By Jacob Toman
This article is part of a Bible study series where we are examining each chapter of 1 John and asking challenging questions about the text. For the next several weeks, Gospel & Gaming will be spending time going over the book of 1 John as a part of our sermons, our Bible studies with members of our community of gamers, and in the content on our website. Our hope is that this series will help you learn not only about this particular book of the Bible, but also how to better examine and benefit from God’s word as a whole. Enjoy!
Reading the Bible isn’t something only pastors, preachers, priests, and spiritual leaders do. Reading the Bible is an activity that anyone can jump into. Many Christians have believed that one of the best ways to know God, is to know what God has communicated to his people throughout history.
For the next few weeks we’ll be focusing some questions on our Twitter and Facebook pages, as well as in our Bible studies and sermons, around the book of 1 John. Regardless of whether you’ve never read the Bible before, or have spent a lifetime reading it, we invite you to join us in reading 1 John and letting it challenges us.
In order to understand the meaning in any piece of media (television, movie, music, book, or game), one must actually process through the material at hand. In this case, it means we’re going to read through a bit of 1 John with each of these devotionals, and ask some questions about what’s going on in the text. Read 1 John 1.
1 That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked at and our hands have touched—this we proclaim concerning the Word of life. 2 The life appeared; we have seen it and testify to it, and we proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and has appeared to us. 3 We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard, so that you also may have fellowship with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son, Jesus Christ. 4 We write this to make our joy complete.
5 This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all. 6 If we claim to have fellowship with him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live out the truth. 7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.
8 If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we claim we have not sinned, we make him out to be a liar and his word is not in us.
Consider the following challenges as you think about what you’ve read:
- What is it that the author of 1 John 1 wants to share with his audience? Is it an event, a person, or a place?
- Who is the “him” being referred to in 1 John 1:5? Is it the author, the audience, God, another character?
- How does the author of 1 John 1 describe God? What adjectives, verbs, or nouns are used to describe who and what God is?
- What are the lies that the author of 1 John 1 warns his audience about? (Hint; see verse 6 and 8)
- What does 1 John 1 tell us about who God is?
- What does 1 John 1 tell us about who we are?