Translation and Exegetical Notes on 1 John



If you are also under the same pastor as I am, he spent a good year exegeting 1Jn.  You can find all those lessons in the NT section of the catalogue at I believe the series is called "1John" in the catalogue;  it was done in 1980-1981.  They never ask for money, put you on some bleeping mailing list or send you unrequested mail.  They limit how many lessons (recordings of live Bible classes over 53 years)  you can order each month (20 if audiotape, 30 if mp3, and I don't recall the videotape limit).  The limit is to forestall people going overboard with study. That's been a problem with us "tapers" for decades.


Really, if  you want to know 1Jn, you should get those lessons.  He updates that 1John series in pretty much every class after 1981.  So the lessons in it are constantly refined or corrected, ever after.  For example,  he later spent probably 60-100 hours exegeting and explaining 1Jn4:17.  Those lessons are in 92 Spiritual Dynamics (Series 376), Lessons 1217-1276, at least. He goes all over Bible to show the ties to that 1Jn4:17.   From those lessons forward he periodically returns to 1Jn4:12-19, as he was always refining and upgrading what he taught.  1John was a bellweather letter for him, as was Ephesians.  He felt he had to revamp all his prior teaching in light of new discoveries in the text of both books, so from 1981 onward his teaching goes beyond ANYTHING I can find ANYWHERE in Christendom, in terms of quality and comprehensiveness, answering all the questions Christendom rarely even asks, let alone explains.


As a consequence, I must retranslate all of 1Jn to see how John goes from point A to point B.  Whether you should read all this, I've no clue.  Use 1Jn1:9 and Ask Our Mutual Dad.  Then you won't be reading some human's writing, but something God wants you to learn for whatever HIS Reasons may be.  If He used Balaam's donkey, he can use any website or document.


Then I'll go back to my exegesis notes from my pastor's prior classes, and refine the translation.  The Holy Spirit knows the Truth He Wrote.  So this is the closest approximation to a laboratory-quality empirical test one can do.  Every teacher wishes his student to be better than him, just as your parents want you to have a better life than theirs.  The LAST thing a parent or teacher wants, is to raise a PARROT.  So no parroting, here.  'Pastor taught how to read Bible in the original-language texts using principles of hermeneutics even better than you learn in seminary; so I'm using those skills, breathing 1Jn1:9 as needed.  That's the procedure. 


In practice, this vetting is very objective, like balancing in accounting or testing a math formula; with Bible you go by what IT says, and generally you don't know where you'll end up, until you get there.  If you have to use the original-language texts and check them pan-Bible, then its data controls you;  Bible content is too vast, proves where there's an errant translation or interpretation.  The words are what they are, the rhetorical style is what it is, and the tie-backs ("incorporation by reference", legal term) TELL you where else in Bible, to discern meaning of whatever current verse, you're studying.  So I never know the outcome in advance, even when I know the text well.  For example, when I wrote the DDNA webseries using 1Jn4:12-17, I had no clue John was deliberately referencing Isa53:1-Isa55 from 1Jn1:1 forward!  I thought he began to do it later in the epistle (birthing rhetoric). But when starting this retranslation, boom! Text shows he begins using Isa53 immediately!   So I'll change this Word doc often.  Always some new surprise to write out.


This is how the Thinking series sites got started:  1Jn4:17 and Heb10:15-17 clicked the whole picture of the Angelic Trial together for me.  Then I was caused to discover that Isa53:10-12 in both BHS and LXX texts, explain exactly HOW God accomplishes our transformation as the NT explains: because we get the Same Contract as made with the Son of God for adding Humanity to Himself.  I don't yet know how my own pastor covers Isa53:10-12 with respect to the contractural nature of the spiritual life, but for over 50 years he's taught it as a Legacy from Christ, pretty much as I describe in my webpages (his description is much more succinct).  Isa53:10-12, so far as I can tell, explains the Origin and Nature of Our Spiritual Life as a Three-Way, God-to-God contract: Holy Spirit is in 53:10-11, the Actor making the five infinitives happen at Father's command (v.10's haphetz/bouletai references Father's delight, agreement).


English Bible translation rules are horrible, which is why often English Bible translations are horrible:  you're only allowed to translate one original-language word with one English word.  Yet you'd be fired in any secular translating job if you followed that rule!  As a result, much of Bible is horribly misleading in the English, and God's Head is routinely cut off (viz., should say "Divine Love", or "God's Love", not merely "Love", every time you see "agape" or "agapaw" words in the Greek).  So here I'm NOT adding to the Word.  The translations cut out what is in the Bible, so it's only right to put back, what IS there in the original-language texts.  So when you see commas appositively setting off verbs or nouns, it's the same Greek word with ALL those meanings:  takes more than one English word, to convey those meanings.  Refining how to phrase a translation is a never-ending process.  Bible is sheer genius -- one can never get its translation wholly right; there's No Substitute for the Word God Preserved!  Hence the many small-font notes per only a line or two of Bible text.


Word has a Print Preview function which allows you to view "Two Pages" side-by-side (Print Preview, click on "Zoom", then "Two Pages").  Once you've set that Two Pages Preview, you can scroll with your mouse wheel through the pages for rapid verse comparison.  That will prove invaluable for tracing the flow of John's words. 


1 John is about how you live the spiritual life.  It's written a generation after the Temple was destroyed.  Many had expected the Rapture to occur when the Temple was destroyed, but nothing happened.  So a lot of apostacy set in.  That's why John's Gospel has a very different structure from prior Gospels; for example, you'll notice he skips right over Matt24 material, since the Temple already WAS destroyed;  all stuff on the Temple is instead related in terms of the Incarnate Christ, because as Paul already prophetically and doctrinally explained a generation prior, WE are the Temple, Eph2.  Hebrews elaborated on why that change, since Hebrews was written in light of the Temple's impending destruction.  John thus elaborates on Hebrews, doesn't need to repeat the Temple Destruction prophecies -- they're no longer prophecies.  So you don't see John write about the Temple again until Rev11, to show how Daniel 9:27 plays.


John uses information readers know;  they all knew what transpired during the Last Supper, for example.    But they need a refresher on the legacy of Christ, His Spiritual Life going into us -- told by one who was THERE.  So John spends the most time on how we are to live in Him, tying all previous Canon into what he writes, stressing the 'now' to his audience, playing on the effective present tense of martureo in Heb10:15. 


Gospel is used to teach, not just to prophesy/certify events, by all Bible writers.  That's why each NT Gospel is so different in tone and stress.  Notice how 1Jn matches up to John's Gospel as you read it, so you'll better see the teaching role of the written Gospels.  We moderns think the Gospels were written too late to be valid, mistaking the purpose of the books.  We don't accredit the Holy Spirit with the 'memory' to transmit the details accurately to the NT writers, yet have no problem that Moses wrote about Adam?  So NT writers cover stuff they personally did not see, via the Holy Spirit -- like, John 17, a prayer the Lord prayed while everyone else was asleep.  That helps the reader validate Divine not human, authorship.  The Holy Spirit has a bigger agenda than just proving He wrote a book through some human hand.  He intends to write on us NOW, effective present tense of martureo in Heb10:15.  1Jn is an elaboration on Heb10:15-17, how it gets done.  So when you read the Gospels, look for the style, tone and goals of the writer. For God is the Writer, behind them.


My pastor said a bizillion times, the goal in translating Scripture "is to apprehend the exact THOUGHT of the writer."  To do that, requires a bit of method acting.  When I was growing up in Los Angeles, "method acting" meant you become the person: so when you say his words, you ARE him.  Only then, will his words be genuine in your mouth. So too in translation, self goes offstage, and you must become the writer, to translate his words.


So, just as I didn't know 'my' website content would be what it has become  --  I also don't know what will come out of this re-translation of 1Jn.   I will not interpret the text, but instead will only translate it and list the tie-backs John deliberately references.  I can't list all of the references, there are too many; I can only categorize the kinds of tie-backs John uses, with but a few verse examples;  I will try to add the more significant tie-backs I find (aka incorporation by reference, which every Scripture writer must do to prove Divine Origin of his writing).  Ask God to show you others, too.  Thus you'll understand even better, how Bible is meant to be read.  Retranslation begins on the next page.

1John, Chapter One


1:1 Typical Greek drama opening flourish. Some metric repetition, counting syllables. John plays on "ho own" sound both here and in John 1:1, Greek of the Sacred Tetragrammaton in Exo3:14. Phrase "ap arches" plays also on Gen1:1's "in the beginning".


 "He Who (neuter heroic accusative of hos, playing on LXX's rema=Taught/Spoken-by-God Word  and Biblion in Isaiah are also neuter nouns) always was (imperfect tense, clever Hebraism aping qal imperfect in Exo3:14, just like  in John 1:1) The Source of  (Greek prep "apw" means source of, not merely "from") the Beginning, He Who we have heard (perfect tense);  He Who we have seen (perfect tense) with our eyes;  He Who we publically beheld (aorist of theaomai, root meaning to watch an actor on stage, spectating as at games or public  trial;  1Jn4:12, 14 tie back here) and our hands touched! (aorist  tense)  (This epistle is about, lit. peri) About THE Word of Life!"

1 John 1:1  BGT  Ὃ ἦν ἀπ᾽ ἀρχῆς, ὃ ἀκηκόαμεν, ὃ ἑωράκαμεν τοῖς ὀφθαλμοῖς ἡμῶν, ὃ ἐθεασάμεθα καὶ αἱ χεῖρες ἡμῶν ἐψηλάφησαν περὶ τοῦ λόγου τῆς ζωῆς-


Notice how this verse opens like a doxology. It really sticks out that John uses the dramatic heroic accusative, but  in the NEUTER of "hos".  Very clever, since both rema (Isa55:11, Jer1:1, etc.)  and Biblion (e.g., Isa29:11) mean The Word and are also in the neuter.  So John's using the neuter to stress that He's GOD, Word Incarnate, in yet another clever way.  Who but God is this smart, to make so much Biblical incorporation by reference of a neuter case?  Proving He is the Source, huh.  So use of the neuter here is definitely NOT "what", but Who.  So John's playing on the Lord as the Revealed One from the sealed book, just like he later does in Revelation 4.  Heh:  neuter in either nominative or accusative case are the same Word.  Always the Same, yesterday, today, tomorrow, Heb13:8!


So we're talking epic drama here, using the neuter.  Not sure if "He Who" is the most dramatic English phrasing.  Greek literally says THIS One Who -- very pointy.  In English we'd find that rude (Greeks used the phrase rudely too), but it's highest honor language, here.   Further, John employs the Attic Greek dramatic accusative to stress Subject As The Hero Of The Play.   Thus you also know" He" not "it" or "what", since things are never heroes.  You further know HE not "it" or "what" because of the "hands" reference, the play on ho own, the "in the beginning" tie-back to Gen1:1 -- all of which are also tie-backs to John's Gospel opening. Hence monadic use of (nee: definite) article in "tou logou", so rendered in caps in English to show uniqueness, one-and-only meaning the Greek conveys. Get the pun?  The Spoken Word (rema) of the OT is now the Written Word (ho logos), and "ho" is also the masculine nominative article, it's soundplay!  For it's a Hebraism to show the Same God!  For "The Word" is an OT moniker for God, as well as a Greek drama and Socratic philosophy term for Divine Word (stressing Perfect Character), for example see Ps33:4 and the Philebus. All this, from a neuter postpositive article used in Greek as a demonstrative?!


Clever use of tou logou tes zwes, double genitive (required by peri, which takes the genitive) has appositive, equating force:  WORD=LIFE.  It's not merely the Word of Life, the Word IS Life.  Both meanings.  In elegant Greek you concatenate cases or position words to do double duty;  that's why for example "God" is not repeated in Rom8:28, but is rather stuck smack dab in the middle of the sentence, a dramatic heroic accusative doubling as an Object, so HE is the one causing all things to work together (intransitive verb!) for those who love Him.  So too here in 1Jn1:1, with the double-usage of two genitives in apposition:  "Life" technically modifies "Word", but is also equal to it (appositional usage of words equates them).  That's why v.2 picks up with the last of the nouns (Life) to further the discourse, as Greek rhetoric is wont to do. John paired WORD in neuter accusative, hence the logos at the end;  so he'll next pair Life here in v.1, with Life beginning in v.2.  Because Word IS Life.  His Word.  Him.  Alive.  So deft!  Two nouns in the genitive (belonging-to, related to, associated with, agency) tell you so much!  John does the same thing using a preposition and accusatives, in 2John, verses 1-2.  There, he cleverly switches from anarthrous aletheia to monadic, The Truth (Him), and then converts menw into a noun (it's more dramatic to make a verb into a noun) to show The Truth Abides in us forever.  All these deft uses of the Greek grammar as a rhetorical style which Communicate Doctrinal Truth, are signs of Divine Authorship, the sheer genius of the wording. There's no way to translate all this in English, so much of the Doctrinal Meaning and all of the wit, is lost in translation.


Exclamations here in English translation indicate Greek dramatic ellipsis or even aposiopesis (the latter type of ellipsis roughly corresponds to the ".. !" construction in English, with a punctual gap showing mouth-stopped shock followed by an exclamation at the end). 


 John thus proves his due diligence, authenticating his writing this Canonical book right from the start -- using tie-backs to the OT, to show this NEW letter, is also Canon;  that's how one validates a new book from God, via incorporation by reference (aka tie-backs).  Tie-backs must always be traced, be they concepts, prepositions, keywords (verbs and nouns repeated like bookends).  This is how a previously known Divine Word is elaborated on in the new book, so to teach the NEW Divine Material, as well as test the new book for Divine Origin.  John's NOT using the editorial we.  He instead brings in all the past Scripture witness, and then adds himself to that list, just as in Isa53:1.  So he well knows he's writing Canon, and will go on to repeat that fact in this letter.  Thus you also know that John's Gospel was released either alongside this letter, or just beforehand, since John incorporate his own Gospel by reference in this very first verse by its phrasing -- updated with affirmation that he is a witness, one of the same procession of witnesses from Adam forward.


By this you know 1Jn was written and released after or co-terminous with, the Gospel of John.  For obviously, John can't be playing on his own Gospel -- thus blatantly advertising it's CANON, for crying out loud -- if he hadn't written it yet.  Thus you also know Revelation is not yet written.  Because John here plays to Isaiah, not to Revelation.  References to Isaiah verses are rife in this letter, from here on out.  Focus in Isa55 is the Word Birthed from the Messiah's sacrifice, the Isa54:1 result of the contract of Isa53:10-12, so all of Isa53 is incorporated by reference as well, all via that simple use of the dramatic accusative in the NEUTER..  Only God is this smart.


Start tracking the prepositions John uses, NOW.  Greek preposition "apw", meaning "from" in the sense of " the source of" (not the horribly truncated "from" in English Bibles), is a major tracking device in the first five verses.  In the next verse, John will only change ONE LETTER of a verb in Isa53:2 (anangellw, to repeat-a-report, confirming witness), in order to track from apw in this verse.  Then, he changes back to Isa53:2's anangellw in v.5, to stress again (in every verse, here) that this epistle is CANON.  Nothing shy about 1Jn!  No hedging:  this is CANON, get it loud and clear!  We got it from THE SOURCE!  The Word, the Source of All, is Alive and Powerful (Heb4:12), get the pun?  Kill me now, this Word is too Beautiful!  Divine Beauty! 


Above all, in 1Jn you must carefully track the prepositions, especially when they CHANGE.  It's the little words, my pastor likes to say, which the writers of Scripture use to finesse or bang home, the doctrines conveyed.  If you don't track the usage or omission of the article and demonstratives, if you don't track prepositions, you'll miss what the writer is saying.   Frankly, Bible scholars do NOT track these things, though taught to do so, in seminary;  which is the ONLY reason why there is confusion about when the Lord came, and when He left, for example.   In Bible Greek and in 1Jn, prepositions are used heavily (or omitted where expected, another drama rhetorical device)  to track flow:  watch how John switches from "in" to "with", for example.


Further -- and you won't 'get' 1Jn if you don't do this -- you must track the TENSE CHANGES, especially in the same sentence. Tense-switching is considered bad English, but it's beautiful Greek, and Bible does it constantly.  Purpose of Greek tense switching is to show how a thing goes from point A to point B.  Here in 1:1 for example,  John switches tenses from imperfect (a Hebraism for the qal imperfect often used in OT to signify the foreverness of God) to perfect (something which began and completed, so a done deal) to aorist (point of time divorced from time, verb's action stressed apart from its time component; when used of God as here, signifies a verbal fact or result which stands for ALL time). English grammar rules generally forbid switching tenses in the same sentence, so English translators WIPE OUT the switching;  so you absolutely cannot learn what John means to say from a translation.  Notice how all the English translations, unify the tenses.  Worse, there's a sizeable difference between the imperfect and perfect and aorist tenses in the original languages, but since there's no aorist tense in English, how to convey the change in good English idiom?  I'm not happy with the English translation above, either, though it's better than any of my English translations in BibleWorks5.  I tried to put in English adverbs to show John's switching of tenses, yet keep to the English rule about unicity of tense in the same sentence.  That's the best I can do at the moment.  Will keep trying to improve that.  Where I can't yet improve it, I'll note the tense change in small font, so you can track the change.  See:  there's no substitute for reading GOD's Word in GOD's chosen languages.  See how much time and translation confusion you'd save, if you learned what HE wrote?  See why we need pastors?  It takes TIME to analyze Bible.  It's a 24/7 occupation!


NOTE CAREFULLY HOW JOHN REPEATS.  In Greek rhetoric as well as in math, you advance a concept by THREADING (repeating) part of what you said and then BUILD on it.  So John follows this style to teach the new material;  you look for the CHANGE in the repeated phrase, and compare it to the prior (and subsequent) repeats to get the organized-truth 'doctrine' John develops.  Again, this proves Divine Authorship, for in Greek rhetoric the perfection of going from point A to point B was prized.  A faulty procession meant a faulty argument.  Holy Spirit has no faults.  So you can prove HE wrote it, by tracking CHANGES in the REPEATS. This threading method of communication is also quintessential Hebrew.  Makes me think the Greeks got it from the Jews. Verbs, nouns, prepositions, tenses, even articles are REPEATED as threads, brought through as with a needle, into each successive clause: knitting together whole doctrines of phenomenal wit. Reminds you of the Temple veil.   Only God is this smart.  So you MUST track repeats or you won't understand the flow of discourse.  Of course, you can't do this in translation.  Now you know why there's so much discord over what Bible means:  we don't track its flow from the original-language texts.  No excuse for that since the late 1800's, sorry.  You really can't prove or know a Bible doctrine until you've tracked the FLOW of what a writer means by what he says.  As always, it's context context context. 


