Read: 1 John 5:1-12
Consider: Society today has convinced many people that the physical human life is all there is and that once we die we cease to exist. Christianity teaches otherwise, in that God offers us eternal life through the atoning death of Jesus Christ on the cross. Have you realised that eternal life starts as soon as you put your trust in Christ? You don’t have to wait until you die to enjoy it. In fact, death is only a transition from the mortal life to the immortal life. This is how Paul describes this change in 1 Corinthians 15:51-54 – Listen, I tell you a mystery: we will not all sleep, but we will all be changed – in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. For the perishable must clothe itself with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality. When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: ‘Death has been swallowed up in victory.’
What we have to do is to live our life today in full knowledge of having inherited eternal life when we came to Christ. So how are we to live? In the fifth chapter of John’s first letter he speaks of three attributes of the Christian life that reveal that we are indeed in Christ. These are:
– faith/belief (v1);
– love (v2);
– obedience (v2-3).
Without these attributes anyone claiming to be a Christian will be living a life that is a sham. So the Christian life starts with faith in Christ and there is no other way to get there. Love for God and fellow Christians should flow naturally from this. Finally, the Christian life should be characterised by obedience to God.
Let’s think for a moment about the negatives and you’ll see that anyone who does not have these attributes in their life cannot be a Christian. Here we would be seeing a person who does not believe in Jesus, does not have love for God and other Christians, and does not seek to keep God’s commands. Hopefully you can see that without these attributes anyone claiming to be a Christian cannot be.
Listen to what Jesus himself said about life: I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full (John 10:10). This means that before believing in Christ we may have been alive, but now we are ALIVE!
Pray: Father, we thank and praise you for the fulness of life that can be found in believing in Jesus. May our life be one of faith, love and obedience. Amen