Being on the Jesus Team
Growing up I remember what it felt like to be in the “unpopular group”. The “popular peeps” wouldn’t so much as look at the “unpopulars”, other than to grimace at them or to mock them. But when the “unpopulars” were noticed by someone perceived to be greater than them, now that meant something. And if they wanted to hang out? Suddenly the status of the unpopular person changed. Or did it? Was their status truly lesser than, or was it something that they believed about themself? Well, friends, we have been seen. Noticed. By the greatest One in the whole world. And He wants to spend time with us. That’s right. Just you and Him, and just me and Him. He has time for everyone. Being on the Jesus team means we are chosen and accepted. Do we see the value in this incredible gift of fellowship with the God of this universe?
Sometimes we want what we can’t have. We want others to notice us who never will. But the precious people who love us and care for us we can take for granted. We hear that God loves us all the time, but perhaps we don’t prize that place that we have in the eyes of the God of this universe. He loves us so much!
Bible Reading: 1 John 1-3
Today we are reading one of the letters from the apostle John, the disciple Jesus loved. How does that phrase rub you? Do you wonder why he was called the disciple whom Jesus loved? Sometimes we can hear of a special relationship and feel on the outside. But that is never the case with Jesus. All are invited.
As it says in 1 John 1:3 “what we have seen and heard we also declare to you, so that you may also have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son, Jesus Christ.”
But all do not accept that invitation. And sometimes we can get distracted by the burdens and lies of this world that we don’t see this incredible gift of salvation and fellowship with God.
John was writing to a church that was being attacked by false teaching. False teaching that minimized sin and a misunderstanding of who Christ was.
John reminded the church of what it means to belong to Christ. We no longer belong to the world and that belonging is going to look different.
Being on the Jesus Team—A New Identity
Being on the Jesus team will require some changes. Like being on any other team requires possibly a uniform and certain behavior, we do not accept the incredible gift of salvation without a serious heart change. And we would not want it any other way. God is our Redeemer. He loves us too much to leave us the same—in our sinful condition.
A New Culture—Sinless and Truthful
1 John 1:5-10
“5 This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light, and there is absolutely no darkness in him. 6 If we say, “We have fellowship with him,” and yet we walk in darkness, we are lying and are not practicing the truth. 7 If we walk in the light as he himself is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. 8 If we say, “We have no sin,” we are deceiving ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we say, “We have not sinned,” we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.”
Being on the Jesus Team—Requirements of belonging to Jesus
1 John 2:1-2
“My little children, I am writing you these things so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father—Jesus Christ the righteous one. 2 He himself is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours, but also for those of the whole world.”
This new freedom is a freedom not to sin. We can rise above our old nature when we belong to Jesus. His Spirit lives within us to empower us.
Being on the Jesus Team—Requirement: Keep His Commands
Those who belong to Jesus keep His commands and walk in truth.
1 John 2:3
“3 This is how we know that we know him: if we keep his commands. 4 The one who says, “I have come to know him,” and yet doesn’t keep his commands, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. 5 But whoever keeps his word, truly in him the love of God is made complete. This is how we know we are in him.”
The moment we start to make excuses for our behavior, friends, we are deceived. Christ’s sacrifice was not so we would lead mediocre lives. His grace is enough!
Being on the Jesus Team—Requirement: Walk and Talk like Jesus
Those who are on the Jesus team will walk and talk like Jesus
1 John 2:6
“The one who says he remains in him should walk just as he walked.”
Being on the Jesus Team—Requirement: Love people
Those who are on the Jesus team love people.
1 John 2:9-11
“9 The one who says he is in the light but hates his brother or sister is in the darkness until now. 10 The one who loves his brother or sister remains in the light, and there is no cause for stumbling in him. 11 But the one who hates his brother or sister is in the darkness, walks in the darkness, and doesn’t know where he’s going, because the darkness has blinded his eyes.”
Being on the Jesus Team—Requirement: Don’t Love the World
Those who are on the Jesus team will not love the world.
1 John 2:15-17
“15 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. 16 For everything in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride in one’s possessions—is not from the Father, but is from the world. 17 And the world with its lust is passing away, but the one who does the will of God remains forever.”
Being on the Jesus Team—Requirement: Remain on the Team
Those who are on the Jesus team remain on the team.
1 John 2:19
“19 They went out from us, but they did not belong to us; for if they had belonged to us, they would have remained with us. However, they went out so that it might be made clear that none of them belongs to us.”
Being on the Jesus Team—Requirement: Don’t Deny Jesus
Those who are on the Jesus team never deny Jesus and confess Him as their Savior unashamedly.
1 John 2:23
“23 No one who denies the Son has the Father; he who confesses the Son has the Father as well.”
Being on the Jesus Team—Requirement: Do What is Right
Everyone on the Jesus team does what is right.
1 John 2:29
” If you know that he is righteous, you know this as well: Everyone who does what is right has been born of him.”
Being on the Jesus Team—Requirement: Do not continue to sin
Everyone on the Jesus team does not continue to sin.
1 John 3:6-10
“6 Everyone who remains in him does not sin; everyone who sins has not seen him or known him. “7 Little children, let no one deceive you. The one who does what is right is righteous, just as he is righteous. 8 The one who commits sin is of the devil, for the devil has sinned from the beginning. The Son of God was revealed for this purpose: to destroy the devil’s works. 9 Everyone who has been born of God does not sin, because his seed remains in him; he is not able to sin, because he has been born of God. 10 This is how God’s children and the devil’s children become obvious. Whoever does not do what is right is not of God, especially the one who does not love his brother or sister.”
Friends, this is a higher standard and I think we can tend to want to grade ourselves on the curve, right? God’s grace is enough for us. We are not supposed to continue in sin, but being in a relationship with Jesus, He will call out our sin so we can repent and be right with Him.
Scripture of the Day: 1 John 3:24
“24 The one who keeps his commands remains in him, and he in him. And the way we know that he remains in us is from the Spirit he has given us.”
This is good news, friends. We belong and we can be certain that we are on the Jesus’ team. Being on the Jesus’ team is not about fulfilling all of these requirements as if it were a religion based on good works. These requirements are the fruit of those who have come to know Jesus Christ who walk in relationship with Him.
- Live like you belong. Because you do.
- Act like you belong. The world needs to see you living what you say you believe.
- Being on the Jesus team is not meant to be an exclusive club. Help others to see their need of salvation, too.
𝗝𝗼𝗶𝗻 𝗺𝗲 𝗳𝗼𝗿 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝗕𝗶𝗯𝗹𝗲 𝗥𝗲𝗮𝗱𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗣𝗹𝗮𝗻 𝗮𝘁 12 𝗽𝗺 𝗘𝗧.
Day #336: 1 John 1-3
𝒱𝑒𝓇𝓈𝑒 𝑜𝒻 𝓉𝒽𝑒 𝒟𝒶𝓎: 1 John 3:24
“The one who keeps his commands remains in him, and he in him. And the way we know that he remains in us is from the Spirit he has given us.”
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