1 John

The High Priest

Exodus 28, Hebrews 7:24-25, Hebrews 8:1-2, 1 John 2:1-2

The Idea of a Priest

In the beginning, man acted as his own priest. An example of this can be seen through the story of Cain and Abel. Later in human history we find the father, head of the household, offering sacrifices to God. An example of this can be seen through Abraham. Still later, we find a man chosen of God to act as the high priest for the nation (Aaron). Finally, God chose Christ as priest for the whole world. Jesus said, “No man cometh unto the Father but by Me.”

Introduction to 1 John

John’s first letter is like a family photograph album. It describes those who are member of the family of God. Just as children resemble their parents. God’s children have His likeness too.

When a person becomes a child of God, he receives the life of God – eternal life. All who have this life show it in definite ways, John points out.

1. They acknowledge Christ as their Lord and Savior.

2. They love God.

3. They love the children of God.

4. They obey His commandments.

5. They do not go on sinning.

There are some of the tests of eternal life. John wrote this letter so that all who manifest these traits may know that they have eternal life. Chapter 5-13. At this time of writing the false sect of the Gnostics had arisen. This belief was Jesus was a man, and Christ was not a person but an influence that came out from God. Jesus was not Christ, rather the Christ came upon Jesus at this baptism and left Him before He died on the cross. With teachers around who believed this it is no wonder that John urged his readers to try the spirits. These false teachers did not have the marks of the true children of God. John comes on strong that a person is either a child of God or he is not. There is no in-between. That is why the epistle is filed with such extreme opposites as “light and darkness”, “love and hatred”, “truth and lie”, “death and life”, “God and the devil”.

Theme of the letter is “Fellowship” mentioned 4 times in Chapter 1. Love is mentioned 32 times. It was near the end of the apostolic age and love for Christ was waning. The world was stealing the affections of the believers. Hence the emphasis on “Love”. Love of God – Christ – the brethren.

Introduction: The First Epistle Of John

Introduction: The First Epistle Of John

We now enter upon our study of the First Epistle.

God dwells in light unapproachable. But He always wanted to reveal Himself. However, God can never reveal His Godhead essence. That intrinsic glory of His we can only behold, as our Lord states in John 17:24; we cannot share in it. What then does God reveal? The moral nature and character and the happiness of the life God has and lives. It is into this that the believer in Christ is introduced, and of which the Epistles of John treat. It is not a fellowship of “Being”; we do not share in the Godhead, in Deity, but in the moral nature and life of God. In order to do this, God had to come out of the unapproachable light in which He dwells, and manifest Himself so that man could see eternal life; see it lived and thus learn to know what it is like. That eternal life is not shown out in creation, nor in the holiness and righteousness of God’s law, but only in the life and death of Christ. There only is God fully displayed. Neither in creation, nor in the law, nor through the prophets is God made fully known. One Only could say, “We speak that we do know and testify that we have seen”—John 3:11. So also in Hebrews 1:1: “God, who in times past spake unto the fathers by the prophets, hath in these last days spoken unto us by His Son.” In creation, under law and by the prophets, God spoke to man, but He Himself remained invisible. Man heard, but did not see. But in Christ, God is made manifest. ‘The Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of an only begotten with the Father, full of grace and truth”—John 1:14. Who can understand the wonder of this great mystery—all that is involved in the incarnation of God? This truth, God manifest in flesh, is the theme of the Gospel of John.

Preface & Introduction

The American Revised Version of the Scriptures has been employed as the text of these Epistles rather than the familiar King James Authorized Version. There are many delicate shades of thought in this important portion of God’s Word—perhaps more than in almost any other book of the New Testament—which are lost or confused in the Authorized Version. There are truths here, as Peter says in regard to Paul’s writings—2 Peter 3:16—“hard to be understood, and which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, to their own destruction.” I have endeavored to avail myself of the help supplied by various translators of the Bible, to arrive at the most correct interpretation of the precious (and by no means easily understood or explained) truths of these letters from the pen of the beloved Apostle John. It is with the earnest hope and prayer that this commentary may supply a simple view of the deep truths in these Epistles that it is being sent forth. If the reader derives as much blessing from the reading as the author has from the writing of it, he will be well repaid.

