Witness Like a Pro (DiscipleGuide)

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For example:. No one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him. For the Father loves the Son and shows him all he does He who does not honor the Son does not honor the Father, who sent him.

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Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you And now, Father, glorify me in your presence with the glory I had with you before the world began. I could go on, but the Bible -- especially John's Gospel -- is very clear. Jesus also asserts an essential unity between him and his Father:. How can you say, 'Show us the Father'? Don't you believe that I am in the Father, and that the Father is in me?

The words I say to you are not just my own. Rather, it is the Father, living in me, who is doing his work. Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me It is important, though, to recognize that the Son, Jesus, is a distinct person from God the Father. Why do I say that? Jesus prays to the Father John This wouldn't make any sense if Jesus and the Father were the same person or entity. Jesus is not talking to himself when he prays to the Father. That is a foolish notion. But I make the point because one branch of the Pentecostal movement is not trinitarian.

They believe that the term "Father" designates Christ's deity, while "Son" designates either his humanity or his deity as manifested in the flesh. Thus they believe that while the Father is not the Son, they hold that Jesus is both the Father and the Son. You can also see in the New Testament that the Father often designated in the Bible as "God" without the word Father , is the leader, with Jesus and the Holy Spirit voluntarily subservient to him.

They seem to be "equal" in terms of divinity, but not in terms of role. The Father is the leader, much like in a human family of Jesus' day the father was typically the leader. No doubt that is why Jesus described the relationship as Father - Son. Paul includes a fascinating passage that explains more about this relationship:. For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet.

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The last enemy to be destroyed is death. For he 'has put everything under his feet. When he has done this, then the Son himself will be made subject to him who put everything under him, so that God may be all in all. I think it is important to recognize that the New Testament presents the Father and Son as separate persons, differentiated from one another in function, and interacting with each other as separate persons do. A very common, but overly simple, explanation of the trinity is in terms of modes or manifestations. On the surface it seems helpful. But the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit must be more than manifestations of a single person, otherwise prayer and submission would be meaningless.

The Bible requires us to see the Father and Jesus as both one God and also as distinct persons. The fourth biblical reason that I believe in the trinity is because the Holy Spirit is referred to in personal terms in the Bible, indicating that he, too, is a distinct person, different from either the Father and the Son. I must concede at the outset that we don't have nearly as much data about the interaction between the Spirit and the other persons of the trinity as we do about the relationship between Jesus and the Father.

And sometimes the biblical data about the Holy Spirit seems ambiguous -- at least for the purposes of trying to form a consistent explanation. Didn't it belong to you before it was sold?

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And after it was sold, wasn't the money at your disposal? What made you think of doing such a thing? You have not lied to men but to God. The Holy Spirit also performs divine functions, such as judging John , pouring out the love of God Romans , giving joy Romans , hope Romans , peace Romans , regeneration John , and faith 2 Corinthians The Holy Spirit can also be blasphemed Mark and Luke , which in the New Testament is usually an act of verbally injuring someone divine.

But here is the solid biblical evidence that points to the Holy Spirit as a distinct person in his own right who performs functions we attribute to personhood. The Holy Spirit appoints missionaries Acts ; , he leads and directs them in their ministry Acts ; ; ; 1 Corinthians , he speaks through the prophets Acts ; 1 Peter ; 2 Peter , he corrects John , comforts Acts , helps us in our infirmities Romans , teaches John ; 1 Corinthians , guides John , sanctifies Romans ; 1 Corinthians , testifies of Christ John , glorifies Christ John , has a power of his own Romans , searches all things Romans ; 1 Corinthians , works according to his own will 1 Corinthians , dwells with saints John , can be grieved Ephesians , can be resisted Acts , and can be tempted Acts In many languages, including Greek, words have masculine, feminine, or neuter genders or inflections that have no real counterpart in English.

a12.pm.dnsrd.com/conti-carlucci-construction-inc-05-0098.php If you had, you would be defiant in your sin, not heartbroken. Don't let the devil trick you! Jesus can and will forgive your sins of weakness!

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In the context of 1 John, it seems clear to me that the sin that leads to death is the brazen and steadfast denial by John's opponents that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. From that denial flowed both their lovelessness and their lawlessness with regard to sin. While this is my own conclusion after looking at the evidence, it doesn't answer all the questions and difficulties raised by scholars. Was the person who sinned unto death once a Christian? This is a theological objection, not one raised by the text.