 For John apes Greek rhetorical (i.e., Socratic) exposition, and Greek Drama.  John, like Peter and Paul, love Greek drama, and even more love tweaking Greek concepts to show the REAL God versus all those fake gods in the dramas. So it really behooves the serious student of the Word to get into Greek drama in the Greek.  Barnes and Noble, Amazon all have lots of books you can buy on both Greek plays and Drama Greek.  There are many websites on Greek plays and Drama Greek.  You can download Greek plays in translation and original text from university sites like Rutgers or Tufts, etc.  I'll then test this translation for wording in Greek plays. Greek drama rhetoric employs a number of rhetorical devices and tones: from pondering (sense of heaviness and time passing, see Phili3:14), to finessed (finessed wit which slowly dawns on you, 1Tim6:5-6, Heb5:8-9),  to banging (woe woe woe passages). Bible writers make liberal use of Greek rhetorical style;  it matters a LOT in translation and interpretation, to detect them.  Silly people think that because Greek culture was pagan, God would never use pagan cultural concepts.  What rot.  ONE CAN'T UNDERSTAND BIBLE APART FROM THE CULTURAL LOADING OF ITS WORDS.  For example, if "twitched her nose" was in a Bible verse and referenced the 1960's sitcom "Bewitched", the verse would have a very different meaning from a "twitched her nose" of mere itching or emotional reaction.  So proper identification of cultural loading and rhetorical style, is vital to translation and interpretation, i.e., the repeated use of three-groupings (dramatic anaphoric style;  also used in English).


Understand that to the immediate audience, this threaded form of wordplay discourse was second nature, because Greek literature and drama specialized in the deft use of language;  big money was awarded for the best-written play. So even the common people used such wit all the time in daily speech, just as you and I might ape a style or quote a popular TV show or movie, or ape the lines of the actors in them.  Makes you feel famous if you say, do or wear something a famous person said or wore.


So you can see how Greek literature and drama used words, and then notice the same rhetorical styles in Bible.  Thus you derive a ton of PROVABLE doctrine, and often it's witty (viz here, now the Real God is coming down from the sky, not some actor playing a demon, and it's at the beginning of the play, not the end)!  The better Greek lexicons (Kittle, Thayer's, Bauer Danker, etc.) list where in Greek literature the same Greek word is used, so you can compare usage.  For a word in any language, has its meaning defined by usage.  God exploits every jot and tittle of every usage of every word in the Word.  It's a hallmark characteristic of Divinity, expressing Omniscience, Omnipotence and Infinity.  Only God could be so smart.  Thus again, you know God and not some human or demon, wrote His Book.  And what a Joy He is!


By modern Western standards Greek plays are melodramatic, overdone.  John's style is more hushed, yet very blatant and dramatic, so he does linger (i.e., using periphrasis) to show you this is an epic drama you're in, a PROCESS of growing in Him.  There's nothing shy about John, though English translations mask his boldness, even as they mask much of the Lord's Own in-your-face style of speaking.  But like all Divinely-Inspired writers, John specializes in the finessed point, leaving UNsaid (in ellipsis) the most dramatic and important meanings.  Because, just like a joke or pithy aphorism, you enjoy and remember those meanings best, if you have to think them over to 'get the point' of the joke or aphorism.  Here, John's letter is about first-things-first.  Foundational stuff in Bible is always finessed, omnipresent, and its explicit or banging expressions are usually axiomatic (phrases in passing you're expected to know already).  Thus again you know it's from God, since this same finessing style runs consistently from Genesis through Revelation.


So here in 1Jn1:1, John apes the Greek drama prologue, which is designed to clue the audience into the plot.  It matters, for the play itself is always a kind of mid-stream depiction, since the actors are in the middle of their lives. Therefore Greek drama always begins with someone (or a chorus) who "reports" the background and purpose of the play.  The reporter is supposed to be one of the gods, or authorized of the gods to speak for them, and in Greek Drama, the reporter is NOT in the play. That's how John tweaks the Greek style, instead stressing Isa53:1, numbering himself AMONG the Canon writers.  Moreover, in the later Revelation John will tie back to 1Jn calling this period a play the Lord commissions him to write (Rev1:19, bald reference to the have-seen openings for the play of the Incarnation, past;  then "the things which are" -- upcoming in the letter, NOW, Church;  then the rest of history). Notice In Revelation, John is the reporter, still, even as in John's Gospel and here in 1Jn1, a fact John will stress.  Hence in Revelation 1-3, you see John tie back to his own openings in 1Jn and his Gospel;  but in Revelation, the drama is more stylized, so John plays the role of narrator as well as the role of  "all believers".  See, originally Greek Drama entailed only ONE actor who played all the characters in the play.  So from that origin grew the role of someone REPRESENTING a group.  John represents believers, in Revelation.  So when he goes up to heaven leaving earth in Rev4:1, that's the Rapture being depicted.


The god in the play selects only certain individuals to whom he talks; they are to send the message to others.  So The God, the Lord Jesus Christ, only talks to John:  you never see Him talk to anyone else throughout Revelation;  NO ONE talks to the people on earth in Revelation except the Two Witnesses in Rev11 and the angels flying mid-heaven in Rev14.  So Church is NOT there.  In short, Revelation like 1Jn and the Gospel of John, are first targeted to CHURCH, precisely because Church will not be there then.  By 4:1, we are OFF the earth and IN heaven (represented by John).  That fact ties back to 1Jn3:2b's "if he should appear". 


So he also begins Revelation with a more stylized, formal Greek Drama prologue.  Revelation is a quadrilogy in classic Greek drama format using "meta tauta" to tell you when each of the four plays begins and ends, flashing forward and backward so you can track the chronology.  In competitions, Greek plays were almost always quadrilogies, a mega-play in four parts, akin to our "mini-series".  So in Revelation, Play #1=Now=Church (forecast of trends in local churches illustrated by seven real churches in Asia), Rev1:1-4:1, with 4:1 being 1Thess4:16-17, the exzanastasis (popularly called "the Rapture" in today's lingo from the Vulgate in 1Thess4:17).  After Rev4:1, there are no more references to Church except for the rhetorical interjection (in Shakespearean and modern drama, a version of interjection is called "an aside").  Rhetorical interjections are always to the audience, never to the characters in the play, viz., all those I-come-like-a-thief-interjections, which in the ancient world meant suddenness, not stealth.  Next, Play #2=Trib, 4:1-19:1, but the tableau scenes in Rev6, 11-13, 17 are parenthetical, hence dual, playing also in Church; Play #3=Mill and ending judgement, 19:1-21:1; Play #4=Eternal State, 21:1-22:5.  Rev22:6ff is the Epilogue, the message/moral you are to take home from the play.  RevPlay.htm shows how meta tauta is used to divide the "times" for you.


By contrast, John's Gospel and 1Jn, John reports to others who are also on stage.  John is part of them, they are part of him;  the writing is intimate, direct.  All are part of Christ.  By the time you get to 1Jn1:4, you'll be blown away by the difference in audience intimacy, between 1Jn and Revelation. For Like Malachi, Revelation is a terse, official, 'distant' book; truncated, impersonal, announcing that God must quit sending any more prophets, time's up -- for no one will listen, anymore.  So He leaves behind a Last Deposit on His Will and Testament, Revelation.  That's why Revelation is so formal and stylized, John merely writing what he's told, reporting what happens;  no direct discourse from John himself, to the audience. Completely the opposite from 1Jn.   So 1Jn is a last call, a how-we-live-now-or-else.  For after that, our play.. ends!


1:2  "And THE Life was publically disclosed, made manifest (dramatic aorist, Greek verb phaneroo, to PUBLICALLY disclose or display, evidentiary, root idea of bringing to light  -- 1Jn4:9 will tie back to it); in fact we have seen (dramatic perfect) and [now, presently (dramatic present)] testify;  in fact From The Source we report  (dramatic present, ties to Isa53:2; really interesting play on anangellw-- the latter is a retelling, but apangellw here in 1:2, is FROM THE SOURCE telling.  1Jn4:14 will tie back to the see and testify verbs) to you THE Life Eternal, (Hebraism -- Jewish The Eternal One, clever double-article official usage, same as LXX does with some official dates, conveying a legal absolute, not relative.  Also Hebraism of having the second clause rephrase and advance content in the first clause, here 1:2 on 1:1) Who (Attic Greek hostis, feminine because zoe is feminine, very dramatic) was always (imperfect plus pros, dramatic etymological usage) Face-to-Face with THE Father and was (dramatic aorist) publically disclosed, made manifest to us."


1 John 1:2  BGT  καὶ ἡ ζωὴ ἐφανερώθη, καὶ ἑωράκαμεν καὶ μαρτυροῦμεν καὶ ἀπαγγέλλομεν ὑμῖν τὴν ζωὴν τὴν αἰώνιον ἥτις ἦν πρὸς τὸν πατέρα καὶ ἐφανερώθη ἡμῖν-


Again, John plays on his Gospel opening.  Hebrew panim -- face-to-face with -- is often used in the OT to describe the Relationship of God to God, and theophanies;  pros has something of that origin as well, so John's incorporating by reference all the panim verses on God from the OT when he uses pros -- especially, Isa53:2b, which is an Angelic Trial statement on the reason for the Incarnation (LXX's enantion, before a judge/court).  The many kai's operate like bullet points, clause separators.  Not sure but what the kai's should be translated AS bullet points, but in English that detracts from the dramatic sense of the Greek.  So I opted for "in fact" instead, which is a way translators show the emphatic use of kai.  Again, John is stressing the Divine Origin of what he writes.  Bald as can be.  By using apw in verse 1, then CHANGING Isa53:2's anangellw to aPangellw, it's like waiving a big red flag, THIS IS FROM GOD, JUST LIKE PRIOR CANON.  See, bleeping human councils didn't determine what books are Canon, GOD FLAT TELLS YOU.  No fudging.  No hedging.  Not subtle, either.  But did anyone bother to translate all this blatancy in published Bibles, even though you're taught in seminary that apw means "from" in the sense of " the source of"?  NOOOO.  Inexcusable.


1:3  "He Who we have seen and have heard (dramatic perfect), we [now (dramatic present)] From-the-Source report even also to you, in order that even you also may have (subjunctive-of-purpose, then anarthrous, hence Divine) Divine Communion, Fellowship in association with us.  In fact now Communion, Fellowship, Ours Jointly (collective, all believers including the audience for the epistle, drama Greek word hemetera, with koinwnia now monadically using the article), in association with THE Father and even also with THE Son of His, Christ Jesus!"


1 John 1:3  BGT  ὃ ἑωράκαμεν καὶ ἀκηκόαμεν, ἀπαγγέλλομεν καὶ ὑμῖν, ἵνα καὶ ὑμεῖς κοινωνίαν ἔχητε μεθ᾽ ἡμῶν. καὶ ἡ κοινωνία δὲ ἡ ἡμετέρα μετὰ τοῦ πατρὸς καὶ μετὰ τοῦ υἱοῦ αὐτοῦ Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ.


John repeats the dramatic apangellw again, from-the-source report verb.  Very strong claim, building to the climax of the next verse.  Hence the ellipsis (no verb between "Fellowship" and "with"), hence the exclamation in English translation.  John's using kai in BOTH the emphatic and ascensive ways -- latter means an equating, togetherness; so "even also" would be a better translation in English, showing John's stress.  In the Greek text, "de" transitional particle (rendered "now", both as to time and explanatory) comes right after "Fellowship".  It's a Greek grammar rule that "de" not be the first word in a sentence, but John's playing on its transitional meaning also, now that Christ is come in the flesh, tying to Heb10:5 and especially 10:15, Holy Spirit's interrupting,  Effective Present Tense Testimony about what's NOW true.  "Ours Jointly" (hemetera) is deliberately placed right NEXT to Father and Son.  So in this English translation I decided to ape that positioning.  It's very climactic, both the proximity and omission of eimi between hemetera and meta; so is dramatically shouting. In both Hebrew and Greek, when an expected verb is omitted -- especially, the verb "eimi", to be -- the omission often signifies an always-ness, as well as Utter Unity. 


 Next::  "Son of His" rather than the normal "His Son", because John uses both articles separately and monadically.  So it's not possible that Son and Father are the same person, see Granville Sharp rule.  Moreover, to literally translate the Greek is similar to drama in English, where one reverses normal syntax or opts for a longer construction.  So too, in Greek, though here "son of his" is normal Greek legal phrase.  But the monadic use of the article for EACH Father and Son is the drama. John deliberately begins and ends the sentence with Christ -- He Who.. Jesus.  By repeating "we have seen" John ties back to 1:1, which was about His Godness.  So again, you have proof that the neuter use of the Dramatic Accusative, stresses HE is GOD, not merely human.  People forget the Hebraism that one chooses to be the "son" of someone due to Love. So pity those endless and silly theological debates over whether Son is somehow not God, became God afterwards, or less than God, lol.  Bible's use of the grammar rules never leaves any room for doubt.  This is not an interpretation, but rules-of-language for THAT language.


John reserves the Lord's Human Name for last.  In Greek you normally put the most important stuff at the end of the sentence.  Here John was building up for a climax.  Notice how in each of these verses there is a pairing or tripling of verb clauses, of the "Source" clauses, etc.  But This Name is referenced by other words.. until the end of verse 3.  Matthew does something of the same reserving in Matt 2, leaving "Nazereth" until the end.  Why?  Because it means "Dedicated Town", basically.  Feast of Dedication, the Lord being born on Chanukah.  Luke plays on Matthew's reserving by mentioning Nazareth three times, showing how they were followed by the magi on their way back to Nazareth, not Bethelehem.  So it's a rhetorical style to reserve important clauses for the right dramatic moment.


In English, "in association with" (Greek "meta") is legal, boring.  Here it must be used, for in 1Jn4:17 -- which is presaged -- John makes the climactic statement that God's Love Plan is brought to completion IN ASSOCIATION WITH us. Legal promise, based on the John 17 prayer.  In short, if enough of us 'do' this letter, God's Rebuttal (my pastor's term) in the Angelic Trial ends, and the Rapture occurs.  That's a LEGAL issue.


Fellowship, Greek word koinonia, is a major NT and OT (LXX) keyword.  The Levitical sacrifices all denoted fellowship due to Christ paying for our sins.  Hence a good lexicon (Thayer's or better) follows the hermeneutical principle of listing Bible verses where a keyword (like this one, koinonia) occurs pan-Bible.  Thus you learn what Bible MEANS by what it says, in OT or NT:  trace the keywords pan-Bible.  Holy Spirit's deployment of a Canon writer is always characterized by the use of keywords in PRIOR Scripture (prior to the time of his own book), to tie back to such Scripture.  Thus you can prove Divine Authorship, for the interpretation and tie in to ALL that prior Scripture must be PERFECT, to qualify as Divine Writ.  So here, since John is the last writer of the NT (advertised blatantly in 1:4), John is tying together pan-Bible, all the fellowship verses.  Thus you know what he means.  Again, in modern legal parlance, this practice is called "incorporation by reference".  It's very precise in meaning.  Legal documents always are.  Bible is a collection of legal documents, first and foremost:  Divine Official Communication.


Theme of 1Jn is thus HOW you get in and stay in Fellowship through completion (Greek verbs teleiow and plerow, used heavily in 1Jn and all the NT).  So the reader is supposed to look up all the fellowship verses, and tie them into what John is saying here. In 1Jn2:1, John blatantly says via the subjunctive that if you master the letter, you will learn to stop sinning (not immediately, of course).  The thinking process to develop is painstakingly laid out in the letter, sorta like tic-tac-toe.  So you go through the letter slowly, analysing it carefully, looking up all the verses with the keywords John uses, so to know what he means in any given verse.  Same is true for any Bible book.  It's not a slipshod thing.


So too, as John methodically develops the doctrinal reasoning process in this letter, he 'ropes' his prior uses of koinonia and parallels them with other concepts.  Coming up, he will parallel koinonia with light (v.6a), truth (v.6b), salvation work on the Cross (v.7b).  The sentences are balanced.  The beginning is compared to the end, and then the ending is 'roped' into the next if-then clause;  he piles up parallelisms so deftly, that you have to think like a thesaurus, to see the roping.  Thus the parallels made, are clear.  You can even see the parallelisms in the English, but they are much balder in the Greek, owing to the fact that the Greek words are keywords in Bible (LXX and NT).  English isn't always consistent in translation, so tracing the keywords becomes problemmatic.  So if you are reading in English, just read for sense:  notice the balancing and equating, breathe 1Jn1:9 as needed and ask God to make it clearer to you.  He will.


When John ropes a keyword to another keyword (fellowship to light, for example), he later uses the second keyword and ropes it to another one (light to truth).  Thus you see the plodding pattern of equating:  fellowship=light=truth=Word in You, and since fellowship is based on salvation -- Christ's purifying us on the Cross, so also it's based on naming sins to God (same purifying keyword katharizw, used in v.7 for the Cross, as in v.9 for naming sins).  So that's why darkness in verse 6a, is parallelled with self-deception in v.8, with having no truth (also in v.8).  Notice the stress is on whether the Word is in you or not.  If you don't know Bible, you're not in the Truth.  That theme will keep on being repeated ever more stridently, throughout the letter, using this pattern of chained parallelisms.


John uses words the way a Roman soldier was trained to use the 18-inch Roman "machaira" ("knife").  The soldier was repeatedly trained to quickly step INTO the onrushing barbarian, quickly and SHALLOWLY penetrate a key spot, then just as quickly, jump out of his way.  In, djut! and out!  Surgical precision and timing, VERY fast.. before the long broadsword of the barbarian, came down on the soldier.  Tactical strike.  That's how John writes, so you must read every seemingly-simple word.. with extra care.


