in your soul, you defensively prevent adversity from being converted into stress. Likewise, offensively you remove stress from the soul. This results in a soul that is happy, healthy, and normal, as far as the spiritual life is concerned.

There are three stages of the Faith-Rest Drill.

  • Establish a relaxed mental attitude by claiming one or more of God’s promises.

Claiming a promise means you recall it and mix it with faith. You have knowledge of God’s Word and you apply faith towards that Word.

Mixing the promises of God with faith is designed to stabilize the mentality of the believer under pressure, confusion, adversity, stress, and disaster. In time of stress, you start by claiming promises and mixing them with faith. For example, you would say to yourself, “God’s word says He will never leave me nor forsake me, (Heb 13:5; Deut 31:6; Josh 1:5), and I believe it.”

  • Concentrate on pertinent Bible doctrine related to your situation in a logical order. This is called “Doctrinal Rationale”.

2 Cor 8:9, “And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that always having all sufficiency in everything, you may have an abundance for every good deed.”

The second stage of the Faith Rest Drill (FRD) requires a stronger understanding of the word of God so that you can develop “Doctrinal Rationales”. Doctrinal Rationales begin as a result of your positive volition towards and consistent intake of the Word of God, which results in your spiritual growth. As you grow spiritually, you develop a true scale of values in which the Word of God has number one priority in your life. With God’s Word as the #1 priority in your life, you are able to compare the situation you are facing with what His Word says and then in faith apply God’s thinking to the situation.

Rom 10:17, “Faith comes by hearing [positive volition] and hearing by the word of Christ.”
1 Cor 2:16, “We have the mind (thinking) of Christ.”

2 Cor 5:7, “Therefore, we walk by faith and not be sight.”

1 Cor 2:5, “That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of man but in the power of God.”

By applying Doctrinal Rationale, you are lifting the shield of faith, which provides both tranquility and contentment to your soul, when under great pressure.

There are several Doctrinal Rationales that you can apply on a daily basis:

  1. The Essence of God rationale.
  2. The Plan of God rationale.
  3. The Policy of God rationale which is grace orientation.
  4. The A fortiori rationale (A fortiori is a Latin prepositional phrase which means “with stronger reason.”).
  5. The Eleven Problem Solving Devices.
  • Reach Doctrinal Conclusions.

At this stage, you have expanded the promises of God into Doctrinal Rationales and you now draw conclusions about what to think and how to act regarding your situation.

Reaching Doctrinal Conclusions coordinates and correlates God’s Word, your soul, and the situation you are facing. This is accomplished by claiming the promises of God, applying Doctrinal Rationales, and reaching Doctrinal Conclusion, with the result of having the happiness of God (+H) in your soul, as you face a difficult situation. And as always, this is only accomplished through the enabling power of God the Holy Spirit.

Fear sees the problem; faith sees the solution.

You do not solve problems with a problem.

Believers occupied with the problem inevitably end up trying to solve a problem with a problem. Believers who utilized the Faith Rest Drill and other Problem Solving Devices end up solving the problem.

You solve problems with a divine solution.

Divine solutions are the only solution; human solutions are no solutions.

We do not need to be right; we need to be right with the Supreme Court of heaven.

You should always put the matter in the hands of the Lord and remain in a state of tranquility without complaint.

You have to avoid taking matters into your own hands. Here is the virtue of patience. Any reaction on your part cancels out God’s divine solutions within your soul.

Heb 4:1-3, “Therefore, let us fear if, while a promise remains of entering His rest, any one of you may seem to have come short of it. 2For indeed we have had good news preached to us, just as they also (Exodus generation); but the word they heard did not profit them, because it was not united by faith in those who heard. 3For we who have believed enter that rest, just as He has said, “AS I SWORE IN MY WRATH, THEY SHALL NOT ENTER MY REST,” although His works were finished from the foundation of the world.”

Try to remember that if God accomplished the greater at the Cross, it is obvious that He can accomplish the lesser in the provision for the believer both in time and in eternity.

1 Pet 1:3-9, “Blessed be the God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Who on the basis of His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living confidence through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, resulting in an inheritance imperishable, undefiled, unfading, having been guarded in heaven for you, who are being constantly guarded by the power of God through faith [Faith-Rest Drill] resulting in deliverance ready to be revealed in the last time. In this, you greatly rejoice [sharing the happiness of God], even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been under stress by various pressures, that the testing of your faith [Faith-Rest Drill], being more valuable than gold which is perishable even though tested by fire, may be found to result in commendation, glory, and honor at the revelation of Christ, Whom having not seen you love, and though you do not see Him now but believe, you greatly rejoice with joy inexpressible and having received glory, receiving back with interest the ultimate destiny of faith–the deliverance of your souls.”

Under Doctrinal Conclusion, for example, you not only say “God’s Word says He will never leave me nor forsake me, (Heb 13:5; Deut 31:6; Josh 1:5),” but you also conclude, “Therefore He will be with me and help me in this situation.”

The increase of the Faith-Rest Drill in your life means the increase of control over your soul and your spiritual life. 2 Cor 5:7, “We walk by faith [the Faith-Rest Drill] and not by sight [human viewpoint].”

The Faith-Rest Drill has the power to avoid reaction to every injustice, every act of unfairness, and every wrong that has ever been committed against you. It has the power to avoid reaction to all injustices in life by putting them, by means of faith, in the hands of the Supreme Court of heaven. The great mistake is taking your case to the Supreme Court of heaven and simultaneously to take the case out of the hands of God by trying to do something about it yourself.

The Faith-Rest Drill works in two directions. It recognizes the reality of the suffering. But it also recognizes the reality of what God provided in eternity past in order to deal with these problems.

Rom 4:20-21, “Yet, with respect to the promise of God, he (Abraham) did not waver in unbelief but grew strong in faith, giving glory to God, 21and being fully assured that what God had promised, He was able also to perform.”

God is infinitely greater than His creatures. Therefore, God’s knowledge is infinitely greater than human knowledge. This fact escapes those who are preoccupied with self. But for the positive believer they trust in the infinite wisdom of God found in His Word to solve the problems of life by applying the Faith Rest Drill.

Grace Orientation

  • Grace is all that God is free to do for mankind without compromising His divine essence.
  • Grace means favor, kindness, and mercy.
  • Grace is free, unmerited favor and love from God alone, not from our works or because we are attractive to God.
  • Grace is the policy of God in blessing mankind totally apart from any creature merit.

Grace Orientation, as a Problem Solving Device, is related to both understanding God’s policy, which is summed up in the word “grace” and relating it to the Christian life and to others.

God’s grace toward the unbeliever is noted in Eph 2:8-9.

Eph 2:8, “For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; 9not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.”

God’s grace toward the believer is noted in Eph 3:20.

Eph 3:20, “Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us.”

Unfortunately, today the prevalence in Christianity is to not be Grace Oriented but instead to be sticking noses into other people’s business.

There is no grace in the common trend to gossip and slander everyone else.

No one wants to give anyone the benefit of the doubt.

Heb 12:15, “See to it that no one comes short of the grace of God; that no root of bitterness springing up causes trouble, and by it many be defiled.”

Our application of Grace Orientation has two directions, 1) toward God, 2) toward mankind.

Grace Orientation is related to the Royal Family Honor Code, where we understand that God deals with us in grace and we should likewise treat other members of the Royal Family in grace.

Grace Orientation is dependence on God’s wisdom rather than on our own desires and lack of wisdom.

1 Cor 15:10, “But by the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace toward me did not prove vain; but I labored even more than all of them, yet not I, but the grace of God with me.”

2 Cor 1:12, “For our proud confidence is this: the testimony of our conscience, that in holiness and godly sincerity, not in fleshly wisdom but in the grace of God, we have conducted ourselves in the world, and especially toward you.”

The function of Grace Orientation is the believer’s response to the divine initiative of grace in two categories;

  • Antecedent grace in both eternity past and in time, and
  • Eschatological grace

Antecedent grace in eternity past is related to everything provided for the believer in eternity past as part of God’s Divine Decrees. Antecedent grace in time was manifest by the humanity of our Lord Jesus Christ establishing the Christian way of life during His first advent.

Grace Orientation responds non-meritoriously to the divine initiative of antecedent grace through the consistent function of the spiritual skills, (i.e. filling of the Holy Spirit, Doctrinal Orientation, and the application of the PSD’s), resulting in the execution of the Plan of God.

Eschatological grace is the divine initiative of grace in our future, including; dying grace, resurrection grace, and eternal state grace.

Grace Orientation anticipates the divine initiative of eschatological grace through the function of those same spiritual skills.

Grace Orientation is the correct and accurate application to both the divine initiative of antecedent grace plus the divine initiative of eschatological grace.

Grace Orientation, by definition, teaches the believer how to respond to the divine initiative of grace and how to apply God’s perfect and matchless grace to every circumstance of life. This is seen in David’s song of Grace Orientation in Psalm 23.

David gave us a preview of coming attractions in the function of Grace Orientation as a Problem Solving Device for the Church Age. He knew all about how God had provided for him in eternity past. What did he know? He knew that:

  • Grace is the Divine system that permeates Biblical theology and all human experience.
  • Grace does not start with mankind, but originates with God.
  • Grace is not earned, deserved, or merited by human works, human resources, or human ability.
  • God’s grace precedes human life on earth, and is, in fact, part of His divine essence.

Many times we think of grace as only the good things that happen to us in life. But in reality, many of the bad things that happen are also part of God’s grace policy. Therefore, grace is undeserved suffering and undeserved support, which God freely gives to all mankind.

In the application of Grace under Grace Orientation, we understand that it completely eliminates any form of human works, human merit, legalism, crusader arrogance, human achievement arrogance, self-righteous arrogance, or any form of human resource. It also excludes any application of defense mechanisms from our human resources.

Our Lord demonstrated this to us through Paul teaching us that the Grace of God is all sufficient for every need and situation. 2 Cor 12:7-10

In verse seven “Exalting self” is part of the arrogance skills of self-justification, self-deception, and self-absorption.

They are the greatest distraction to the function of Grace Orientation and the spiritual life. Even Paul had to be warned and protected from the arrogance skills.

The thorn in the flesh was not eye trouble, malaria, migraine headaches, insomnia, epilepsy, baldness, a speech impediment, being single, or Jewish persecutions.

Paul tells us in verse ten what the thorn in the flesh was;

  • People testing (he was slandered a lot),
  • Thought testing (there was a lot of unusual pressure on him),
  • Injustices (persecutions), and
  • Troubles

These however were brought on by a demon or demons assigned to him. They could not possess Paul, because all believers are indwelt by God the Holy Spirit. Yet nevertheless, the “thorn” the demon(s) probably worked through were unbelievers influenced by them.

The thorn in the flesh prevents arrogance, while at the same time builds momentum in the spiritual life by utilizing the spiritual skills including the Problem Solving Devices especially Grace Orientation.

Paul was so concerned about the thorn in the flesh, he prayed for it to be removed. But this was the wrong thing for which to pray. There is a reason and purpose for everything that happens to the believer.

Here we also note that prayer is not the solution. Prayer is not a Problem Solving Device; it is the result of the Problem Solving Devices.

In verse nine the Present, Active Indicative of ARKEO is the word “sufficient,” and in this sentence, means “My grace has been and still is sufficient for you”. This is an idiom meaning, “you need nothing more than my grace.”

God assured Paul that he was on the right track in his spiritual life. He only needed to go back to Grace Orientation to handle the problem.

Keep in mind that motivated by Divine love, God’s grace takes the initiative in eternity past, and combined with His Divine omnipotence, provides the most fantastic things for you as a believer. “My grace has been” is the divine initiative of antecedent grace in eternity past, “and still is” is the divine initiative of antecedent grace in time.

The thorn in the flesh is designed to prevent arrogance and to accelerate your spiritual growth. What the Lord does not remove,  He intends for us to bear, through the function of the Eleven Problem Solving Devices

Grace orientation is the believer’s response to the divine initiative of grace.

The believer who begins with divine grace ends up with divine power. But remember that the grace policy of God preceded your grace response. This will keep you humble.

Grace Orientation responds to the divine initiative of antecedent grace in eternity past, as well as in time.

It is the response of The Word of God metabolized and resident within your soul to the divine initiative of antecedent and eschatological grace.

The last point we are noting from 2 Cor 12:9 is the phrase “most gladly”. This is the expression of PSD #9, Sharing the Perfect Happiness of God, which comes from Grace Orientation plus Doctrinal Orientation in your soul.

John 15:11, “I have taught you these things, that my happiness may be in you, and that your happiness may be fulfilled.”

Psa 31:7a, “I will rejoice and be happy in your grace,….”

Psa 146:5-6, “Happiness belongs to the one whose help is in the God of Jacob, whose confidence is in the Lord his God. Who made heaven and earth, the sea and all that is in them; who guards truth forever.”

So, we close with the exhortation from Peter in his second epistle to grow in Grace and Doctrinal Orientation.

2 Peter 3:17, “You therefore, beloved, knowing this beforehand, be on your guard so that you are not carried away by the error of unprincipled men and fall from your own steadfastness, 18but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory, both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.”

Personal Sense of Destiny

1 Peter 5:1-3, “Therefore, I exhort the elders among you, as your fellow elder and witness of the sufferings of Christ, and a partaker also of the glory that is to be revealed, 2shepherd the flock of God among you, exercising oversight not under compulsion, but voluntarily, according to the will of God; and not for sordid gain, but with eagerness; 3nor yet as lording it over those allotted to your charge, but proving to be examples to the flock.”

As a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ, God has already given you a Personal Destiny as part of His overall Plan for the Church. Therefore, you might as well start the experience of living in that Destiny.

Rom 8:29-30, “For those whom He (God the Father) foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son (living in the righteousness of God), so that He (Jesus Christ) would be the firstborn among many brethren; 30and these (Church Age believers) whom He (God the Father) predestined (the grace plan of God in eternity past for salvation), He also called (The grace plan of God in time for salvation); and these whom He called, He also justified (imputation of God’s righteousness at salvation); and these whom He justified, He also glorified (antecedent grace for eternal blessing).

All of this is the manifest destiny God has designed for your life. This is called the Predesigned Protocol Plan of God. Looking down the corridors of history, God has designed a specific plan for you in both time and eternity. In the above passage we see the broad brushes of God’s Plan for our lives in terms of absolutes. These things have and will occur regardless of our own personal volition. What happens in between is largely dependent on your own volition. Knowing these broad brushes of God’s Plan becomes the basis for having your very own Personal Sense of Destiny to live each day inside the Predesigned Protocol Plan for your life.

A Personal Sense of Destiny derives its initial strength from the first six Problem Solving Devices, Rebound, the Filling of the Spirit, Doctrinal Orientation, Faith Rest, Authority Orientation, and Grace Orientation.

Having a Personal Sense of Destiny means you understand the objectives of the spiritual life and you walk in them.

As such, your Personal Sense of Destiny eventually becomes so great that it outweighs any problem, disaster, heartache, and tragedy that comes your way. No matter what happens, you always remember that you have a destiny inside of God’s Plan.

The fulfillment of your destiny depends on your volition to perceive the mystery doctrine of the Church Age, including your Portfolio of Invisible Assets and your POLITEUMA privileges, classified as the “riches of His glory” in Eph 3:16; Phil 4:19; Rom 9:23.

In the “thorn in the flesh” analogy that we noted under Grace Orientation, Paul also recognized that a Personal Sense of Destiny was a part of the divine solution to his problem.

