1 John is a New Testament letter, however it is a little strange. There are none of the usual distinguishing features of a letter, no description of the sender or those receiving the letter, no clear details of the location community to which it is addressed. Other than several references to it being written (1:4, 2:1, 2:12-14, 5:13) you could begin to wonder if this was a sermon rather than a letter. You begin to wonder if the content that we have before us was a letter written to several church communities to be read out as they gathered for worship and the personal greetings have been omitted in the version we have before us.
Interestingly there is an indication that time had already passed from Jesus’ first community of disciples, those receiving the letter are receiving instruction from those who were there with Jesus. Yet this church community are not just passive recipients of this teaching but encouraged to see that the Spirit brings the confidence of belonging to Christ.
As we look into this ancient teaching, the tradition of faith and discipleship handed down from the Christian community of Jesus’ first disciples, we too can receive a fresh anointing of the Holy Spirit (2:20), a vivid personal experience of the truth and love of God.
You can listen to the audio recording of the sermons as they become available below.
We will be exploring 1 John over five Sundays and then reflecting upon how this teaching impacts our day to day life on Wednesday evenings with our Small Groups using Dr. Tony Evans’ video series.