In the next extremely-climactic verse, John announces that what he writes will complete the Fellowship.  Idea is, if you master the letter's meaning and keep living it, your spiritual growth in Christ will complete to the Eph4:13 pleroma level (John uses the verb form of pleroma, quoting Christ's promise of all this back in John 16:24, in 1Jn1:4).  Verses 5-10, therefore, cover the framework of how that growth occurs, how you reason it out as a practical matter:  God is light (v.5, refers back to Isa53:11's contract), so you only have Fellowship if you are also in the Light because Christ purified you (v.7);  which fellowship purification is renewed upon naming sins (v.9, same purification keyword in Isa53:10 used in 1Jn1:7 and :9).  In the OT, that katharizw=purification keyword is used of the Temple when it had been defiled and thus needed to be purified again.  Thus John deftly ties in all the you-are-the-Temple themes of Paul, the Lord in the Gospels, Peter, and book of Hebrews, when he uses this purification verb, katharizw.  Only God is this smart:  so much said in so few words!  You need a computer to search all the verses, but John knows them all when he writes?  Yeah, because God doesn't even need a search engine to know the ties.


 As you live on Bible and grow spiritually, living in God's System, you'll find your recall of verses is so genius and apt in the pairing incorporation by reference, you'll come to realize ONLY the Holy Spirit gave it to you: John 14:26 in operation.  Pretty shocking thing to discover, actually.  Then you will better understand how it worked for the writers of the Bible, how the Holy Spirit gave them perfect Canon to write.  Your own experience will shed light on how the same process, worked in their heads.  Because, something of the same process, is ORDAINED to occur in all of us, meaning of Eph4:11-16.

1:4 "Even also These Words we are writing to you, with the result that THE [Communion] joy of Ours is Jointly being pleromized, filled up, completed!"


1 John 1:4  BGT  καὶ ταῦτα γράφομεν ἡμεῖς, ἵνα ἡ χαρὰ ἡμῶν ᾖ πεπληρωμένη.


This is the theme of the letter. Wow, John keeps up the neuter heroic accusative to show WORDS he's writing are coming from THE WORD, by using "tauta" first in verse 4!   So I gotta translate "tauta" as "These Words" or the English reader won't see the tie.  Greek grammar demands that any use of a demonstrative tie in gender and number to some substantive which was previously mentioned in the text.  Here, hos, first word in 1:1, is in the neuter.  But the neuter gets repeated and elaborated on in meaning by other words like Word, Life, in verses 1:1-3.  So ALL of them are a kind of plural.  So the neuter PLURAL heroic accusative here in 1:4's beginning, is about as blatant a statement of Divine Origin of the epistle, as can be made. Sound-wise, it's also a clever play on the "He" usage (not mentioning God by Name because He's Sacred).  Clever way of saying God is Subject though Object though God, so technically speaking is without gender.  Isaiah and David use sound-plays all the time, so the Greek reader would get the cleverness of John's choosing a neuter of hos as a sound-play reference to "ho" used so often in LXX to mean Father, Son, Spirit (identicality-of-Essence also is referenced by not using Their Names).


1:4 is an affirmation of Divine Origin and purpose of the epistle.  So  John's either being completely arrogant, or God gave him these words to write for the purpose and result stated.  Anyone claiming to be writing for God must be upfront about it, which of course gets the true claimant in lots of trouble with his hearers, since that person got it from God, and the others did not.  As if the claimant were any better, which of course is not true.  Conversely, the penalty for NOT giving the message God gives you, or for lying and pretending to speak for God, is death (see how God handles Jeremiah in Jeremiah 1, how He handles Ezekiel in Ezekiel 1, versus how He handles Hananiah in Jeremiah 27:14ff).  Damned if you do speak and are not supposed to, damned if you don't admit and speak when you ARE supposed to.  Now you know why I keep BEGGING people to use 1Jn1:9 if they read 'my' material.  I can't write Canon, it's already completed.  So some of  'my' writing will be properly from God on what Bible means.. and some will not be.  With 1Jn1:9 you get GOD's Testimony, because you get GOD's brains.  So you know for sure, you're not hallucinating.  God will never communicate anything but punishment lessons, if 1Jn1:9 is not used.  OT version of that is in many places, with Ps32:5 and 66:18 being blatant in translation.  So that's ALWAYS been the rule.


So here in 1Jn 1:4, we see the Epic tale of the Real God birthing us, siring us in His Word, thus completing His Angelic Trial Demonstration of Love which began at the beginning, creation of Adam and the woman. 1Jn4:12-17 is on that completion, tying back to 1:4.  Here in 1:4 and  in 1Jn4, John uses Greek periphrasis (eimi+participle), which is a longer way to say a thing, so you get the sense of PROCESS, how 1:4 gets accomplished.  John's letter specializes in firsts, idiom of birthing ("male" in Hebrew (mem lamed aleph)  is used the same way);  John plays on Paul's use of Euripedes' play Ion as the framework for Ephesians.  It's about how God sires you in His Son.  Is our God great, or what!


Greek hina in both 1:4 and 4:12-19, as elsewhere in Bible, signifies a blending of purpose-and-result clause conjunction and grammatically requires the subjunctive. There's NO doubt of the outcome here in 1:4's use of hina and plerow in the SAME PERIPHRASIS as the Lord used in John 16:24 -- what God does TO you --  a done deal!  So John is blatantly saying that THESE WORDS he is given to write, will accomplish the result the Lord talks about in John 16:24.  Can't miss that.  And get this: Greek "pepleromene" is also a play on Greek verb MENW, which John repeats a bizillion times in his letter and Gospel  -- for that verb is the underpinning of John 14-17, again what the LORD said.  The exact same word is used by the Lord in John 16:24, so John is reminding the reader what the Lord said, and tying the menw concepts in the Gospel to it -- a plero-menw, a filling-up-on-Word-and-abiding-in-Him, playing on the Greek grammar form of the plerow participle, to remind them of menw as well.  Clever:  Surely only God is this smart.  We wanted the Word in writing, plein..  so now John is writing to fulfill that!  So John knows he's the last writer of Canon, not merely that he's writing Canon.  And you can't convey any of this significance in English translation -- how?  I'd have to add "just as the Lord said it would, in John 14-17, and especially 16:24", but our referencing system of verses and chapters and book names, did not exist at the time John wrote!  So true as a translation, but unethical to translate a reference system which didn't exist when John wrote!


In Drama Greek,  periphrastic construction -- eimi + participle, often in different tenses -- stresses PROCESS.   The eimi tells you something about the length of the process and its progress;  the participle tells you the goal, or stresses the kind of action in progress.    1John  is all about what IS HAPPENING, an ongoingness;  completion of Canon will result in the eventual Completion of Church, and this letter shows how you live your own spiritual life in light of that completion process.  That ties back to 1Cor13, and Heb8:8-10:17, Eph Chaps 1-4.   English should thus render much of 1Jn  with the progressive tense, so "being sired of God" would be better in many of his verses than "born of God", stressing what the Holy Spirit IS doing.  For the Hebraistic concept of a Teacher SIRING you, is in view.  So here in 1:4,  "is being" is progressive, reflecting the periphrasis -- even though eimi is in the subjunctive.  Because, again -- hina takes the subjunctive, to denote the result and the purpose are realized.  There's no doubt here, of the outcome. The only contingency is whether the believer will SUBMIT to that Siring.   What 1:3 shows as the purpose ("in order that", first hina clause), 1:4 shows as the result/answer to that purpose (hence "with the result that" should be the translation of the second hina clause, even though smoother English would require a verb clause to convey the same meaning, "which will result in"). 


When translating Bible, the translator is always faced with the dilemma of rendering the text so you can match up the keywords without always needing to refer to the original text, or translating it into good target idiom, so you know what it means.  Frankly, much of the translation philosophy behind the KJV and NAS is to enable easier tracking of original-language keywords, which is why sometimes the translations are hard to understand.  Teachers knew Greek back in King James' day, and it was much harder to compare original versus translation in those times of heavy codices, candle wax and globbing quills.  That's why the KJV became a standard for teachers, because it was easier to track.  The NAS is an improvement on the KJV, but it suffers from a number of mistakes too.  No one can get it right.  God is too genius.  But of course one must keep trying.  So you'll find all Bible translations divide over their translation philosophy.  That's why certain translations cannot be used for tracking (like New Living Translation, Bible in Basic English, etc).  Sometimes these communicate-the-idiom translations render the meaning FAR better than the traditional translations.  But sometimes, ugh -- their rendering is sheer drivel.  NIV seems to aim for a middle ground, trying to track keywords yet translate the idiom.  Again, it's impossible to get right.  So of course I'm not getting it wholly right, either.  Ergo the need for these small-font notes!


Here in 1:4, stress is on the running OT prophecy of Word-never-returns-void, concept in Isa55:11-12 (v.12 uses "joy") and elsewhere (promise began in Gen3:15, actually). So John is showing the fulfillment of the promise of Word-in-you in Isa55, which OT book ties forward in time also to Jer3:16, 31:31-34, you-won't-miss-the-Ark-because-the-Ark-will-be-IN-you, and-be-WRITTEN-in-you. Very witty.   Graphic way also to tell you YOU'RE onstage in the Angelic Trial: 1Jn4:12-17's meaning, ties back to 1Jn1:4 when you get there, closing the point of the letter.


1Jn4:12-17 will show how this pleromization gets done, especially in 4:17, using teleiow in the same tandem style as Paul and writer of Hebrews. Teleiow stresses the legal perfection of contract, whereas plerow stresses the fulfilling of contract. So plerow stresses the process, but teleiow stresses the progress. Unfortunately English Bibles often render both verbs with the same English words, so you can't track the flow of the writer's meaning.  Hence I transliterate plerow here, then appositively give its two most common English-Bible translations;  for plerow is one of the most important keywords in Bible.  Best to just transliterate where it shows up in the text.  Means to fill up and fulfill, but etymologically it means one who is pregnant with god-seed, a big theme in Greek drama.  Fullness as in pregnancy, about to give birth -- completion being what occurs when the birth occurs. To stress this fact, John uses soundplay again:  for the periphrasis of eimi plus plerow, sounds exactly the same as if the participle were dramatically converted into a noun, requiring the fronting article to denote that.  So John stresses both process and the drama of it, by that sound play.  Tell me, is this Divine Writ or what!  Kill me NOW!


John's thus using joy here to stress the birthing/siring etymology.  He'll end up stressing birthing/siring a lot in this letter, as it's the means to accomplish the purpose stated here in 1Jn1:4;  which letter, is thus constantly about firsts, foundations, from which all else springs.  John is also tying to Paul's pregnancy analogies in every letter, but especially in Romans 8:11ff. Romans 8:1-10 is on the contrast between what gets filled up and birthed if you live in the flesh versus the Spirit.  James had previously covered that in-labor analogy in James 1:1-2:26, since Isa53:10-12 is the contract to birth our salvation from Him Who Had No Descendants (Isa53:8, only NIV translates "dor" correctly as "descendants").  Isa54:1 is thus the dramatic outcome, birthing from sterility (sin).  So John is tying back to all that, also.  Again, if someone claims to be writing Canon, he has to demonstrate it comes from God by tying back to all previous Canon extant at the time.  Hence John's deft economy and genius of wording -- glossed over in the English, since the keywords don't port over in translation -- must be that good.  Not just any book can justifiably claim to be Divine Word.


Pleroma (noun) and plerow (verb) are thus very useful terms, to show how the Seed of the Word fills you up and completes you according to the Isa53:10-12 contract (use both BHS and LXX texts), viz. referred to by the Lord in Luke 8;  for the Vine and the Branches,  John 15.  So John is directly tying to all of Paul's heavy use of plerow, especially in Ephesians 1:21-23, 3:15-19, 4:13-16;  as well as to Book of Hebrews (which uses plerow as a tracking device in tandem with teleiow);  and of course, to his own Gospel, esp. Chaps 14-17.  In 1Jn4 he'll ape Paul and Hebrews' use of plerow and teleiow, thus showing how they interrelate. In English, usually plerow is translated "fill up", and the noun, "fullness" -- KJV always uses "fulness" for pleroma.  Verb teleiow is often translated "perfect", and its nouns teleios or telos are usually translated "end".  Translations aren't consistent, so not ALL occurrences of the same words are translated the same way;  which is valid to translate differently, since both words vary in nuance given sentence context.  But they are ALWAYS tracking devices to see Bible Doctrine, as are all keywords in Bible.  That's how you learn Bible's meaning, by tracking its words pan-Bible.  So you really can't track these keywords in translation, sorry.


"THE [Communion]  joy of Ours..Jointly" is a literal trans from the Greek for the same reason as "THE Son of His" was rendered thus. I had to put in "[Communion]" because it's the antecedent parallel in 1:3.   I also had to put in the word "Jointly" because hemetera in 1:3 is the JOINED "Our" John means, and in English we'd need the word "Jointly" to distinguish it. Again, the "our" is not an editorial we, so when John says "our" he's not talking of just himself;  when he uses hemetera, he's talking of ALL believers in Church, not just himself or his group.  Moreover, he uses  "Joy" to incorporate by reference (tie back to) ALL "joy" verses in the OT and NT, but especially back to Heb12:2, which in turn also refers back to the Isa53:10-11 birthing-contract clauses, the Joy of Savior Seeing Offspring Forever. "Joy" also refers back to Peter's use of chara (joy) and menw in his letters (Peter is doctrinally addicted to hupo-prefixes, so uses hupomenw, hupotassw, huparchein, etc).  So the  "Our Joint" in 1Jn1:3 is referred back to, showing how it gets done (summary statement in 1:4, rest of letter will elaborate).  Our=Collective us in Him, Church. Again, the combo emphatic/ascensive use of kai between verses 3 and 4 is rendered by the "even.. also" English.

1:5 "In fact this is the selfsame message which we have heard From The Source of (Greek prep apw again) Him and repeat-the-report to you [just as in all prior Canon], that God is Light;  in fact, in Him there is no darkness at all."

1 John 1:5  BGT  Καὶ ἔστιν αὕτη ἡ ἀγγελία ἣν ἀκηκόαμεν ἀπ᾽ αὐτοῦ καὶ ἀναγγέλλομεν ὑμῖν, ὅτι ὁ θεὸς φῶς ἐστιν καὶ σκοτία ἐν αὐτῷ οὐκ ἔστιν οὐδεμία.


John now uses the Hebraistic rhetorical style of repeating what was said in the previous clause, stressing yet again, the apw preposition to show STRONG assertion of his letter's Divine Origin.  He's calling in all prior Scripture witness and lumping what he writes in with them, by using "we".  Again, this is blatant claim.  So either John is from the devil, or from God, and you can't dance around the question of whether this Book is Canon. Next John SWITCHES from aPangellw to aNangellw (marked in the Greek for easier viewing), same verb in Isa53:2, so I'm changing "report" to "repeat-the-report", to reflect the meaning of Greek ana, versus apw prefix.  In 1:2 and 1:3  he'd upgraded to apw from the Isa53:2 usage of anangellw, to show Source Added and Source Gave him;  now he's asserting CONTINUITY of the previous Divine message, by reverting back to the Isa53:2's anangellw.  So how do you translate that fact?  You HAVE to translate it to provide the same meaning, for all of 1Jn2 is on this Divine continuity-yet-Divinely-new theme.   In English, John's witty I'm-writing-you-a-new-commandment-yet-an-old-one in 1Jn2, seems to come from nowhere.  But 1Jn2 is an elaboration on this 1Jn1:4-5.  So here in 1:5, I must append "[just as in all prior Canon]", to communicate the deft Greek switch from apangellw to anangellw, which is a tie-back to Isa53:2, or the translation will be in error.  To the Greek reader, this simple switch of prefix stands out in both 1:2, 1:3 and 1:5.  It's a finessed rhetorical style common in Bible, change only the smallest thing, grammatically or syntactically.  Just as John did with the neuter of hos, he now does by changing only ONE LETTER in a verb.  Greeks appreciated that kind of linguistic genius.  And God is Genius, baby.


Thus John asserts Divine consistency of what he's writing now, from Genesis (let there be light) through James 1:17 (which might have been the earliest Canonical NT book, else tied with Matthew and Corinthians or Galatians) through 1Pet2:9, which of course thus includes what Paul, Mark, Jude and the unnamed writer of Hebrews wrote.  Firsts is John's theme.  So he opens his letter with a tie-back to Gen1:1, and here in 1:5 ties back to Gen1:2ff, which is how God restores us, even as He restored the trashed-up earth.  That's a pretty dramatic claim, the assertion that what he writes is from God and ties perfectly from Genesis forward.  Nothing shy about 1Jn's text.  Pity the English sugar-coats and fuzzes it up.


Greek "autos" is an intensive pronoun, much like "moi" in French. It replaced the Attic spheis, so became the common pronoun in koine.  But it still is used dramatically.  For it originally had something of the force of English "selfsame". Here John is using it to stress continuity, so "it..selfsame" is the English rendering, with Greek verb eimi preceding in the Greek.   At the end of the verse, Greek word "oudemia" (feminine of oudeis, feminine because skotia is used) -- accompanies "ouk" so you have to say "no.. at all" in English to convey its force.  So God is Light, therefore these words being from God, are light, for the Word -- all prior Canon -- is light.  So all the Light verses of OT and NT are thus incorporated by reference.  Pity the people who think only Jesus' words or only the Gospels are the Word of God.  See how digging into the Greek so quickly resolves doctrines folks debate?  See why God preserved the original words?


John's also continuing to tie to Isa53, specifically the "dexzai autoi phos" infinitival clause in the LXX of Isa53:11.  Deiknumi is cousin to phanerow and of course to the entire phos panoply of meanings.  Making manifest and making known are both proclamation verbs (phanerow and deiknumi, respectively).  Ties also to Paul's 1Cor12:31 wit of deiknumi.. huperbalw, pointing out the Head (which is higher than the Body, get it?) which is the subject of 1Cor13, the completion of Canon.  John will return to this wordplay stridently in 1John 2.


It will be VERY important to remember how John ties to the LXX of Isa53:11 as you watch him thread the parallelisms of Light, Word, Truth, knowing Him in the remainder of the letter.  Light=Word=Truth=Communion=Knowing Him.  Notice how there are NO WORKS or religion anywhere in those parallels.  Amazing what one learns when one actually looks at what BIBLE says, rather than hearsay or goofed-up translations.


1:6 "If we allege that we have fellowship in association with Him but in darkness we are walking, we lie and are not practicing The Truth."

