The letter of 1 John is for the family of God. It contains the kind of expressions and information commonly heard among family members behind closed doors. We get that impression from numerous references in these five chapters addressing “little children” and “children,” as well as “fathers,” “young men,” and “brothers.” In this letter, John passed along the same kind of sage advice we hear when gathered at the knee of a family patriarch. At the time he wrote, John had lived almost a century and had endured the blast of life’s harshest treatment. He had felt the brutal blows of persecution and bore the scars that proved it. He had also witnessed the fall of many who once walked closely with their Lord; he anguished over heresies that had sprung up in the lives of Christians he loved—people who were once actively engaged in churches where he had served. Because he had “seen it all,” this old gentleman was able to offer some elementary rules all of us would be wise to hear and obey.
1 John 2:1-6
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