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Lenten Devotions from Fourth Presbyterian Church

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Today’s Scripture Reading | 1 John 2:21–27

I write to you, not because you do not know the truth, but because you know it, and you know that no lie comes from the truth. Who is the liar but the one who denies that Jesus is the Christ? This is the antichrist, the one who denies the Father and the Son. No one who denies the Son has the Father; everyone who confesses the Son has the Father also. Let what you heard from the beginning abide in you. If what you heard from the beginning abides in you, then you will abide in the Son and in the Father. And this is what he has promised us, eternal life. I write these things to you concerning those who would deceive you. As for you, the anointing that you received from him abides in you, and so you do not need anyone to teach you. But as his anointing teaches you about all things, and is true and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, abide in him. (NRSV)

We live in a time of much talk about facts and “alternative facts,” real news and “fake news.” What is the truth? It is not new for humanity to wrestle with whom to believe and how to discern the truth. With the early followers of Jesus, there were other figures who tried to persuade them to believe and pursue a different path. In this Scripture, those who deny that Jesus is the Christ are called liars. Those who live in ways that go against God do not know the Father or the Son. 1 John 2:9 says, “Whoever says, ‘I am in the light,’ while hating a brother or sister, is still in the darkness.” Love is the hallmark of light and truth.

The author urges his readers to trust that they already know the truth. Abide in it. Stay with it. Don’t be distracted or dissuaded by what others say. Live in the truth that you have heard from the beginning. Then comes this promise: “If what you heard from the beginning abides in you, then you will abide in the Son and in the Father.” If we live into the truth that God is our Creator, Jesus Christ is our Savior, and other people are to be loved by us as our brothers and sisters, we will know oneness with God. We will live in the same Spirit of oneness known between the Father and the Son. This affirms, “It’s easier to act your way into a new way of thinking than to think your way into a new way of acting.”

Source of Life, strengthen my desire and action to love you as the center of my life, and to love others as myself. May the truth of who you are thus grow. Amen.

Written by Victoria G. Curtiss, Associate Pastor for Mission

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