1 John 1:6  BGT  ἐὰν εἴπωμεν ὅτι κοινωνίαν ἔχομεν μετ᾽ αὐτοῦ καὶ ἐν τῷ σκότει περιπατῶμεν, ψευδόμεθα καὶ οὐ ποιοῦμεν τὴν ἀλήθειανˇ


In English you must translate this sentence with the progressive tense.  John now switches into what constitutes Fellowship for the rest of the letter.  First things first.  Darkness is not light.  Greek dramatic present tense displays what IS happening whether it's a fact or a scenario. Here, it's a scenario which arises in every Christian's life, of being in a state of unconfessed sin.  The fundamental of being in fellowship is this: if in darkness, then the Truth the Word the Light is NOT functioning in you.  Doesn't mean you're not saved.  In the Greek there's NO doubt what John means, the walking (Hebraism for spiritual lifestyle) of a saved person.  So yes you can be saved and be in the dark.  You know this is the right interpretation because the parallelisms are made between light and darkness, Word and Truth. These parallelisms should be even clear in English translations:  the translations only mess up the tenses.  Watch how John plays a kind of Socratic tic-tac-toe with parallelisms from here on, in his letter.  Occasionally he will spike up the plodding, relentless logic with a dramatic interruption.  By this he demonstrates the union of the plodding quality of the spiritual life's THINKING, with its dramatic Trial Victory effects and Fellowship results.  High-low. 


Greek third-class condition is a one of five if-clause debater's techniques of exposition. Third class condition always takes the subjunctive mood, even though there's no doubt of the fact of a thing.  Debater's exposition is designed to develop a point from premise to conclusion.  The if-part of the sentence is called a "protasis", and the "then" part of the sentence is an "apodosis".  So you construct parallels based on the protasis of the prior sentence, or based on the apodosis of the prior sentence.  Either way, the idea is to demonstrate irrefutable results from prior conditions.  The third-class condition means that a thing will happen, but it won't happen constantly.  So "when" it happens, the apodosis occurs.  It's math:  so the sentences are very repetitive, and you look for the CHANGES compared to the prior sentence(s).


Hence you look for comparison and contrast, parallelisms.  The whole pattern of discourse is based upon them.  So even if you can't tolerate the Greek, look for the parallelisms in the letter within your favorite translation.  By the way, walking in darkness is NOT the same as being unsaved.  You can't even walk, if you are spiritually dead.  So it's clear even in English, that John is not talking about someone unsaved, since verse 5 is about Fellowship among saved persons.  Always read Bible in context.  The context of who is in view, was established in verse 3. 


And parallelling from verse 5, John introduces a strawman believer who is WALKING in the dark.  John also deftly incorporates by reference all the stumbling verses in the OT.  There are hundreds of them, notably Isa28, about how the BELIEVERS among Israel (subdefinition of the 10 tribes, aka Samaria) would be disciplined by God, destroyed by Assyria.  Clear reference here in John to explain why the Temple was destroyed in 70AD, too.  When he gets to 1Jn5, he'll climactically reference back to 1:6-1:10 here, to show how believers are EXECUTED by God, for continuing to walk in the dark, devoid of Word in them, which after all is the central warning of Leviticus 26 and Deut 28 contract provisions, on which the wiping out of Israel, was based.  A famous Jewish OT blessing refers to the Lord's Face "Shining" upon you like Moses (i.e., "face.. shine" verses like Num6:25);   means the Light of the Word is upon you; so Light and dark is a common OT analogy for in-Word or not-in-Word.  See how much material John can incorporate by reference simply by making analogy to Light and darkness?


Similarly, all the "by this" clauses which permeate the letter are conclusion statements teaching the lessons, driving them home. YOU MUST READ SLOWLY and think over what is said. The plodding nature (and Greek cadence) of the wording makes it very easy to gloss over what is said!  For example, John now begins a series of contrasting states-of-being, layering them.  He'll do this throughout the letter, too.  By this, he means to show the zig-zag nature of the spiritual life:  first you're out, then you're in, then out again -- just as Paul was explaining in Romans 5-8.  Romans' style of exposition is also patterned in this format throughout.  Both books are often misdiagnosed as being simple.  Which is why most Christians misdiagnose the true spiritual life, too.  The deft Greek is mistranslated, sure:  but even in English, you can see the back-and-forth nature of the logic.  Depicting, the zig-zag nature of spiritual life.  In, then out.  Then in again.


John also incorporates all of James in this verse, particularly Chapters 1 and 2.  James builds up to his "doer of the Word" climax near the end of his Chapter 1;  from that climax he next bookends at James 2:26 to show how apart from the Spirit, not only are you walking in the darkness NOT receiving the implanted Word so forgetting whatever you had learned, NOT walking in Him Who is Light without even a turning's shadow, NOT having the PISTIS -- Believed Word, clever Greek (and Hebrew)  literature analogy to Pistis and Sophia, two drama personifications of God's Truth Attribute -- but you are not a DOER of the Word.  So now you can better see why James next branches off into the alleger (Chap 2), who claims that he shows his Pistis by the WORKS he did.  Yeah, right -- no Spirit, body dead, James 2:26.  Contrasted with, Abraham who DID believe, was hence in the Light, and like Father would later do, gave up his own son. John deftly summarizes all that, playing off "doer", with the Greek verb poiew (meaning, to do, to practice).. The Truth.  Christ is the Way, the Truth, and the Life.  You don't 'practice' HIM if there's no Word in you.  So dark of Word, you lie to yourself and claim fellowship which doesn't exist.


By the time John gets to verse 10, this zig-zag series of logical exposition will have his readers on the edge of their seats, much like Paul did at the end of Romans 7:  who will deliver us from this body of darkness and death?  Then John will ZING them with 1Jn2:1.  Awesome stuff.

1:7 "By contrast, if in The Light we are [really] walking even as He is in the Light (play on Isa53:10-11's phrasing  in the LXX,, since He IS the Light, not merely in it) , we have Fellowship in association with each other;  in fact THE Blood of Jesus HIS Son purifies us away from the source of all sin [just as depicted by those sacrifices in the OT]."

1 John 1:7   BGT  ἐὰν εἴπωμεν ὅτι κοινωνίαν ἔχομεν μετ᾽ αὐτοῦ καὶ ἐν τῷ σκότει περιπατῶμεν, ψευδόμεθα καὶ οὐ ποιοῦμεν τὴν ἀλήθειανˇ


There's a whole LOT being said here.  I almost don't know where to begin. Word placement is vital in this kind of discourse, so I translate in Greek word order (except "By contrast" had to be placed first in English).  That makes for awkward English, but you HAVE TO SEE the word order to get the points John makes.  This pattern of exposition is just like a math formula:  the placement of the variables affects the formula's results.  For example, it really matters a lot, that John puts "walking" RIGHT NEXT to "even as".  Very dramatic claim, stressed by the juxtaposition of the words.  We saw that same drama-by-juxtaposition in v.3, where "Jointly" is placed RIGHT NEXT to "in association with FATHER.."  It sticks out.


Gotta pause here and talk about Greek preposition "en", which is rife in this letter.  The preposition is almost always translated "in" by English translators, but it means a WHOLE lot more than that.  Every Bible writer using "en" plays with all its meanings when using the preposition.  "Track the prepositions", my pastor warned us repeatedly.  So notice:  "en" expresses "in" a location, within (Someone), but also MEANS and RELATIONSHIP.  So if someone is in your mind, you are "in" that person, in the sense of sharing his thinking:  fellowship.  So there's a causal connotation:  BECAUSE of Him, you are "in".  So "in Christ" also signifies by means of Christ, by Agency of Christ, in relationship to Christ, because of Christ.  Bear all that wordplay in mind whenever you see "in".  Especially, within 1Jn.  John makes a whole logical matrix between dwelling in, being in, thinking in, living in -- his Gospel and 1Jn have this in-ness as their framework.  Hence because-in, by-means-of-in, etc.


Probably should translate instead "THE Blood of Jesus THE Son of Him [Father]", because John's stressing both His Unique God-Man Nature, and Their Identicality-of-Essence again.  That's extremely awkward English, though.  Normally a Greek article used this way can itself be translated as a possessive, but John also uses autou also (Greek is probably monadic,  tou huiou autou, not merely tou huiou).  The intensiveness of autou is in view.  How to best show that in English, yikes!  Only way I could think of, was to capitalize "His".  Notice how John thus brings forward the thread of verse 3's climactic statement that we are Jointly (hemeteros) in Fellowship.  In Greek you don't repeat for dramatic effect and elegance, or you DO repeat for dramatic effect and elegance.  Here John doesn't repeat the allegation of Fellowship with HIM, but instead goes to the verse 3's consequent fellowship with other believers.  The Message:  if you're not in HIM, you're NOT in fellowship with anyone else, either.  All or nothing.


Continuing the rhetorical exposition pattern of the third-class condition, John next builds on their knowledge of how they got saved, to show how FELLOWSHIP is constructed.  It's not just about being saved, but being in fellowship POST-salvation, and the basis is the same:  the Cross.  Inter alia, this is a very clever Trinity statement.  The most common OT rhetorical mechanism for denoting Trinity is a simple "He", with the rest of a verse's sentence, telling you which "He" is in view.  Sacred Name not stated, so you know it's "God" -- and the Identicality of Divine Essence is deftly communicated as well, by leaving out the Name (i.e., not Ab-Elohim or Ruach-Elohim, etc).  Each One is Wholly, Infinitely, God.  No polytheism, here!  Polytheism depends on an INequality of Divine Essence.  Three Gods NOT unequal, is what Bible always says ("Triplets" as my pastor once quipped to convey total Identicality of Essence).  So OT demonstrates this Identicality deftly and mostly, via the simple "He".  So here, John employs that common OT rhetorical style, referring back to verse 5.  For the antecedent "Him" is both Father and Son.  Son in His Deity of course IS Light, just as Father.  Son in His Humanity BECAME Light, even as He became the Truth and the Life;  so focus here in v.7 is on His Humanity, as illustrated by the clause about His Saving Work on the Cross.  Blood of Christ is His THINKING, as stated 21 times in Isaiah 52:14-54:1.  Specifically, Isaiah 53:11's "dexzei autoi phos" is in view, one of the five infinitives of what would happen as a result of the Incarnation and His THINKING (Greek suneisis, Hebrew da'ath) on the Cross.  That contract is also between Father and Son.


There's also a clever play on the Tetragrammaton.  The "WH" in "YHWH" is a concatenation of Hebrew "hawah", to become.  So to say He is in the Light obviously represents His Humanity, which BECAME.  Wow, what a clever way to repeat He's God, huh.  Only God is this smart.


Next, Greek word "katharizw" has a very particular usage in the LXX.  It means purify, not merely cleanse.  Idea of PERMANENT separation from the past unclean state.  Of course, a new uncleanness can occur, requiring a new purification.  But the old status is permanently GONE once purification occurs.  John's setting up a parallel, here to the purification of the OT Temple, to what will follow in verse 9.  Since we are the Temple, the OT Temple being long GONE (a generation prior) at the time John writes.  So the use of katharizw (from which we get the modern English prefix "cath", idea of purity) is a special term, evocative of the Temple, specifically.  We are His Body, so Temple, as Paul had written back in 1Cor and Ephesians:  so John is incorporating ALL that meaning from OT and Paul, into what he writes here via the deft and simple choice of katharizw, to purify.


This analogy to God filling the Temple when it was in a pure state, is critical to the spiritual life, and John's setting up that climactic statement, here.  Verse 9 will clinch it;  v.9 also uses katharizw, so is the bookend for the point he's making about Light and darkness, from v.6 onward through v.10.  Thus John ties to Eph5:18 and similar verses on how one must be Filled with the Spirit.  Again, if you don't know the specialized meaning of katharizw in Greek, you won't see the pointed referernce to Filling and Temple analogy.  English cannot convey this -- you HAVE to add words. Hence the bracketed "[just as" clause at the end of the verse. 

Remember, under the Law there were TWO types of sacrifices:  individual, and corporate; and much of the corporate sacrifice was what MADE the Temple Holy, viz., the command for lambs to be daily sacrificed both morning and just before sundown (3pm or so, same hour as the Lord died on the Cross on TRUE Passover 30AD).  When the Temple was periodically desecrated throughout its history, it had to get its own purification:  that was "katharizw".  Thus John makes clever reference to the Lord's being born on Chanukah in (4BC), which holiday commemorates the first day the Temple was rededicated, after purification from the reign of Antiochus Epiphanes IV.


Thus John incorporates all of the OT law, plus Hebrews Chaps 8-10 by reference, since that was the point of those Hebrews' chapters, to contrast the Once-and-for-All-Time nature of HIS Sacrifice, versus all those temporary cleansings which were at best mnemonics of The Sacrifice-to-Come. All this incorporation, simply by referencing Blood and purify?  Can there BE another Author of this letter than God Himself?


Notice the suddenly-dramatic claim in the verse:  we CAN be walking JUST AS HE IS.  That's a setup for 1Jn4:17, a parallel statement that we are just as He is, in this world.  Simple Greek "hos" accomplishes all that drama!  John will repeat it often, as it's key to the parallelisms he's constructing.  To demonstrate that drama  I preserved the Greek word order, which is also the same word order in v.6 (exact parallelism by contrast).  The walking is right next to "just as" ("hos") in the Greek.  Pretty dramatic, huh:  in verse 6, "we lie" is RIGHT NEXT to "walking", but in verse 7, "even as" is RIGHT NEXT to "walking".  Can't be a starker contrast than that:  "even as He is", or.. "we lie".


Greek particle "hos" means "like, in the same manner as", and is usually truncated to "as" in translation, leaving a fuzzy impression, watering down the drama into an unpalatable blob you'll gloss over.  In Greek there's a stronger synonym for "hos", "kathos", which is not used here.  John is parallelling, though, and in Greek drama you do use simplicity to stress the absolute truth of a thing.  So in English, "even as" seems a better translation, to bring out the equation John makes.  It's a kind of dramatic finesse:  just a simple "i love you", just a simple absolute fact.


The translation, "away from the source of all sin" is how you must fully translate Greek preposition "apw" in this clause. References back to the strong use of apw in verses 1-4, the Report from the Source of All Things.  He is the Source of all removal of sin nature's power, too.  That's a main theme in the Book of Hebrews, esp. Chapter 10.  So John incorporates that by reference.  Same, for Isa53, especially 53:11's "apw tou ponou" -- out from His Soul's Labor (Hebrew is me amal, means the same thing, pregnancy analogy).  Hence complete and total separation from source is the meaning:  birthing something else, our salvation. 


We know this, because sin in the singular in the NT is used to designate the state of being 'in' sin nature.  That's a genetic problem, and the sins we actually sin are SYMPTOMS illustrating the underlying disease.  We have these urges, but our SOULS give into them, which creates a state of being "in" sin.  As unbelievers, that's how we are all the time, even when not sinning.  Sin nature isn't strictly a sinning thing, but has 'trends', as my pastor likes to explain:  trend to good deeds, to evil, from the source of the Tree of the Knowledge-of-Good-and-Evil (hyphenated translation here is actually the meaning in Hebrew and Greek text --  means it's ALL the same thing, sin=humangood=evil, see also Isa64:6).  As believers, we give into sin, and hence are "in" our sin nature, still.  Verse 9, removes and purifies the "temple", so we are no longer "in" the sin nature, within our souls.  That will be a main theme in 1Jn, even as it was the main theme of John Chaps 14-17.  You are "one" with your sin nature, or "one" with God at any moment in time;  1Jn1:9 takes you literally OUT of sin, and here in v.7 we see why.


Hence the need for a complete spiritual rebirth (John 3 being incorporated by reference).  Ok, but what about post-salvation?  You still have the same sin nature.  So John addresses that point here:  idea, again, of fellowship versus separation from fellowship with God.  Again, John's setting up for verse 9, which explains how to GET OUT of being in a status of sin (separated from fellowship).  Thus John incorporates by reference all of Romans 5-8, especially the end of Chap7.


It should be obvious that if John has to painstakingly explain how you can KNOW if you're in fellowship, then you CANNOT FEEL ANYTHING when you are in Fellowship with God.  So much for all the kant about feeling the Filling of the Spirit:  feeling is NOT a criterion for spirituality, and never was.  What rubbish.


Again, the spiritual life is a knowing, not a feeling;  and that means zig-zag.  It's wearing.  In and out of Fellowship, Light, Truth, Him.  When out, one fancies himself to be still in the Light, and lives a lie.  So next notice how John's focusing in v.6 and v.7, on the believer who's "good" in his own estimation, not on the believer who is busy with gross sin.  John will continue with this strawman who so prides himself on his good deeds, just like James did, just like Paul did beginning in Romans 2.  So of course all that is incorporated by reference here.  The most dangerous Christian is the one who fancies himself in the Light.  And he does so, due to all his many religiosities and good deeds, like the Pharisee did (parable of the Pharisee and the publican in the Gospels, i.e., Luke 18).  So all that OT and Gospel Divine Writ on how religious people are among the worst sinners (i.e., your-sacrifices-are-a-stench-in-My-Nostrils verses), is deftly incorporated here.


Follow this new thread of the sanctimonious believer, throughout 1Jn.  The religious believer is likened in 1Jn (and by Christ in the Gospels) to the devil himself.  It's a main warning, to avoid such persons, to not be them, to detect them.  In 2Jn the reader is warned to not even GREET them, for crying out loud.  How strong a warning can one get?  Parallel passage is in 2Tim2:26-3:7.


Paul warned often about religiosity, and of course Galatians is all a parallelling of how religious people are immoral DUE TO that religiosity.  John follows that same theme.  It's not the gross sinner, that John is stressing -- but rather, it's a GROSS thing, to be religious.  Really pointed, trace the theme yourself.  Writer of Hebrews does the same thing with nothros, from Heb5:11-6:12 ("nothros" means "dull" as in "dull knife", meaning Dull-of-Word, the  Machaira, Heb4:12).  After all, lascivious people don't pretend to themselves that they are holy.  So this isn't a lascivious person, in view.


