3 Look at the remarkable love the father has given us – that we should be called God’s children! That indeed is what we are. That’s why the world doesn’t know us, because it didn’t know him. 2 Beloved ones, we are now, already, God’s children; it hasn’t yet been revealed what we are going to be. We know that when he is revealed we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is. 3 All who have this hope in him make themselves pure, just as he is pure.
4 Everyone who goes on sinning is breaking the law; sin, in fact, is lawlessness. 5 And you know that he was revealed so that he might take away sins, and there is no sin in him. 6 Everyone who abides in him does not go on sinning. Everyone who goes on sinning has not seen him, or known him.
7 Children, don’t let anyone deceive you. The person who does righteousness is righteous, just as he is righteous. 8 The person who goes on sinning is from the devil, because the devil is a sinner from the very start. The son of God was revealed for this purpose, to destroy the works of the devil. 9 Everyone who is fathered by God does not go on sinning, because God’s offspring remain in him; they cannot go on sinning, because they have been fathered by God. 10 That is how it is clear who are the children of God and who are the children of the devil: everyone who does not do what is right is not of God, particularly those who do not love their brother or sister.
The Challenge of Love
11 This is the message which you heard right from the start, you see, that we should love one another. 12 We should not be like Cain, who was of the evil one, and murdered his brother. Why did he murder him? Because his deeds were evil, while his brother’s were right.
13 Don’t be surprised, my brothers and sisters, if the world hates you. 14 We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love the family. Anyone who doesn’t love abides in death. 15 Everyone who hates their brother or sister is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has the life of the coming age abiding in them. 16 This is how we know love: he laid down his life for us. And we too ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters. 17 Anyone who has the means of life in this world, and sees a brother or sister in need, and closes their heart against them – how can God’s love be abiding in them? 18 Children, let us not love in word, or in speech, but in deed and in truth.
19 Because of this, we know we are of the truth, and we will persuade our hearts of this fact before him, 20 because if our hearts condemn us, God is greater than our hearts. He knows everything. 21 Beloved, if our hearts do not condemn us, we have boldness before God, 22 and we receive from him whatever we ask, because we keep his commands and give him pleasure when he sees what we are doing. 23 And this is his command, that we should believe in the name of his son Jesus the Messiah, and should love one another, just as he gave us the commandment. 24 Anyone who keeps his commandments abides in him, and he in them. This is how we know that he abides in us, by his spirit that he has given us.
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