Today's Lectionary Text
1 John 5:13-21
I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life.
And this is the boldness we have in him, that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have obtained the requests made of him. If you see your brother or sister committing what is not a mortal sin, you will ask, and God will give life to such a one—to those whose sin is not mortal. There is sin that is mortal; I do not say that you should pray about that. All wrongdoing is sin, but there is sin that is not mortal.
We know that those who are born of God do not sin, but the one who was born of God protects them, and the evil one does not touch them. We know that we are God’s children, and that the whole world lies under the power of the evil one. And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding so that we may know him who is true;and we are in him who is true, in his Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life.
Little children, keep yourselves from idols.
Building our confidence as a follower of Jesus is what I understand John’s purpose is in the writing of these verses. First, he wants us to understand that when we surrendered our hearts to Jesus we received God’s gift of eternal life. Next, John shares with us that because we believe that Jesus is the Son of God, the prayers that we pray for our brothers and sisters who sin will be heard by God. These are the intercessory prayers we pray for those we love: family, friends, and neighbors who we know have a need, and also for those we don’t know who are facing a crisis or difficult situation.
We can have confidence that God will answer our prayers because He hears our prayers. John continues on by telling us that Jesus keeps us safe and protects us from the Satan. And finally John defines who God is, “Him who is true” and who Jesus is, “His Son Jesus Christ,” to build our confidence in the ones we have chosen to follow.
-Pam Bilyeu, Lay Leader
Five Rivers District
Prayer for Reflection
Lord thank you for your Son and the gift of eternal life, and for listening and answering our prayers. Amen
*Devotion reprinted from 1/15/19
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