So many shibboleths in modern and long-apostate-for-centuries fake 'Christianity' are knocked out by this verse 7.  No penance (setup to verse 9).  Obviously no works can make you in the Light, and the parallel is to the TRUTH in v.6, not to works!  Obviously too, no losing salvation, but you CAN lose Fellowship.  Further, the over-vaunted "fellowship with'Christians" requires being in Fellowship with God, not the other way around: you're not in fellowship with God just because you are in fellowship with Christians.  You have to be in the LIGHT, which means being in the TRUTH (v.6 contrast, noun just before "light" in this verse), not being in works or with people.  Think it over.  Note what is and is not said, diagram the parallelisms.  Then you'll wonder how Christianity got it so wrong all these centuries.


It's painful to say someone else is wrong.  One of the greatest of all happinesses in life, is to say someone is SUPERIOR to the self, and RIGHT.  So it's like parricide, to be forced to say someone you consider 'above' you, is wrong.  Stabs the soul.  Especially, to call "wrong", those who literally slave their lives away in religious circles.  Most religious people are extremely hard working, very sincere, and take great pains to be moral.  They work hard in seminaries, universities, churches;  so it seems quite arrogant for some brainout to say, "wrong".  But here's where we all must draw the line:  the WORD should not be misrepresented.  Never mind what initials or credentials or human approval or even achievements one has, if the WORD is misrepresented, that's evil.  Evil comes from good intentions far more often than it comes from bad ones.  Because, the more moral a person is, the more competent, so the evil 'born' from morality is thus more competent.. and devastating.  Nothing can be more evil, than to misrepresent the Word, however well-intentioned. 


And we in Christendom are the worst, misrepresenting Him for centuries.  First the Jerusalem church misrepresented Him, Acts 15;  their falsehoods morphed into Catholicism beginning in the 90's AD, which (beginning about 180AD), came to dominate the northern hemisphere, even until now;  back at the Reformation (and in spurts prior), folks who became known as "the Protestants", picked up the banner; and while in the beginning of their break with the Rev17 'Church', some Light broke out, they quickly devolved into statism and myriads of other misrepresentations;  now, the independents are trying to outdo both the Catholics and the Protestants, with an ever-widening variety of misrepresentations of This Glorious Word.  You just TRY to find a correct Gospel on the web: 95% of what's out there, VIOLATES what the Lord says in John 3:16, thus saving NO one reading those pages.  The misrepresentation goes on and on.  All well-intentioned, of course!


So John will explain how any Christian gets it wrong, in the following verses.  Century after century.

1:8 "If we allege that we have no sin nature, we are leading ourselves astray like wandering sheep; in fact, the truth is not in us."

1 John 1:8  BGT  ἐὰν εἴπωμεν ὅτι ἁμαρτίαν οὐκ ἔχομεν, ἑαυτοὺς πλανῶμεν καὶ ἡ ἀλήθεια οὐκ ἔστιν ἐν ἡμῖν.


NT's Greek uses hamartia in the singular to designate the sin nature.  Colorful (and pejorative) Greek verb planaw is used by Paul in Eph4:14 (and by others elsewhere), so has to be fully translated here, "lead.. astray like wandering sheep".  More like the Pied Piper.  The essential meaning of planaw is that you WANDER OFF like a sheep, constantly getting yourself in trouble, utterly without sense, easy prey for anyone, quickly seduced (planaw is often properly translated "to seduce").  You have NO CLUE where you are going, you're completely LOST; anything sounds good, for you wouldn't recognize the truth if it bit you.  In fact, lies are what you crave, so you get swindled by everyone -- especially, yourself.  Really graphic and insulting verb, planaw. As in PT Barnum's, "there's a sucker born every minute." Someone you can fool easily.


Sheep cannot find food or water on their own;  they have an insatiable desire to wander off, especially to places which place them in peril.  So we're not hearing our Shepard's Voice when this verse is 'on' in our lives.  We all have times when we think ourselves fundamentally good.  Guess again.  This verse totally shoots that silly planaw'ing idea.  Original sin happened.  We like it so we give into its urges.  So the sin nature is not merely genetic, after that::  it's a soul craving.  We WANT what is bad for us. Now you know why the world is always so bad.  We WANT it to be bad.  Just like Adam and the woman post-Fall, in Genesis 3.  From the beginning.  Their qvetching nature is our own.  Yeah, in the genes.  But by choice those urges get into the soul, and by continuing choices those urges build in the soul.  Who will deliver us from these bodies of death, Paul moans in Romans 7, having explained the sin nature for three chapters prior.  John is referring the reader back to both Genesis 3 and Paul's Romans 5-7 discourse, simultaneously.


Again, this is a new continuing thread, the parallel to the religious believer who fancies himself in the light, v.6.  The parallel to the religious believer continues through the end of the letter.  Very pointed and insulting language is reserved for the religious believer throughout 1Jn, playing off Phili3:8 and Isa64:6, both very gross passages (likening man's goodness to a swear word for doo-doo, and menstruation, respectively).  You don't say "planaw" of anyone but a fool -- and who likes to be called a liar (v.6)?  No one could ever accuse John of being less than blunt!  So those who claim man's goodness, well.. give them wide berth.  It's like gravity:  the more you hear someone be 'nice' and exclaim about 'nice', the more evil that person is.  Never seen that rule yet fail.  Don't even greet such folks, John will warn in 2Jn.


This bluntness incorporates by reference many scathing Gospel and NT passages, not to mention all the OT references to easy-prey-due-to-wandering-astray from the Word (i.e., Deut 4:19, 11:28, 13:5, 27:18, 30:17, Ps94:10,  LXX). There are 153 verses using the verb planaw  in Bible's Greek (LXX and NT), alone.  That's even before you tie in all the synonyms (gotta think like a thesaurus when reading Bible).  Seems like almost every other verse from Deuteronomy onward is some kind of warning about wandering and leading the self astray.  There is a distinct parallel being drawn here in v.8 between false doctrine you believe, and lying.  In v.6, the problem is lying outwardly, though one can never lie outwardly without lying inwardly.  Here in v.8, the inward-to-self lying is insultingly highlighted.  So v.7's Light, is not 'on'.


Notice how John's advanced the doctrine by repeated, quite-similar concepts with very slight variations.  Easy to gloss over.  Here, planaw gives you OOODLES of doctrine, as it's a big Bible keyword.  So, John set it up beginning in verse 6:  claiming fellowship but walking in darkness is to live a lie you tell others as well;  v.8 advances that idea by showing someone who is SO convinced he is in fellowship, he thinks he has no sin nature anymore.  So notice how that person believes a false doctrine which flatters him.  He literally leads himself astray;  it's not his errant teachers, friends, relatives who are to blame.  Lots of falsehoods out there;  most of Christianity is falsely taught, even.  But only WE are to blame for what we incorrectly believe:  Greek verb planaw puts the responsibility squarely on the wandering believer.  Seems like John especially stresses Psalm 58:3 (57:3 in LXX) and Prov10:17 and 13:9, here.  When 1Jn1:8 is paired with 1Jn1:6, the two form a whole concatenated quote of those probably-popular, Psalm and Proverb verses.  Proverbs 13:9 in particular says, "The light of the righteous rejoices, but the lamp of the wicked.. goes out."  LXX has extra text, elaborating that "crafty souls deceive others into sin, but the righteous have compassion and mercy" (LXX synonym for Hebrew chesed, unconditional love).  So John's beginning his main theme:  Word is Love, so no Word=no Love.

Then there's Proverbs 14:22, which in both LXX and Hebrew show that chesed wa amen -- Love and Believed Truth construct the framework of true good.  Wow, John sure knows what keywords to pick to incorporate a whole SLEW of applicable doctrine into a verse!  All this is learned, simply because he chooses the verb planaw!  So apt!  Via this one word planaw, you have ALL the applicable verses to carry you throughout every point John makes from this verse, forward.  Only God is this smart, sorry. .


But hey:  once born-again, one immediately wanders off into lies.  What else would a baby do, but poop?  Baby poop is the worst kind:  "meconium", they call it in medicine.  Think diarrhea.  Paul makes reference to the same childhood phenomena using that same verb planaw,  in Eph4:14; so John is ALSO tying back to the Henotes System of getting the Truth in you via pastors (get the pun here? Pastors for SHEEP?), which God had Paul summarize, in Eph4:11-16. See Eph41216.htm, or the shorter translations in RightPT.htm.


Above all, John makes reference to Psalm 119:176, which Isa53:6 uses -- we have all gone astray like sheep, but the Lord laid on Him the iniquity of us all.  Both verses use planaw.  Well, that's quite a dramatic setup for the contrasting solution, 1Jn1:9.  It comes next.  Like v.8, the same third-class debater's technique, continues.  Free will, baby.  We choose or do not..

1:9 "If we name, admit, cite, acknowledge-as-a-courtroom-case our sins to God, He is Faithful and Righteous to PERMANENTLY CANCEL-the-debt-of-those-sins (literally, HE CANCELLED, aorist tense) , and to PERMANENTLY PURIFY  (lit., HE PURIFIED, aorist tense) us from all wrongdoing."

1 John 1:9  BGT  ἐὰν ὁμολογῶμεν τὰς ἁμαρτίας ἡμῶν, πιστός ἐστιν καὶ δίκαιος, ἵνα ἀφῇ ἡμῖν τὰς ἁμαρτίας καὶ καθαρίσῃ ἡμᾶς ἀπὸ πάσης ἀδικίας.


Well, where do I start to cover this climactic verse? The most dramatic changes from the translation you have, are in the capitalized words.  They aren't really infinitives, but you cannot translate into English without switching to infinitives.  More about the infinitive will be said below.  For the moment, the most important thing to understand is that John switches from the dramatic present (name..sins)  to the aorist.  Wow. That shift of tense punches you right in the eyes. For the dramatic present is something ONGOING.  But the aorist, is something permanently OVER.  Greek aorist tense means something COMPLETED, over, done with, permanent.  In short, time won't change it.  There may be results (culminative aorist);  the viewpoint of the action may stress an entirety (constantive aorist, lumping together as a unity, all the actions comprised in the verb);  the simple action itself being done might be all that's in view -- but whatever use of the aorist, it's got this point-of-time-divorced-from-time root meaning of permanency.  Can't relive it, can't redo that same moment, it's OVER.  So to say "permanently" might not be the best way to convey the aorist meaning in English, for in English we think that a thing permanently done, can't happen again. Clearly sin happens over and over again.   But until I can think of a better adverb to convey the aorist tense, I'll have to leave "permanently" in the translation.  If you can think of a better adverb, please let me know.


I remember my pastor translating this verse differently, but can't remember in what classes, probably during the 1 Jn exegesis.  Instead of using infinitives, he says "with the result that He CANCELS.. PURIFIES".  Which is, the better literal translation of the hina clause in the Greek, and of course follows the ENGLISH rule of using the same tense as the main verb (when simultaneous action is indicated, as here).  Then he explains the permanence of the aorist tense.  But he harps on 1Jn1:9 so much in all his 50 years of teaching, that if you have ANY lessons of his, you'll probably run into this verse exegeted, so can see for yourself what an authority says.  I've heard him exegete this verse so often I (when being pissy) would sometimes turn off the tape recorder, tired of the repetition.  This verse has in turn, saved my life (gotta be) hundreds of times:  I have the scars to prove it.  Big stupidity on my part, to not want the repetition!


The permanency was already introduced by John in verse 7:  THE CROSS.  Permanently done, point of time for all time;  thus John incorporates all of Hebrews 10:1-14 by reference again, since his focus is on how Heb10:15-17, the promise of Jer31:31-34 being fulfilled, gets done.  You'll see him shift squarely into that focus, in Chapter 2.  Right now, he's setting up the basis for it.


Greek verb homologew is a courtroom verb, usually quasi-mistranslated "confess". But in the Greek meaning, a lawyer would 'homologew' when citing proof of some legal principle, by citing a past court case or other precedence which said the same thing as he's saying currently in the courtroom, to the judge.  Verb was also used to admit some legal principle is true in one's own situation, i.e., admit one's guilt, as used here.  So it requires several English words to convey the legal meaning:  name, admit, cite, acknowledge as a courtroom case:  here, the Cross, from verse 7.  Homologew always goes by precedence, and what preceded, were the conditions of verses 6-8.  Verse 7 is smack dab in the middle.  This zig-zagging rhetorical style of compare and contrast, thus demonstrates rather vividly the importance of breathing 1Jn1:9.  Can't live the spiritual life without it, as John proves here.  Else one is lying, in the dark, devoid of Truth, wandering astray, making a fool of himself about how good he is.


Capitalized verbs are mistranslated in Bibles.  Greek verb aphiemi really means to blot out or cancel a debt, particularly a GAMBLING debt.  "Forgive" is way overused in English, has almost no meaning (people don't really forgive, they just mouth it).  But hey: we all can relate to cancelling debt!  That's a big deal to anyone.  For you owe it, can't pay it, and the One you owe, WHOLLY cancels the bill?!  See?  "Forgive" is too tame a word!


No penance here.  Not possible.  Again, it's due to the Cross, as the next capitalized verb is katharizw, which points back to verse 7.  Purified by Christ.  Not by penance or any other Source.  Apw, from the Source of the Cross, your sins are purified AWAY from you.  Period.  No partial, you can't contribute.  Don't know how John could use more ABSOLUTE verbs than aphiemi and katharizw.  Flabbergasts me, that Christians get it so wrong for centuries.  This verse is plain enough, even in English.


Naming the sins "to God" is in the Greek meaning of the text.  In English, we have to add the words "to God", because in the Greek elegance is expressed by economy, so the Greek depends on the "He" in "He is faithful", to indicate WHO receives the action of homologew.  That's the SAME "He" to whom you name sins:  FATHER.  You know it's GOD, because only the sacred "He" is used, and if you know your Bible, you already understand no one but the Father can forgive sins, Ps32:5, 66:18 (see context).  Gospels made that clear, too;  Christ was GRANTED that authority while He was down here, as He painstakingly repeated to the crowds when He did things like make the paralytic of Matt9, walk.  OT sacrifices made that clear, too:  first you did what David did in Psalm 32:5 (etc.), and THEN you certified it before a priest, giving an animal or flour, etc. to demonstrate you knew Your Messiah-to-Come would in the Future Pay.  For it's not the Son, to Whom you name sins, since the Son would become the Lamb of God as a SUBSTITUTE for sin, Isa53:10-11.  Father is the Head in the Divine Corporation, which Jesus repeatedly explained when He was down here.  Prayer only goes to Father (i.e., John 17).  So also, naming sins only goes to Father, since naming sins is to a JUDGE.  Same Judge to Whom you pray.  For prayer is a request to be adjudicated.  Legal thing, prayer.  Legal thing, to admit sin, too.  So a simple "He" is all the reader needs, to know Which "He" is in view.  For all believers are royal priests now, as Peter explained (1Pet2:5,9), as Book of Hebrews explained (main theme of the book):  so John here reminds the reader of his PRIESTLY DUTY.


"Faithful and Righteous" is a ONENESS in the Greek.  Anarthrous construction.  It's not really quite right to translate "to PURIFY" as infinitives.  Yes, this is Greek subjunctive of purpose, so that's why the verbs are usually translated as infinitives.  But hina is actually the blending of purpose and result, and the RESULT is what's stressed here.  Any sins you name are really BLOTTED OUT (usual OT translation of aphiemi, rather apt).  No double jeopardy.  You are truly and permanently PURIFIED from those sins when you merely admit them to God.  Courtroom was the Cross, and in admitting the sins you are essentially citing the Cross as the precedence and basis through which you OBTAIN the blotting out and purification.  God is Faithful-and-Righteous to do that blotting and purifying to you:  again, because of the Cross, v.7.


Again, Isa53:10-11 in the LXX is stressed.  First verb in that passage is katharizw.  Sins were literally PURIFIED IN HIM on the Cross, according to v.10. The passage really should be translated in English Bibles with both the LXX and Hebrew text, so you can see the whole picture.  But alas, translators keep the languages separate.  Here, the LXX brings out the parallel point Hebraistically, that what Yahweh haphetz'd, got done.  God was PLEASED to make His Son suffer in order to purify sin IN Him.  That's what John is stressing here, the contract of purification.  Which contract, you essentially cite when you admit your sins -- sins that were paid in the PAST according to that contract.


Notice what's missing:  how you feel about your sins.  Feeling has no place in a proper courtroom.  Penance has no place.  You either did it or did not, and your penance is irrelevant.  What's relevant, is what Christ did.  We admit, God blots out and purifies:  based on the Cross.


It shouldn't have to be said, that God ought to be paid for sin.  If you have to be paid for damage to YOUR property, then God should certainly be paid for damage to us, His Property.  But who can pay God?  Only Christ.  So Christ has to be God AND Man, for the juridical value to be sufficient:  by NOT USING His Godness, and by SUBMITTING His Humanity which CAN USE His Godness -- by instead CHOOSING to submit to the Cross, then sufficient value is paid.  God-quality value.  Think it over, then see how all those fake-holy books alike deride God as somehow unworthy or impotent of getting Justice for himself (Koran, Bhagavad-Gita, etc.) -- because they NEVER ADDRESS how GOD GETS PAID.  He's NOT God if He is NOT properly paid, get it?  So that juridical fact also knocks down all claims that God is but One (Hebrew echad and Greek heis really mean "first, unique, united" before they mean one in mere number, look those words up throughout Bible original-language texts).  Yeah, if God is but one in number, then He pays Himself?  That's moving money from one pocket to another one.  So no NEW payment TO God, really occurs.  Trinity is thus stressed here in 1Jn1:7 and 1Jn1:9.  Else salvation is a juridical sham.  No middle ground.


As previously covered in verse 7's notes, "katharizw" is a keyword for purifying THE TEMPLE, in the LXX -- you can search on the verb's root (i.e., in BibleWorks) and trace out that commonly used meaning of the verb.  Post-Temple, this verb has heightened significance, so when John deliberately uses it here, he's closing the point raised in verse 7:  YOU ARE THE TEMPLE, and YOU ARE PURIFIED.  Thus he reiterates all the incorporation by reference he did back in verse 7, so you know exactly what He means:  Spirit FILLS you, just as He did the OT Temple.  The OT people didn't get filling (plerow, in Greek), they got something less (see pimplemi.htm).  But Christ was filled with the Spirit from Birth, as John painstakingly explains in his Gospel.  So John incorporates by reference the Gospel he wrote, here too.  So no filling of the Spirit, no spirituality.  You'd be defiled temple, no spiritual life.  See why now all that parallelling of no truth and darkness PRECEDED this verse?  If the Spirit doesn't fill you, you're like the Temple when it was desecrated by Antiochus IV Epiphanes.  Period.