2 Cor 12:9-10, “Most gladly therefore I would rather boast about my weakness that the power of Christ may reside in me. 10Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ’s sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong.”

Paul realized that human solutions are actually no solution at all to the problems in life and only divine solutions like Doctrinal Orientation, Faith Rest, Grace Orientation, Authority Orientation, a Personal Sense of Destiny, Sharing the Happiness of God, and Occupation with the Lord Jesus Christ are true, lasting, and real solutions.

This attitude and understanding of the Personal Sense of Destiny is also noted in the second part of our opening passage in Rom 8:31-32.

Rom 8:31-32, “What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who is against us? 32He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things?”

Again, Paul recalls the broad brushes of God’s Plan and promises to His children and that is all we need to focus on to have a Personal Sense of Destiny. The details are the details and God will lead us to overcome them but we should never let the details distract us from walking in the Plan and purpose God has for our lives.

The illustration of God’s care for the birds.

The following illustrations given to us by our Lord demonstrate the importance we have in God’s eye as His children. If God is going to care so much for the birds of the air, it follows, a fortiori, that He is going to care for you too.

Psa 84:1-3, “How lovely are Your dwelling places, O Lord of the armies! My soul longs and even yearns for the courts of the Lord; my heart and my flesh sing for joy to the living God. The bird also has found a house, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may lay her young, even Your altars, O Lord of the armies, my King and my God.”

Mat 6:26-27, “Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? And which of you by worrying can add eighteen inches to his height (an hour to his life)?”

Because of the grace of God, even birds have a destiny. If God provides for birds, it follows, a fortiori, that God will provide for the Church Age believer. Likewise if birds have a destiny, it follows that believers have one too.

As noted in Psa 84, having a Personal Sense of Destiny is based on having personal fellowship with God, which is based on your attitude toward His Word. If you do not know His Word, you will never develop a Personal Sense of Destiny.

A Personal Sense of Destiny vs. Fear:

The P. S. of D. bird analogy is also found in Mat 10:29-31, which adds another aspect to understanding your Personal Sense of Destiny.

Mat 10:29-31, “Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. As a matter of fact the very hairs of your head are numbered. Therefore stop being afraid; you are of more value than many sparrows.”

In this verse and Mat 6:27, we see the antithesis of a Personal Sense of Destiny: fear, worry, and anxiety.

Having a Personal Sense of Destiny eliminates fear from your soul. Fear is failure of the believer to use the provisions of God (His Word, Spirit, your portfolio of Invisible Assets, etc.) with the result of not applying your Personal Sense of Destiny.

Did you know that God has provided you forty things  at the moment of your salvation, which includes:

  1. Efficacious grace. (God the Holy Spirit {G t HS} makes our faith effective for salvation)
    2. The sealing ministry of God the Holy Spirit.
    3. An eternal inheritance.
    4. Regeneration.
    5. Eternal life.
    6. The imputed righteousness of God.
    7. Resultant justification.
    8. Reconciliation. (barrier removed between God and Man by means of The Lord Jesus Christ {TLJC})
    9. Beneficiaries of propitiation.
    10. Beneficiaries of unlimited atonement.
    11. Beneficiaries of redemption.
    12. The baptism of the Holy Spirit.
    13. Created a new spiritual species.
    14. Entered into the royal family of God forever.
    15. Equal privilege and equal opportunity.
    16. Positional sanctification.
    17. The asset of Election.
    18. The asset of Predestination.
    19. The universal priesthood of the believer.
    20. The royal ambassadorship of the believer.
    21. The indwelling of God the Father.
    22. The indwelling of God the Son.
    23. The indwelling of God the Holy Spirit.
    24. The unique availability of divine power.
    25. The unique Pre-designed Plan of God.
    26. The filling of the Holy Spirit.
    27. The distribution of spiritual gifts.
    28. All judgment removed.
    29. Deliverance from the kingdom of Satan.
    30. Transferred into the kingdom of God.
    31. We are a gift from God the Father to God the Son as the royal family of God.
    32. We are delivered from the power of the old sin nature.
    33. We are given access to God.
    34. All scar tissue is removed from the soul.
    35. Escrow blessings.
    36. We are on a secure foundation.
    37. We are related to God the Son by biblical analogy.
    38. Recipients of eternal security.
    39. Guaranteed a resurrection body forever.
    40. Beneficiaries of problem solving devices.

Therefore, a Personal Sense of Destiny combined with the Faith-Rest Drill is the function of the application of metabolized Bible doctrine in your soul ready for application, which drives fear out of your soul.

Instead of focusing on the problem at hand, you apply reverse concentration and adjust your thinking towards God’s Word, His promises, the Forty things you have received, etc., and your very own Personal Sense of Destiny.

Fear only adds disaster and stress to your life. The more things you surrender to fear, the more things you fear. The extent that you surrender to fear, the greater your capacity for fear. The greater your capacity for fear, the more you increase the power of fear in your life. The more you increase the power of fear in your life, the greater your failure to use God’s provisions. As you fail to use God’s provisions, you no longer walk under a Personal Sense of Destiny.

The application of the Problem Solving Devices, especially a Personal Sense of Destiny, eliminates fear from your soul. For example:

The Faith-Rest Drill, Psa 56:3, “When I am afraid, I will put my trust in You.”

Love for God, 2 Tim 1:7, “For God has not given us a spirit of timidity, but of power and love and discipline.”

The Personal Sense of Destiny, Psa 23:4, “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for You are with me,”

Personal Love for God the Father (PLfGtF)

1 John 2:15, “Do not love the world nor the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life, is not from the Father, but is from the world. 17The world is passing away, and also its lusts; but the one who does the will of God lives forever.”

There is no subject more exalted to which the human mind can address itself than contemplating and learning of the person and character of God. While God is one in essence, God has three separate and distinct personalities yet is one God. The three persons of the Trinity are co-eternal, co-infinite, and co-equal in essence and attributes. The “Godhead” is defined as the essence of being God.

There are several propositions about God that we all must understand in order to have a relationship with Him and love Him.

  • God exists.
  • God reveals Himself.
  • When God reveals Himself, it makes sense.
  • God has a plan and purpose for your life as an individual.
  • If you can say, “I am a human being,” then you can conclude that God has an eternal plan for you personally.
  • God is perfect and His plan is perfect. Perfect God can only create a perfect plan.

However, God has created a perfect plan for imperfect persons.

With an understanding of these basic facts and concepts about God, you are prepared to enter into a personal relationship with Him. Yet if we ignore these facts and instead concentrate on our relationship with the world, as noted in 1 John 2:15-17, we will not have the foundation to personally love Him.

Personal love means you love because the object of your love is lovable. You are focused on the object of your love and its virtue.

Therefore, Personal Love for God the Father is first based on His divine perfection, integrity, righteousness, and justice.

Secondly, we love God because of the fact that He loved us first, before we ever loved Him.

Rom 5:8, “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died as a substitute for us.”

1 John 4:19, “We love, because He first loved us.”

God the Father is lovable because of who He is and His actions toward us – His virtue.

Whether you are a winner or loser believer, there is no greater security than the Personal Love of God for the believer. You have never been and never will be abandoned by God. Heb 13:5; Deut 31:6; Josh 1:5

Since God has loved us from eternity past and has done everything necessary so that we could enter into relationship with Him, we should have a sense of obligation to reciprocate His love by loving Him back. But how do we do that?

First and foremost, it is through our love for Jesus Christ. Believe it or not, when you express your love towards Jesus Christ, you are expressing your love towards the Father.

John 8:42, “Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, you would love Me, for I proceeded forth and have come from God, for I have not even come on My own initiative, but He sent Me.” See also John 14 & 15:9-11.

When we express our love towards Jesus Christ, we are expressing our love towards the Father. Likewise, when we express our love towards the Father, we are expressing our love for Jesus Christ.

So you might ask the question, how do I express my love towards Jesus Christ?

First we learn to love the Lord through metabolized Bible doctrine circulating in the stream of consciousness in the soul. Bible Doctrine is the Word of God, the mind of Jesus Christ. John 1:1; 1 Cor 2:16

Second, we learn to respect the Lord through divine discipline from the divine love found in the integrity of God. Heb 12:6, 10; Rev 3:19

Heb 12:10b, “He disciplines us for our good, so that we may share His holiness.”

Through God’s Word and His parental discipline, we come to learn about and love Him.

1 John 2:5, “But whoever guards His word, truly in him the love for God has been perfected. By this we know that we are in Him.”

1 John 5:2, “By this we verify the fact that we keep on loving the children of God, when we love God and execute His mandates.”

Rev 3:19, ‘Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline; therefore be zealous and repent.” See also Psa 119:75; Heb 12:5-11.

“Zealous” is the Present Active Imperative of ZELEUO and means, “to have warmth of feeling for”. So even through divine discipline, we come to a closer relationship with the Father in love.

“Repent” is the Greek word METANOEO in the Aorist, Active, Imperative. It means to change your way of thinking. In other words, change your way of life and thinking from sin and cosmic living, to personal love for God by keeping His commandments. John 14:15, 21; 15:10; 1 John 5:2-3; 2 John 1:6

1 John 5:3, “For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not burdensome.”

Principles:

  • We learn to love the Father through metabolized Bible doctrine, (the mind of Christ, 1 Cor 2:16b), circulating in the stream of consciousness.
  • We learn to respect the Father through divine discipline from that divine love found in the integrity of God.

In addition to our love being based on the Father and the Son, our love for God exists because of the ministry of God the Holy Spirit. Rom 5:5; 1 John 3:24; 4:13

Rom 5:5, “And confidence does not disappoint us, because the love for God has been poured out in our hearts [stream of consciousness] through the agency of the Holy Spirit who was given to us for our benefit.”

Therefore, all three members of the Trinity are involved and loved in our Personal Love for God the Father. This tells us that we have 100% availability of divine power residing in and leading us to have and express Personal Love for God the Father.

Likewise, we are exhorted to love each member of the Trinity.

2 Cor 13:14, “The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit, be with all of you.”

In addition, our capacity for loving God the Father does not come from emotional streaks of gratitude, but from the mechanics of the spiritual life.

Capacity for loving God is based on:

  • Knowledge of Bible doctrine, rather than emotion.
  • Application of Bible doctrine through the Problem Solving Devices, rather than emotional stimulation in the sphere of self-gratification.

The appropriate mechanics for loving God includes an emotional response to the Word of God resident in your soul, as a result of the teaching and leading ministry of God the Holy Spirit.

Our emotions should never lead in worship, they must always follow, which means we respond to the Word through the leading and guiding ministry of God the Holy Spirit.

  • Emotion without knowledge is neither worship nor a demonstration of love; it is self-gratification.
  • Emotion as a result of knowledge is worship and demonstrates love for God; it is propitiation.
  • Love for God includes gratitude, but gratitude does not necessarily imply love for God.

The Church Age believer cannot have Personal Love for God the Father or a true perspective of the spiritual life, unless he becomes cognizant of the potential for true love for God in his own soul. This is only accomplished through the consistent intake and application of God’s Word in faith.

Every believer is responsible for the success or the failure of his or her own spiritual life. God has provided everything necessary for your success in your very own Portfolio of Invisible Assets.

Therefore, Personal Love for God the Father in your soul cannot co-exist with the arrogance complex of sins.

  • To the extent that you entertain bitterness, you have no respect for God.
  • To the extent that you have guilt in your thinking, you have no respect for God. This includes fear, worry, anxiety, jealousy, vindictiveness, vilification, malice, and revenge.
  • To the extent that you enter into these sins, you enter into irrationality, do not have respect for God, and destroy any possibility of fulfilling the spiritual life. Irrational people do not love. 1 John 4:7-21

1 John 4:8; “The one who does not love does not know God, for God is love….11Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another…. 18There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves punishment, and the one who fears is not perfected in love. 19We love, because He first loved us. 20If someone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for the one who does not love his brother whom he has seen, cannot love God whom he has not seen. 21And this commandment we have from Him, that the one who loves God should love his brother also.”

With Personal Love for God the Father, everything else in the spiritual life will fall into place.

Personal Love For God the Father as a Problem Solving Device.

As we have previously noted, a Personal Sense of Destiny operating within your soul is the dividing line between spiritual childhood and spiritual adulthood. A Personal Sense of Destiny is analogous to Spiritual Self-Esteem, entrance into the adult spiritual life. Then Personal Love for God the Father is the first adult Problem Solving Device.

As we move from spiritual childhood to spiritual adulthood, we realize more and more of what God the Father has done for us and with that knowledge we love Him more and more every day.

Therefore, PLfGtF is based on your understanding and assurance of the common questions you found answers to as a growing believer, including:

  • How did the love of God solve the most devastating problem in life; the spiritual death of man, which occurs at physical birth, the moment God breathes human life to your soul? How did God solve that problem?

He solved that problem through the substitutionary spiritual death of Jesus Christ on the Cross. John 3:14-21; Rom 5:8

John 3:14-21, “As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up; 15so that whoever believes will in Him have eternal life. 16For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. 17For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. 18He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. 19This is the judgment, that the Light has come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the Light, for their deeds were evil. 20For everyone who does evil hates the Light, and does not come to the Light for fear that his deeds will be exposed. 21But he who practices the truth comes to the Light, so that his deeds may be manifested as having been wrought in God.”

  • If God was able to solve the biggest problem in your life; your spiritual death, is He able to solve any other problems that come along?

Through the death and resurrection of our Lord, He demonstrated His love for us regarding the biggest problem. That same demonstration of love is available to solve all our other problems in life. Luke 12:22-34; Rom 5:9-11, 17

Luke 12:28, “But if God so clothes the grass in the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, how much more will He clothe you? You men of little faith!”

Rom 5:9-11, 17, “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him. For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life. And not only this, but we also exult in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation….17For if by the transgression of the one, death reigned through the one, much more those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.”

  • How am I going to have a love for an invisible God?

There is only one way; we have to know God.

Our spiritual life is related to the thinking of God as mentioned in 1 Cor 2:16, “But we have the mind of Christ.”.

The whole system of love and the spiritual life is a system of thinking Bible doctrine. Rom 5:5; Eph 3:14-19; Col 2:2-3

Rom 5:5 NLT, “And this expectation (hope 2) will not disappoint us. For we know how dearly God loves us, because He has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with His love.”

Col 2:2-3, “That their hearts may be encouraged, having been knit together in love, and attaining to all the wealth that comes from the full assurance of understanding, resulting in a true knowledge of God’s mystery, that is, Christ Himself, 3in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.”

You cannot think what you do not know. If you don’t know, you can’t have Personal Love for God.

  • How does God enable us to understand what is normally beyond our comprehension, His spiritual phenomena, the doctrine of the inerrant word of God?

How does God accomplish the seemly impossible task of communicating to the finite minds of mankind those perfect divine attributes related to the integrity of God?

God has revealed Himself to our finite minds through the ministry of the Holy Spirit in verbal plenary inspiration, resulting in the infallible word of God. Psa 138:2; 1 Cor 2:13; 2 Tim 3:16; 2 Peter 1:20-21

2 Tim 3:16-17, “All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; 17so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.”

2 Pet 1:20-21, “But know this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture is a matter of one’s own interpretation, 21for no prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God.”

1 Cor 2:13. “Which things we also speak, not in words taught by human wisdom, but in those taught by the Spirit, combining spiritual with spiritual.”

The infallible Word of God, known to us as the Bible, contains the mind, the faculty of the thinking of Christ.

1 Cor 2:16, “For who has known the mind (thinking) of the Lord that we should instruct Him? But we have the thinking of Christ.”

