16.09.19, I JOHN STUDY, PART VI

I JOHN 4:1-6, ACTS 5:1-11

It’s about discernment, using good judgment, being able to choose wisely on the basis of Truth vs. deception, good vs. evil, wrong vs. right. 

There is such a political correctness about not judging/being judged, that people have lost touch with reality. The paranoia about “judging” has caused God’s people to forget about the need to assess, discriminate, be discerning, evaluate behaviour/actions. Discernment serves to protect us in many ways. It serves to provide wisdom, and to prevent wrong choices. 

Important principles, wisdom, guidelines, and advice are given in this regard in I John 4. To help underscore a major precept on this matter, STUDY CORNER will combine Acts 5:1-11 with I John 4:1-6 on this topic of testing/discerning the spirits.

I JOHN 4:1-6

1 Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world. 

2 By this you know the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God, 

3 and every spirit that does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not of God. And this is the spirit of the Antichrist, which you have heard was coming, and is now already in the world.

4 You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world. 

You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.

5 They are of the world. Therefore they speak as of the world, and the world hears them. 

6 We are of God. He who knows God hears us; he who is not of God does not hear us. By this we know the spirit of truth and the spirit of error.

ACTS 5:1-11

1 But a certain man named Ananias, with Sapphira his wife, sold a possession. 

2 And he kept back part of the proceeds, his wife also being aware of it, and brought a certain part and laid it at the apostles’ feet. 

3 But Peter said, “Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and keep back part of the price of the land for yourself? 

4 While it remained, was it not your own? And after it was sold, was it not in your own control? Why have you conceived this thing in your heart? You have not lied to men but to God.”

5 Then Ananias, hearing these words, fell down and breathed his last. So great fear came upon all those who heard these things. 

6 And the young men arose and wrapped him up, carried him out, and buried him.

7 Now it was about three hours later when his wife came in, not knowing what had happened. 

8 And Peter answered her, “Tell me whether you sold the land for so much?”

She said, “Yes, for so much.”

9 Then Peter said to her, “How is it that you have agreed together to test the Spirit of the Lord? Look, the feet of those who have buried your husband are at the door, and they will carry you out.” 

10 Then immediately she fell down at his feet and breathed her last. And the young men came in and found her dead, and carrying her out, buried her by her husband. 

11 So great fear came upon all the church and upon all who heard these things.

 

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