1 John 3:10-15

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"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. For this is the message which you have heard from the beginning, that we should love one another; not 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. Do not be surprised, brethren, if the world hates you. We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we love the brethren. He who does not love abides in death. Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer; and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him." 1 John 3:10-15


So far throughout 1 John, there has been more than one mention of being children of God. This passage of scripture falls into line with this, however, it also brings the other side into the picture. That of being children of the devil.

While we do not read much in the Bible about being children of the devil it is not a new topic of discussion either. In John 8:41-47, Jesus also makes reference to being children of the devil. In this passage, Jesus is pointing out the importance of our heritage. In this case, the heritage we find in God when we accept Him into our lives. Here is how this passage reads --

"You are doing the deeds of your father." They said to Him, "We were not born of fornication; we have one Father, even God." 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. Why do you not understand what I am saying? It is because you cannot hear My word. You are of your father the devil, and you want to do the desires of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. Whenever he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own nature; for he is a liar, and the father of lies. But because I speak the truth, you do not believe Me." Which one of you convicts Me of sin? If I speak truth, why do you not believe Me? He who is of God hears the words of God; for this reason you do not hear them, because you are not of God."

If we are children of God, we recognize the truth in the words of God. The words He gives us in the Bible. The way He guides and directs us in our daily lives. If we are children of the devil, we do not recognize the truth in God's words, but only the lies that are given to us by Satan.

As children of God, we are most easily recognized by the way we love our brothers. Do we show hatred and dislike towards those around us? Or, do we always show an attitude of love and caring? Do we speak unkindly towards someone that is different than we are? Or, do we treat them with kindness and try to know them better? Do we ignore those we meet that are not Christians? Or, do we care for them and share with them the love of God?

Is the world always going to show the same love towards us even though we are loving and kind to them? No. There will be many times in our lives that we will be treated unkindly, disrespectfully, ignored, or shown hatred simply because we are Christians. As a matter of fact, John tells us we should expect to be treated in this manner by some. And, while that can make life difficult at times, I think we can also use it as a source of encouragement. As John tells us in verses 13-14 "Do not be surprised, brethren, if the world hates you. We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we love the brethren." If the world hates us because of our faith in God -- because we love our fellow man --we know we are a loving witness of our Lord. People are able to see it in the way we live our lives and the words we say.

I know for me this isn't usually the way I would prefer to see that I am living my Christian life. As a human, I would prefer a more positive manner in which to have this realized. I do know, though, that there are many positive ways in which I see where God is working in my life and I choose to place my focus on those -- peace from God, the receiving of God's grace, desire to be closer to Him, the many blessings I have received from God, etc.

As I am seeing more and more, it is where I choose to place my focus. Am I more concerned with how the world views me and seek to live my life according to those views or am I more concerned with how God sees me and strive to live my life according to His Word?


3 Thoughts Shared:

Tricia said...

Hey Melanie
What a great and timely post...

I am having trouble with my memorizing of 1 John, but God is definitely speaking to me through it... it is exactly what I need to hear and be reminded of, especially in regards to a trial I am going through with my family right.

God's Word is so good, so true, and speaks to every situation in our life, what a treasure it is! Keep digging and uncovering those treasures, and thanks for sharing them!

Blessings!

Sita said...

Hi Melanie,
thank you for dropping by...so many times I have been truly surprised that what people think matters so much still...because that is one of the main lessons He has been teaching me ...taking heed of One Voice--His...
blessings to you...keep on seeking and keep on sharing..
Love, Sita

Cheryl said...

Nelanie,

First, let me say thanks for continuing to pray for Jan. I'm standing firm on my faith that this is necrosis.

Secondly, this post here on 1 John really hits close and maybe square between the eyes. A lot to ponder and pray about.

Blessings!
Cheryl