Notice the absoluteness of the parallels.  If sin, darkness and no truth.  Not a partial thing.  If sin but named to God, as here, then CANCEL and PURIFY instead apply.  Again, no middle ground.  How mature you are spiritually, is by contrast not in view:  that comes in the next chapter.  But obviously you won't mature spiritually, except in darkness, without 1Jn1:9.  Dunno how much plainer God can make it, what constitutes being in fellowship or not.  Precedence (also incorporated by reference) from the OT abounds, such as Ps32:5 and 66:18 (see context).  Fellowship back then was not Filling, but clearly it's the same idea:  you're in or out, due to sin.  So no prayers heard, nothing learned, only discipline:  until you name the sin to God.  No works, no rituals, nothing replaces this verse.  Thus many Christians walk in darkness for centuries, mangling Bible as they amble blindly along, NOT using this verse.  Life or death, this verse.  John will 'rope' in that fact, during 1Jn5.


Notice also how John's sticking to the present tense for the main verbs, ever since verse 5.  It is a standard tense for Socratic rhetorical teaching.  If-then, two 'livenesses' as it were, being contrasted or parallelled.  You can call that also a dramatic present, action-in-progress being related.  English Bibles would do better to translate it with the English progressive whenever possible, so you can see action-in-progress is being stressed, which is what the dramatic present is designed to do: 'play' is onstage, occurring.  So it becomes VERY important when John switches tenses, from here on out.  And the first place he does it, is right here in 1Jn1:9.  AORIST results, permanent results, from an ongoing naming of sins.  Ties neatly to the "I will remember their sins no more" and "east is from the west" clauses in the OT.  So all that meaning is incorporated by reference by the simple use of the two keywords, aphiemi and katharizw, in the AORIST tense.  Blows one away.  One second, one naming, and it's GONE!  Due to the Cross! How much more drama can one take?


The readers of John's letter must be panting for breath, at this point.  They knew all this, of course.  Couldn't even read his letter, if they didn't know the procedure described in 1Jn1:9.  So what might John do for an encore?  Whoa -- verse 10!  Let's see how John tops the drama of verse 9, now.  Seems impossible, huh...

1:10 "If we allege that we have NOT sinned, we are making Him out to be a liar;  in fact, HIS Word is NOT in us."

1 John 1:10  ἐὰν εἴπωμεν ὅτι οὐχ ἡμαρτήκαμεν, ψεύστην ποιοῦμεν αὐτόν, καὶ ὁ λόγος αὐτοῦ οὐκ ἔστιν ἐν ἡμῖν.


Well, you can only top verse 9, regarding what God's Grace Love does for man, by going down -- to the vileness man makes of God.  Religious vileness, here: the person claims he doesn't NEED 1Jn1:9, that he has not sinned.  A lascivious person isn't in view, for that person exults in his sinner status, loves rebelling, makes OTHER excuses for continuing to sin.  So the sanctimonious believer we met in verses 6 and 8, is the one threaded through here to verse 10.  Hence the apodosis, "HIS Word is NOT in us."


It would be better English to say "make Him out to be a liar", often in published English translations.  But then you miss the NOW-OCCURRING stress of the Greek.  Progressive English tense is vital to understanding 1Jn, making the Greek meaning, clearer.


Notice the parallel to verse 8.  In verse 8, the person denies he has a sin nature.  Here in verse 10, one denies having sinned one or more specific sins.  Verb hamartanw is here used, compared to verse 8's hamartia in the singular.  In verse 8, the person lies to himself alone.  But here in verse 10, the person lies to himself and lies against God, too.  For that crime, Ananias and Sapphira were executed, Acts 5.  So John's making a very serious charge here, and the readers all knew about Ananias and Sapphira's execution by God directly.  John will tie back to that crime in 1Jn5:16, using "pros";  thus incorporating by reference the selfsame scene as Luke described in Acts 5:2,5,9-10:  for Ananias and Sapphira died right in front of the money Ananias laid at the apostles' feet  -- at least John's and Peter's (Acts 3:11, 4:13, 4:19, :35, 37, and follow the plural "them" since Chapter 3).  So John was THERE:  Ananias and Sapphira died right at his feet.


Temporal death result: HIS Word is not in us.  It's a death-of-fellowship, to be in a state of sin.  The devil's word might be in us, the world's word might be in us, our own words might be in us -- but NOT God's Word.  So we then have fellowship with the devil, the world, ourselves -- but NOT with God.  Now you know why the clear words in John 3:16 are SO ENTIRELY missed, hardly a 'Christian' says the Gospel properly, anymore. No Word in them, means they can't READ it, either.  Even in translation.  No Word in you means disintegration of understanding in all areas of life, eventually.  Darkness spreads.  Thus people reading Acts 5, don't GET IT when Peter says, 'was not the property and its proceeds, yours to KEEP?' (Acts 5:4, very strong).  That's the OPPOSITE of tithing or giving to the church.  So Ananias and Sapphira died for LYING about a gift given to outclass Barnabas' POPULARITY within the church (see context from Acts 4).  Darkness spreads.  Religiosity is darkness, so lying goes with it.  All this meaning, John incorporates by reference; which you can prove, by comparing verses which talk about lying to God or about God (i.e., "false witness" verses).  Penalty in the OT for continuing to lie about or to GOD was execution -- unless, named to God (i.e., Hananiah in Jer28).  Same rule, here wholly incorporated by reference;  John will return to that execution penalty, in Chapter 5.


Technically, here we have the same pairing of definite article and possessive of autos, as we saw in verse 3.  There I translated the construction "THE Son of His" to show the Greek stress.  That's awkward English, a kind of circumlocution.  In verse 7 I opted variantly to translate that construction with a capital "HIS".  Seems like the better English translation is to capitalize "HIS", though you miss the monadic use of the article, that way.  Unique.  Only One God.  Only One Father, no one else like Him.  Only One Son, no one else like Him.  Only one Spirit, no one else like Him.  Yet, Each Wholly of Identical Infinite Divine Essence, so of the Exact Same Nature.  Well, being of the Exact Same Infinite Nature doesn't negate the Uniqueness of Each One.  You are human, unique from me.  We have the same nature.  How much more, if God has the Same Nature, would Each Person STILL BE UNIQUE?  So this coupling of the definite article with autos deftly stresses, yet again, the Unique Yet God Nature.  So to make Such A Nature out to be a Liar, is the most serious of crimes.


Notice that distinction.  The WORD is not in us.  Works might be in us, and probably we do a lot of works if we are being self-righteous religious types.  Our own words are of course in us.  We would still be saved, for We are IN HIM.  But lookie here: it's what's IN US, not Whom we are in due to salvation.  Paul spent a lot of time contrasting Who we are in, versus Who is in us, in his letters.  It's a where-is-your-thinking, fellowship question, where 'you' are in YOUR thinking, versus where you are in God's Thinking.  Clearly God loves us whether we love Him or not.  So we are IN HIM, but He is not always in us -- in our thinking.  He is not in us when we deny Him.  We remain in Him, however, since He never denies us (i.e., that clever song Paul quotes in 2Tim2).  John's main theme in both Gospel and 1Jn is how to KNOW you are abiding in Him in your thinking, as you'll see in Chapter 2 and following.  Greek verb "menw" means to remain-at-post, to remain-in-a-marriage, so it's all about how you are THINKING, what thinking is in you.  No Word, no fellowship, is the point of John 14-17, and 1Jn here.  Tracing the uses of menw will help you see the rhetorical thread for yourself, in those chapters.


So John is recalling to the reader all that material, incorporating it by reference.  So too, in the OT distinction was always made between whether God was in Israel, versus whether Israel was in God.  When God left Israel, it's because Israel rejected Him, as poignantly depicted by Ezekiel's stark vision of the Glory leaving the Temple.  But Israel remained in God;  the promises to her shifted over to the negative Leviticus 26-type contracts, and of course when the Temple was destroyed, the promise of it being rebuilt at the Second Advent, still stood (Eze Chaps 39 et seq., and Isa61 et seq).  So John is incorporating all that by reference too:  we are OUT OF CONTRACT, temporarily.  No Word in us.  Salvation remains, promise of ultimate deliverance remains, but.. no fellowship.  Word not in us.


So notice next the building parallels from the prior verses.  Stark contrasts.  Sin means you lie, you are in darkness, you have no truth in you, you lead yourself astray fancying yourself to be in fellowship.  So you don't KNOW you are in the dark, etc.  Worse, here in verse 10, you the liar now make God out to be a liar, since His Son paid for sin but you claim you've not sinned.  That sin you're not admitting, WAS paid on the Cross, and you're denying it.  See?  Only a religious type would think this way.  So the grossly-sinning believer, who is alike wrong, is not in view.


Thus John demonstrates the devastating result of religious sinning: self-righteousness, self-justification, self-deception, and -- especially here -- self-absorption.  For in saying "I have not sinned", it makes God out to be a liar, but the person really doesn't mean to make God out to be a liar.  This strawman religious type is focusing on HIMSELF, not God.  So can't see the larger accusation in his denial.  Thus he has no Word.


Notice: the FINAL indictment is that he has no WORD.  So the absolutely WORST sin is to have no WORD, trumping even the making-God-a-liar indictment!


To set up this verse following adikia ("wrongdoing") in verse 9, is a devastating, contrasting parallel.  Pattern of verses 5-6,  John 'ropes' the last word/concept of the prior clause to what he immediately says next; here he 'ropes' adikia with one alleging he has not sinned, with making God out to be a Liar, with having no Word operating in the soul, out-of-contract.  Better to be boiled in oil.  In verse 9, one is completely PURIFIED FROM all adikia.  But here in v.10, one is committing adikia, adding to his past accumulated adikia, by refusing to name, cite, admit other sins.


Adikia is far worse than sin.  Sin is essentially a shortfall, a slip;  true, it's an act of volition, but most often sin is when you feel temptation so strongly, you just flat give into it.  By contrast, adikia is the worst kind of injustice possible.  Technically, Greek "adikia" means a judge who misuses justice, skews it to his own ends.  Someone who misuses his authority.  That's the worst kind of wrongdoing.  That's the parallel here, following just after the adikia clause.  So of course the one denying he's sinned won't but commit the greater injustice of  'making' God a liar, making a mockery of the Cross thereby, essentially claiming something Christ paid for wasn't paid for, wasn't due.  We all howl about the injustices man does to man.  But how is it, we are strangely mum on the injustice done to GOD, when we claim our self-righteous acts aren't sin?  Surely we see all too often the evil of self-righteousness; it pounds you every time you turn on TV.  The severity of any wrongdoing depends on the Value of the Object wronged.  Here, GOD is wronged, so it's the worst sin, to deny one has sinned, to not use 1Jn1:9.  Shall not God discipline such wrongdoing?  Yes.. with death.  That point will be stressed by John in Chapter 5, tying back here to 1:6-10.  Thus one should be executed for having no Word -- which Word you CANNOT GET in you, if the Holy Spirit doesn't fill you -- remember katharizw in 1:7,9, and John Chapter 14?  Defiled Temple!


My pastor spent a good 60+ hours explaining why the worst sin you can commit, is to NOT use 1Jn1:9; the subseries (within series 376, Spiritual Dynamics) is called "the Law of Double Punishment";  you can order the tapes/mp3 by that name, for free.  Now as I re-translate 1Jn, I see WHY he spent so much time explaining the worst thing you can do, is not use 1Jn1:9.  John really stresses that fact here in verse 10.  Worst sin is against God, not against mere people, huh.


I testify that I know people who are dying, ONLY for REFUSAL to use 1Jn1:9; I myself almost died several times for the same reason. We all know the parallel of Moses nearly dying when he refused to circumcise his sons;  of David, Hezekiah, and other believers in Bible who nearly died because they were catywampus with God.  Paul nearly died on the Temple steps (Acts 22, read Paul's explanation there, or start back in Acts 18:18 at Kegchreai to see context of his reversion to Jewish law); all because, he wasn't using 1Jn1:9. Col3:25 uses adikia the same way.  Great or small, forget what works you do or even if you are great like Moses or the apostle Paul: if you belay 1Jn1:9, you're TOAST.


So:  if you remember NOTHING else you ever read in my websites, keep recalling 1Jn1:9 and GET UNDER YOUR RIGHT PASTOR.  Else God will execute you.  Don't be fooled by His 'slowness', Peter warned in the last half of 2 Peter.  1Jn5 is dedicated to that warning:  you can't even PRAY for a dying person who refuses to use 1Jn1:9.  Take this fearful warning seriously. I've seen it play, live.


Next item to explain:  why the "NOT", here in 1Jn1:10's translation? Greek negative particle "ouk" denies a fact;  Greek "me" (pronounced "may", "m" plus the Greek eta) denies both fact and idea. Hence "NOT" rather than mere "not" is used, to show contrast with admittance one HAS sinned, in v.9.  Notice how John switched to the PERFECT tense (of hamartanw), versus present tense.  So the denial that one has sinned, is very strong.  The religious type has a strong need to say he's 'in' with God.  The lascivious type, gets his rocks off by rebelling against God and bragging about it, even.  Neither, however, admits to GOD, the sin.  So, one "ouk" results in another "ouk":  His Word is NOT in us.


Thus all those who downplay studying Bible in favor of to-people stuff, don't know the Word and are living in this 1Jn1:10.  For if they paid attention to these parallelisms of 1Jn, even in the English (or favorite-language) common translations, they'd realize the penalty for lying ought to be severe: and deprivation of WORD, is as severe as it gets.  No Fellowship.  No Bible, no fellowship.  No matter how many works.  Again, John stresses the sins of the religious type, not the lascivious one:  the religious type puts PEOPLE ahead of God, replacing all definitions of 'holy' with PEOPLE-oriented activity -- not, the Word.  They fool themselves that they are 'in' Him.  But the Word is not in them.. and it shows.  Vilely.


As you read what follows in Chapter 2, you'll see that the above points are not interpretation, but rather what John actually says in these verses.  For he will thread the above points throughout the rest of his letter, elaborating on them.  Now I understand why my pastor totally revamped his teaching, after revisiting 1Jn's Greek and exegeting it for us, back in 1980.  Completely changed his focus.  Now I see why.

1John, Chapter Two



If you were a 90's AD reader getting this epistle, at this point you'd be thinking like Paul said at the end of Romans 7, "who will deliver us from these bodies of death?"  See, religiosity occurs because people want to be RIGHT WITH GOD.  That's a noble motive, huh.  So sin becomes something one frets over.  Good deeds become insistences; and you begin to wonder if you really closed the top of that cereal box the way God would like -- were you too hasty?  Too sloppy?  Didn't 'Hilda' do it better?  See how love can quickly become obsession, God getting 'lost' in the shuffle, eyes on people, self and things, instead? 


After all, you as a reader of the 90's AD, well.. you already know you confess sins, else John's words would go right over your head, full of sound you nod at but never understand.  What you didn't perhaps realize, is that the self-righteous religious type depicted here, really gets himself into a jam, deluding himself that he doesn't sin -- and who hasn't done that?  So one is moral, yet sinning, making God into a liar?  Who can save us from this delusion?  Who among us is exempt from thinking himself good at times, especially when doing works?  How then do we KNOW we are in Him, as He is in us?


And that's right where John means you to be thinking, in need of Major Relief.  Watch how from now on, John keeps on repeating, "by this we KNOW".  It's all about KNOWING, from here on in the letter.  Knowing, not doing.  For obviously the doing, can FOOL you.



2:1-2 "My dear children:  these words I am writing to you, so that you can stop sinning (shift to aorist tense).  In fact, if anyone sins, THE Hero Advocate we have, face-to-face with Father:  Jesus Christ, the Righteous One.  In fact, He is the Propitiation Substitute for our sins;  not only the Substitute for ours (hemeteros, jointly), but also the Substitute for [the sins of] the whole world."


1 John 2:1-2  BGT Τεκνία μου, ταῦτα γράφω ὑμῖν ἵνα μὴ ἁμάρτητε. καὶ ἐάν τις ἁμάρτῃ, παράκλητον ἔχομεν πρὸς τὸν πατέρα Ἰησοῦν Χριστὸν δίκαιονˇ 2  καὶ αὐτὸς ἱλασμός ἐστιν περὶ τῶν ἁμαρτιῶν ἡμῶν, οὐ περὶ τῶν ἡμετέρων δὲ μόνον ἀλλὰ καὶ περὶ ὅλου τοῦ κόσμου.


Sometimes it's better to translate in choppy English, to portray special features in Greek which don't port over in translation.  So the Greek word order is used.  Exception:  "only" is put in front of "Substitute", whereas the Greek puts it just before "also".  Had I followed that word order in English, you'd get "not the Substitute.. only", which is misleading.


Just as in 1:4, John asserts the Divine Origin of this letter by the simple Greek "tauta" (heroic accusative plural).  See the notes on 1:4, which also uses "tauta".  What distinguishes the heroic accusative is its proleptic position in a sentence -- it's placed where you'd expect the nominative to be.  Peter uses the heroic accusative a lot, as does Paul.  This is Attic drama.  But the cadence of John's writing retains the same plodding of prior verses, so the heroism hits you softly, unlike 1:4.  In 1:4, John directly quotes Christ in John 16:24 -- and is the only NT writer who does -- using the exact same construction.  So 1:4 is very dramatic, a claim that what Christ said is being FULFILLED by what John writes.  But here in 2:1, John just uses "tauta", quickly threading forward from 1:4, the theme of the letter;  then quickly marches on to his next series of points.  He's letting the CONTENT provide the drama. It seems like a kind of finesse.  The drama 'sneaks up' on you.  He uses this same style in Revelation ("meta tauta" clauses) to bookend the "times" for you, so Revelation is quite simple to parse out.  John likes simple Greek phrasing. But the content.. wow.


