Week in Review

Truth is that which explains all the facts. The Epistles of James and Peter (especially 2 Peter) contain some key facts that people tend to ignore, because they conflict with their theology and lives. It's only when we bring our understanding of the truth into conformity with the facts, that our lives will start meshing with the truth, because our thinking is reflected in our actions.

So spend some extra time making sure you understand 1 Peter 1.

Then see if you can explain that he says in 2 Peter.

It you didn't grasp the argument of James, now is as good a time as any to do so.

Now you're left with 1 John. One key to unlocking its secrets is to recognize that anti-Christ means anti-Messiah, opposed to Jesus being the Messiah. "Messiah" means "anoint" in Hebrew, as does "Christ" in Greek. Kings were anointed with oil as a symbol of divine empowerment. In the Old Testament this was accompanied by the giving of the Holy Spirit to have power to do God's will.

Another key is realizing that the Messiah was the one who would give the Holy Spirit, which was authenticated with signs and wonders (done by the power of the Holy Spirit) and further demonstrated by the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the Day of Pentecost, and through the charismatic gifts. The recipients of the Epistle of 1 John had received an anointing, or the Holy Spirit. The fact that they had the Holy Spirit teaches them all they need to know against the false anti-Christ/Messiah teachers. Since Christ gave the Holy Spirit, He was indeed the Messiah, and anything the anti-Christs said to the contrary, was clearly false. Thus the audience of 1 John didn't need the anti-Christs to teach them how to live so as to be blessed (by following the OT).

Clearly the audience still needed teaching from John, even about this topic, so any interpretation which concludes that having the Holy Spirit means you know all truth isn't true (although in the case of the Apostles it was true - John 16:13; 1 Corinthians 2:12).