Lectionary Year B
May 7, 2000
1 John 3:1-7
Step V: Distillation/Hermeneutical Bridge
(JFC) A. SUMMARY OF SALIENT FEATURES
The assurance of believers/recipients of this Epistle's being God's children has
got to be paramount here. Other major factors include doing right/righteousness and their/our becoming as is the Deity. God's purpose described as taking away sinfulness is of major importance, too, as is sinning, lawlessness, guilt and abiding in God, as well. The sentiment of love expressed in these statements still ranks high in my estimation.
(JFC) B. SMOOTH TRANSLATION
1 Look and see what love God has given us, in order that we might be called
children of God, and, that is exactly what we are, God's childre). Now many in the world might not know (that about?) us because they have not known Him. 2 Beloved, we are definitely God's children, (even and especially) as we speak, yet what we have known is that when it should be revealed, like him we shall be, so that we might see ourselves in him as he is. 3 And all having this hope in him purify themselves, according to how he is pure.
4 All the ones doing sinfulness also doing lawlessness they thereby do, and sin is lawlessness/wickedness/iniquity. 5 And surely you know that he was revealed, so that he would take away sinfulness, and yet, furthermore sinfulness in him never existed. 6 All who are abiding in him do not sin; all who do sin neither have seen and/or recognize) him nor have they known him. 7 Children, never let anyone deceive you; the ones doing the upright deeds are righteous, as he is righteous.
(JFC) C. HERMENEUTICAL BRIDGE
Whitney Houston sings, "It's not right but it's Okay and I'm gonna make it anyway".
Since I like Whitney Houston's singing, I can be glad she can sing those lyrics. They seem right appealing to my sense of sound revealing appealing images. They sound hopeful, at least momentarily they do. However, upon thinking more about true rightness and righteousness, we get to wondering. What about the rest of us? We have a chance only if things are right, truly right. In Christ all things are right. He is Righteousness personified. This passage might confirm that we have a claim to/on righteousness in Him. There is real and lasting hope in that expectation faith gives us. Does that hope purify us?
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