See, John's targeting the reader who is just beginning to love God for Himself, and the BIG DANGER in that status, is religiosity.  When you love someone, you become legalistic about superficialities -- because, you're NERVOUS and INSECURE.  Love means the object is BETTER than you;   due to the sin nature, the soul just can't handle Someone Else being the object of attention, instead of self.  So in the soul, there's this fight;  the self keeps trying to GRAB attention, by 'making' the love-object BE about the self.  That's why you suddenly worry if you look good, if your words are right -- you become "anal".  Hence religions invent all kinds of silly food, day and dress rules; every behavior is regulated so much, it's stifling.  Thus the love-object becomes a NAG, a PAIN; and self the martyr, the hero trying to 'appease' it.  That's all symptomatic of a person with a sin nature, expressing his overweening need to be RIGHT WITH GOD.  Misplaced love is miserable love, not at all relaxing.


So John's out to relax the reader, now.  Think:  the reader here, has just been smacked upside the head with the realization that if he's busy in his works, he'll think he's not sinning and thus is committing "adikia", a huge violation of justice -- lying about God, Himself!  If you are at all inclined toward religiosity, which frankly is an obsession anyone gets from an initial desire FOR God -- this is your worst nightmare.  So by clever wordplay between adikia ("unrighteousness" in the sense of a judge ABUSING his authority) and dikaion (Righteous One, Hebraism for "tsadiq" in Isa53:11) -- both come from the same root, dikaios -- the wordplay functions like salve, applied to an open wound.  Very soothing, very memorable.  Our Savior is Our Advocate, famous Homeric Greek word Parakletos, sometimes transliterated "Paraclete" in both English Bibles and classic Greek literature or plays.  Whew.


Parakletos has a long and rich etymological history in Greek literature.  More about it will be said later on.  Most important thing to remember is this:  a parakletos is a PROFESSIONAL.  Think statesman, think lawyer, think governor even king -- for a parakletos was hired to TRAIN a king's sons.  Parakletos is one of the Holy Spirit's titles, in John 14:16-26.  So John's tying together the Lord's being Parakletos, and His being TRAINED by the Parakletos while He was down here.  Thus John reminds his audience of a pun:  the Parakletos (Lord) sent the Parakletos (Spirit) so we can be trained as kings under the King of Kings.  Kinda like, "The LORD said to My Lord, 'Sit down...'", Ps110:1.  A more blatant and humorous reminder of our Royal Training Purpose down here is hard to find.  Ahh, well that's pretty relaxing, huh.


For it's a joy to KNOW the extremely dramatic Isa53:12 in the LXX, which John invokes here by using dikaiov ("the Righteous One") in the EXACT same way as Isaiah did.  John is reminding the reader of the fifth infinitive in Isa53:11, and the "dikaion" there, coupled with the climactic piling up of (previously-omitted) prepositions in Isa53:12, the inheritance-measured-out clause.  Peter did the same invoking, in 1Pet3:18, dikaion huper adikwn -- notice how "adikia" in 1Jn1:9 cleverly ties back also to 1Pet3:18.  So John's closing the circle, incorporating Peter, too.  Paul of course spent most of his time explaining dikaiosune, so all of Paul's writing is incorporated as well, especially 2Cor5:21, Romans Chapters 4-8, Colossians 1, Galatians 3-5 -- but especially, Eph1 (which elaborates on how Isa53:12 was designed).  OT use of tsadiq in Hebrew was often translated in the LXX with dikaio lemmas (especially dikaiosune, the thinking of a Judge); so of course all the OT uses are thus referenced as well.


Most importantly,  John incorporates all of the Book of Hebrews by usage of dikaion;  for Book of Hebrews is on the change of covenant, why we are Royal Priests, how the Law was changed up in Christ, and that's what John will be talking about as well, in this Chapter.  Hebrews Chapter 10 alike ties back to Isa53 (whole chapter).  Blows me away, to see God the Holy Spirit have John choose  "dikaion" to incorporate so much meaning. Thus John also deftly threads ALL of what he said in Chapter 1, here.  For in Isa53, The Righteous One is Light -- LXX clause in Isa53:11 you can't see in translation, and His Mastery Of Knowledge (sunesis) is used to Sculpt/Fashion/Mold/Manufacture, To Make Righteous -- plassw and dikaiow, fourth and fifth infinitives in Isa53:11's LXX which you also can't see in translated Bibles.  Next word in that same Isa53:11 LXX, is dikaion in the heroic accusative, just as here in 1Jn2:1, showing How He Substituted Himself.  Placement of dikaion in Isa53:11 shows the cycling purpose:  what got done to Him FIRST, gets done to us. 


The face-to-face nature of the Angelic Trial Isaiah began stressing in Isa53:2 is deftly woven in here by using Greek pros, which has the same meaning as Hebrew panim;  that gives John the 'excuse' to use dikaion in the accusative, just as Isaiah did (pros takes the accusative case).  Blows you away, this stunning parallelism to the Isa53 passage, and it's threading from 1Jn1:1.  Thus John begins here, a long backgammon-like manuever, which will culminate the Angelic Trial, due to Church being completed, 1Jn4:16-17.  For just as He is, so also we are in the World.  Even now.  Complete with The Hero Advocate's, Trainer (without limit, John 7:39). That dual-screen nature of what's going on in heaven while we are down here, was the main theme of Hebrews 11, which alike explained why the Church completes the Trial.  John's invoking it, telling the reader to look UP and know what's really at stake.


So John jarringly switches pronouns, here in 2:1.  Trace the pronouns, trace the prepositions, trace the tense changes, when reading what God gave John to write.  He deliberately uses simple Greek whenever possible, so these changes will STICK OUT and you'll see the parallelisms.


So he stops using "we" all of a sudden, and switches to "tis" ("someone, anyone" in English). So John cleverly brings in the "Jointly" (hemeteros) thread from 1:3, forward here to 2:1.  Not until you get to the end of 1Jn2:2, can you see why John does this -- for Christ Paid For All Sins Of All Mankind.  Apparently the heresy claiming Christ died only for the elect had begun already, for John is quite emphatic, saying "de monon alla" -- strongly DENYING the idea Christ only died for believers, bracketing "monon" (only, solely, alone) between "de" (particle of mild contrast and transition) with "alla" (conjunction of STRONG contrast).  The only other place in the Bible where you see this emphatic construction, is in Phili2:27.  Phrase "de monon" has the connotation of "merely", in English.  So by placing "alla" second, John stresses that ALL mankind was paid for -- and also emphasizes how that fact benefits us.  In short, we shouldn't be gloating (or groaning) over the unbeliever.  Very strong, almost chiding.


Which all-mankind-paid-for fact, John stresses by using "tis" here instead of hemeis at the beginning.  So all the text between tis and kosmos ("world", last word in 1Jn2:2) applies to everyone, potentially.  In those days, since elegance was expressed by economy and verbs already embed the 'actor' in their endings, to use a pronoun WITH a verb, would stress the actor of it.  So as you noticed in verses 5-10, John didn't use a separate pronoun "we" for 1st-person plural verbs.  Still, you don't normally use a 3rd person singular pronoun when the main verb doesn't agree with it -- unless you wish to convey something universal and therefore impersonal. 


Greek "tis" is an indefinite pronoun, so it's more impersonal.  Ahhhh.  When you're nervous, you need the IMPERSONAL, to stabilize attention away from the natural-in-Adam fixations about the self.  Hence the plodding cadence John rhetorically employs.  Calm, steady, think-this-then-that, keep moving.  Here, reinforced by "tis" and "kosmou", incorporating John 3:16's "whosoever" by reference.  Blatantly.


Greek prepositions peri and huper both connote SUBSTITUTION, and are often used interchangeably in the Bible, when "sins" is the object of the preposition. Hence "Substitute" is used to translate the preposition peri used in 2:2.  By clever placement (really just aping the Greek word order), its English translation functions simultaneously as both preposition and the Noun it represents (Christ).  The usual English "for" is very misleading, even criminal.  Yet in seminary, though you're taught peri and huper mean "SUBSTITUTE for",  you're nonetheless required in translation to truncate the meaning to the ambiguous "for": English rotten(!) Bible translation rules require you translate one English word for one Greek word.  Incredibly blasphemous results thus occur in translation, and thus you have all those goofy ideas like the one claiming Cross 'just opened the door' FOR you to work for salvation, and similar garbage.  Sorry, that's criminal.  Now I understand why my pastor ranted and raved (a rare outburst, for him) whenever he came to huper and peri during exegesis, stridently correcting the English translations.


 John's trebled use of peri here in 2:2 is rhythmic.  John last used "peri" in his opening drama flourish, "About the Word of Life!" -- for "peri" means concerning, about, (idea of encircling a topic).  So now 1:1 is threaded forward here to 2:2.  The Word of Life is the Word for everyone.  Word Stops the Sinning is the headline for this chapter (covered in more detail below), so it's appropriate to thread the Word-of-Life opening of Chapter 1, to the opening of Chapter 2 via peri.  Because, it's still ABOUT the Word of Life.  So here in 2:2,  it's a strong way to EQUATE the payment for unbelievers, as for believers, by repeating the selfsame preposition "peri".  That equating would be important for the religious crowd to remember;  for religiosity eventually mistakes its many good deeds as a kind of superiority.  Common problem Israel had, common problem Christians have in every generation, to value the self OVER others, because saved, chosen, doing 'good works'.  John uses this device of equating (same preposition for everyone, peri, three times, anaphoric rhetoric) because he's about to lambast the religious crowd in Chapters 2 and 3 (especially 3:18).


In the OT, the lamb was a substitute sacrificed for the sinner, as were the other types of animal sacrifices.  So the LXX of Isaiah 52-55, uses both peri and huper in that manner.  Here John uses peri, just as Isa53 does;  just as Peter does, in 1Pet3:18.  Paul uses huper a lot (i.e., in Romans 5:8). Again, Heb10 is being stressed, since its theme is about how the Once-For-All Sacrifice was for all time, too -- and uses peri:  NO more repeating animal sacrifices, which after all were only shadow-teachers of Messiah-to-Come.  He's come, now.


"Propitiation" refers to the OT sacrifice, and Greek word hilasterion was the LXX word used for Mercy Seat of the Ark (i.e., in Exo25:17), which depicted God being propitiated by the Messiah-to-Come's, sacrifice (Hebrew root kaphar, from which we get Yom Kippur).  Covering.  Covered. Paid for. It never signifies partial.  ONLY TOTAL, whether Hebrew or Greek term. Complete covering.  Yeah, you repeated the sacrifices, but they COMPLETELY ended the uncleanness in question.  Again, Hebrews 10 explains that His Covering for us is PERMANENT for all time:  John thus again invokes the reader to remember that chapter.


At this point, the reader's agitation is relieved, just as the Lord said it would be, in John 14:27.  Notice that you can't think clearly if your soul is in a state of tumult (John 14:1,27) -- and only BELIEF in Him, relieves you (ibid).  First things first, "from the Source of the beginning" -- is 1John's rhetorical style.  It's almost like a hymn, all these firsts:

ˇ         First, the Son is God, always Face-to-Face with Father; 

ˇ         first, John's a witness of that fact, one of a long line of Canon writers (playing on Isa53:1, so NOT a bleeping 'rhetorical we'); 

ˇ         first, he validates his witness by attestation that Word makes for communion; 

ˇ         first, God is Light; 

ˇ         so first, you believed, and

ˇ         first you LOSE communion if you walk in darkness, say you have no sin nature, say you didn't sin. 

ˇ         But first!  you are in communion, due to

ˇ         His FIRST paying on the Cross,

ˇ         if first you NAME your sins as they occur. 

ˇ         Then and only then, is the Word First in you. 

ˇ         But if you first sin,

ˇ         then first remember:  He is In Heaven on Your Behalf;  and not yours only, but potentially He's the Advocate for the whole world, since ANYONE can be saved,

ˇ         since He FIRST died for the sins of EVERYONE.  Hemeteros, baby.  Jointly.


The WHOLE human race is cut off except for our Advocate, Who Died Childless (Isa53:8, NIV gets it right) to Make Us One with Father, prayer of  John 17 ratifying the Isa54:1 effect of Isa53:10-12.  So John rightly jolts the reader to remember all this, by "tis".  For just as in English, you don't mix pronouns in Greek.  Main verb is 1st person plural, so technically John should repeat the construction in 1:10, with the 1st person plural of hamartanw, to sin.  But instead, John uses "tis", a 3rd person singular, in proximity with "we have".  Sometimes "tis" is shorthand for "one of", with the group referenced being subsumed in the verb (so "one of us", here) -- but since Christ died for EVERYONE, ANYONE is potentially hemeteros.  So the simple "tis" is a grammatical cutoff, and thereby communicates BOTH ideas, simultaneously.  We start out "tis", cutoff.  But we believe in Christ, John 3:16 -- at which point we become "hemeteros", jointly-in-fellowship, 1Jn1:3.


Due to the sin nature, we make peculiar conclusions: 'If I say good words, then I am good.'  No, the WORDS are good, and would be JUST AS GOOD in anyone's mouth, even a drunk's.  The person SAYING the words might be good or not, severally.  Hence it's true that when one is saved and learning Word, he is in God's Favor -- but the person himself, is still whatever he is.  It's the intrinsic value of what GETS DONE to the person, not the person, which counts as "good" in God's jurisprudence.  WHAT GOT DONE TO CHRIST, GETS DONE TO US:  that's the Isa53:10-12 contract John keeps on invoking in every verse here.  For as he says here in 2:1-2, God already loves us:  that's why there was a Cross, Rom5:8.  Consequently, the believer doing many good deeds is liable to think HIMSELF good, because of the goodness of the DEEDS.  Not so.  Just as even a drunk can mouth the Gospel which is good, so also the unbeliever can do good deeds and yet remain unsaved.


Now for the clincher:  thus John signifies how we need the Defense Attorney when we cut ourselves off by sin, too.  For then, we are electing just like an unbeliever does, to live apart from fellowship with God:  we CHOOSE the "tis" cutoff class.  Can't lose salvation, can lose fellowship.  NOW do you see why he used "tis" rather than the first-person plural?  Awesome, huh.  Again, all this sweeping meaning, accomplished by such deft use of a mere indefinite pronoun?!  What human is ever THAT smart?


Next Greek item, more detail on John's use of  "Parakletos" in this verse.  Greek "Parakletos" is here used anarthrously in the heroic accusative, meaning the normal article ("the") is absent.  When the article is omitted, often the QUALITY of the noun is stressed (for good or bad, depends on the noun and context).  Normally and especially in legal discourse, articles are used with their nouns (even with proper names).  So to say "on the 3rd of January, in the Year of Our Lord Two-Thousand-and-Seven" in Greek, the offical wording would be "on the 3rd of the January..."  If you search Chronicles and other historical OT books in the LXX, you'll see this official rhetorical style for dates and other facts.  It matters a bunch, to see it.  For centuries, people have not known the Lord was born on Chanukah simply because they don't notice the official doubled-article dating of Luke 1:26. (Annunciation came in the month of Adar, sixth month on the Jewish civil calendar.)  Hence to OMIT an article stresses a kind of relativity (compare Luke 1:24,36), therefore omission of the article emphasizes something in the RELATIVE QUALITY of the anarthrous noun.


So here, the anarthrous use of Parakletos advertises that the Hero is God -- here God the Son, previously introduced as God way back in 1:1.  Always, the hero is the Object of the Drama, the Person to emulate.  (In Greek mythology, Hero is also the name of a Greek girl who sacrificed herself due to love.  You should be able to find her myth on the web.)  Again, John stresses that Christ is God.  So to show this I translated Parakletos "THE Hero Advocate" to bring out both the anarthrous construction, and the Attic heroic accusative. You have to put in "THE" when Greek leaves it out, for a capitalized "THE" stresses quality ("THE standard by which all else is measured", for example).


Parakletos is not merely an Advocate in the sense of Defense Attorney, though that's the meaning used here.  Parakletos is a term with a lot of cultural loading, in the Greek;  English NT translations typically mistranslate "parakletos" with timid words like "Helper" or "Comforter".  What rot.  Odysseus' son Telemachus, the heir apparent, had a Parakletos named Mentor.  The man's job was to render Telemachus, fit to one day be king.  Hence in English we use "mentor" as a specialized term for someone competent who is unusually and kindly motivated to train a "protogé"; moving-us-up, grooming us for an inheritance or major promotion, training us for RULE.  That's the FIRST meaning of parakletos.  It is but one of a whole family of cognate nouns, and derives from a military context, "someone called alongside for help in battle".  (The originating verb is parakalew, very commonly used in Bible, so you can trace out all the meanings.)  Idea of reinforcement, someone who will fight for you, alongside you.  So, even Achilles is parakletos for Agamemnon, though both hated each other.  Achilles was called in alongside to aid Agamemnon in the defeat of Troy.


Of course, war isn't only carried on by traditional means;  in fact, the Greatest War is the Angelic Trial, and it's all 'fought' with WORDS.  Legalities.  Hence John's use of "Advocate", defense attorney.  Thus John deftly introduces the Angelic Trial proper, painting the scene in Heaven, much like Zechariah did in Zechariah 3 (thus John incorporates all like OT passages, by reference), and the writer of Hebrews did in the extremely dramatic Greek of Hebrews 11:1. 


John 14:16 shows that the Holy Spirit is also Parakletos, SENT BY Christ;  the fact that God the Holy Spirit would WANT to "be sent" seemed to indicate inferiority to medieval believers, so centuries were wasted in silly debate about "proceed" -- also a military verb in Greek would anyone have bothered to look it up -- as illustrated in the badly-worded, Nicene Creed.  But of course that's all patent nonsense;  just because the Holy Spirit proceeded from God, doesn't mean He Himself is inferior, for crying out loud.  Love subordinates;  God's Love being Infinite, He Infinitely Subordinates to Each Other God -- an EXERCISE of Sovereignty, not a surrender of it.  After all, the Parakletos for Christ Himself, was the Holy Spirit Himself, Who takes on all the mothering roles (i.e., depicted by rahaph in Gen1:2, teaching us, raising us).  John in fact is stressing the Holy Spirit's being sent by Christ, beginning here in 1Jn2, by choosing the well-known moniker Parakletos from the then-famous, John 14:16, 26.  In short, it's RELAXING wordplay.  Too bad all those debating the "proceed" question, missed this verse.


