1 John 5 - Steve Wiggins Daily Devotional
“We know that everyone who has been born of G_d does not sin, but the One who is born of G_d keeps him, and the evil one does not touch him. We know that we are of G_d, and the whole World is under the sway of the evil one. And we know that the Son of G_d has come and has given us understanding so that we may know the true One. We are in the true One – that is in His Son Messiah Yeshua. He is the true G_d and eternal life. Little children, guard yourselves from idols.” 1 John 5:19-21
The Biblical ideas of “sinning” are not as clear-cut as one might think. Obviously, followers of Messiah sin. Otherwise, Yeshua would not have needed to teach His disciples to pray:
“Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us.” Matthew 6:12
Also, earlier in 1 John, the apostle exhorted:
“My little children, I am writing you these things so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father – Messiah Yeshua the righteous One.” 1 John 2:1
So, what does John mean when he says, “everyone born of G_d does not sin”? He is referring to the Jewish concept of “sinning willfully”. More than simply sinning on purpose, “sinning willfully” means to willfully approach the L_rd without an atoning sacrifice.
“He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not only for ours, but also for those of the world.” 1 John 2:2
When it comes to approaching the L_rd, the follower of Yeshua never sins “willfully”. Although they may sin of their own free will, they never approach the L_rd without atonement. That is how John can exhort believers in Yeshua (like ourselves) who sin, and yet, later, make the statement that believers do not sin. Of course we sin, but we can stand before the L_rd boldly because our sin has been atoned for. (Hebrews 4:14-16)
This is also part of why John is going to such great lengths to make sure people know that a true believer would never abuse G_d’s grace. Rather, true believers live to obey the L_rd’s commands, out of thankfulness for having their sin atoned for.
Finally, John ends his letter by eluding-to the Tri-unity of G_d. He uses the Hebrew understanding that G_d is “ONE” (Deuteronomy 6:4-5) to describe the Messiah, G_d the Father, and the One who “has given us understanding”, which is the ministry of the Ruach HaKodesh (Holy Spirit), Whom Yeshua sends to all believers.
Any other concept of G_d is a lie of the “evil one”, and thus idolatry. We must stay away from any teaching, which denies (or adds to) these attributes of G_d.
~Steve Wiggins, Associate Leader, Worship Leader
Daily Devotional, Tuesday, December 10, 2013