The thinking of Christ is equivalent to Bible doctrine, but to us in the dispensation of the Church, it is a specific kind of Bible doctrine. In Eph 3:3-10; Col 1:26-27; Eph 5:32 and 1 Tim 3:16 it is called “the Mystery Doctrine” or “this mystery”.

Rom 16:25-26 gives the definition of mystery doctrine, “Now to Him who is able to establish you according to my gospel, the preaching of Jesus Christ on the basis of the revelation of the mystery which has been kept secret for long ages past, 26but now is manifested, and by the Scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the eternal God, has been made known to all the nations, leading to obedience of faith; 27to the only wise God, through Jesus Christ, be the glory forever. Amen.”

This doctrine is part of your Portfolio of Invisible Assets, your spiritual heritage.

Now that we have understood God’s love for us and His provisions enabling us to love him, we have to ask ourselves a few more questions.

  • If you can’t love the children of God who you see every day, how can you love an invisible God? 1 John 4:11-5:2

Answer: You cannot.

You cannot love someone you have not seen, when you cannot even love someone you have seen.

God gives us instruction and power to love His children. Yet if we do not know His Word and how to utilize His power to love, we are hopeless to love others, never mind God Himself.

One of the major attributes of God is love; therefore, He is love, 1 John 4:8, 16. All that He does is based on love, (just as everything He does is based on the combination of all of His attributes).

Everything He thinks is related to love. Therefore the mind of Christ is the thinking of love.

So how can you love God without His thinking in you? How can you love anyone without getting to know them?

You cannot.

Therefore it is vital to know the mind of Christ so that we can truly understand how to love, both God and His children.

  • God loves you. Do you love God?

In relation to the right man and right woman in marriage, there are two categories of love. Understanding both of these categories teaches us how to love God.

The man is commanded to love His wife. Eph 5:25-33; 1 Peter 3:7

Col 3:19, “Husbands, love your wives and do not be embittered against them.” (embittered is the Present, Passive, Imperative of PIKRAINO [πικραινο] = sharp, i.e. caustic, harsh, or crass);

In this command, he is to bring an aggressive love called enduring devotion to the marriage.

The word aggressive means a vigorous initiative.

In relation to God, the man’s vigorous initiative is shown by his persistence in the perception, metabolization, and application of Bible doctrine through the function of the two power options, (the filling of the Spirit and metabolization of Bible doctrine).

His aggressiveness is focused on the vigorous pursuit of God.

The woman then brings a responding love called respect to the marriage. Eph 5:22-24, 5:33b; Col 3:18; Titus 2:4; 1 Peter 3:1-6

Col 3:18, “Wives, be subject to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord.”

To have submissiveness and respect to your husband, who may not be respectable, takes a tremendous amount of humility. This genuine humility can only be accomplished when she has adorned her heart with the Word of God.

Now, not to leave the kids out, children are commanded to obey their parents. Eph 6:1-3; Col 3:20

Col 3:20, “Children, be obedient to your parents in all things, for this is well-pleasing to the Lord.”

So, the aspect of simple adherence to what is said is how a child demonstrates his love towards his parents and towards God.

But getting back to the right man and right woman categories of love, we (male and female believers) have to have both categories of true love in order to love God.

We must have an enduring devotion toward God as an aggressive function of our soul.

We must also have respect for God because respect is our response to His grace, which is the ultimate expression of God’s love directed toward us.

Therefore, respect is our response to that part of divine integrity called God’s love.

True love must always be related to integrity, God’s and ours.

  • If we do not respond to God’s integrity, we do not love him.
  • If we do not personally possess integrity through aggressive perception, metabolization, and application of Bible Doctrine, there is no true love for God or anyone else.

Since the believer’s response to the love of God (as expressed by His grace) is the passive part of our love for God, our respect demands the fulfillment of 1 Peter 5:5-6. Compare with James 4:6.

James 4:6, “But He gives a greater grace. Therefore it [Prov 3:34] says, `God makes war against the arrogant, but gives grace to the humble.’”

1 Peter 5:5-7, “You younger men, likewise, be subject to your elders; and all of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, for GOD IS OPPOSED TO THE PROUD, BUT GIVES GRACE TO THE HUMBLE. 6Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time, 7casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you.”

We only learn to love God in the status quo of humility. Arrogance in our soul resists the truth of His Word and defeats any expressions of true love. 1 Peter 3:8-12

1 Peter 3:8-12, “To sum up, all of you be harmonious, sympathetic, brotherly, kindhearted, and humble in spirit; 9not returning evil for evil or insult for insult, but giving a blessing instead; for you were called for the very purpose that you might inherit a blessing. 10For, “THE ONE WHO DESIRES LIFE, TO LOVE AND SEE GOOD DAYS, MUST KEEP HIS TONGUE FROM EVIL AND HIS LIPS FROM SPEAKING DECEIT. 11“HE MUST TURN AWAY FROM EVIL AND DO GOOD; HE MUST SEEK PEACE AND PURSUE IT. 12“FOR THE EYES OF THE LORD ARE TOWARD THE RIGHTEOUS, AND HIS EARS ATTEND TO THEIR PRAYER, BUT THE FACE OF THE LORD IS AGAINST THOSE WHO DO EVIL.””

What causes the believer to get all fouled up in his life, when in the past, he has been very clear in his understanding of Bible doctrine?

It begins with reaction to something in fear or bitterness, leading to a reversionistic focus on his situation or status.

When focus becomes on self, he then begins a frantic search for happiness. The frantic search for happiness leads to greater frustration and further unhappiness. If unchecked, you continue to spiral downward in reversionism being further away from your personal love and relationship with God.

That’s why we are exhorted to wait anxiously on the Lord. Waiting anxiously is your soul response to the love of God.

Jude 21, “Keep yourselves in the love of God, waiting anxiously for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to eternal life.”

Rom 8:28, “For we know that to those who love God, He causes all things to work together for good, to those who are elected on the basis of a predetermined plan.”

Jam 1:12, “Blessed is the person who perseveres under testing; because when he becomes approved, he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love Him.”

The frantic search for happiness is analogous to children at Christmas time. Their parents love them and buy presents to give on Christmas morning. The children anxiously await with excitement and anticipation for that morning to open the presents from their parents. When they finally receive the presents, they are filled with joy, love, and appreciation towards their parents who gave them the gifts. (Well at least it happens that way in the movies!). Now what happens when the child does not patiently wait for Christmas morning and goes hunting for the hidden presents and finds them?  Well, he is excited initially upon the discovery but come Christmas morning, he is tremendously disappointment because he already knows what he is receiving and the usual built up excitement is not there. So the moral of the story is, if we try to find happiness on our own, we will have it for the moment. But that happiness pales in comparison to waiting anxiously on the Lord and receiving in His timing. When we do, the exhilaration and appreciation is much greater.

This is the point in Mat 7:7-11 & Luke 11:9-13.

Luke 11:9-13, “So I say to you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. 10“For everyone who asks, receives; and he who seeks, finds; and to him who knocks, it will be opened. 11“Now suppose one of you fathers is asked by his son for a fish; he will not give him a snake instead of a fish, will he? 12“Or if he is asked for an egg, he will not give him a scorpion, will he? 13“If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him?”

We get all fouled up in this life, when we try to achieve our own success and happiness instead of petitioning our Father in love and waiting anxiously on His timing and answers.

Even though in the past we have been very clear in our understanding of Bible doctrine and God’s plan for our lives, we can easily lose our focus and revert back to satisfying ourselves in our own time and in our own way.

You can do that but the results will be greatly diminished from what God had planned for you.

And when you endeavor under the frantic search for happiness, you are saying to the Father in essence, “You do not love me; therefore, I’m going to accomplish this on my own”. And that is a demonstration that you do not have personal love for God the Father.

Through the simple reminder of the Problem Solving Devices, you can catch yourself in times of frustration before you go out and frantically search for happiness on your own.

In conclusion of our study of PLfGtF, there are five concepts of virtue-love that we can apply to understand our Personal love towards God the Father.

  • Motivation. Motivation for all true love comes from having personal love for God the Father.

The more you know Him (through His Word), the more motivation you will have as appreciation for what He has done, is doing, and will do for you.

  • Capacity. All true love must have a capacity.

The capacity is mental or perceptive ability.

Capacity for true love depends on Bible doctrine metabolized and circulating in the six compartments of the heart of your soul.

There is no capacity for love until you have Bible doctrine circulating in your stream of consciousness, and you are functioning under the filling of the Spirit.

  • Verification. Verification confirms the authenticity and accuracy of your motivation based on your capacity to love God.

With the filling of the Holy Spirit and the Word of God resident in your soul, you should assess your motivation to love God to determine if it is pure and based on the capacity within your soul.

There are many un-pure, self-motivated individuals running around in the Church today professing to love God. Yet if you ask them a biblical question regarding their faith and actions, they will not be able to respond. In that type, there is no capacity to love and their motivation is self-motivated.

Your capacity for love and motivation depend on the filling of the Spirit, Bible doctrine circulating in the stream of consciousness, your utilization of the three spiritual skills, and the deployment of the Eleven Problem Solving Devices.

When you deploy and use the 11 PSD’s, there is verification of your love towards God.

  • Validity. Validity is advancing in the adult spiritual life having maximum glorification of God.

When you advance through the three stages of Spiritual Adulthood (Spiritual Self-Esteem, Spiritual Autonomy, and Spiritual Maturity), you have demonstrated your motivation, capacity, and verification of Love towards God.

In the third stage of the adult spiritual life, you join the Lord Jesus Christ as witnesses for God against Satan in Satan’s appeal trial.

  • Reality. Reality is the doctrinal principle that Christians can love God the Father personally and each other impersonally.

This is the function of virtue-love as a Problem Solving Device.

Rom 5:5, “Hope does not disappoint us, because the love for God has been poured out in our hearts by means of the Holy Spirit who was given to us.”

The fantastic things provided for those who attain personal love for God the Father are absolutely beyond description.

Rom 8:28, “We know, therefore, that to those who love God, He works all things together for good to those who are elected according to a predetermined plan.”

1 Cor 2:9, “But just as it stands written, `Things which the eye has not seen, and it has not entered into the right lobe of mankind all that God has prepared for those who love Him.'”

Personal Love for God the Father provides motivation for the advancement in the spiritual life. Rom 14:19; Gal 5:7 (pursuing, running after God)

Personal Love means positive volition towards God, applying enforced and genuine humility, objectivity, and teachability.

Impersonal, Unconditional Love for Mankind

We now turn to the Eighth Problem Solving Device, which is the main principle of our scripture in 1 John 3:11-18.

1 John 3:11-18, “For this is the message which you have heard from the beginning, that we should love (AGAPAO: V-P.A.S.) one another; 12not as Cain, who was of the evil one and slew his brother. And for what reason did he slay him? Because his deeds were evil, and his brother’s were righteous. 13Do not be surprised, brethren, if the world hates you. 14We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we love (AGAPAO: V-P.A.I.) the brethren. He who does not love (AGAPAO: V-P.A.Part.) abides in death (acts like an unbeliever as qualified in the next sentence). 15Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer; and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him. 16We know love (AGAPE: N-A.) by this, that He laid down His life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. 17But whoever has the world’s goods, and sees his brother in need and closes his heart against him, how does the love (AGAPE: N-N.) of God abide in him? 18Little children, let us not love (AGAPAO: V-P.A.S.) with word or with tongue, but in deed and truth.” (italic parenthesis mine)

Key to parentheses by the word love:
AGAPAO is the Greek verb for love.
AGAPE is the Greek noun for love.

For the verbs:
P = Present tense
A = Active voice
S = Subjunctive mood
I = Indicative mood
Part = Participle

For the nouns:
N = Nominative case (Nominative is the case that presents the subject of the sentence.  A noun in the nominative case is the subject or subject complement of the verb)
A = Accusative case (The case that indicates the direct object. More broadly, it may be considered the case that limits the action.)

The word love is used six times in this passage. Four times it is the verb AGAPAO with one of them in the participle and two times the noun AGAPE.

  • The first point to note is that this passage begins and ends with verb AGAPAO in the Subjunctive mood. This means that John is expressing his desire for each of us to apply impersonal and unconditional love towards the brethren and one another.

This expression of love is directed towards the members of the Royal Family of God, fellow believers, and those outside the family of God, unbelievers.

The Subjunctive mood also provides potentiality. It is John’s desire that we love one another, but he is admitting that it is not always the case. We must use our positive volition towards the Word of God, through the filling of God the Holy Spirit, to express this love through our deeds and actions. As you know, and as I know, and as John knew, this is not always the case!

  • This leads us to our second point: Each of these verbs is in the Present tense and Active voice. Which means the believer is the one who produces the action of the verb at this very moment.

a) In verse 11, it is a Customary Present tense, which indicates an iterative action that regularly occurs but not without interruption. When we are filled with the Spirit and apply God’s Word, this will occur. When we walk in sin, it is interrupted, and we are not producing the desired action.

b) In verse 14, the first mention of AGAPAO is in the Retroactive Progressive Present tense combined with the Indicative mood. That means this is an action that has begun in the past and continues in the present, with emphasis on present time. It can almost be translated as a Perfect tense, which speaks only of results, but this Present tense is much broader. It is the action and results of apply AGAPAO love. The indicative mood is the reality of impersonal unconditional love expressed towards the Royal Family of God.

c) The second AGAPAO in verse 14 is the Articular Present tense in the Active voice and is a Participle. This is a Progressive or Descriptive Present tense for what is now going on. It is a scene in progress, continuous action. Coupled with the Greek negative ME, it is describing the one who does not love the entire Royal Family of God. In other words, we are exhorted to love the noble, honorable, attractive, and also the weirdoes, the kooks, the nut jobs, and the nitwits that are always involved too. We are commanded to love all. This includes believers who reside inside the cosmic system and those who do not.

d) The final Present tense is in verse 18. It is also a Progressive Present for an action that is in progress or a state of persistence. It too is combined with the negative ME as an exhortation to prohibit observing a negative action. In addition, this AGAPAO is in the Hortatory or Volitive Subjunctive mood, which is an exhortation or command. In this case, in the negative, it is an exhortation in which John invites other believers to participate in the action of the verb. That is, to not love with lip service, but to actually get involved by applying the truth, the Word of God, to the situation.

Now we turn to verse 16, “We know love (AGAPE: N-A.) by this, that He laid down His life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.”

R.B. Thieme Jr. translated this verse as such; “In this (God’s power system) we have come to know love (impersonal/unconditional) that He (and only He, the Lord Jesus Christ) laid down His life for us: consequently, we ought to lay down our lives for fellow believers.”

John is summarizing what our Lord commanded in John 15, which was not an empty command, because He demonstrated its application personally upon the Cross.

John 15:12-13, 17, “This is My commandment, that you love one another, just as I have loved you. 13Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends…. 17This I command you, that you love one another.”

In our Lord’s great Upper Room Discourse, He gave this command to all believers. He was teaching what true love is. It is not in lip service but in action and in deeds and in truth. We are not to live just for ourselves. We are to live for each other; putting each other first in all things.

In verse 12, “just as I have loved you” is the Gnomic Aorist tense of AGAPAO, which is an absolute. The Aorist Tense looks at the action as a whole. It is a timeless, general fact that Jesus Christ loved you and still loves you. Jesus Christ loves you with an absolute love. This love originated in eternity past, which motivated Him to become true humanity in Hypostatic Union, so that He could pay the price for your sins and give you salvation and eternal life.

