Author: Ron Graham
Great Truths About Jesus
—What John says about Christ~2
Our first lesson focussed on the fact that "Jesus Christ has come in the flesh" (1John 4:1-3). In this second lesson, we look at John’s view of Jesus in a more general way.
John’s view of Jesus Christ "is true" because Jesus Christ was manifested to him in two very special ways...
- Firstly ~ John had a close and personal association with Jesus and is able to be a true witness. "What we have seen and heard we proclaim to you" (1John 1:1-3).
- Secondly ~ John received a witness from God, the essence of which is that "God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son" (1John 5:9-12).
Let us consider the various facts about Jesus to which John draws attention in his letter:
1 Eternal life is in Jesus Christ
John claims that Jesus was "from the beginning" and he was "that eternal life which was with the Father" (1John 1:1-2).
In his gospel account John states this more strongly: "In the beginning was the Word, and the word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him nothing was made" (John 1:1-3).
John says, "God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He who has the Son has the life" (1John 5:11-12).
2 Jesus Christ is truly human
John uses a careful form of words, "The blood of Jesus Christ his Son" (1John 1:7).
This form of words acknowledges that JESUS THE MAN OF FLESH AND BLOOD was not separate from CHRIST God’s SON.
The essential confession, "Jesus Christ has come in the flesh" is a similar form of words. Christ God’s Son was Jesus the man of flesh who shed his blood.
Later John says that any person who does not confess that "Jesus Christ has come in the flesh" is not from God and is "antichrist" (1John 4:1-3, cf 2John 1:7).
3 Jesus is truly God
When John speaks of fellowship "with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ" (1John 1:3), he acknowledges Jesus as the Son of God.
John twice uses the exact title "the Son of God" when he tells us that we must believe and confess Jesus to be such (1John 4:15 and 5:5).
"Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him and he in God" (1John 4:15). "Who is the one who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?" (1John 5:5).
John finishes his letter with an extremely strong and clear statement: "and we are in him who is true, in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life" (1John 5:20).
4 Jesus is Christ our Advocate
"We have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous" (1John 2:1).
Jesus is our intercessor or paraclete called alongside to help. Jesus has this authority to advocate, because he is the Christ, the Anointed Messiah.
Christ’s role as intercessor is to stand up for you when you are required to account for yourself under charge of wrongdoing, or speak for you when you are making a plea to God.
5 Jesus is the propitiation for our sins
John calls him "Jesus Christ the righteous" (1John 2:1). John later says, "He was manifested to take away our sins, and in him there is no sin" (1John 3:5).
John makes a number of statements about the sacrifice of Christ:
- "His blood cleanses us from all sin" (1John 1:7)
- "He himself is the propitiation for all sins" (1John 2:2)
- "He laid down his life to save us" (1John 3:16; 4:14)
The word "propitiation" (1John 4:10) means that which, through the love of God, makes atonement to appease the wrath of God.
6 Jesus is greater than Satan
John encourages us by pointing out the supremacy of Jesus Christ: "Greater is he who is in you than he who is in the world" (1John 4:4).
Christ’s power over Satan is the main idea in the Book of Revelation. Jesus’s purpose is to "destroy the works of the devil" (1John 3:8).
There are three confessions in First John:
- "Jesus is the Christ" (1John 2:22)
- "Jesus Christ has come in the flesh" (1John 4:2-3)
- "Jesus is the Son of God" (1John 4:15)
In his second letter, John uses a full title for Jesus: "The Lord Jesus Christ the Son of the Father" (2John 1:3).