“…so that you may know that you have eternal life.”
1 John 5:13b
Of Utmost Importance
Do you remember passing notes in school and trying to not let your teacher see you? Now in hindsight, most of the very pressing matters we so urgently needed to share weren’t worth the risk of detention. They probably had something to do with secret crushes and afterschool plans and whether or not we were ready for upcoming pop quiz.
But John’s letters to the church in 1 John were not this low stakes. His writings were of eternal significance, created for us to believe and also know of the everlasting life we have in Christ. They mattered so much that we’re still studying them today! He wrote with a purpose and a mission: that those who belong to Jesus would have complete and total assurance of their eternal life…even those of us reading today.
Bringing It All Back
In different seasons of our walks with Christ, we may find ourselves in doubt and in despair, unsure of our faith, salvation, and standing before God. When troubling times like these occur, we must bring ourselves back to the source of our certainty: Christ Himself. And it’s the simple act of bringing us back that made John pen this letter to the church.
It’s because of who Jesus is and what He has done right that we can be made right with God; never has it been about our ability to keep ourselves afloat, out of trouble, or in the clear. It’s always been about His power that sustains us, empowers us, and equips us to keep the faith. God knew that we would be continually in need…which is why He sent us His Son and why He left us His Holy Spirit.
God isn’t shaken by our doubts and uncertainty. He planned for them…which is why we have His Word to go off of. And in His Word, we’re reminded of our need to lean back into the source because the gospel has only ever been good news for us. (This is precisely why John wrote out this fifth chapter for us!)
1 John 3:20 tells us that when our hearts, anxieties, and doubts condemn us, the Father doesn’t. He has already made a way for us in Jesus. So, dear follower, lean back in. Turn to His Word so that you, too, would believe and also know that you truly have life in His name. Let the God of peace make His way in. Let assurance take the place of your doubts, uncertainty, and shame.
Consider the state of your assurance in Christ today. Read back through this chapter of 1 John and consider the truths of Christ’s testimony. Revel in the good news offered to us in Jesus, that we would find rest and peace in His finished work. Cling to the biblical community in your life that will guide you back into the truth when your doubts are all you see.