# **1 JOHN 1: Fellowship & Refuting Gnosticism Heresy**
Does 1 John 1:6 teach that how we walk and behave after salvation determines if we are saved or not? The answer is no by the context.
1 John 1 is about refuting Gnosticism beliefs and encouragement for our ongoing fellowship with God.
> *”6 If we say that we have FELLOWSHIP with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth:”*
Notice it does not say we are not saved and the truth is not in us. No, John states that if we walk in darkness, we DO NOT THE TRUTH, not knowing the truth enough to walk in the way Christ wants us too? To have fellowship with God, we need to know Him and His ways. If we are saved by belief on Christ (John 3) and then live as we always did before salvation, it ruins our witness to others and affects our lives negatively. It will also mean a loss of Rewards at the Bema Seat judgment of believers. Apostle Paul put it this way,
*”How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?” (Romans 6:2 KJV)*
> *”7 But if we WALK IN the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from ALL SIN.”*
What is walking in the light? It is walking in the truth and in the Biblical concepts Jesus taught. The key to understanding verse 7 is the context. First it is about FELLOWSHIP and not SALVATION. Verse 7 is about fellowship and in verse 7 John then also states about salvation to clarify the difference and that it is Jesus Christ that ‘cleanseth us’ of all sin, *not our behaviour*. The point is that fellowship matters and to have fellowship with a person or God, we need to know that person right? Jesus most certainly walks in the light 100%! We have been cleansed of all our sin by Christ and now, we should be wanting to dig deeper in to the knowledge of the truth and walk as Christ intends us to walk. That is ‘walking in His light’. Apostle Paul taught the same in Romans 12 and that, yes we are eternally saved and born again, but we need to renew our mind to God’s ways. This is walking in the new Spirit God made us and also how we can avoid the lust of the flesh (Gal. 5:16). The half brother of Jesus, James, wrote about the fact that we should be living in love for others and not just be a saved person, useless and carnal. That kind of faith is DEAD and useless in helping others come to salvation and useless in helping others in love. John is saying the same here. What we do after salvation matters. After all, don’t we all want a closer fellowship with God? We are in perfect union in the Spirit right now (John 17, Colossians 2, 2 Cor. 5:17-21, Hebrews 10:14) so why not get our MIND to catch up as much as possible until our death and ultimately bodily resurrection?
Notice here that John is writing about SIN, not our specific sins (plural). It is about the root of the problem humankind has, the SIN problem. Wanting to be our own God. What I call the Adam spirit complex. When we believed on Christ we became born again in the Spirit as John wrote down what Jesus said in John 3. Later in 1 John 2:2 we see John explain how Christ paid for not only believers sins, but that He paid for all sins of the whole world (1 John 2:2). Apostle Paul taught that Christ paid for all our sins for us and then gave us the very righteousness of God, in Christ (2 Cor. 5:21). So this SIN PROBLEM has already been judged and dealt with on Christ at the cross. In the letter of 1 John, John is talking about our fellowship with each other and with God and our walk in life being already born again and redeemed people. We need to read the Bible and see what God expects of us believers in our daily walk as members of His eternal family.
Now, John refutes the false teachings of the early heresy in the church called Gnosticism. He starts going point by point exposing the truth of the Christ and the fallacy of the Gnostic teachings, as he addresses the believing community.
The Gnostics taught that there is no sin we commit. John refutes that very directly and warns,
> *”8 If we say that we have no sin, **we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.**”*
That is NOT where a believer want so be right? If we actually believe we have no sin, well, you definitely do not believe the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ. Also, this statement exposes the Gnostics false teaching.
The Gnostics denied that Jesus is God who can forgive sins.
“9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
John now confirms true salvation. All have sinned and if we confess to God (that is to agree with God) that we have sin, Christ will forgive us through the belief on Him. John is refuting the Gnostic false beliefs and confirming the truth about sin and Jesus and our salvation. He now warns readers,
> *”10 If we say that we have not sinned, WE MAKE HIM A LIAR, and his word is NOT IN US.”*
Pretty basic truth for most of us believers today. Denying Christ and the fact that He died on the cross and paid for our sins as the only begotten Son of God is making Jesus to be a liar. The very reason He did this for us is because WE HAVE this thing called SIN in us. We acknowledge we have a ‘sin problem’ and we believed on Christ for forgiveness and salvation (John 3:14-18, 36, John 6:35-40, 1 Cor. 15:1-4, )
Salvation is by the grace of God, not our works (Eph. 2:8-9, Gal. 3, 5:4-5), but salvation and fellowship after salvation are not the same thing. By belief on Christ we have become part of God’s family, in perfect union. Some kids have a close relationship with their parents, because they know what the parents expect and they live that out to please them. Other kids rebel against their parents or just do whatever they please without much thought. They are both still love their parents **in the family** but who has the close fellowship? Who is a better witness to others about the character of that family? You see how important it is?
John continue sin his letter in 1 John 2 etc and continues going point by point to refute the Gnostic heresy of the day and to confirm the truth of the Gospel and our salvation and our FELLOWSHIP with others in love and our fellowship with God.