Continue in Him

And now, dear children, continue in him, so that when he appears we may be confident and unashamed before him at his coming. If you know that he is righteous, you know that everyone who does what is right has been born of him.

1 John 2:28-29

I don’t know about you, but sometimes I sit back and think about everything involved in following our Lord and it all just seems a little overwhelming.  Thinking about who He is, what He is, His love for us, His call to us… and all of the implications of these things… Wow!

I don’t want to mess this all up!

Oh sure, I’m confident in forgiveness for sins, and I understand that He is loving, merciful and not interested in a “gotcha” moment, no that isn’t it at all; I don’t want to grieve Him or let Him down.  In the text we’ve been looking at, John seems to sense the same kind of thing.  He’s taken us through all of these amazing attributes, and he’s taken us through the facts of life in a spiritual battlefield, and now suddenly, he seems to take a little step back to survey the scene, and just as though he were reading my mind, he writes these two verses.

Wow!  What do we do now?  John’s answer is “continue in Him.”  Yes, that’s right; continue in Him so that when He appears we may be confident and unscathed by this world of ours.  By “continue in Him,” I think John means that we should simply keep on living in Christ’s image, as He taught us, doing what He did, following His Father’s purpose and not being distracted. We do know that He is righteous; so then, we do know that everyone who does right is born of Him.  By “right,” John must mean that they do the things that He would do, so while Jesus is the Model for all of us to follow, when those around us follow His model, we have someone to show us the way when we are confused.

Wow! Once again, the answer is simple, if not always exactly easy.

Yes, dear reader, let’s just continue in Him…

About Don Merritt

A long time teacher and writer, Don hopes to share his varied life's experiences in a different way with a Christian perspective.
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11 Responses to Continue in Him

  1. Kitsy says:

    Two thoughts:

    Remember the rich young ruler? Even though he was unable to sell all he had and give the money to the poor, Jesus “loved him.” Jesus knew how difficult it was to be human; Jesus probably also knew (before He even told him to) that the young ruler would be unable to give up all he had. Regardless, “Jesus loved him.” I daresay Jesus also forgave him on the spot. I may receive a lot of criticism for this but I believe we are not judged or condemned for our human frailties but for intentionally rejecting the efforts of God to draw us to Him, for fighting reconciliation and for denying His sovereignty and, much more, His existence. And even then, if we later repent, He forgives. This I believe. Sin, to my understanding, is separation from God…pure and simple.

    I doubt the writers of the Bible, and the Gospels in particular, wrote down their memories, thoughts, and insights with the idea that every nuance and inflection would be micro-analysed. I am not criticizing anyone who wishes to get it right, but I recall Jesus warning the Jewish leaders about choking on gnats. My concern is not with trying to get it right but with tying ourselves in knots with concern that we will miss something or get it wrong. Jesus came to make it simple, to lighten our load, to free us from worrying about getting the law exactly right. I don’t think Jesus intended for us to replace our crossing our t’s and dotting our i’s of the law with consternation over His Good News.

    I hope you know, Don, that I feel a great deal of connection with you and I am not intending to find fault with your writing. I just fear you are causing yourself too much concern.

    The other day, I was concerned about how to respond to a friend who was getting too ‘involved’ with me. Jesus told me very clearly, “Stop controlling. Trust. Let things happen…and enjoy life.” In response, I deleted the email I had been composing to my friend and let it go. The friend has since found fault with my position on homosexuals and has gone his own way.

    Jesus is so smart.

  2. Kitsy says:

    Don, I truly worry (there I go, worrying) about Christians who obsess over issues like “sins of the flesh.” I’m not even sure I know what is and is not included in things ‘of the flesh.” But Jesus went to a great deal of trouble to forgive us of our sins, did He not? Why then, do Christians beat themselves up over being human? Of course, if they are hurting other people, yes, stop it and beg forgiveness. But taking care of yourself and your loved ones, as well as enjoying life, is not a sin.

    We have a fellow blogger, bless him, who states that if what we think, do, or be is not totally God-focused then it is Satan-focused. (I want to know what antacid he takes.). When I correspond with him, I am reminded of Br’er Wolf and the Tar Baby…it just gets worse and worse.

    All I can say at this point is a saying used frequently by my daughter, “Jesus…take the wheel.”

  3. Kitsy says:

    Ooops….Br’er Fox….sorry, Uncle R.

  4. Mel Wild says:

    Just “continue in Him.” I love it! What a profoundly simple truth you’ve brought out here. I see this passage “continuing” John’s theme on fellowship from chapter one: walking together in the light, as He is in the light, and while we’re on this trajectory, going from glory to glory, together, He purifies what’s broken in us from the inside-out. Of course, then, when He appears, we’re meeting an old Friend who’s been there all along with us, day in and day out…this is why there’s nothing to fear in love. 🙂

  5. Citizen Tom says:

    John had this beautiful way of writing that reduced things to the basics.

    When I was in college and I had trouble understanding one of my textbooks, I would run to the bookstore and find a book on the same topic that focused on the basics. Then I could decipher the textbook my instructor wanted me to read.

    The Bible is the only book I know of that contains within itself books that are simple and straightforward and books that leave you gasping in confusion. Yet if we read the simple and straightforward forward books, we can make sense of the more complex books. And it is worth the effort to understand both.

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