Get Real
Part 3
“To The Children, Fathers, and Young Men”

Next, John addresses three groups of believers: little children, fathers, and young men. He addresses each group twice. He speaks to the little children regarding what they have received, to the fathers about what they have known, and to the young men concerning what they have conquered.

Vs 12 “I write to you, little children, because your sins are forgiven you for His name’s sake.”

When John uses the term little children, it means “little born ones” and refers to those who are new in the faith.

Forgiven is in a verb tense meaning a past, completed action that continues to have present results. John is saying that our sins were put away at the cross and will never again be remembered against us.
When Jesus said on the cross, “It is finished,” he used this same perfect verb tense, telling us that the atonement for our sins was complete and would forever be the all-sufficient payment for sin.

John tells these believers that they were forgiven “for his name’s sake,” or literally, “because of his name.”

John addresses the little children again in the next verse, but this time he uses a different Greek word that literally means, little child under instruction.

These are children of God who are willingly submitting to the discipline and training of the Word and of the Holy Spirit.

I write to you, little children [under instruction]… because you have known the Father.”
1 John 2:13a, NKJV

Because these believers had willingly submitted to the training of Godly discipline, they were progressively gaining knowledge of the Father by experience.

Then next, John speaks to the fathers:

I write to you, fathers, because you have known Him who is from the beginning.1 John 2:13b, NKJV

These fathers were older men who were mature in the Christian life, having lived in fellowship with the Lord Jesus for many years. As a result, they had gained much personal knowledge of him through experience.

John addresses the fathers in exactly the same way in verse 14 and seems to be saying that the greatest accomplishment of their long lives was their accumulated knowledge of Jesus Christ, the One Who has existed from the beginning of creation!

Finally in verses 13 and 14, John addresses the young men:

“I write to you, young men, because you have overcome the wicked one.” 1 John 2:13c, NKJV

I have written to you, young men, because you are strong. And the Word of God abides in you, and you have overcome the wicked one.
1 John 2:14, NKJV
The verb “overcome” is again in a tense meaning they were enjoying permanent victory following a past conflict. They fought their fight to a finish and were enjoying the fruits of victory — a life lived in the power of the Spirit where victory over Satan was a consistent one.

The term the wicked one in the Greek means the pernicious (evil, destructive, deadly) one. The Greek language has two words for the idea of wickedness:
Kakos refers to a man who is content to perish in his own corruption, and poneros, used to describe a man who seeks to drag everyone else down with him into his ultimate downfall. Here John uses the word poneros to describe Satan.

He says that these young men overcame by the power of the Word of God abiding within them. Abide means to dwell in a home. The Word of God, residing in their hearts in an unhindered, welcome state, joined with the power of the Holy Spirit is what gave these young men victory over Satan, the Pernicious One, who sought to drag them down with himself into the ruin that will someday be his.

Notice that those yielding to the training of the Word as a child grow into young adults who, because of the Word of God abiding in them, have victory over Satan.

And those who continue to walk in the Word as young adults then grow into a well-rounded, mature knowledge of Christ as older adults, which is the greatest achievement of all!
The direct translation of these verses, then, is this:

I write to you, fathers because you have come to know by experience the One who is from the beginning and are, as a present result, possessors of that knowledge. I write to you, young men, because you are strong with endowed strength, and the Word of God in you is abiding, and you have gained the victory over the Pernicious One, and as a present result are standing on his neck!

Chapter 5: The Antichrist

“Do not love the world or the things in the world.”
1 John 2:15a, NKJV

World here is the Greek word kosmos and can mean one of several things: the created order, all of humanity, or the evil world system (everything in the world that stands against God). John is certainly not telling us to refrain from loving humanity, nor that we should fail to appreciate God’s creation.
John is talking about the evil world system, of which Satan is the ruler.

The Apostle Paul writes that, “Satan, who is the god of this evil world, has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ…”2 Corinthians 4:4, NLT

Satan is the god of this present evil world. Notice that verse speaks of god with a little “g”. That does not mean that Satan is literally a god, simply that he is the author and instigator of hostility toward the true God. In his letter to the church at Ephesus, Paul described our life in this world before knowing Christ:

“And you, He made alive, who were once dead in trespasses and sins, in which you once walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air (the evil atmosphere of earth, the realm of demons), the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience.” Ephesians 2:1-2, NKJV

A new world is coming where Christ rules and reigns but for now we are in the age of grace. In this current age there is tremendous warfare between the forces of evil and the forces of God.