Jesus did not give us an empty command but one that He fulfilled completely as reiterated in John 10:7-18.

John 10:7-18, “So Jesus said to them again, “Truly, truly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. 8All who came before Me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not hear them. 9I am the door; if anyone enters through Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture. 10The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly. 11I am the good shepherd; the good shepherd lays down His life for the sheep. 12He who is a hired hand, and not a shepherd, who is not the owner of the sheep, sees the wolf coming, and leaves the sheep and flees, and the wolf snatches them and scatters them. 13He flees because he is a hired hand and is not concerned about the sheep. 14“I am the good shepherd, and I know My own and My own know Me, 15even as the Father knows Me and I know the Father; and I lay down My life for the sheep. 16I have other sheep (Gentiles), which are not of this fold (Jews); I must bring them also, and they will hear My voice; and they will become one flock with one shepherd. 17For this reason the Father loves Me, because I lay down My life so that I may take it again. 18No one has taken it away from Me, but I lay it down on My own initiative. I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it up again (reality of His resurrection). This commandment I received from My Father.” (Italic in parenthesis mine)

This is also understood in Eph 2:14-18.

Eph 2:14-18, “For He Himself is our peace, who made both groups into one and broke down the barrier of the dividing wall, 15by abolishing in His flesh the enmity, which is the Law of commandments contained in ordinances, so that in Himself He might make the two into one new man, thus establishing peace, 16and might reconcile them both in one body to God through the cross, by it having put to death the enmity. 17AND HE CAME AND PREACHED PEACE TO YOU WHO WERE FAR AWAY, AND PEACE TO THOSE WHO WERE NEAR; 18for through Him we both have our access in one Spirit to the Father.”

Our Lord’s example is the one we need to follow. He laid down His life for us, because He loved us impersonally and unconditionally. We did nothing to earn or deserve His love. He loved us and died for us, because He is love and He expressed that love towards us at the Cross.

In 1 John 3 we are exhorted to love, presently, as Christ loved us. In John 15 His AGAPAO is in the Aorist tense, because He loved us in all aspects and timeframes in which love can exist. And that love was culminated at the Cross.

In essence you could say that He loved us unto death!!!!!!

Webster’s Dictionary defines impersonal and unconditional as follows:

Impersonal means having no personal reference or connection and not engaging the human personality or emotions.

No Personal Reference: It’s not based on whether you like them or not. It’s not based on who they are or how they have treated you in the past or even if you know them at all.

No Connection: It’s not based on having a relationship with someone or even the type of relationship you have, friendly or animosity.

Not engaged in human personality: It’s not based on whether they are a jovial or funny type of person or whether they are the bitter or jealous type of person.

Not engaged in emotions: It’s not based on whether they are happy or sad.

Unconditional means not conditional or limited.

This means that you don’t base your love on a specified set of circumstances.

It also means that you don’t set goals or boundaries for your love.

For example:

“I’ll do this much but if they don’t ………..that’s it”.

“I’ll do this if they do that”

“If they treat me nice then I’ll do ……….”

“If they screw up one more time than that’s it”

“I’m not doing that, it’s a waste of time”

“Why should I. What have they done for me”

Therefore, in relationship to love, Impersonal Love does not emphasize the personality, characteristics, or condition of the object of your love.

Instead, it emphasizes the virtue, honor, and integrity of the subject (you).

Personal Love emphasizes the virtue, honor, and integrity of the object (the one loved).

That is why we can have personal love for God, but it is impossible to have personal love for all of mankind.

Instead, we are commanded to have impersonal and unconditional love for all of mankind.

John 13:34-35, “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. 35By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”

You cannot have impersonal love until you first love God personally, which is the first half of virtue love.

Therefore, this becomes your motivation for expressing the other half of virtue love, for you must be motivated to love everyone.

You have no natural motive in your sinful self to love everyone.

As members of the Royal Family of God, we are in the world but not of the world. Our spiritual heritage is heavenly, not earthly, yet God preserves us alive in the devil’s world after salvation to represent the absent Christ, “even as I have loved you”.

God does not totally separate us from the devil’s kingdom but intends that we advance to spiritual maturity and become imitators of God and ambassadors of Christ in whatever circumstances we find ourselves. Eph 5:1-2; 2 Cor 5:20

Eph 5:1-2, “Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children; 2and walk in love, just as Christ also loved you and gave Himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God as a fragrant aroma.”

2 Cor 5:20, “Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were making an appeal through us; we beg you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.”

God is glorified by our lives in the devil’s world when we advance to spiritual maturity and express impersonal and unconditional love toward mankind.

This love is called impersonal because it means the subject has the ability to accept all people as they are.

It is the “professional love” of the Christian, which is accomplished through the filling of God the Holy Spirit.

In personal love the emphasis is on the object. In impersonal love the emphasis is on the subject. When love emphasizes the object, it is personal. When it emphasizes the subject, it is impersonal.

The greater the virtue of the subject (you), the greater the scope or range of the objects (mankind, likable to intolerable).

You are commanded to love all the brethren, your neighbors (those in your periphery), and everyone. Rom 13:8-14

Rom 13:8-14, “Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another; for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law. 9For this, “YOU SHALL NOT COMMIT ADULTERY, YOU SHALL NOT MURDER, YOU SHALL NOT STEAL, YOU SHALL NOT COVET,” and if there is any other commandment, it is summed up in this saying, “YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.” 10Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law. 11Do this, knowing the time, that it is already the hour for you to awaken from sleep; for now salvation is nearer to us than when we believed. 12The night is almost gone, and the day is near. Therefore let us lay aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. 13Let us behave properly as in the day, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual promiscuity and sensuality, not in strife and jealousy. 14But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh in regard to its lusts.”

Impersonal love for all mankind is the basis for problem solving in all human relationships. Not only is this virtue-love a problem solving device for the Christian life, but at the same time, it provides capacity for love, life, happiness, and thanksgiving.

The willingness to give one’s life for any believer is a motivation demonstration of maximum virtue, the maximum virtue of impersonal love.

The presence of impersonal love in the soul from living inside God’s power system produces this motivation.

You may not be called upon to make the supreme sacrifice from this motivation, but the presence of this motivation is an instant reaction force to deal with any personnel problem in life, including giving one’s life for another.

If you have enough motivation for supreme sacrifice, it follows that you have enough impersonal love motivation for facing all personnel problems related to people testing, system testing, and disaster testing.

The question arises: Would you be willing to give your life for the most obnoxious person of your acquaintance?

Your answer gives you some understanding of your own status quo, spiritually, regarding honor and integrity as the function of impersonal love.

John 15:13, “Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends.”

Sharing the Happiness of God

One of the essence or characteristics that make up God is that He is happy. God is perfect; therefore, His essence is composed of only perfect attributes. One of His perfect attributes is His perfect happiness.

  • Perfect God can only possess perfect happiness.
  • Because God is eternal, He has always been and will always be happy for all eternity. There never was a time, nor ever will be a time, when God is not happy. God has never been unhappy. Therefore, no one has ever made or ever will make God unhappy.
  • Although His omniscience has always known the billions of angelic and human creatures who would be a disappointment, He cannot be disappointed or frustrated, because He has perfect happiness. His happiness cannot be tarnished or in any way challenged or destroyed.
  • God is immutable, meaning He cannot change. Therefore, His happiness is unchangeable; nothing can make God unhappy. No creature has the power to make God unhappy, but God has the power to make you happy and to share His happiness.
  • Because God is infinite, His happiness has no boundaries; therefore, He can share His happiness. This same perfect happiness is available to you.

Psa 16:11 teaches three ways in which God shares His perfect happiness with us.

1) “You will make known to me the path of life.” (The Word of God resident in the soul)
2) “In Your presence is the fullness of happiness;” (Application of the Word of God to life’s situations)
3) “At Your right hand (Jesus Christ) are pleasures forevermore.” (Blessings and rewards as a result of applying the Mind of Christ)

The happiness described here, as belonging to God, is now the potential for any Church Age believer, who is consistent in his relationship with God and in the application of His Word, in faith, which results in spiritual growth.

The more you grow spiritually, the more you will experience the Happiness of God.

When you depend on the circumstances of life for your happiness, it is inevitable that spiritually you will fail miserably and become a believer that loses out on rewards.

  • People who can make you happy temporarily, can also make you unhappy.
  • If circumstances make you happy, then adverse circumstances will make you unhappy.

Mat 13:21, “Yet he has no firm root in himself, but is only temporary, and when affliction or persecution arises because of the word, immediately he falls away.”

  • If the thrill of the chase is your basis for happiness, when you make the catch, your happiness will slip away.
  • If your success in competing with others is your source of happiness, then you have a false happiness, which is very quickly lost.

All the forms of pseudo happiness in this life will never be satisfying to the believer in the Lord Jesus Christ.

Therefore, God has provided a happiness in the soul which is far greater than the pseudo happiness of life.

John 15:11, “I have taught you these things that My happiness might be in you, and that your happiness might be fulfilled.”

If you are dependent on any person or set of circumstances for happiness, you are weak and you do not have true happiness. To the extent that you are dependent on people, circumstances, prosperity, success, or any accouterments of life for happiness, you are weak.

But if, as a believer in Jesus Christ, you have been faithful in the reception, retention, and recall of Bible doctrine and have advanced in spiritual maturity, you are not only a strong person, but you have great inner happiness. As a result, you can take it with you wherever you go. It isn’t dependent on environment, associations, or circumstances of prosperity or adversity; it depends on none of these things. It is a part of God’s grace policy to believers in the Lord Jesus Christ.

The source of God’s Happiness is taught in Prov 3:13.

Prov 3:13, “Happiness belongs to the person who finds wisdom, even to the person who gains understanding.”

“Wisdom” is the faith application of metabolized Bible doctrine.

“Understanding” refers to faith perception and metabolization of the Word of God.

Luke 11:28, “But He (Jesus Christ) said, “On the contrary, blessed (happy) are those who hear the word of God and observe it.””

This is also taught in the Beatitudes of Mat 5:3-13 where the Greek adjective MAKARIOS in the plural should be translated happy.

3“Happy are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”
4“Happy are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.”
5“Happy are the gentle, for they shall inherit the earth.”
6“Happy are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.”
7“Happy are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.”
8“Happy are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.”
9“Happy are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.”
10“Happy are those who have been persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”
11“Happy are you when people insult you and persecute you, and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of Me.”
12“Rejoice and be glad, for your reward in heaven is great; for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.”

This happiness would not be possible with the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is the source of our sharing God’s perfect happiness because He is the teacher of Bible doctrine, which is the source of true happiness.

Perfect happiness is said to be the “fruit of the Spirit” in Gal 5:22; Rom 14:17.

Gal 5:22, “The fruit of the Spirit is love, happiness, prosperity.”

Rom 14:17, “For the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and prosperity and happiness by means of the Holy Spirit.”

In other words, the Plan of God for our lives goes way beyond our normal functions of eating and drinking, the physical pleasures of life. It includes sharing in the happiness that God possesses and is.

We commonly use the word happiness in relationship to our emotions, stimulation, excitement, and anticipation. But they typically give us a false sense of what true happiness is.

Typically, we carry the entrenched notion that some set of circumstances, things, or people can “make” us happy.

But true happiness is not something that is made or manufactured by you.

We must never confuse happiness, as taught in the Word of God, with the various stimuli of life, which are enjoyable for the moment, but have no ability to sustain us in day-by-day living.

Many times people get caught up in what is called the “frantic search for happiness” because they are trying to fill the void in their soul due to the absence of God and His Word in their life.

During that search, Satan is more than happy to attempt to counterfeit God’s true happiness, this is called Pseudo-Happiness.

As the ruler of this world, Satan likes to keep his constituents happy.

He does so by providing stimulation, ambition, and self-indulgence, which will either counterfeit or cancel out the happiness God has available for us.

Satan’s myth is that both people and pleasant circumstances in life will make you happy.

Satan’s propaganda is that money, success, pleasure, social life, sexual life, public approbation, fame, material things, travel, health, and pleasant circumstances in life will make you happy.

This is true under certain circumstances and with certain limitations. However, it doesn’t last.

Heb 11:25, “… than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season.”

Often these things are pleasurable, stimulating, fun, and enjoyable, but they don’t carry you in times of difficulty.

By way of contrast, what God has provided for us in perfect happiness is a permanent factor and a Problem Solving device.

God’s true happiness is inner peace, joy, and contentment, which are the blessings He makes available to all Church Age believers. We just need to make ourselves available to receive these blessings.

Psa 1:3, “He will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in its season and its leaf does not wither; and in whatever he does, he prospers.”

Anything that is worthwhile is worthwhile in adversity, as well as in prosperity.

The question is, “What are you going to fill the void in your soul with”?

Are you going to fill the void with the temporary and fleeting happiness that the world says is happiness, or are you going to fill the void with the permanent and lasting happiness of God?

Perfect happiness comes through the believer’s consistent positive metabolization of Bible doctrine. Perfect happiness depends on Bible doctrine in the soul.

Perfect Happiness is something you think, not something you do.

God has to share His thoughts with you before you can share His happiness. When the thinking of God becomes your thinking, then you will share God’s happiness.

The Word of God gives us the only true Happiness in the universe. Psa 31:7; 32:10-33:5; John 17:13

Psa 31:7, “I will rejoice and be glad in Your lovingkindness, because You have seen my affliction; You have known the troubles of my soul.”

John 17:13, “But now I come to You; and these things I speak in the world so that they may have My joy made full in themselves.”

It is not how much we have, but how much we enjoy, that makes us happy.

Phil 4:11-13, “Not that I speak from want, for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am. 12I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need. 13I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.”

Content is the Greek noun AUTARKES, which means:

  • Sufficient for one’s self, strong enough or processing enough to need no aid or support.
  • Independent of external circumstances.
  • Contented with one’s lot, with one’s means, though the slenderest

Its verb ARKEO, in the active voice, means to be sufficient; therefore, to be self-sufficient. To be possessed of unfailing strength, to be strong, to suffice, to be enough, to defend, ward off.

2 Cor 12:9-10, “And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me. 10Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ’s sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong.”

1 Tim 6:8-10, “But godliness actually is a means of great gain when accompanied by contentment. 7For we have brought nothing into the world, so we cannot take anything out of it either. 8If we have food and covering, with these we shall be content. 9But those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a snare and many foolish and harmful desires which plunge men into ruin and destruction. 10For the love of money is a root of all sorts of evil, and some by longing for it have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.”

Heb 13:5-6, “Make sure that your character is free from the love of money, being content with what you have; for He Himself has said, “I WILL NEVER DESERT YOU, NOR WILL I EVER FORSAKE YOU,” so that we confidently say, “THE LORD IS MY HELPER, I WILL NOT BE AFRAID. WHAT WILL MAN DO TO ME?””

This comes closer to describing what Biblical happiness really is, and what happens to us, when we execute the Plan of God for the Church Age.

The Happiness of God is something we have with us all the time. It’s not dependent on situations or circumstances.

Happiness is only in the body to the extent that the soul is filled in the body.

The soul and spirit are the immaterial parts of man, and as such, God’s Happiness is not related to the body at all.

A person is happy because he is growing daily, not even knowing where his limit lies. Every day there can be a new revelation or a new discovery about life, about God, and about ourselves. Those who are truly happy will live one day at a time.

Occupation with the Lord Jesus Christ:

Occupation with Christ is personal love for our Lord Jesus Christ as demonstrated through maximum intake, metabolized, and application of His Word (Bible Doctrine), in faith.

