Born To Do Right

I. The opening thought of chapter three is “we shall be like him.”

A. We are the sons of God (1 John 3:1).

1. We are fellow citizens of God’s household (Ephesians 2:19).

2. We are presently the temple of the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 6:19).

3. We are a holy priesthood (1 Peter 2:5).

B. We are, therefore, to purify ourselves (1 John 3:3).

1. We are to “grow in grace” (2 Peter 3:18).

2. We are not to let “sin rule over us” (Romans 6:14).

3. We are to set our “affection on things above” (Colossians 3:2).

C. We are to have already grasped the basics of this teaching.

1. Fellowship with God requires walking in the light (1 John 1:5-7).

2. Confidence in God requires keeping the commandments (1 John 2:3-5).

3. Loving the Father requires not loving the world (1 John 2:15).

II. The strong “purity” emphasized requires an understanding of “sin.”

A. There are very strong statements that seem to imply perfection.

1. “Whoever abides in Him does not sin” (1 John 3:6).

2. “Whoever has been born of God does not sin” (1 John 3:9).

3. “We know that whoever is born of God does not sin” (1 John 5:18).

B. There are very strong statements of the opposite condition.

1. “Whoever sins has neither seen Him nor known Him” (1 John 3:6).

2. “He who sins is of the devil” (1 John 3:8).

3. “Whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God” (1 John 3:10).

C. There are several aspects to “sin” that need to be understood.

1. The most frequently used term is amartia and ‘amartion.

a. It is a compound word with “a” (negative particle) and meros.
b. Its basic meaning is “no part” or “no portion.”
c. Revelation 22:19 -- And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.

2. The other words with the “a” prefix are also used.

a. asebeia = “ungodliness” (Romans 1:18)
b. anomia = “lawlessness; iniquity; transgression” (1 John 3:4)
c. agnoema = “error” (Hebrews 9:7)


3. The several synonyms are used sparingly to give shades of meaning.

a. hettema = “fault” – “diminished” (1 Corinthians 6:7)
b. parakoe = “disobedience; neglect to hear (Romans 5:19)
c. paranomia = “against the law; iniquity” (2 Peter 2:16)
d. paraptoma = “trespass; fall away” (Colossians 2:13)

III. The “amartia”(no part) is incompatible with the nature and character of God.

A. Sin is opposed to the Holy Law of God (1 John 3:4)

1. It is the breaking of the law and the order of God.

2. It is a rebellion against the direct will of God.

3. It is a thing of great enormity – it is not a “small” thing.

a. John 8:34 -- Jesus answered them, "Most assuredly, I say to you, whoever commits sin is a slave of sin.”
b. Romans 6:23 -- For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
c. 1 John 3:8 -- He who sins is of the devil, for the devil has sinned from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil.

B. Sin is incompatible with the sinlessness of Christ (1 John 3:5)

1. The purpose of His mission was to take away sin.

2. The entire ministry was opposed to sin.

3. The life of Christ was free from sin.

a. Hebrews 4:15 -- For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin.
b. 2 Corinthians 5:21 -- For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.
c. 1 Peter 2:22 -- Who committed no sin, Nor was deceit found in His mouth

C. Sin is incompatible with continued fellowship with Christ (1 John 3:6)

1. He is righteous; we must be also (1 John 3:7)

2. He is in the light; we must walk there too (1 John 1:7)

3. He obeyed the Fathers commandments, we must obey too (1 John 2:6)

a. Hebrews 5:9 -- And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him;
b. 1 John 5:3 -- For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.
c. Hebrews 8:10 -- For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts: and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people:

D. Sin connects to an evil source (1 John 3:8).

1. The “works of the devil” can be summarized in three major impacts.

a. Delusion (lie, untruth) – John 8:44
b. Sin (law breaking; no part) – 1 John 3:8
c. Death (separation from God) – Hebrews 2:14

2. The “no part” (sin) is foreign to that which is born of God (1 John 3:9)

a. As a matter of fact, the child of God does not commit sin.
b. As a matter of principle, the child of God cannot sin.
1) There is a master influence (1 Peter 1:23 – the incorruptible word)
2) There is the divine nature (2 Peter 1:4)
3) There is water of life always springing up (John 4:14)
c. As Prophet Jesus declares truth to destroy delusion.
d. As Priest and Sacrifice Jesus destroys both guilt and the power of sin.
e. As King Jesus has the authority of “life in himself” – and the keys to “hell and death”

IV. The child of God does not commit (do continually) sin (1 John 3:9).

A. We are “created in righteousness and true holiness” (Ephesians 4:24)

1. If we had no other nature we would never sin.

2. Since we still have the old nature, we may sin.

a. 1 John 1:8-10 --If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us.
b. Romans 6:12-14 -- Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in its lusts. And do not present your members as instruments of unrighteousness to sin, but present yourselves to God as being alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God. For sin shall not have dominion over you, for you are not under law but under grace.

B. We are identified by our righteous behavior (1 John 3:10).

1. The child of God will NOT have a fixed resolution to sin.

a. Matthew 7:18 -- A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit.
b. Romans 6:2 -- Certainly not! How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it?
c. 1 John 2:29 -- If you know that He is righteous, you know that everyone who practices righteousness is born of Him.
d. 1 John 5:18 --  We know that whoever is born of God does not sin; but he who has been born of God keeps himself, and the wicked one does not touch him.

2. The child of God will NOT walk in a way that is doubtful to him.

a. Romans 14:23 -- But he who doubts is condemned if he eats, because he does not eat from faith; for whatever is not from faith is sin.
b. Galatians 3:12 -- Yet the law is not of faith, but "the man who does them shall live by them."
c. 1 John 5:4 -- For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.

3. The child of God will NOT have a settled, deliberate love for any one sin.

a. Hebrews 12:1 -- Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us,
b. Romans 13:13-14 -- Let us walk properly, as in the day, not in revelry and drunkenness, not in lewdness and lust, not in strife and envy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts.
c. 2 Corinthians 7:1 -- Therefore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.
d. Ephesians 4:22-24 -- that you put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts, and be renewed in the spirit of your mind,  and that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness.
e. 2 Timothy 2:4 -- No one engaged in warfare entangles himself with the affairs of this life, that he may please him who enlisted him as a soldier.

C. The absence of sin is what identifies the Sons of God (1 John 3:10).

1. Simply put: no righteousness, no life.

2. Simply put: God only recognizes two classes

a. The Children of God.
b. The Children of the Devil

3. Simply put: the visible difference is what they do!

a. 1 John 3:7 -- Little children, let no one deceive you. He who practices righteousness is righteous, just as He is righteous.
b. 1 John 3:12 -- not as Cain who was of the wicked one and murdered his brother. And why did he murder him? Because his works were evil and his brother’s righteous.
c. Matthew 7:16-18 -- You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thornbushes or figs from thistles? Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit.
d. Matthew 25:33, 46 -- And He will set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on the left . . . . And these will go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.
3. 2 Corinthians 5:10 -- For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad.

D. This doctrine is not to be mistaken for a “works” salvation message.

1. Salvation is not of works – it is only by grace through faith (Ephesians 2:8)

2. Salvation gives life – which is holy and produces godly works (James 2:18)

a. No works – no evidence
b. Evil fruit – evil tree
1 John


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