“For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against the spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.”Ephesians 6:12, NKJV

What is the devil’s primary activity in this current world? To blind the minds of the lost so that they do not come to Christ.—“Whose minds the god of this world has blinded…2 Corinthians 4:4, NKJV

In the Corinthians reference, the phrase “has blinded” literally means, “he got to blinding them.” Satan blinds people’s thoughts, reasonings, and conclusions when they hear the Gospel, leading them to reject it. Their mental reactions and thought processes are under the influence of the devil. This is important to know because the ultimate blinding of the world will come at the arrival of the Antichrist.
John warns his listeners not to love the evil world system. Some of John’s readers were still drawn to and enmeshed in the world system from which they had been redeemed. In the original Greek, John literally says, “Stop loving the world with a love called out of your hearts because you consider it precious.”

“If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.” 1 John 2:15, NKJV

The person who habitually, exclusively loves the world with no love for God is not of God. “For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world.” 1 John 2:16, NKJV

Here John tells us that the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life all proceed out of the evil world system, which is energized by Satan. The lust of the flesh is a passionate desire or craving that comes from the fallen nature, not from the physical body. The physical body and its members have no evil desires in and of themselves; rather desires arise from the depraved nature.
The lust of the eyes is the passionate craving for satisfaction. We want what we see around us. The phrase pride of life comes from a word meaning vainglory or braggart talk or display. It is an arrogant and vain assurance in one’s own resources or in the stability of earthly things, the attitude that says, “I don’t need God. My own abilities and the security of earthly things are all I need.”

John assures us that this current age, energized by Satan and captivated by the lust of the eyes, the lust of the flesh, and the “I don’t need God” attitude, is passing away like a parade passing by in the street. ________________

Next, John introduces us to the Antichrist:

“Little children, it is the last hour…1 John 2:18, NKJV

Last hour does not refer to a specific length of time, but to the characteristics of a particular, indefinite length of time. In essence, John says, “It is a critical season.”
So, last hour does not refer to the end of the world but to a period preceding the appearance of Christ’s kingdom. This will be a time of trouble and danger, marked by the appearance of “many antichrists.” The last hour began with the death and resurrection of Christ.

“He (Jesus) indeed was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you.” 1 Peter 1:20, NKJV

We might say that when Jesus died on the cross and rose from the dead, the age of grace began and the hourglass measuring the last hour was turned upside down. For a little over 2,000 years, the sands of the last hour have been falling through God’s timepiece.

Now, it is very important that we understand there is a difference between a false christ and the Antichrist. The term false christ is the Greek word pseudochristos, meaning a pretender to the office.

Jesus warned,

“For false christs and false prophets will rise and show great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect.” Matthew 24:24, NKJV

However, Antichrist is literally the Greek antichristos, which means “against or opposing Christ.” Resistance to, and defiance of, Christ will be the mark of the Antichrist, not the assuming of his character and office.

The antichrist spirit is one that denies the very existence of the true Christ. John tells us that “many antichrists” were already on the scene in his day and that this is one of the marks of the last hour. “…many antichrists have come, by which we know that it is the last hour.” 1 John 2:18, NKJV

John is not saying that the Antichrist had already come, but that men who were influenced to a lesser degree by the same spirit that will empower the final Antichrist had already established themselves in the midst of the early church.

“They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us…” 1 John 2:19, NKJV

John is letting us know that the Antichrist is yet to come. Paul the Apostle agreed with this position and wrote: “Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition…” 2 Thessalonians 2:3, NKJV

The term “man of sin” removes any notion of the Antichrist being a political system, computer network, etc. The word used here is the Greek word anthropos which specifically refers to a human man.

Scripture teaches us some specific traits of the Antichrist:

—He will reveal himself to the world.

“For that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition…”2 Thessalonians 2:3, NKJV

—He will be filled with deadly hatred against Christ.

“Who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshipped.” 2 Thessalonians 2:4, NKJV

—He will hate the church which worships the true God in Spirit and in truth.

“And in the latter time… a king shall arise, having fierce features, who understands sinister schemes. His power shall be mighty, but not by his own power; he shall destroy fearfully, and shall prosper and thrive; He shall destroy the mighty, and also the holy people.” Daniel 8:23-24, KJV

—He will come in the power of Satan, working signs and lying wonders.

“The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders.” 2 Thessalonians 2:9, NKJV

—He will bring a strong delusion to the whole world.

“And for this reason [because the world rejected Christ] God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie.” 2 Thessalonians 2:11, NKJV

John closes by saying, “By which we know it is the last hour.” 1 John 2:18, NKJV

With over 2,000 years of church history behind us and apostasy sweeping through the church at large today, the return of the Lord must be close!

Let’s look at the literal translation of this verse:

Little children under instruction, a last hour it is. And even as you heard that antichrist is coming, even now antichrists, many of them, have arisen, from which fact we know by experience that it is the last hour.

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