Yours in our Lord,
August Van Ryn

Introduction To The Epistles

Before entering upon the detailed study of these wonderful Epistles of John, let us consider briefly the distinctive ministry of the three most prominent writers of the New Testament, that portion of God’s Word as penned by inspiration by Peter, Paul and John. I am borrowing most of what immediately follows from another.1

New Testament (Acts-Revelation)

Lesson 221: The Ascension Of Christ
Acts 1:1-11
Golden Text: Acts 1:11

I. The Great Commission. Matthew 28:18-20; Mark 16:15, 10.

1. The Person Who gave it. He had the right by virtue of His Person and His work.

2. The power for it—“Himself;” v. 18. Note the “power” as seen in (1) His birth; Luke 1:35. (2) Ministry; Luke 4:32. (3) Miracles; Luke 4:36. (4) Forgiveness; Matthew 9:6. (5) Death; John 10:18. (6) Resurrection. Romans 1:4; Colossians 2:13-15. (7) Ascension; Ephesians 1:20. (8) Coming; Matthew 24:30.

3. The plan of it. (1) The command “go ye.” (2) The scope, “world.” (3) The theme, “the Gospel.” (4) The persons, “every creature.”

4. The persons to whom given—His disciples. (1) Chosen. Mark 3:14; John 15:16. (2) Saved; Matthew 16:16. (3) Taught. (4) Commissioned. (5) Equipped.

5. The privilege of it. Ambassadors, co-workers, witnesses, trustees, servants of the Lord Jesus Christ.

6. The price of it. “Go” means leave. Cp. Luke 14:26.

7. The promise with it. “I am with you.” Cp Hebrews 13:5.

II. The Promise. Acts 1:4, 5.

1. Promised in O. T. Isaiah 32:15; Jeremiah 31:33; Ezek 11:19; Joel 228.

2. Promised in N. T. John 15:26—16:14.

III. The Questioning Disciples. Vs. 6-8.

1. The question; v. 6. (1) An earthly kingdom expected; Isaiah 2:2-4. (2) The King being rejected, the kingdom is in obeyance. Luke 19:14; Acts 3:14. (3) He will yet be King over the Earth; Psalm 2.

1 John

The epistle of John has a peculiar character. It is eternal life manifested in. Jesus, and imparted to us—the life which was with the Father, and which is in the Son. It is in this life that believers enjoy the communion of the Father, that they are in relationship with the Father by the Spirit of adoption, and that they have fellowship with the Father and the Son. God’s own character is that which tests it; because it proceeds from Himself. The first chapter establishes these two lat...

James - Jude

Epistle Of James. Why should the Revisers perpetuate the traditional blunder of “The General Epistle of James”? The best critics drop καθολική, following B K, A C being defective, but A also dropping it at the end: so many Latin copies, and the Pesch. Syr. It is not “general,” but specially addressed to the twelve tribes. James 1:1 has neither the closeness of a literal rendering, nor the freedom of the Authorised Version. If we are to adhere to the letter, it is in...

Address 10 - 1 John 3:11-17

For this is the message which ye heard from the beginning, that we should love one another: not as Cain was of the wicked one, and slew his brother; and for what did he slay him? Because his works were wicked, and those of his brother righteous. Wonder not,14 brethren, if the world hateth you. We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we love the brethren. He that loveth not the brother abideth in death. Every one that hateth his brother is a murderer; and ye know that no m...

Address 9 - 1 John 3:7-10

“Dear children, let no one lead you astray: he that doeth righteousness is righteous even as he is righteous. He that doeth sin is of the devil, for from [the] beginning the devil sinneth. To this end was manifested the Son of God that he might undo the works of the devil. Every one that hath been born of God doeth not sin, because his seed abideth in him: and he cannot sin, because he hath been begotten of God. Herein are manifest the children of God and the children of the devil.” ...

Address 7 - 1 John 2:14-27

“I wrote (or, write, the epistolary aorist) to you, fathers, because ye have known Him [that is] from [the] beginning. “I wrote to you, young men, because ye are strong, and the word of God abideth in you, and ye have overcome the wicked one. Love not the world nor the things in the world. If anyone loveth the world, the love of the Father is not in him: because all that [is] in the world, the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride (or, boasting) of life, is not of the...
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