I. WE HAVE BEEN DEALING WITH THE SUBJECT OF LIVING IN SIN.
A. We know that sin is a transgression of the law.
B. We know that Jesus was manifested to take away our sin and in Him is no sin.
C. Thus we know that we cannot be living in sin and abiding in Christ at the same time.
D. If you are living in sin, you really do not know Jesus.
Know ye not that your bodies are the members of Christ? shall I then take the members of Christ, and make [them] the members of an harlot? God forbid.
What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost [which is] in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?
II. HE THAT IS LIVING IN SIN IS OF THE DEVIL.
A. This is really strong language, and should serve as a warning to all those who are living in sin, while still claiming to be saved.
1. Notice how John places the validity of a person's profession on what they are doing.
a. He that doeth righteousness is righteous.
b. He that is living in sin does not know Jesus.
2. Far too many people are trusting in what they profess, and John shows us many false professions throughout this epistle.
a. If we profess to have fellowship with God and walk in darkness, we lie.
b. If we profess not to have any sin, we deceive ourselves.
c. If we profess that we have not sinned, we make God a liar.
d. If we profess that we know Him, we will be keeping His commandments.
e. If we profess to love God, yet we hate our brother, we are liars.
B. The devil sinneth from the beginning.
1. Sin originated with the devil.
a. In Isaiah 14
, we read of the devil's exalting his will above the will of God.
For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north:
I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High.
b. Jesus said to the Jews,
Ye are of [your] father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.
c. Satan lied to Eve when he said, "You will not surely die."
d. He lied when he said that by eating they could be as gods.
2. The parable of the tares sown among the wheat is a warning to all who are making a profession of trust and faith in Jesus.
Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field:
But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way.
But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also.
So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares?
He said unto them, An enemy hath done this. The servants said unto him, Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up?
But he said, Nay; lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them.
Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn.
3. The scriptures tell us to make our calling and election sure.
a. For not all who say, Lord, Lord, are going to enter the kingdom of heaven, but he that doeth the will of the Father, Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied Thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.
b. They may have been doing those things but they were living in sin.
c. I believe that they were genuinely deceived into thinking that because of the things that they were doing in the name of the Lord justified them and excused their degenerate lifestyles.
4. Paul wrote to the Corinthians,
But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of [that] bread, and drink of [that] cup. For if we will judge ourselves, we should not be judged.
Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?
5. Knowing the deceitfulness of the human heart, David prayed,
Examine me, O LORD, and prove me; try my reins and my heart.
And see if [there be any] wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.
III. FOR THIS PURPOSE WAS THE SON OF GOD MANIFESTED, THAT HE MIGHT DESTROY THE WORKS OF THE DEVIL.
A. What are the works of the devil?
1. Leading a rebellion against the commandments of God.
a. He rebelled against God in the beginning.
b. He led Adam and Eve to rebel against the commandment of God.
c. He seeks to lead us in rebellion against the commandments of God.
2. He sought to make it seem rational.
a. To Eve he said that God knew that if they ate of the tree, that they would become as gods.
b. To Jesus, he quoted the scriptures, "He will give His angels charge over you, to keep you in all your ways."
c. So many of the arguments today seem so sane and rational.
d. People seek to make the commandments of God seem irrelevant to our present day society.
e. The A.C.L.U. seem to make such convincing arguments before the courts.
f. There was a disgusting article in the Times today by one of their columnists named Mike Downey in which he made a scurrilous attack against the Boy Scouts and the California Supreme Court for supporting their stand against allowing into the program the twins that would not take the scout pledge, and for their stand against allowing gays to be scout leaders. I was so angry that I called the Times and canceled my subscription. I respect the right of Mike Downey to express his opinion, and the editors to pay him for his expression, but I also have the right not to support those who are seeking to tear down the moral values of our nation and an outstanding organization who have traditionally stood for God and our country. Let the atheists start and develop their own youth programs where no oaths are required if they desire, but don't try to change one that was started for the purpose of instilling godly morals and values in our youth.
3. The prophet Hosea warned against sowing the wind. He said you will reap the whirlwind.
a. That seems to be where we are today.
b. Reaping the whirlwind.
c. We are shocked at the news of the boys 12 and 13, who gunned down the students at the school who had gone outside because of the fire bell ringing.
d. They were only doing what many of your children are doing in their video games. 1. The game Mortal Combat. 2. All of the violence in the movies, TV, and video games that our children are exposed to.
e. Paul in speaking of the final stage of moral degeneracy declared,
And even as they did not like to retain God in [their] knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;
Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers,
Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents,
Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful:
Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.
f. What are the issues of most of the movies today?
g. What do the lyrics of the popular songs advocate?
h. What do the video games portray?
4. These are the works of the devil.
B. Thank God, Jesus was manifested to destroy the works of the devil.
1. How does He do that?
a. In Colossians 2
, Paul tells us that He spoiled the principalities and powers that were against us as He triumphed over them and made an open display of His victory through the cross.
b. In our lives He destroys the works of the devil by delivering us from the power of the devil, and giving us His new nature.
2. He who has the new nature of Jesus Christ does not live in sin.