1 John 1:7-How Do We “Walk In The Light?”
The atoning blood of Jesus Christ washes our sins away at baptism (Acts 22:16), but the apostle John teaches us that it continues to cleanse us of our sins if we “walk in the light.” He wrote, “But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin” (1 John 1:7). What a reassuring verse! He tells us that “if” we walk in the light of God our sins will continuously be cleansed. This should be a source of inner peace for the faithful Christian. We know we all sin, and if we say that we don’t, John says we are liars (1 John 1:8). So, it is comforting to know that if we meet the conditions of walking in the light we can know that Jesus acts as our advocate with the heavenly Father (1 John 2:1). But, we must ask ourselves what it means to “walk in the light?” This is a question of the utmost importance, and one that we must consider for our spiritual well being. John answers our question throughout the remainder of First John; so let’s consider some things he pointed out that we should do to insure we are walking in the light.
1. We walk in the light when we live a life of faithful obedience to the commands of God. Jesus made it clear that we show our love for Him by keeping His commandments. He said, “If you love me, keep my commandments” (John 14:15). When we obey the New Testament plan of salvation, we enter “into Christ” by being baptized into Him (Rom. 6:3,4; Gal. 3:27). To maintain this relationship and know that we are “in Him,” we must obey and keep His commandments. John wrote, “Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments. He who says, “I know Him,” and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him” (1 John 2:3-5). So, we can know we are walking in the light when we do our best to obey his commands. Take time to read Matthew 7:21-23 and Hebrews 5:8,9.
2. We walk in the light when we love our fellow brethren in Christ. John wrote, “He who says he is in the light, and hates his brother, is in darkness until now. He who loves his brother abides in the light, and there is no cause for stumbling in him” (1 John 2:9,10). It is impossible to maintain a loving relationship with God without love for our fellow Christians. Jesus commanded us to love one another (John 13:34,35), and we show our love for God by obeying His commands to love one another. John stated, “By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and keep His commandments. For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments” (1 John 5:2,3).
3. We walk in the light when we abstain from walking in the ways of the world. John said, “Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world – the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life – is not of the Father but is of the world” (1 John 2:15,16). We have two paths to choose from. We can develop a “friendship with the world” which is “enmity with God” (James 4:4), or we can choose the spiritual path of walking in the light. Let’s examine ourselves daily to insure we are walking in the light so our sins can be cleansed by the precious blood of Christ. -Ed