John told us:. For if they had belonged to us, they would have remained with us; but their going showed that none of them belonged to us. Were they apostates who were once Christians, but who had turned from Christ? Stott says, "In John's view they were not apostates; they were counterfeits. John's point in the passage is that we are to pray for a Christian brother whom we see in sin. The situation of the opponents'stubborn antichrist position is an afterthought.

John is saying: Pray for a brother who sins -- oh, but that doesn't mean you should pray for the heretics who seemed to be brothers but who have left the church. Can a true Christian lose his salvation? It's a great question, but far beyond the scope of this study, and not really the central issue here.

I know this is a cop-out, but I need to stay on track.

Why shouldn't we pray for a person who sins unto death? Frankly, I don't know. Perhaps because we tend to be always hopeful of repentance, though there comes a time to "shake the dust off our feet" and move on Mark ; also Jeremiah On a couple of occasions, the Holy Spirit has led me to stop praying for a person.

I find that hard. Nevertheless, I must obey and leave them in God's merciful hands. If you look carefully, however, verse 16b doesn't command us to stop praying for a person who has sinned unto death, only that John is not commanding us to pray for that person. Why should we pray for a sinning brother? Just because a person's sin isn't "unto death" doesn't mean we shouldn't pray for him.

It is possible, of course, for a true Christian to stray from the path. We are to pray that God will bring him back. When we see our brothers and sisters in any kind of unrighteousness, it is a serious matter. We should pray because we seek their best -- life with an eternal quality.

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Directory and handbook — This week think about the people you know in your congregation. If so, go to each and thank them for using their spiritual gift to help the congregation be healthy or restore its health. The purpose of John's statement is not to make the true believer agonize over whether or not he "has" the Son, but to give assurance. I'm sorry about that. When we believe we know God's will, then bring it boldly before God as did the saints in the Bible.

We pray for our brothers and sisters to be walking in the light and in full fellowship with God. John concludes this short section on prayer with a reminder that, though there is such a thing as a sin that leads to death, all sin is serious:. But sin isn't just an attitude.

The attitude works itself out in acts that are wrong, unjust, and unrighteous.

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You may not have meant to sin you tell yourself , but that doesn't mean that you didn't commit a sin, that is, do an unrighteous deed. It's clear in the Old Testament that one could sin unwittingly, but it was still sin.

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In jurisprudence, there's a saying: "Ignorance of the law is no excuse. John is now summarizing as he winds up the letter. He prefaces his assertions with three "We know" statements:. And we are in him who is true -- even in his Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life. We discussed, "anyone born of God does not continue to sin," in Lesson 4 at Stott comments:. Sin and the child of God are incompatible.

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They may occasionally meet; they cannot live together in harmony. The word originally applied to prison guards, "to retain in custody, keep watch over, guard. Jesus protected his sheep so that "no one can snatch them out of my hand" John In his high priestly prayer, Jesus prays for his followers, "My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one" John He taught his disciples to pray: "Deliver us from the evil one" Matthew Paul assured the Thessalonians, "The Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen and protect you from the evil one" 2 Thessalonians He is the one "who is able to keep you from falling and to present you before his glorious presence without fault and with great joy" Jude Despite the pervasiveness of the enemy's influence, we have a clear understanding of our identity as God's children.

And we are safe: Christ's keeping power is active all around us. Three times John affirms that the heretics are wrong. They have devalued Jesus into being merely a righteous man. But he is more -- much more. John does not hesitate in the least to call Jesus "God" John , 18; Here, as he closes the letter, John asserts Jesus'full divinity once again:.

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Cities across the Mediterranean were filled with idol worship. But throughout this letter, the errors that John has confronted have focused on a wrong Christology, lack of love, and lawlessness. Why does he bring up idol worship now? Because John has just exhorted his readers that Jesus Christ the Son is "the true God and eternal life" The essence of idolatry is substituting something false and unworthy in the place of the true God.

So John seems to be using idolatry in a figurative sense here. He is saying: Little children, watch yourselves so that you don't let anything false or unworthy take the place of your true faith in the true God -- a fitting way to conclude! What idols distract us from the true God?