With the Word circulating in the stream of consciousness in the heart of your soul, by means of the filling of the Holy Spirit, the result is freedom from Cosmic garbage in the subconscious of your mind and total focus on the mind of Jesus Christ.

That is your thinking would be in line with “what would Jesus do?”

Did you know that mimicking someone, emulating their traits and characteristics, and copying their train of thought is the highest form of flattery.

Therefore, when we have the mind of Christ circulating through our soul, we are giving Him the highest form of glory and honor.

Occupation with Christ is personal love for God the Son caused by post-salvation renewing of your mind, which is accomplished by the fact that the mystery doctrine of the Church Age has been and continues to be the number one priority in your life.

1 Pet 1:8, “And even though you have not seen Him, you love Him [occupation with Christ]; and though you do not see Him now but believe in Him, you greatly rejoice with inexpressible happiness [God’s Happiness] and full of glory.”

Capacity to love someone who is invisible requires a tremendous amount of information in the heart of your soul.

The capacity to love Jesus Christ comes from having His Word converted in your soul to Problem Solving Devices.

Again, when you apply His Word by utilizing the first ten PSD’s, you are demonstrating your love and respect for His thinking. His thinking is and tells us who He is.

As a result, we are occupied with Him because we are engaged in His character and personality.

Those who love Christ have made a role model out of our Lord.

God’s Plan for the believer is broken down into three phases. Each Phrase emphasizes the work of Jesus Christ on our behalf.

Phase One – Salvation, eternal life, placed in Union with Jesus Christ. John 1:12; 10:28-29; Acts 4:12; 16:31; Rom 6:8, 23; 2 Tim 2:11

This is made possible because of the efficacious work of our Lord Jesus Christ upon the Cross.

Acts 4:12, “And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved.”

Acts 16:31, “They said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household.””

2 Tim 2:11, “It is a trustworthy statement: For if we died with Him, we will also live with Him.”

Rom 6:23, “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Phase Two – The Christian walk empowered by God the Holy Spirit in the application of the Mind of Christ. John 14:16, 26; 15:26; 16:13

John 14:26, “But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you.”

John 15:26, “When the Helper comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, that is the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify about Me.”

John 16:13 “But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come.”

This is made possible because of Jesus providing His Word to men through the inspiration of God the Holy Spirit. John 1:1-14, 1 Cor 2:16; 2 Tim 3:16;

John 1:1, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”

John 1:14, “And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.”

1 Cor 2:16b, “But we have the mind of Christ.”

Being in fellowship with the Holy Spirit through confession of our personal sins (1 John 1:6-9; Ps 32:5) enables us to be occupied with Christ. Failure to have fellowship with God destroys our ability to be occupied with Christ.

God has made perfect provision for the Christian to live a supernatural life, to advance to spiritual maturity, and to possess happiness and blessing, whether in prosperity or adversity through Occupation with Christ. John 17:13

John 17:13, “But now I come to You (God the Father); and these things I speak in the world so that they (believers occupied with Christ) may have My joy made full in themselves.”

Phase Three – God’s Plan for the believer in the eternal state. John 14:1-6; 1 Thes 4:13-18

This is made possible through the Resurrection, Ascension, and Session of our Lord. 1 Cor 15:20-26

1 Cor 15:20-21, “But now Christ has been raised from the dead, the first fruits of those who are asleep. For since by a man came death, by a man also came the resurrection of the dead.”

1 Thes 4:14, “For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so God will bring with Him those who have fallen asleep in Jesus.”

Believers who do not advance spiritually are living in carnality.

Carnality is living outside of the plan and protection of God because of unconfessed sin upon our soul. (Psa 32:5; 1 John 1:6-10)

The believer who is not living in fellowship with God will have failure in their spiritual life regardless of past victories or triumphs. 1 Kings 19:1-14

Without fellowship with God and resultant Occupation with Christ, fear, worry, anxiety, arrogance, malice, projection, etc. sets in as tempted by the Old Sin Nature (OSN). 1 Kings 19:3, 10, 14

When temptations from the OSN take hold in our souls, we are no longer occupied with Christ and are now occupied with self and circumstances. 1 Kings 19:2-4

The believer who has just had a spiritual victory is most vulnerable to failure because we see “OUR” victory then we see “OUR” faults and weaknesses.

Self-preservation is a powerful instinct that will lead us to do things we normally would not or could not do. 1 Kings 19:3

Instead of realizing we are alive and therefore God has a plan for us, we become carnal weaklings and enter into the self-pity party. 1 Kings 19:4b

No one believer is better than the others are. The difference between believers is the appropriation of God’s Grace.

It is a soul kink to feel sorry for ourselves and one of the worst expressions of carnality.

We can all relate to Elijah’s sitting under the Juniper Tree. 1 Kings 19:5a

In God’s perfect character, His grace is always available to us no matter what our mental attitude. 1 Kings 19:5-7

Jesus Christ always comes to us in our hour of difficulty and trial. Isa 41:10

Isa 41:10, “Do not fear, for I am with you; Do not anxiously look about you, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, Surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.”

Believers who are occupied with Christ have true happiness and have more than adequate spiritual strength. 1 Kings 19:8; 1 Peter 1:8

1 Pet 1:8, “And even though you have not seen Him, you love Him [Occupation with Christ]; and though you do not see Him now but believe in Him, you greatly rejoice with inexpressible happiness [God’s Happiness] and full of glory.”

This happiness is dependent upon the accumulation of Bible doctrine in the right lobe of the soul and having zero garbage in the subconscious of the soul.

The happiness [from Occupation with Christ and the Problem Solving Devices] is an inexpressible happiness which you cannot communicate to others.

It is something that belongs to the privacy of your own soul.

This believer is full of glory, an invisible glory to man, but very visible to the angelic creatures. 1 Pet 1:12

1 Pet 1:12, “It was revealed to them that they were not serving themselves, but you, in these things which now have been announced to you through those who preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven—things into which angels long to look.”

The same Shekinah glory that filled the Tabernacle and the Temple now fills the believer’s soul.

2 Cor 6:16, “For we are the temple of the living God; just as God said, ‘I will dwell in them and walk among them; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people’.”

The primary ministry of God the Holy Spirit’s indwelling is to glorify Jesus Christ. John 16:7-14

John 16:7-8, “But I tell you the truth, it is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I go, I will send Him to you. 8And He, when He comes, will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment;”

John 16:12-14, “I have many more things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. 13But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come. 14He will glorify Me, for He will take of Mine and will disclose it to you.”

Jesus Christ had to be absent from the earth before the Holy Spirit could begin His ministry of glorification.

Once Christ was glorified in Heaven through His Ascension and Session upon the throne at the right hand of the Father, now He could be glorified on earth. John 7:37-39

John 7:37, “Now on the last day, the great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, ‘If anyone is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink. 38He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, ‘From his innermost being will flow rivers of living water.’’ 39But this He spoke of the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were to receive; for the Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.”

Occupation with Christ is based on the glorification of Christ. Col 3:17

Col 3:17, “Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father.”

Rom 8:13-14, “For if you are living according to the flesh, you must die; but if by the Spirit you are putting to death the deeds of the body, you will live. For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.”

Only one person can glorify Christ, and that is God the Holy Spirit by means of indwelling and leading the believer.

1 Cor 6:20, “For you have been bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body.”

1 Cor 6: 17, 19-20, ” But the one who joins himself to the Lord is one spirit with Him. …19Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own? 20 For you have been bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body.”

In the Tabernacle of the Old Testament, the pillar of fire represented a visible manifestation of Jesus Christ, yet it was an impersonal relationship to the believer because there was no indwelling.

In the Church Age, the believer has an invisible manifestation of Christ in our souls (the temple) yet we have a personal relationship with Him because of His indwelling. 1 Cor 3:16; 6:19; 2 Cor 6:16; Eph 2:21

With doctrine as the working object of faith, the believer has maximum love response toward God, hence he is designated PHILOS THEOU — “friend of God” or “lover of God.” James 2:22,23.

As a Lover of God, Occupation with Christ is illustrated by the doctrine of right man – right woman in 1 Cor 11:7-12; Eph 5:25-32.

As the man is the initiator and the woman the responder in God’s design for husband and wife, the function of GAP is the believer’s response to Christ’s love in Phase Two.

In other words, Christ initiates love to the believer through Bible doctrine, 1 John 4:19; James 1:21-22. As a beautiful wife we should be responding to our lover’s initiative.

The Sealing Ministry of the Holy Spirit, which occurs at salvation, guarantees an eternal love relationship between Jesus Christ and the believer Eph 1:11-14.

Therefore Occupation with Christ is the standard operating procedure for the Christian life, the normal super-grace life. Heb 12:1,2

There are two divine mandates with regard to Occupation with Christ.

  • Heb 12:2, “fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”

“Be concentrating on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith (doctrine), who because of the exhibited happiness, He endured the Cross and disregarded [use of the problem solving devices] the shame [imputation of our sins], and He sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”

  • 1 Pet 3:15, “But sanctify the Lord Christ in your hearts always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence.”

“Sanctify” = hagiasate – [ηαγιασατε]

It means to set apart; make holy, consecrate; regard as sacred; purify, cleanse. Set apart as more important than anything else.

God makes a direct positive demand on your will and volition to be occupied with Christ, which is a mandate to be consistent in the intake of Bible doctrine.

If your number one priority is not Bible doctrine, there is no way you can effectively use the Problem Solving Devices.

Occupation with Christ is also defined as fellowship with the Son.

1 Cor 1:9, “God is faithful, through Whom you were called into fellowship with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.”

The Call of God is God the Father inviting the unbeliever to change his mind about Jesus Christ and believe in His Son for salvation.

After Salvation, fellowship with the Holy Spirit is necessary for the execution of the mandates to be Occupied with Christ. 2 Cor 13:14.

2 Cor 13:14, “The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit, be with you all.”

Getting back to 1 John 3:

1 John 3:19-24, Confidence Before the Lord:

1 John 3:19-24, “We will know by this that we are of the truth, and will assure our heart before Him 20in whatever our heart condemns us; for God is greater than our heart and knows all things. 21Beloved, if our heart does not condemn us, we have confidence before God; 22and whatever we ask we receive from Him, because we keep His commandments and do the things that are pleasing in His sight. 23This is His commandment, that we believe in the name of His Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, just as He commanded us. 24The one who keeps His commandments abides in Him, and He in him. We know by this that He abides in us, by the Spirit whom He has given us.”

In verse 19, “We will know by this that we are of the truth” is John’s expression and exhortation of confidence in being a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ.

The phrase “we will know” is anchored by the Greek verb GINOSKO which means, “to know” in the Future, Middle Deponent, Indicative. This indicates that when we operate according to God’s Word, we will have confidence in our standing before Him and in our relationship with Him. This also indicates that in order to operate in the Word of God, we must know the Word of God.

In this exhortation of confidence Paul is referring back to the previous verses (16-18), which are the demonstration of the Christian way of life, including:

  • Having impersonal and unconditional love for all of mankind.
  • Laying down your life for a fellow believer, (giving your all for the benefit of others, having a self-sacrificial attitude).
  • Not being a cheapskate but giving graciously to those in need from the resources God has already given to you.
  • Having personal integrity in all that you do.

The principle is, when you demonstrate these characteristics in your life, as a result you will be assured within your own heart that you are walking in the Plan and Will of God.

The Greek word for “assure” is PEITHO in the Future, Active, Indicative, which means, “to persuade, to have confidence or assure.” So the meaning is that we will have confidence in our relationship and standing before God when we operate in the Christian way of life. We will know and have confidence!

This assurance operates in what the Bible calls your heart. This is not the blood pumping organ in your chest but is actually the mentality of your soul (a.k.a. the right lobe of your soul) where you store and retain information, especially Bible Doctrine.

There are six compartments to the Heart of your soul including; the Frame of Reference, Memory Center, Vocabulary, Categorical Storage, Conscience; Launching Pad.

Even though the overall term heart is used here, the specific compartment called the “conscience” is what is in view as noted in the first part of verse 20.

“In whatever our heart condemns us” is a clear picture of the function of the Conscience of your soul.

The Conscience is the scanning of information on a file, within the filing cabinet (heart) of your soul, to use as reference material. It is the actual reference material within a file that is applied in your life. Whatever information is imprinted on the files within your soul determines the Norms and Standards you will express in life.

If you have the Word of God resident within your soul, then your Norms and Standards will reflect God’s thinking. If your N & S are imprinted with cosmic / worldly thinking, then that will be reflected in your actions.

When you have God’s Norms and Standards, your conscience will lead you away from evil and towards the righteousness of God.

The Greek word for “condemn” is the compound word KATAGINOSKO – καταγινοσκο. It is made up from KATA, which means, “down or against,” and GINOSKO, which means, “to know.” So combined literally it means, “know against”, but comes to mean to find fault with, blame, to accuse, or condemn.

It is in the Present, Active, Subjunctive, Third Person, Singular. The Subjunctive mood makes this a variable action. In the Present tense and Active voice based on what information is stored within the heart of your soul, will determine how your conscience operates either positively or negatively.

In the context of this passage it has the meaning of the conscience of the soul condemning your negative actions. This is a quick and subtle way of balancing verse 19. In verse 19, you have confidence when you operate in God’s Word. In verse 20 you are convicted when you do not.

So “condemns” is a good translation with the understanding that when you build up your soul with the Word of God, the Word becomes your norms and standards raising a “red flag” from your conscience when you are tempted by the sin nature.

The other point of interest here is the last phrase of verse 19, “assure our heart before Him”. As we noted previously, the word for “assure” is the Greek verb PEITHO – πειθο, which means, “to persuade, to have confidence, or assure.”

Therefore, the confidence you have “before Him” means confidence in your personal relationship with God.

So with the Norms and Standards in the right lobe of your soul (heart), from resident Bible Doctrine, you should have confidence in your personal relationship with God.

The point is you can either be self-conscious, embarrassed or ashamed of your thoughts and actions in the presence of God or you can have confidence and assurance in your daily walk / relationship with Him.

It all depends on what you are building your norms and standards with. Are you building them based on worldly / cosmic thinking or are you basing them on the mind / thinking of Jesus Christ?

Then in the second half of verse 20 we have the phrase “God is greater…”

Regarding this phrase Charles Ryrie states, “We may be either too strict or too lenient in examining our lives; therefore, John’s word of comfort is, God the all-knowing is also the all-loving.”

You see God is THE perfect judge. He never goes too far nor comes up short. In all that He does, it is the right thing, at the right time, in the right way.

That is why you need to know His Word. Without it you will over or under judge yourself in a wrong way. But with His Word resident in the heart of your soul, you will know exactly how He thinks, acts and judges. With that knowledge as your norms and standards, you will judge yourself rightly.

Acts 13:46, “Paul and Barnabas spoke out boldly and said, “It was necessary that the word of God be spoken to you first; since you (Jews) repudiate (push away / reject) it and judge yourselves unworthy of eternal life.”

Here the unbelieving Jews were given the thinking of God first, but rejected it. Instead, they used their own false set of norms and standards from Satan’s cosmic system of legalistic religion and judged themselves as not being qualified for salvation and eternal life by means of Jesus Christ.

The application is, they over judged (condemned) themselves thinking that only by means of their human good works could they possibly save themselves. They did not understand the grace of God and His provisions for their salvation.

But what does the Word of God say?

1 John 5:11-13, “And the testimony is this, that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. 12He who has the Son has the life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have the life. 13These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life.”

