1 John 3:4-10
4 Everyone who sins breaks the law; in fact, sin is lawlessness. 5 But you know that he appeared so that he might take away our sins. And in him is no sin. 6 No one who lives in him keeps on sinning. No one who continues to sin has either seen him or known him. 7 Dear children, do not let anyone lead you astray. The one who does what is right is righteous, just as he is righteous. 8 The one who does what is sinful is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devil’s work. 9 No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God’s seed remains in them; they cannot go on sinning, because they have been born of God. 10 This is how we know who the children of God are and who the children of the devil are: Anyone who does not do what is right is not God’s child, nor is anyone who does not love their brother and sister.
This is a passage that can be easily misunderstood such that we bring condemnation upon ourselves. The Message version of this passage refers to those who make a practice of sin rather everyone who sins as being those who do not really get Jesus.
I like the last verse in this passage where John talks about those who belong to God being those who love their brothers and sisters as well as those seeking God’s help to live righteously. This includes loving ourselves by viewing ourselves as God does. He is a loving father not a harsh task master. If we are working at living as He asks with His help and we are doing our best to treat those around us and ourselves with love and grace then we are part of His family and meet this test.
Thank you so much Lord that You give us a way to pull ourselves out of the mess of sin. Thank you that You want to help us each and every day to live well as Your children. Help us to reach out for Your help, not to curl up with condemnation.
Written by Therese Manning