Pastor Nate Harlan equips us to test the spirits — that is, false teaching inspired by demonic influence. We must be diligent or we will be led away into heresy and idolatry. If any teacher says that Jesus Christ is not God incarnate, fully human and fully God, then we must reject him. The scriptures and the church’s creeds protect us from such falsehoods.
God’s love for his children is extravagant. In this second part of Pastor Nate Harlan’s sermon on 1 John 3:19-24, we focus on what the Apostle John tells us about this important topic. We are not to live in a state of insecurity about our relationship with God. We are to live trusting in the generosity of God to us, his children.
If you are struggling with the assurance of your salvation, if you lack confidence before God, you are more concerned about yourself than about others. This lack of confidence before God can actually make us selfish and keep us from obeying His command to love the brothers. Having biblical confidence equips us to love others rather than worry about ourselves.
No one wants to be hated, so the temptation for the Christian is to compromise with the world so the world won’t hate us. But as Pastor Nate Harlan says, simply by your example of following Jesus, you are exposing the wickedness of the unbelievers around you. We cannot cave in to the pressure to make peace with the world.
Are you a child of the devil or are you a child of God? Can you know for sure?
What the Apostle John tells us in this passage is that you can discover the answer. But the process is uncomfortable because it requires deep self-examination: Do you practice sin or do you practice righteousness? Hear Pastor Nate Harlan on this passage.
Hope has a central importance in the Christian’s life. Just like faith, hope by itself is useless. Hope must have an object. Moreover, you cannot follow Jesus faithfully without having hope. Pastor Nate Harlan digs into the purifying aspect of hope in the first of a series of sermons on this particular passage.
We are not saved by sound doctrine. But we cannot be saved apart from it.
Pastor Nate Harlan shows us from 1 John that we should be concerned with doctrine because we want eternal life. And to have eternal life, we need to abide in the truth of the gospel and abide in Christ.
(Our apologies for the poor sound quality in this recording.)
The teaching of the Incarnation, that Jesus Christ is God in the flesh, is viciously attacked today. This is an old lie; the Apostle John himself also faced this lie among the heretical Gnostics of his era. But as Pastor Nate Harlan preaches on 1 John 2:18–23, we discover that if the Incarnation is false, then Christianity collapses. We must hold onto this truth against any “false christs” who would claim otherwise.
The Apostle John warns us to love not the world. But what is the antidote to loving the world? It’s remembering who you are in Christ and being thankful. Pastor Nate Harlan preaches on 1 John 2:12–17 and encourages us, especially if we are little children, fathers, or young men.
The theme of brotherly love is a fundamental concern of this epistle. In order for you to be a true disciple of Jesus Christ, you will show love for your brothers in Christ. There is more to being a Christian than having mere knowledge. We also must love the church.