You see there is no mention of works or cleaning up one’s life to earn or deserve salvation. The correct norms and standards regarding your sins and salvation tell you that God has taken care of your every sin through the efficacious work of His Son Jesus Christ upon the Cross. If we believe in Him, we have eternal life. If we do not, then we have rejected God’s grace provisions and do not have eternal life, John 3:16-18.

Without the Word of God resident within your soul (in this case the gospel message), you are left with false norms and standards that tell you your salvation is up to you. But with the truth of the Word of God resident in the right lobe of your soul (heart), you have confidence in the righteous judgment of God that has provided your salvation.

Let’s also not forget that we must believe in what we have heard. Faith must be mixed with knowledge.

This is not only applicable for understanding salvation, but it also applies to our everyday living, as Paul noted just after reciting the Eucharist in 1 Cor 11:29-32.

1 Cor 11:29-32, “For he who eats and drinks (partakes of communion), eats and drinks judgment to himself if he does not judge the body rightly. For this reason many among you are weak and sick, and a number sleep (three stages of divine discipline). But if we judged ourselves rightly, we would not be judged. But when we are judged, we are disciplined by the Lord so that we will not be condemned along with the world.”

God’s discipline is our wakeup call to get back into the sphere of blessing. God can only bless us when we are in fellowship with Him, walking in His light.

Judging yourself rightly, includes God’s Grace Plan of recovery when we have sinned as noted in 1 John 1:8-10.

1 John 1:8, “If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us. 9If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 10If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar and His Word is not in us.”

As we have recently noted in the 11 Problem Solving Devices, correct and appropriate self-condemnation is a part of Problem Solving because it involves Rebound, the recovery of the filling of the Spirit and re-entry into God’s power system.

In other words, there comes a moment when the norms and standards of the right lobe, the conscience, functions in self-condemnation, which is the recognition of personal sin, that then leads you to acknowledge them to God (the rebound technique).

Remember that we are to be careful to not over or under judge ourselves but to do so according to the Word of God that says, all sins have been forgiven at the Cross, and therefore we only need to confess them to God.

Therefore, we do not have to make up for our sins or do any form of penance. That is over judging.

Likewise, we can’t ignore our sins and think we don’t need to confess them. That is under judging.

We judge rightly by affirming that Christ has paid for our every sin, and we humbly approach the throne of grace in confidence to confess them directly to God the Father.

Remember that KATAGINOSKO is a potential subjunctive. It implies a future reference point of contingency because you may or may not decide to use the rebound technique. It is your choice.

Now back to verse 20, “Because if our right lobe condemns us, bear in mind that God is greater than our right lobes; furthermore he has always known all things.”

There is nothing that you can do or say that will ever surprise God, so you might as well stand up and tell it like it is. Besides, He already knows what was on your heart. You can’t hide from Him.

Gen 6:5, “Then the LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great on the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.”

So as stated in verse 21, with the Word of God resident and functioning, in faith, in the heart of your soul as your norms and standards, you have confidence in the day to day decisions you are making and assurance of your standing before God “uncondemned”.

Likewise, in times of failure and sin, we also know that through the confession of our sins, we have a right standing before God once again.

Our sins have been forgiven and forgotten and we do not condemn ourselves for past action. Isa 43:25; Jer 31:34; Heb 8:12; 10:17

Isa 43:25, “I, even I, am the one who wipes out your transgressions for My own sake, and I will not remember your sins.”

Phil 3:12-16, “Not that I have already obtained it or have already become perfect (ultra-spiritually mature), but I press on so that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus. 13Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, 14I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. 15Let us therefore, as many as are perfect (mature), have this attitude; and if in anything you have a different attitude, God will reveal that also to you; 16however, let us keep living by that same standard to which we have attained.”

In verse 20, we understand the superiority of God compared to our own hearts. In 1 John 4:4, we will also see that God is greater than the greatest power of this world, Satan.

We are told these things so that we would have confidence, not in our own heart and ourselves, or in the world or things of the world, but to have confidence solely in God who is greater than all.

Knowing that God is in you and greater than all, also tells us that we have the Omnipotence of God available to us. So we are given this exhortation to receive and utilize that power in all aspects of life.

God is greater than the inward man. God is greater than the outward man. His Greatness is there for us to use in confidence as noted in verse 21.

1 John 3:21, “Beloved, if our heart does not condemn us, (with the Word resident in your soul and applied in faith it should not), we have confidence before God.”

Principles of Confidence:

  • Having confidence when face to face with God is what the believer’s social life with God should be. It is the true spiritual life, our worship of God.

All true confidence is toward God, not toward man. The only way we can have confidence is to link up with someone we can depend on, and that someone is God. He is the only One dependable 24 by 7 by 365.

  • Therefore, there can be no real confidence in life apart from residence and function inside God’s power system. At the same time, there can be no real courage in life apart from residence and function in God’s power system.
  • You cannot reside or function inside God’s power system apart from the continual and habitual use of the Rebound technique.

1 John 1:8, “If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us. 9If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

Eph 5:18, “And do not get drunk with wine, for that is dissipation, but be filled with the Spirit, 19speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody with your heart to the Lord; 20always giving thanks for all things in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to God, even the Father; 21and be subject to one another in the fear of Christ.”

John 13:10, “Jesus said to him, ‘He who has bathed needs only to wash his feet, but is completely clean; and you are clean.'”

There are three results of the rebound prayer:

  • Recovery of the filling of God the Holy Spirit. Eph 5:18
  • Restoration to fellowship with God. 1 John 1:7-9
  • Resumption of your spiritual life. Phil 3:13-14

Rebound makes it possible to continue a life of prayer as part of your spiritual life.

Prayer is an extension of the spiritual life. You are not spiritual because you pray; you pray because you are spiritual. Therefore, prayer is a result of the spiritual life; the spiritual life is not a result of prayer.

The application of the Rebound technique demonstrates your confidence toward God, especially when praying.

  • Your ability to continually use Rebound is only possible when you recognize two things.

a) What sin is. Rom 1:22-32; 1 Cor 6:9-10; 2 Tim 3:1-7
b) All sin originates from human volition.

The source of sin is human volition; the source of temptation is the Old Sin Nature. But the OSN can only tempt; you must consent. The two factors to be recognized in Rebound are the sin in the believer’s life, and the source of it. Rom 6:6; 7:5; Eph 4:22; Col 3:9

  • Legalism is arrogance; either arrogance in preoccupation with self or arrogance in submitting to a system of expression that has no meaning. Religious legalism is a distraction to the effective spiritual life.
  • To add any form of human merit to the grace function of Rebound, such as remorse, penance, promises to God (I’ll never do it again), is to destroy or nullify the effectiveness of the Rebound technique. Compare with Rom 11:6.

Therefore, instead of re-entering God’s power system you remain in the cosmic system.

  • Confidence toward God and love toward people is the pattern of impersonal love as the ultimate virtue in life. To say it another way, the pattern of unconditional love as a virtue demands confidence toward God.

Confidence toward God has a great by-product: effectiveness in prayer.
This leads us to verse 22 where we see the application of our confidence in God when praying.

Heb 4:16, “Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”

The same Greek word for “confidence,” PARRESIA, is used in both verses. PARRESIA means freedom of speech, confidence, boldness (in speech), frankness, bluntness, and openness.

This tells us the mental attitude we should have when approaching the Father in prayer.

Therefore, a key aspect regarding effective prayer is having confidence:

1) In your experiential standing before Him. 1 John 3:22b, “Keeping His commandments and doing the things that are pleasing in His sight.”

2) In His ability in answering your prayers. 1 John 3:22a, “And whatever we ask we receive from Him.”

If you approach Him in fear, worry, or doubt, your prayer will not be answered directly. Any response will purely be the grace of God.

Principles Regarding Prayer.

  • Prayer is a function of the Royal Priesthood, where you have access and privilege to present two categories of requests to God the Father.

a. Petitions – prayers for yourself.
b. Intercessory prayers – prayers for others.

Because of the universal Royal Priesthood of the Church Age, there has never been such an emphasis on every believer entering into prayer. It is part of your equal privilege and opportunity to have an effective ministry.

  • All prayer is offered to God the Father, not to Jesus Christ or to the Holy Spirit. Any prayer offered to Christ is automatically cancelled, since it fails to follow God’s protocol for prayer.

This is illustrated by the model prayer for the disciples in Mat 6:9 and also found in Eph 1:16-17, 3:14; 1 Pet 1:17.

Mat 6:9, “Pray, then, in this way: ‘Our Father who is in heaven, hallowed be Your name’.”

Eph 3:14, “For this reason I bow my knees before the Father.”

Prayer is addressed in the name of or through the channel of the Son. John 14:13 14; Heb 7:25

John 14:13, “Whatever you ask in My name, that will I do, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son.”

All prayer is made through the enabling power (filling) of God the Holy Spirit. Eph 6:18; Jude 20

  • The more you grow spiritually in grace the more effective you will be in your prayer life.

Effectiveness is not measured in terms of your eloquence when praying in public, but on the basis of your spiritual growth when praying in private. Mat 6:7; Mark 12:40; Luke 20:47

Effective prayer is related to Spiritual Adulthood.

Confidence and effectiveness in prayer exists when the believer has advanced to spiritual adulthood.

Confidence is a virtue directed toward God. Confidence in prayer is dependent upon knowledge of God’s will. Therefore, effectiveness of prayer must relate to cognizance of the will of God.

1 John 5:14 15, “And this is the confidence which we have face to face with Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us in whatever we ask [and He does], we know that we have the request which we have asked from Him.”

If we hold sin upon our heart, then our prayer life will not be effective. Psa 66:18; Mat 6:15

Psa 66:18, “If I regard wickedness in my heart, the Lord will not hear me.”

Trusting in God regarding your prayers is also a key factor in the effectiveness of your prayers, that is Faith Resting in God.

Mat 21:22, “All things whatsoever you shall ask in prayer, believing, you shall receive.”

Mark 11:24, “Therefore, I say to you, `All things for which you ask and pray, believe that you shall receive them, and they shall be given to you.'”

At Spiritual Adulthood, you now have a thorough understanding of God’s will and your prayers comply with God’s will.

1 John 5:14, “If we ask anything according to His will, He hears us.”

As you grow to attain Spiritual Adulthood, your prayers will be increasingly effective.

Jer 33:3,”Call to Me and I will answer you, and I will tell you great and mighty things, which you do not know.”

Upon reaching Spiritual Adulthood the power of your prayers are increasingly sensationally.

Psa 66:18-20, “If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me. But in fact, God has heard (in eternity past) me and He has given heed to the voice of my prayer. Blessed be God who has not turned away my prayer or His gracious mercy from me.”

Psa 116:1-4, “I love the Lord, because He has heard my voice and my supplications. Because He bent down and listened carefully to me, Therefore I will call to Him as long as I live. The snares of death encompassed me and the terrors of the grave have overpowered me; I am suffering anguish and distress. Then I kept calling on the person of the Lord: `O Lord, I beseech You, deliver my soul!'”

This believer was dying and prayed for deliverance. The rest of the Psalm indicates his prayer was answered.

The real power of prayer is between Spiritual Self Esteem (“I love the Lord”) and Spiritual Maturity.

John 15:7, “If you abide in Me, and My doctrines abide in you, whatever you wish shall be done for you.”

“If you abide in Me,” refers to your very own spiritual life.

“and My doctrines abide in you,” tells us that the key to prayer is doctrine first.

This promise is not like a blank check on which you can write any amount you want.

When doctrine is in you, then you can “ask whatever you wish, and it shall be done for you”, because by that time, you’ll have enough sense to know how to use the weapon of prayer effectively.

Rom 12:12, “Rejoicing in hope [hope 2 and 3], persevering in tribulation (undeserved suffering), devoted to prayer.”

Effective prayer is related to spiritual childhood.

In spiritual childhood, your prayers are not as effective because most of your petitions are related to arrogance, and your intercessions are only for those people you like.

But all intercessory prayers must be impersonal and unconditional. The great power in intercessory prayer is impersonal / unconditional love.

Now with that said, also keep in mind that there is a relationship between the effectiveness of your prayers and the Faith Rest Drill.

Mat 21:22, “In everything you ask in prayer, believing, you will receive.”

Believing refers to the first stage of the Faith Rest Drill, which is Problem Solving Device #3.

In the first stage, you mix the promises of God with faith, that is believing and trusting in the promises found in the Word of God.

For example, Hebrews 13:5 says, “Make sure that your character is free from the love of money, being content with what you have; for He Himself has said, “I WILL NEVER DESERT YOU, NOR WILL I EVER FORSAKE YOU.”

The question then is, “do you believe that”? Do you believe that when you are in trouble or in a jam, especially financially, that God will always be there for you? Do you believe that He will provide for your every need?

So to have effective prayer you must apply the Faith Rest Drill (FRD).

The FRD begins with stage one which is “claiming a promise of God”, which includes:

  • Recall segments of Doctrine.
  • Think about what it means.
  • Realize that from the Divine viewpoint, your situation is not hopeless.
  • Understand that God is in control.
  • He has you in His loving hands.

The point of the Faith Rest Drill is relying on the promises of God and applying that trust in your prayer life.

Next, we see in Mark 11:24, “Therefore I say to you, all things for which you ask in prayer, believe that you will receive them, and they will be given to you.”

Mark 11:24 refers to the second stage of the Faith Rest Drill, which is turning a promise from God into a rationale with which you apply to your situation.

This is called doctrinal rationale:

  • You interconnect several doctrines.
  • You begin to cling onto (KOLLOMENOI) κολλομενοι – more and more information, which is like hanging onto a thicker and thicker rope.

Examples: combining the doctrines of Rebound, Essence of God, Plan of God, Logistical Grace, etc.

The third stage of the Faith Rest Drill is called Doctrinal Conclusions.

This is when, as a result of the promises of God, you arrive at a resolution to your situation. By combining your situation with what the Word of God says, you have a conclusion regarding the matter or situation.

  • You will reach a conclusion by believing on the doctrine(s).
  • By reaching the doctrinal conclusion, you will find courage, rest, and comfort in its truth.

But remember that the conclusion you reach doesn’t mean a magic wand is waved to remove the problem.

Instead, it means you have stabilized your thoughts and emotions, have relaxed / rested in the Lord, and now are turning the situation or problem over to God.

In turning the problem over to God, you are now prepared to offer up prayer regarding the situation.

So we understand that a major component to effective prayer is Faith Resting in God’s promises and His ability to answer our prayers.

Therefore, effective prayer begins in spiritual childhood with Problem Solving Devices like the Faith Rest Drill, with dynamic impact as you grow in grace.

You can have effective prayer in spiritual childhood. But like everything else in spiritual childhood, it does not peak-out until you reach spiritual adulthood. The first three Problem Solving Devices that began in spiritual childhood have a definite impact on the effectiveness of your prayer life: The Rebound Technique, the Filling of the Spirit, and the Faith Rest Drill.

These, along with your persistence in the spiritual life (your intake of the Word of God), determine your prayer effectiveness.

With God’s Word resident in your soul, you will understand both the limitations of your prayer life (what things you should not be praying for) and the fantastic opportunities of your prayer life.

His Word will limit you in some of your petitions, but it will expand your prayer life in intercessions.

With these two areas of prayer correct, you will have a fantastic prayer life and you will enjoy every minute of it!

Therefore, effective prayer depends upon knowing what you’re doing.

1 John 3:22, “And whatever we ask we receive from Him, because we keep His mandates and keep on doing the things that are pleasing in His sight. [Spiritual adulthood].”

