1 John 2:28-3:10 NKJV And now, little children, abide in Him, that when He appears, we may have confidence and not be ashamed before Him at His coming. 29 If you know that He is righteous, you know that everyone who practices righteousness is born of Him. 3:1 Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! Therefore the world does not know us, because it did not know Him. 2 Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is. 3 And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure. 4 Whoever commits sin also commits lawlessness, and sin is lawlessness. 5 And you know that He was manifested to take away our sins, and in Him there is no sin. 6 Whoever abides in Him does not sin. Whoever sins has neither seen Him nor known Him. 7 Little children, let no one deceive you. He who practices righteousness is righteous, just as He is righteous. 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. 9 Whoever has been born of God does not sin, for His seed remains in him; and he cannot sin, because he has been born of God. 10 In this the children of God and the children of the devil are manifest: Whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor is he who does not love his brother.
Does God expect perfection from us?
Although our perfection is not possible now, there are three ways to measure our commitment to the One who is.
1. Our Position
True believers recognize that God alone is all-together righteous.
Unless or until we recognize His perfection, we will never submit to His standards.
- God warned Moses that people who tried to approach Him while on Mt. Sinai would perish. (Exodus 19:20-21, 20:18-21)
- God said no one could see Him face to face and live. (Exodus 33:20)
- Moses had to wear a veil after being in God's presence. (Exodus 34:29-35)
2. Our Direction
True believers all called to pursue righteousness.
- We desire to live a righteous life because "His seed" remains in us.
- We are capable of living a righteous life because "His seed" remains in us.
3. Our Motivation
True believers recognize that righteous living determines heavenly rewards.
- We can live right without living righteously.
- Only those who acknowledge the Righteous One can be made righteous.
- Only the righteous are capable of living righteously. (Otherwise our best equals filthy rags—Isaiah 64:6)
- Our motives will determine our rewards.
1 Corinthians 3:10-17 NKJV According to the grace of God which was given to me, as a wise master builder I have laid the foundation, and another builds on it. But let each one take heed how he builds on it. 11 For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12 Now if anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, 13 each one's work will become clear; for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will test each one's work, of what sort it is. 14 If anyone's work which he has built on it endures, he will receive a reward. 15 If anyone's work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire. 16 Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? 17 If anyone defiles the temple of God, God will destroy him. For the temple of God is holy, which temple you are.
Confident or embarrassed… which would you be, if Jesus came back right now?
This message has an accompanying Breakout Group lesson: