Verse 4: He who says, I know Him and does not keep His commandments is a liar and the truth is not in him
Whoever keeps God’s word is the one who has been made perfect in His love(v5). There is no way we can claim allegiance to God and still be found to be living in sin or enjoying a sinful habit. Sin is the main thing that got us separated from God. We could only get reconciled to God the moment Jesus’ offer of salvation was accepted by us through our repentance and rejection of sin and all of its lures. No one who still enjoys sin can boldly say that he is a child of God.
Sinfulness and holiness are two parallel lines that can never meet. While still on this side of eternity we continue to struggle against sin by carefully and totally depending on Jesus’ grace. Occasionally, we may fall into Sin. But as children of God, we are privilege to have an advocate; Jesus our great high priest still interceding on our behalf (v 1) Hence when we accidentally fall, we must race back into his embrace by confessing and repenting of such sins.
Verse 9: He who says he is in the light and hates his brother, is in darkness until now.
This verse is very important to every believer. Hatred is usually well hidden in the heart. So perfectly concealed that most times it is only the person harbouring hatred that knows about its existence. We may do well to remind ourselves that Jesus ratified the law on murder to include hatred for a brother (see Matthew 5:21-22) What do we do when we see this ugly seed trying to germinate in our hearts? We must prayerfully rebuke it. We must not try to justify it. We must not claim one scripture or the other. There is no place in the bible that hatred is approved not even for our enemies. In fellowships, brethren still segregate. We have our own little groups and close allies while others who are not in this group are prejudiced against. This is not of God. It is the seed of hatred springing up.
Today it is coming clear to us from verses 9-11 that he who is made perfect in love for his brother is the only one who will not stumble. He is the one who remains in the light. He is the one who is not overcome by darkness. Even unbelievers are to be treated with Love. How much more our fellow brethren in the Lord. As long as we still wear this flesh we may stumble but what matters is that we get up again and continue the journey. May God bless us all and keep us spiritually energised as we continue to journey ahead in Jesus name. Amen.