Part of God’s mandates is to confess our sins so that the sins of life do not hinder our prayer life, especially mental attitude sins. Phil 4:6

Phil 4:6, “Stop worrying about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God.”

Worry is mentioned because it’s;

  • A sin, Rom 14:23.

Rom 14:23, “But he who doubts is condemned if he eats, because his eating is not from faith; and whatever is not from faith is sin.”

  • A malfunction of the Faith Rest Drill, Luke 12:29

Luke 12:29, “And do not frantically search for what you will eat and what you will drink, and do not keep worrying.”

  • A sign that you’re in the cosmic system, Mat 6:25-34, note verse 32.

Worry is and always will be a fatal disease of the heart, for its beginning signals the end of faith.

When you worry it intrudes on God’s compassionate ability to provide for you.

When you allow your problems to overshadow God’s promises, you, unknowingly, doom yourselves to a defeat that was never part of God’s eternal plans for you.

Likewise, other various sins in your life cause the sin of worry to appear. When you worry about past sins, it causes guilt in your soul, which is sin and leads to other sins. Psa 38:18

Psa 38:18, “For I confess my iniquity (sin); I am full of anxiety (worry) because of my sin.”

Anything that causes malfunction in the Faith Rest Drill also means malfunction in your prayer life.

All mental attitude sins are destructive to an effective prayer life; they must be eradicated by rebound and the Faith Rest Drill.

The Faith Rest Drill makes your prayers effective long before you’ve learned enough doctrine to know what’s going on in the Christian life.

Jer 17:7 8, “Happy is the man who trusts in the Lord and whose trust is the Lord.”

In addition, Jude 20 says, “Praying by means of the Holy Spirit”. This emphasizes the importance of the power of God in prayer at all stages of spiritual growth. Rom 8:26

Rom 8:26, “In the same way the Spirit also helps our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we should, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words.”

Eph 5:18, “And do not get drunk with wine, for that is dissipation, but be filled with the Spirit.”

Eph 6:18, “With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints.”

Therefore, with the power of the filling of the Spirit (Eph 5:18 & 6:18) working within us, through the confession of our sins (rebound), and applying faith to all situations, including our prayer life, we will have an effective and fantastic prayer life.

Phil 4:6-7, “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”

Why Prayers are not Answered:

  • The basic reason why prayers are not answered is because the believer is under the control of the sin nature.

Perfect God can have nothing to do with imperfect sin. Therefore, if we remain in sin, God cannot answer our prayers.

Everyone who continues without the confession of their sins, remains in them. By not rebounding, you do not receive the cleansing of God, and you remain with the imperfection of sin upon your soul.

Because God is perfect, He can have nothing to do with that which is imperfect. Therefore, living in a state of sin means your prayers cannot be heard or answered by God.

The other general reasons for prayers not answered are related to carnality, being out of fellowship or residence inside Satan’s Cosmic System, which all stem from not confessing your known sins.

Psa 66:18 says, “If I cherish iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not listen to me.”

“Cherishing iniquity,” means not rebounding.

Rebound is a recovery procedure. Rebound must precede all divine mandates of prayer, whether the mandates are in the Old or New Testament.

Rebound is an emergency procedure to get you back into fellowship with God immediately.

When you are living in carnality, you grieve (Eph 4:30) and quench (1 Thes 5:19) the Holy Spirit, where your prayers cannot be heard.

When you are out of fellowship, the only prayer that can be heard is rebound, which is the private confession of your sins to God.

Rebound is a reliance upon the Righteousness and Justice of God for the forgiveness and cleansing of your sins. The principle is what the righteousness of God demands (perfection), His justice satisfies (Jesus Christ crucified).

Therefore, in relationship to rebound, what the righteousness of God approves (personal prayer on behalf of self and others with a cleansed, soul when the believer has rebounded), the justice of God answers in love expressed through His grace.

Likewise, what the righteousness of God disapproves (the believer praying in a state of sin or in perpetual carnality), the justice of God does not answer, or even hear for that matter.

Nevertheless, the love of God provides the solution and the means of effective prayer through the grace of God. Psa 66:19 20

Psa 66:19-20, “But certainly God has heard; He has given heed to the voice of my prayer. 20Blessed be God, who has not turned away my prayer nor His lovingkindness from me.”

Between verses 18 & 19 is rebound.

  • The believer’s rejection of Bible doctrine.

Whatever your reason for rejecting doctrine is, it means you have no understanding of the mechanics of prayer.

Only Bible doctrine resident in your soul teaches the mechanics of prayer and what His will is.

Prayers must comply with the will of God, and must follow His mandated procedure for prayer.

  • Rejection of Bible doctrine produces three categories of ignorance that guarantee the malfunction of your prayer life.

a) Ignorance because of indifference to doctrine.

b) Ignorance because of wrong priorities. If wrong priorities persist in your spiritual life, you’ll become a loser with no prayer life.

c)Ignorance because of the arrogance complex of sins: jealousy, bitterness, vindictiveness, implacability, hatred, self-pity, inordinate ambition, inordinate competition, vilification, slander, maligning, judging, creating the public lie, revenge motivation, and modus operandi.

Arrogant believers never get through to the throne of grace.

  • Failure to advance spiritually and execute God’s mandates in life. 1 John 3:22

1 John 3:22, “Furthermore, whatever we have asked, we receive from Him, because we continue to execute His mandates, and we keep on doing what is pleasing in His sight.”

Prayer is related to your fulfillment of the Plan of God and the execution of the Christian way of life.

Prayer becomes more and more effective as you execute His mandates.

You can have effective prayer right from the start of your spiritual life if you execute His mandates.

But to become a great prayer warrior, depends on your daily intake of God’s Word and the daily use of His Problem Solving Devices.

To do “what is pleasing in His sight” describes spiritual adulthood when the believer reaches the peak in his prayer life.

Therefore, failure to execute His mandates and to attain spiritual adulthood (“do what is pleasing in His sight”) impedes, obstructs, inhibits, and undermines all effective prayer.

  • Malfunction in marriage or lack of domestic tranquility. 1 Pet 3:7

1 Pet 3:7, “You husbands in the same way, live with your wives according to knowledge, as with a weaker vessel, since she is a woman; and show her honor as a fellow heir of the grace of life, so that your prayers will not be hindered.”

When there is a domestic problem, the husband is not commanded to love (as he is elsewhere in Scripture, Eph 5:25, 28, 33, where no problem exists), but he is commanded to live with His wife on the basis of knowledge, that is, knowledge of pertinent Bible doctrine.

The word GNOSIS has a special use. It means “special knowledge.” There is a special knowledge required by the husband about his wife in marriage, the fact that she is a weaker vessel.

The woman is a weaker vessel, since she is designed by God as a responder.

The weakness comes from the woman becoming either a reactor to the right man or a responder to the wrong man.

Being a responder explains why the woman must be under more authority than the man.

The application is that an uncontrolled woman is an unhappy woman.
An uncontrolled woman also becomes a troublemaker, whether she wants to or not.
When the woman has nothing to which to respond, her sin nature gets out of control and she reacts.

Personal love for people is not a Problem Solving Device. Only knowledge of doctrine and resultant virtue can solve domestic problems.

Failure in your marital life spills over into failure in your prayer life.
Failure in your prayer life simply reflects failure in your spiritual life.

Believers in marriage need to pray for each other.

1 Peter 4:7-8, “The end of all things is near (the Rapture); therefore, be of sound judgment and sober (self-restraint) for the purpose of prayer. 8Above all, keep fervent in your love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins.”

The least you can do is have virtue love within your own family.

  • Arrogance is the number one cause of failure in prayer, as well as in the spiritual life.

Job 35:12-13, “There they cry out, but He does not answer because of the pride (arrogance) of evil men (people). 13“Surely God will not listen to an empty cry, nor will the Almighty regard it.”

Arrogance is the number one reason why people are not teachable, why people are not trainable, and why people do not profit from suffering.

Arrogance is formed within your own soul without any help from anyone else, for we all have an old sin nature, which daily knocks at the door and says, “How about a little arrogance?”

  • Because of lust, criminality, jealousy, and false motivation, which neutralize prayer.

James 4:2-3 is addressed to believers, “You lust and do not have (what you want); so you commit murder. You are envious and cannot obtain it; so you fight and quarrel. You do not have because you do not ask. 3You ask and do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, so that you may spend it on your pleasures.”

The point is that lust and murder, jealousy and fighting are the wrong way to get what you want. Lust is a wrong motive for prayer. It also has a negative spiraling effect, because when you don’t get what you want, it leads you to other sins such as murder because of your frustration.

Jealousy is a also a wrong motive for prayer. If you’re jealous of your friend or loved one, your relationship will never work because you’re constantly trying to bend them to your way. Since you can’t obtain through jealousy, you fight and quarrel.

Lust and jealousy are wrong motives and both come from wanting things for your own pleasure.

  • When a client nation is under the cycles of discipline, prayer for deliverance cannot be answered.

This is because the justice of God is going to remove that nation.

Lam 3:44, “You have covered yourself with a cloud [negative volition] so that no prayer can pass through.”

  • Malfunction of the Faith Rest Drill in prayer means the malfunction of effective prayer.

Mark 11:24, “I say to you, all things for which you ask and pray, believe that you shall receive them, and you shall be given them.”

Having a lack of trust in God to answer your prayers, results in prayers going unanswered. As we noted above, a lack of faith is sin, and therefore our prayers are not heard or answered.

James 5:15, “The prayer offered in faith will deliver the one who is sick, and the Lord will raise him up.”

  • A lack of concentration while praying.

One of the greatest problems related to prayer is not concentrating on what you’re saying or doing, and falling into day dreaming.

When we place other thoughts in front of our prayers, we are making the thought or ourselves more important than God is, and therefore our prayers are ineffective.

All forms of worship are a concentration test. This test can be divided into four categories.

  • Concentration on the teaching of the Word of God. If you can effectively concentrate on the Word taught it reflects your positive volition towards God, your motivational virtue (Personal Love toward God the Father), your spiritual growth, and your values (norms and standards within your soul). The Word of God should have number one priority in your life.

There is a direct relationship between concentration in Bible study under the ministry of the Holy Spirit and concentration in prayer under the ministry of the Holy Spirit.

  • Concentration during the Communion Service. The communion service is a reflection of the person and work of Christ. Your concentration during that portion of worship reflects to what extent you are Occupied with Jesus Christ.
  • Concentration in your prayer life. This concentration is demonstrated in your personal and private prayers, during public prayers when others are praying, and in your petitions and intercessions.
  • Concentration during the song service. Singing unto God is your expression of love and appreciation for who God is and what He has done for you. It should also be a time of learning and memorization when the song lyrics are Biblically sound.

Conclusion

Prayer is a challenge to concentration. If you can concentrate on Bible doctrine in time of stress, adversity, or even in time of prosperity, then you can concentrate in prayer.

Prayer is an index to your spiritual life.

Prayer is something that all believers are commanded to do.

If you’re not praying correctly or fail in prayer for any reason, that means there’s some problem in your spiritual life; there’s some kink, some syndrome, some arrogance, some problem.

The problem will overflow to every aspect of your life.

The solution:

  • Be aware of the pitfalls of prayer, as noted above.
  • Remain consistent in your intake and concentration of the Word of God.
  • Confess your sins to maintain the Filling of the Spirit.
  • Boldly offer your prayers to God.
  • Trust in God – Faith Rest it!

We now continue our passage in the second half of verse 22 & verse 23.

As we have noted, prayer is a key aspect of our spiritual life and must be done in confidence.

The virtue pattern for the spiritual life is confidence toward God and courage toward people.

Interestingly enough, part of courage toward people is prayer.

Why, because in prayer you are going to the One in whom you have confidence [God] about people, situations, and the circumstances of life.

And remember to use the PUSH Principle: P = Pray, U = Until, S = Something, H = Happens.

1 John 3:22, “…because we keep His commandments and do the things that are please in His sight.”

This is speaking about the believer who is filled with the Spirit consistently through Rebound, and has the ultimate virtue of life; impersonal love directed toward people and situations, as well as enforced and genuine humility which is the basis of his confidence toward God. Confidence does not come from arrogance that is pseudo confidence! Confidence comes from residence inside of God’s Power System (GPS), the filling of God the Holy Spirit, and maximum Bible doctrine in the soul.

“Keeping (TEREO) His (AUTOS) mandates (ENTOLE)”, is in the Progressive, Present Tense, and means that effectiveness of prayer increases as your virtues are developed inside GPS. And your virtues are the virtues of God resident inside your soul, “His mandates”.

This includes two forms of mandates as found in the Word, residence mandates and functional mandates.

Residence Mandates speaks to your experiential sanctification, living in Christ’s love by means of the Spirit.

John 15:9-10, “Just as the Father has loved Me, I have also loved you; abide (reside) in My love. 10If you keep My mandates, you will abide (reside) in My love; just as I have kept My Father’s mandates and abide (reside) in His love.”

Eph 5:2, “And walk in (the sphere of) love, just as Christ also loved you and gave Himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God as a fragrant aroma.”

Functional Mandates is your application of Christ’s love towards other people and your own personal situations.

2 John 6, “And this is love, that we keep walking according to His mandates. This is the mandate, just as you have heard from the beginning, that you should keep walking in it.”

Keep walking is another way of saying – apply. So, under Functional Mandates, we are to apply the Love of God towards mankind. To apply the love of God, we must know what His love is as only taught in Scripture.

Then we have “the things that are pleasing (ARESTOS – agreeable) in His sight”.

The word for sight is the Greek word ENOPION, which means, “in front of, before, in the presence of, or in the sight of.” So again, we have our “in the sphere of” context.

This is an important statement, because we are not to do the things we think will be pleasing to God. We are not to do the things that are pleasing in our own sight. That is humanistic virtue, which is not acceptable to God. Instead we are to do the things that are pleasing in God’s sight, which means according to His Word.

When we do things according to what the Bible says, that glorifies God, it is pleasing to Him and we benefit by sharing in the Happiness of God. In other words, it is pleasing all the way around.

So what is God’s Mandate? Well, Jesus told us what it was in John 13:34 and Paul reiterates it in Romans 13:8 & 10, as does John in verse 23.

Rom 13:8, “Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another; for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law. … 10Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.”

John 13:34, “I give you a new mandate, that you love one another even as I have loved you, that you also love one another.”

This type of love is what we call Impersonal and Unconditional Love, and it is expressed as follows:

  • It ignores sinfulness, hostility, and pettiness of others.
  • It motivates the Christian way of life, the royal family honor code.
  • It is the foundation for all capacities. (e.g. love, happiness, giving, doctrine, etc.)
  • It is the key to relating the believer’s lifestyle to the doctrine resident in his soul.
  • It is needed to sustain the personal love of a few, as well as for dealing with the hostilities of humanity in general.
  • It is the honorable motivator, causing human volition to make right decisions, which open up options for more and greater decisions.
  • It is the stabilizer of enforced and genuine humility.
  • It is the basis for objectivity under pressure, and the doctrinal solution to various testing.
  • It insulates the believer from injustices.
  • It protects the believer from being distracted by sinfulness, human good, and evil in others.
  • It protects the believer from his distraction problems and weaknesses exploited by the sin nature.

Compare with Mat 5:38-6:8

Next in verse 23, we have, “This is His commandment, that we believe in the name of His Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, just as He commanded us.”

“Believe” is the Greek word PISTEUO and means, “to believe, entrust, or have faith.”

Faith is a non-meritorious system of perception based on confidence in the authority and the veracity of another. Faith is not based on one’s own knowledge, as is rationalism or empiricism.

The other two systems of perception include:

Rationalism is reason from the source of knowledge in itself, superior to and independent of any other source of perception. Rationalism says that reality is what you think to be true. Rationalism requires a high I.Q., from which systems of philosophy are often developed.

Empiricism is knowledge from perception by observation and experience rather than by theory. All ideas are derived from some sensuous experience using the eyes, ears, nose, touch, etc.

Perception by faith is always non meritorious. It depends on the authority, veracity, and ability of someone else. Faith requires authority.

Faith also means a system of doctrine or a creed perceived by faith; i.e., what is believed.

The first mention of Faith in the New Testament is found in Mat 9:28.

Mat 9:28-30, “When He entered the house, the blind men came up to Him, and Jesus said to them, “Do you believe that I am able to do this?” They said to Him, “Yes, Lord.” 29Then He touched their eyes, saying, “It shall be done to you according to your faith.” 30And their eyes were opened.”

In 1 John 3:22, we have the two primary mandates from God:

1) Which we have already noted, believe in the Lord Jesus Christ for Salvation.

2) Operate post salvation in Impersonal / Unconditional love.

These two mandates are part of God’s Plan of Sanctification that includes:

a) Positional Sanctification

b) Experiential Sanctification

c) The third form of sanctification is ultimate sanctification, which is our eternal state upon leaving planet earth.

Positional Sanctification is the security of your salvation upon belief in the Lord Jesus Christ.

  • You are placed in Union with Jesus Christ.
  • You have been sealed by the Baptism of God the Holy Spirit.
  • You are given the status “child of God” through adoption and are a member of the “Royal Family of God”.
  • You are set apart from unbelievers positional.
  • You have a place in heaven.
  • You are made holy by the imputation of God’s perfect righteousness.
  • It is a position that no one can take away, not even you. John 10:27-30

You can never be taken out of your position called “union with Christ”.

Rom 8:38-39, “For I am convinced that neither death nor life nor angels nor principalities nor powers nor things present nor things to come nor height nor depth nor any other creature shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Rom 8:1, “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.”

See also: 1 John 3:1-2; 5:11-12; 1 Cor 1:2, 30; 2 Cor 5:21; Gal 3:26; Eph 1:4; 2:10; Col 1:13

Experiential Sanctification is what you do with the position you have been granted post salvation. It is the function of the spiritual life after salvation. You have the choice to walk in the holiness that God has made you or not.

  • Walking in your personal relationship with Christ. 1 John 1:7
  • Walking by means of God the Holy Spirit. Eph 5:18
  • Operating in the privileges of sonship and applying the Royal Family Honor Code to all situations. Gal 4:6-7
  • Confidence in your unique relationship with God.
  • Assurance of your eternal abode. John 10:29
  • Living in the holiness of God by keeping His mandates. 1 John 3:22-24
  • Assurance of your eternal life by living the resurrected life. Phil 4:13

1 Cor 15:58, “Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your toil is not in vain in the Lord.”

Rom 6:4, “Therefore, we have been buried with Him [Christ] through baptism into death [baptism of the Spirit] in order that, as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life.”

Our Experiential Sanctification is dependent on the Balance of Residency, which is Maximum Bible Doctrine in the soul, ready for application, plus the Filling of God the Holy Spirit. John 17:17; Eph 5:26; 1 Thes 5:23; 2 Thes 2:13

Jesus Christ is our example for Experiential Sanctification.

John 17:19, “For their sakes I sanctify Myself (experientially), that they themselves also may be (experientially) sanctified in truth.”

1 Thes 5:23-24, “Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete, without blame at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. 24Faithful is He who calls you, and He also will bring it to pass.”

We now turn to verse 24, which is the final encouragement for having Confidence before the Lord. It is confidence based on the Word and Spirit, working within your soul, with the result that you and Christ are one working in unison.

1 John 3:24, “The one who keeps His commandments abides in Him, and He in him. We know by this that He abides in us, by the Spirit whom He has given us.”

We see once more in this verse, the understanding of our Positional and Experiential Sanctification. In verse 23, the order was Positional, as noted by “believe in the name of His Son Jesus Christ”, and then Experiential, as noted by “Love one another just as He commanded us.”

Verse 24 reverses the order. It picks up where verse 23 left off, and then comes back around to Positional Sanctification.

Verse 24a in regards to Experiential Sanctification states, “The one who keeps His commandments abides in Him, and He in him.”

The word “Keeps” is the Articular, Present, Active, Participle, TEREO. It means, “to watch over, to guard (from loss or injury, properly by keeping the eye upon), continue, keep, heed, or execute.

Thayer defines this word as, “to attend to carefully, take care of, metaphorically to keep one in the state in which he is, and to observe.”

The Progressive Present tense stands for action in the state of persistence.

The Active Voice, the believer who resides and functions inside God’s Power System (GPS) produces the action.

Therefore, we are to keep on guarding (our souls) by executing His mandates. Another way to say this is that all mandates refer to God’s game plan for the Church Age believer’s residence and function inside God’s Power System (GPS).

In reference to the mandates of Jesus Christ, we are to watch over our souls to ensure that we guard and protect the Word of God resident within our soul. That is what it means to “keep His mandates”. We are to guard and protect the Word we already have stored in our souls, by taking in more of His Word and applying it to our lives, through the filling of God the Holy Spirit. That is utilizing God’s Power System (GPS) for our lives. When we utilize GPS, we are walking experientially in Christ and “abide in Him”.

“Abide” is the main Greek verb in this sentence MENO, which is in the Present, Active, Indicative. It means, “to stay, abide, remain, reside, or not depart.”

It too is in the Progressive Present Tense and therefore means to “keep residing”.

The Declarative Indicative mood is for the reality of residence and function inside GPS, producing what you are really seeking, fellowship with Christ. It also stands for the fact that this is the main verb and there is simultaneous action between the participle TEREO – guarding and the main verb MENO – residing.

Therefore, the idea here is to keep his mandates by guarding (the Doctrine in your soul) and residing (in fellowship with the Holy Spirit). In other words, to continually walk in fellowship with Jesus Christ as John stated at the beginning of this book, 1 John 1:6-7.

You see the Christian way of life is not to abide in Christ sometimes, or on Sundays, or when you feel like it. It is not to sin when you feel like it, and then pay attention to God again when you feel like it. It is not intended to bounce back and forth between carnality (sin) and spirituality habitually.

The Christian way of life is to walk in Christ 24 by 7. God has given us all the tools necessary to accomplish the “abiding life”.

Does that mean you will never sin again? No, it does not. We will continue to sin post salvation. But the issue is to limit the power of the sin nature over your soul. This is only accomplished by utilizing GPS, which is God’s Word and the filling of the Holy Spirit.

God, in grace, has given us all the tools necessary to “abide in Christ”.

  • He provided His perfect Righteousness at the moment of Salvation. 2 Cor 5:21; Gen 15:6
  • He regenerated our Human Spirit. Rom 5:12 compared with Rom 8:16; 1 Cor 2:12 16
  • He gave us the Indwelling ministry of the Holy Spirit. 1 Cor 3:16; 2 Cor 1:22; Eph 1:13-14
  • He gave us the Filling ministry of the Holy Spirit, Eph 5:18.
  • He gave us His Word. John 1:1; 1 Cor 2:12-13
  • He provided the Rebound Technique, (confession of our sins). 1 John 1:9 with John 13:5-10

All we need to do is apply what God has given to us in FAITH!

Therefore, the application is this. If you sin, confess it immediately, 1 John 1:9. When you are tempted to sin by your own thoughts or from Satan’s Cosmic System, take that thought captive and don’t let it flourish in your soul.

2 Cor 10:5, “We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ.”

So, 1 John 3:24a has to do with the indwelling of our Lord. The policy is, the believer who obeys the mandates of our Lord Jesus Christ not only resides inside GPS but derives additional encouragement from the fact of the indwelling of Christ, and obviously, of course, from the Indwelling and Filling of God the Holy Spirit.

John is recalling the doctrine he learned first-hand from our Lord during the Upper Room Discourse in John 15:1-17.

Then we see in 24b the Positional aspect of your Sanctification once again as it states, “We know by this that He abides in us, by the Spirit whom He has given us.”

There is a two-fold understanding here.

1) A mandate to experience your sanctification, and

2) Reassurance of your position in Christ, as a result of the sealing ministry of God the Holy Spirit, which occurs at the moment of your salvation. Eph 1:13; 4:30; 2 Cor 1:22

Now the last part of verse 24 also tells us that when we are in fellowship with Christ, we will know it by means of God the Holy Spirit. In other words, you will understand from inside your soul that Christ is working in you. This is the result of confessing your sins and remaining without sinning as you cycle the Word of God by means of the Holy Spirit within your soul. You will know that Christ is working, “abiding”, in your life.

The phrase “by this”, refers to the policy of God.

It is followed by the Present, Active, Indicative, of the verb GINOSKO, which means, “to come to know.”

This is a Retroactive Progressive Present which denotes what has begun in the past and continues into the present time, translated by the English perfect tense.

The Active Voice, the believer who obeys the divine mandates, resides and functions in GPS, produces the action of the verb.

The Indicative Mood is declarative for the reality of a doctrinal system given to us by God that we must apply. A right thing, done in a right way.

The we have “He abides” with the word MENO once again. It is a Perfective Present tense for a fact which has come to be in the past, but emphasized as a present reality.

The Active Voice, Jesus Christ produces the action.

The Indicative Mood is declarative for a simple statement of doctrine.

Next is the prepositional phrase that develops the concept of power in the spiritual life. “By the Spirit” is EK plus TOU plus the noun PNEUMA, “from the Spirit.”

GPS came from this concept, made up of the Koine Greek words DUNAMIS = power, and the Attic Greek noun SPHEIA = Sphere. So, combined it is a power sphere or a power system by which man is controlled by a greater power than himself.

Then we have the Genitive, Neuter, Singular from the relative pronoun HOS translated “whom”, referring to the Holy Spirit, plus the Aorist, Active, Indicative, of DIDOMI which means, “to give”.

This is a Culminative Aorist viewing the giving of God the Holy Spirit to the Royal Family of the Church Age in its entirety, but regarding it from the viewpoint of existing results.

The Active Voice, God the Son produces the action, also God the Father but He is not in view here.

The Indicative Mood is declarative for the reality of the unique ministry of God the Holy Spirit to the Church Age believer.

So, God the Holy Spirit has been given to us as a seal of our salvation and for the assurance of knowing Christ is working in you, when you guard and protect your soul from Satan, His Cosmic System, and your own Old Sin Nature.

The Indwelling of Jesus Christ

John 14:19-20, “After a little while the world will no longer see Me, but you will see Me; because I live, you will live also. 20In that day you will know that I am in My Father, and you in Me, and I in you.”

The indwelling of Jesus Christ belongs to all believers at the moment of faith in Christ and remains a permanent possession regardless of spiritual status quo or lack of it. You don’t feel it or experience it, but you can know it by the teaching ministry of God the Holy Spirit.

Just as there is a difference between the Indwelling and Filling of God the Holy Spirit, there is a difference between the Indwelling of Christ and Occupation with Christ.

Therefore “to abide in Christ” means occupation with the Indwelling Christ and relates to the soul, which occurs experiential for the few who are persistent in the use of the three spiritual skills; Filling of the Spirit; the Word of God cycling in your soul, and the formation and faith application of the Eleven Problem Solving Devices.

In regards to the Indwelling of Christ, God the Son indwells us for a number of reasons:

  • As a sign or badge of the Royal Family, John 14:20.

John 14:20, “In that day you will know that I am in My Father, and you in Me, and I in you.”

  • As a guarantee of the availability of divine power in time, 2 Cor 13:4-6; Rom 8:10-11.

2 Cor 13:4-6, “For indeed He was crucified because of weakness, yet He lives because of the power of God. For we also are weak in Him, yet we will live with Him because of the power of God directed toward you. 5Test yourselves to see if you are in the faith; examine yourselves! Or do you not recognize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you—unless indeed you fail the test? 6But I trust that you will realize that we ourselves do not fail the test.”

Rom 8:10-11, “If Christ is in you, though the body is dead because of sin, yet the spirit is alive because of righteousness. 11But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.”

  • As a guarantee of life after death in the presence of God forever, Col 1:27.

Col 1:27, “To whom God willed to make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.”

  • As the depositary of special blessings for time and eternity, Eph 1:3.

Eph 1:3, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ.”

  • As the escrow officer who will deliver these blessings to you (the believer) when he reaches spiritual adulthood, and when you appears before The Judgment Seat of Christ (TJSC), 1 Cor 3:13-15; 2 Cor 5:10.

2 Cor 5:10, “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may be recompensed for his deeds in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad.”

  • As motivation for continued momentum, when facing the three categories of suffering for blessing: Providential Preventative Suffering (PPS), Momentum Testing (Mt.), Evidence Testing (ET), Gal 2:20; Rom 8:17.

Gal 2:20, “I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me.”

Rom 8:17, “And if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him so that we may also be glorified with Him.”

  • As the basis for assigning highest priority to relationship with God over relationships with people, and to the use of divine power over the exercise of human power, 1 John 2:24.

1 John 2:24, “As for you, let that abide in you which you heard from the beginning. If what you heard from the beginning abides in you, you also will abide in the Son and in the Father.”

  • As the basis for the glorification of Christ, the Shekinah Glory, in the unique life of the Church Age believer, John 17:22-23, 26.

John 17:22-26, “The glory which You have given Me I have given to them, that they may be one, just as We are one; 23I in them and You in Me, that they may be perfected in unity, so that the world may know that You sent Me, and loved them, even as You have loved Me. 24“Father, I desire that they also, whom You have given Me, be with Me where I am, so that they may see My glory which You have given Me, for You loved Me before the foundation of the world. 25“O righteous Father, although the world has not known You, yet I have known You; and these have known that You sent Me; 26and I have made Your name known to them, and will make it known, so that the love with which You loved Me may be in them, and I in them.”

Occupation with Christ

  • The basis for Occupation with Christ is having the mind of Christ (1 Cor 2:16) by taking in Bible Doctrine through the G.A.P. (Jer 9:24, Eph 3:17-19, 4:20)
  • With the Word of God as the working object of faith, the believer has a maximum love response toward God causing us to be “A friend of God” which is a title for Occupation with Christ. 2 Chron 20:7, James 2:23, Isa 41:8
  • Occupation with Christ is based on the fact that Christ has been glorified in His humanity. Col 3:1-2
  • Occupation with Christ is the standard way of life for the mature believer. Heb 12:1-2
  • Occupation with Christ is illustrated by the Doctrine of Right Man Right Woman. She is to be occupied with her right man as we are to be occupied with Christ. 1 Cor 11:5-9; Eph 5:25-33
  • Function of G.A.P. is not only the basis for capacity for life, but is the believer responding to Christ’s love in time. James 1:21-22
  • The Sealing of the Holy Spirit guarantees eternal love relationship between Christ and the believers. 2 Cor 1:22, Eph 1:11-14, 4:30
  • Occupation with Christ includes total dependence on grace provision. Psa 37:4-5, Prov 3:1-26
  • Occupation with Christ is the basis for blessing in suffering, while reversionism intensifies suffering. Occupation with Christ only minimizes the suffering, it does not take it away. Psa 77:all; 1 Peter 1:6-7; 3:14-17; 5:10; 2 Tim 2:3-10
  • Occupation with Christ causes both stability and inner happiness. Psa 16:8-9

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