Again John cleverly places words to stress Trinity, Christ's God-Man Nature, and fellowship.  "Patera" is anarthrous, so means God the Father;  "Jesus" is anarthrously placed RIGHT NEXT to "Patera", with no intervening words.  Thus John graphically illustrates the "face-to-face" meaning of pros, as well as using that preposition.  So you thus 'see' Him being at the Right Hand, so to speak ("Jesus" is immediately right of "Father" in the line of text facing you).  Clever.  Cleverer still, if you know that the original-language texts the writers of Bible actually penned, didn't have accent marks, spaces between the words, or punctuation; and were usually written in all capital letters.  That was the way people then wrote, since they were familiar with the language and text, already. So all the accent marks and small letters, etc. you see in the original-language texts today, are of more modern invention for people long-separated from the language.


Major Relief is therefore spelled 1 - J - o - h - n - 1: - 9.  The Parakletos fills you again, and the meanwhile, you also have Parakletos Your Savior.  Thus John incorporates Romans 8 by reference, in which Paul also plays out the drama of the two Parakletoi we have in heaven, groaning on our behalf.  Paul deftly shows how the purpose of being granted God's Righteousness at salvation is to get the Truth filled up in you via the filling of the Spirit (8:1-10);  John incorporates all that, by his deft "My dear children.. sinning" clause.  Then Paul in Romans 8:11ff shows how the 8:1-10 individual growth, plays on the stage before God and the angels, ending in victory, no-one-shall-separate-us!  John incorporates all that by reference, merely using Parakletos in the SAME heroic accusative which Paul uses in Romans 8:28.  Of course, it's GOD who is the Hero, in Rom8:28 -- that's the ONLY use of the heroic accusative, in the whole chapter.  So notice that by using a term for God, Parakletos, and by using the heroic accusative with words incorporating Romans 8 by reference, John yet again repeats that Christ is also God, Himself.  Same drama epic, fewer words.  Greek drama loves economy.  The readers of this verse in the 90's AD, must have been utterly stunned.  I know I am.  It's just not possible for a human being to incorporate so much Scripture perfectly with just an accusative case and a famous Greek word!  You have to be God, to be this good with the language.


John is also a parakletos to his readers.  Therefore he affectionately uses the diminuitive of teknon, which adds an i before the last syllable (teknion).  Most non-English languages have diminuitives to show affection, and the word "little" is often used to translate the affection in English. Yet to say "my little children" as do most English translations, is misleading to the modern English reader, who tends to be ignorant of idioms, literary expressions, etc.  So it's better to translate "my dear children", for a modern audience.


And what news John writes, to mentor his readers!  Remember, back in 1:4, John made the astounding claim that the words he would be writing, would fulfill what Christ said in John 16:24, to complete Canon;  that from the completion of Canon, would come the completion of Church, "pleroma" being a keyword for the completion of both Canon AND Church in God's Pauline writ (Eph1:15-23, 3:15-19, 4:11-16, 1Cor12:31-end 1Cor13, all of Rom8); not to mention, Heb8:8-10:17, playing off that same promise in the OT, Jer31:31-34.  So now, what does John add with his WORDS here in 2:1?  OHHHH that these words will enable you to STOP SINNING? Kill me now.


Yet John still uses the same rhymthic pattern of if-then Socratic exposition.  Only the endearing opening slightly syncopates the 'fatherly' rhythm.  If you read aloud in Greek from say 1:6 onward, you see it's a very calm, methodical, steadied walking-of-logic.  But the content?!!  Sheer shock!  So the first inclination is to just plod along, until the meaning dawns on you, knocking you flat.  John does this throughout the letter.  Plodding with shock! thrown in.  He's depicting the cadence of the spiritual life.


Why is "stop sinning" the proper translation?  In a purpose clause (hina), Greek negative particle me plus the potential subjunctive and the second person plural, are in the same form as they would be for the imperative of prohibition: but the tense is different.  John here uses the AORIST.  (Imperative of prohibition would use the present tense.)  So because it's the aorist tense but the subjunctive mood, it's something potentially possible.  So would mean lots of repetition in living out the "words" used in the epistle and rest of Scripture, obviously -- thus putting a primacy on John's words being deftly chosen to incorporate ALL of Divine Writ in what he writes.  That's a pretty bold promise!  Again, either John is wacko.. or is really writing from-the-source-of-God, as he claims.


Of course, then the Lord Himself would be even more wacko, for John is merely incorporating by reference all of  John 14-17, the Lord's Last Supper discourse which had been known for three generations at the time John wrote that Gospel and this verse.  (Bible books are often written as a legacy to future generations, when the current and past generations which had the information, have turned negative;  or, when the prophet/writer in question, will soon die.  Idea of leaving behind a written record of what was taught.  So Paul's contemporaneous writing was a major exception to that rule.  That, because he was getting Canon for a far-flung audience which needed it right then, and he couldn't travel fast enough.)


Specifically, John is reminding them of the promise of the Parakletos in John 14, with emphasis on the command to stop sinning VIA the Peace He gives, in John 14:27 (which is right on the heels of the Parakletos discourse in 14:16-26).  In John 14:27, the 3rd-person imperative of prohibition is used -- stop doing something one IS doing.  The 3rd-person imperative is the strongest kind, in koine (maybe also Attic) Greek.  It's always mistranslated in English with "let", a horrible reversal of meaning.  There's no "let" about it.  It's a me+imperative, and with the third person, it's a universal prohibition: NEVER will there be a time when it's okay to violate the prohibition.  Moreover, the Greek verbs in John 14:27 are tarassw and deiliaw, very strong soul tumult.  Susa was "tarassw" over the Purim announcement (Esther 3:15);  King Herod was "tarassw" over the prospect of a true King being born in Israel, and all Israel with him (Matt2:3);  soul-all-in-a-tumult, royally upset, thrown into confusion, expectation of calamity is what "tarassw" means.  Verb deiliaw means to be panic-stricken, to 'crack up' as we put it in modern English -- due to a cowardly nature.  The "heart" is Bible term for the believing part of the soul throughout Bible.


So John 14:27c should read in idiomatic English, "STOP your heart's [being] upset, and STOP its panicking cowardice."  He began the chapter the same way (14:1), so it's disbelief in the WORD which causes upset and cowardice (ibid).  


So now you know another reason why John chooses "tis":  he's reminding the reader of the 3rd-person imperative in John 14:27, which was newly available for comparison.  Clever way for the Holy Spirit, the Parakletos for John, to attest to His Authorship of the Gospel of John, doncha think?


Ok, but how does one stop sinning any kind of sin;  how does one stop being agitated, when this world is one PILE of agitation?  Well, just as the Lord said in John 14-17 -- "words" -- His Words.  In you.  "Words", not "works".  Words mean you have these words in your head, obviously (Ho Logos in your logoi, Greek wordplay in 1Cor1:5).  His Word.  Him.  So the FIRST thing is to use 1Jn1:9, as John just explained, to get the Word operating in you;  the FIRST thing to remember when out of fellowship, here in 2:1, is that we have Parakletoi.  That matters, because it's a kind of promise which brings relief -- instead of guilt.  Guilt is a sin which paralyzes, Matt9.  Son intercedes while we are out of fellowship, and Spirit fills us when in.  John will spend the rest of the letter explaining this dynamic.  For clearly, if you are filled with the Spirit (1Jn1:9 used), you are NOT able to sin at the same time (1Jn5:18, presaged here).


So that's how you STOP SINNING:  keep on being filled with the Spirit, by using 1Jn1:9 -- thus John reminds the reader of Eph5 and 1Thess 5, especially Eph5:18 and 1Thess 5:19.  I really want to translate 1Jn2:1 as "If you master the contents of this letter, you will STOP SINNING."  But while that's what John means, his actual words are different.  More deft.  Leaving the reader to recognize the meaning as he reads the words, rather than hit the reader over the head with the meaning.  So it slowly dawns on you.  And THEN hits you between the eyes. 


In English grammar school, you used to be schooled in the difference between "can" and "may".  The word "may" is a more-polite form of "can"; up through even the 1950's, only ill-bred children used "can" in lieu of "may".  "Can I go out to play, Mommy?" was Bad English, shame-on-you.  But "May I go play, Mother?" was a well-bred child's request.  So English Bible translations of 1Jn2:1 use "may" -- the polite form.


In modern-day English, "may" connotes doubt more often than it denotes an ability or permission.  So I opted for "can", to delete the idea of doubt.  There's NO doubt about the results, in the Greek.  Hina clause blends purpose and result, God's Rema (neuter, in Greek means Spoken-to-Teach) Word never returns void, theme of  Isa55 which John has been invoking since 1:1 (neuter accusative of  hos). 


WORD IN YOU STOPS THE SINNING.  That's the headline of  John Chapter 2, thereby reminding the reader of Psalm 119:11's famous "I have hidden Your Word in my heart that I may not sin against You."  Sung by those on the death march to Babylon, as they were brutalized, raped, tortured during the journey.  Remember that famous verse, for John invokes it again, in 2:5ff.  You know "WORD IN YOU"  is what John means, because


a) he already threaded 1:1 into 2:1 via use of "tauta", these WORDS he's writing;

b) he's again 'roping' "Word in you" from 1:10 into 2:1, typical Greek piggybacking of a prior conclusion forming a current premise/condition --

c) for he'd just finished showing the Word is NOT in you if you won't use 1Jn1:9;

d) thus the Word IS in you, if you DO use 1Jn1:9. 

e) So the Word in you, stops the sinning. 

f) And you also see roping, due to the proximity and placement of the words, the if-then construction of the last five verses prior:

g) because he PARALLELS the most famous name for Christ, the Word, here in 1Jn2:1 with "Jesus Christ the Righteous" in the famous Isa53:11 clause -- which talks about how His THINKING paid for sins.  He Who Became the Truth (parallel from 1Jn1:6 and 8). 

h) John's style of parallelism 'arranges' words so you can see them in columnar comparison:  a tic-tac-toe diagram, three clauses per verse (condition followed by two result clauses in verses 5-10, all balancing).


So trace, beginning with the next verse (2:3), how John thereafter begins using "by this.. know", as a refrain.  Its repetition, builds.  John also becomes ever more scathing in his criticism of religiosity, much like the Lord's anti-religiosity comments in the Gospels. Why?  Because, as James tried to explain from Jas1:1-2:26, you cannot substitute the WORD for anything, i.e., works.  HE is the Substitute, so there is no substitution for Him.


The WORD is Someone Whose Word you are supposed to KNOW, 2Pet3:18, Eph3:15-19.  YOU know.  YOU.  Inside yourself.  Hence, "by this.. know" will be the insistent rhythm from here on out, in 1Jn.  You might want to read 2Jn before you return to 1Jn2:3.  Preview of coming attractions, believers didn't listen to 1Jn.  So 2Jn is pretty terse and scathing.


Of course, almost none of this meaning ports over into English. Doesn't matter that 1John is the simplest Greek to translate.  You can't tell from the English how John 'ropes' from all over the Bible, because the roping keywords are GREEK.  Bible scholars have known this for centuries, which is why lexical entries in GOOD lexicons, frequently provide other Bible verses in which the same word occurs.  That's why the KJV and NASB are translated somewhat stiffly:  they try to translate the same Greek (or Hebrew) word with the same English word whenever possible.  Problem is, they don't amalgamate the LXX verses in the OT with the Hebrew, so you CANNOT trace many of the NT quotes of the LXX.  NASB tries to help you out by capitalizing major OT-quoted passages, but frankly every NT verse is tying back to MANY OT verses, so to maintain economy, the keywords of the ORIGINAL language are used deftly.  Hence the modern reader of a translation, never learns the very mechanism by which God intends him to STUDY Scripture, all because he's using a translation.  It's tragic, it's boring, and frankly the translations all put one to sleep.  Vague and fuzzy, but what a great NAP!


So the modern reader glosses over the English and gushes, "oh, how nice."  And then promptly forgets what he read, busy piling up works.  To him, the Bible is something to argue over, be 'right in doctrine' versus a 'heretic';  so the MEANING in Bible is all Greek, to him.  Such a modern reader will pride himself on the big words he knows, on his encylopedic rattling of Church history;  on what one theologian contends versus another;  and of course he can't discern who among them, is right.  So he prizes credentials, respectability, how "nice" someone acts as his criterion for expertise, for spirituality.  He will aggregate with those he thinks 'spiritual' and villify those not of his group;  he will rattle off famous creeds, writers, and Bible verses by the score, yet never discern what they signify;  he will debate endlessly and pride himself on his knowledge.  Yet if you ask him to parse Isa53:10-12's verbs even in the English, and then answer what HAPPENED to Christ on the Cross -- he can't say.  Instead, he'll parrot what Hoary Head claimed happened (usually, that Christ's physical death paid for sins, never mind that 21 times in Isa52-53, Isaiah says it was HIS LIVING SOUL which paid for sins).  Yeah, everything but the meaning of the words IN BIBLE, he knows how to read.  No 1Jn1:9 means no ability to read the Word, as John had just explained.  In 1Jn2, John will demonstrate these and other  results of naming versus not-naming sins.  Devilish results.


Yeah, no Word in him, not a doer of the Word (James 1:22). All that tragic human building, instead of being built by his Parakletos;  ever busy, he's tragically piling up lots of wood hay and stubble for the Bema (1Cor3).  John will remind the believer of all this in 1Jn4:17, possibly the most climactic verse in the NT.  But right now, John's still setting up that platform:  we've been introduced to the Person Who Will Be Sitting On It, Our Parakletos, Jesus the Righteous One Who Will Hand Out The Spoil, on that Day.


2:3 "So by means of this fact we know that we are knowing Him (John switched to the dramatic perfect tense):  if HIS Commandments we cherish, guard, hold close, protect."

1 John 2:3  BGT  Καὶ ἐν τούτῳ γινώσκομεν ὅτι ἐγνώκαμεν αὐτόν, ἐὰν τὰς ἐντολὰς αὐτοῦ τηρῶμεν.


Greek verb terew will be the focus of the next three verses.  It has two main branches of meaning:  military sense of to guard, and marital intimacy sense of cherish and protect.   To translate it "keep" is okay, but in today's English "keep the commandments" is all huff-and-puff.  Not so the Greek terew, which is founded on an utter devotion, something you LOVE to do and don't want to live without. You might "terew" your privacy, your free time, your family, your favorite hobby, your country.  You are possessive of it;  it's always on your mind, so you are 'occupied' with it.  You linger over it, not wanting to stop paying attention.  No amount of time or effort spent on its behalf, is too much.  You ache if you can't be near it, you yearn to grasp it all the time, so it is on your MIND, all the time, kinda like tfellin.  So that's the kind of "keeping" you do, when you "terew" something or .. Someone.


If you look at the usage of terew throughout Bible, you'll realize John is blending BOTH branches of meaning, military and marital-intimate cherishing.  Here he specifically incorporates the many (64, per BibleWorks) verses which use the verb in the NT;  it was a favorite verb of the Lord's.  But surprisingly, John also incorporates all of Jude by reference.  Terew is a main verbal framework theme of Jude, with lots of wordplay on the verb's meaning;  and is all about how the Angelic Conflict gets resolved in Church, producing the Rapture (verse 1 and 21).  [Last phrase in v.21 is mistranslated, should read "with reference to eternal life".  Again, stupid translation rule of one English word for one Greek word causes blasphemous misreadings.  This is one of those verses the gotta-work-for-salvation crowd uses, never looking at the many uses of Greek preposition eis.  Verse 21 should read, "Guard, cherish yourselves by means of the Love of God, awaiting anxiously the MERCY LOVE (play on chesed in the Hebrew) of Our Lord Jesus Christ with reference to eternal life."  It's a reminder of Psalm 23:6.  Verse 20 defined what "Love of God" is -- being filled with Spirit and Word,  Paul's metaphor of Love=Word in 1Cor13.]


Maybe trace all the uses of terew by the Lord and by Jude His half-brother, before examining what John does with terew here in verses 2:3-5.


So again, as in verse 2, John ties to the Trial in heaven playing also here on earth.  Yeah, and we need to hear him do that, so we stop looking at ourselves and our things, busy with whether we're better than someone else!  Nothing like looking UP to change one's perspective.


EXEGETICAL KEY:  Obviously, you can't obey what you didn't FIRST come to know. So John switches from the present tense of ginwskw to the perfect tense of ginwskw, depicting how the present, depends on the past.  This is how you track the first-ness John stresses -- by the NON-present tenses he uses.  If you go back through the prior verses, you see the same pattern:  what is distinguished NON-presently, actually happened PRIOR;  thus the current condition, obtains;  thus the current condition is wholly DEPENDENT on what happened prior.  So the current condition (i.e., state of sin) must be CHANGED (i.e., using 1Jn1:9) and/or REPEATED (again, 1Jn1:9) in order for the current condition to itself become a "prior" with the desired result.


So all those accumulated priors, depict sine qua nons (="without which, nothing exists").  John thus talks in absolutes.  No substitutions, no middle ground.  It will be impossible to understand the flow and meaning of the climactic Chapters 4 and 5, if you don't do this tense-tracking.


Something FIRST happened in order for you to be in whatever status you are now.  God had to be First, then Christ had to be First, then witnesses had to first tell you about Him, then you had to first believe in Him, then you had to first sin after believing, then you had to first use 1Jn1:9.  All these firsts become PASTS and are precedental to how you live the spiritual life.  Idea of First Commandment (coming up, in verse 5).


If you read Wallace or other advanced Bible Greek grammar texts, you are told that the Greek perfect tense, particularly with verbs innately depicting present results from past action, should often be translated in English with the present tense, or at least the present perfect tense.  Since John will use a dual-verb construction like this one throughout the rest of his letter to stress current results from past action;  since John stresses the current action as a play onstage (Angelic Trial, introduced in 2:1), I will translate the perfect tense as progressive; or, if in English you'd still realize the action is presently occurring, I'll use the simple present. You still need to see when he switches tenses, to TRACK the threaded relationships.  I can't translate with the English perfect tense, to enable that tracking.  For the Greek perfect tense doesn't function like the English.  Depends on what "aspect" the Greek stresses;  so the English must translate the ASPECT, not matching tense name.  Trouble with that, is you'd think the tense in the Greek is the same:  so I'll just have to follow the convention above, saying in small font that John switched tense.


For  John walks the reader through a current action or state which in turn comes from current results DUE TO past action.  Because, we are all ONSTAGE.  John's demonstrating the CURRENT REALITY of Hebrews 11, especially 11:1,  from this point forward.  So to translate the perfect tense of ginwskw as "are knowing" links the present to the past as John intends it, with the same vividness that the always-mistranslated Hebrews 11:1, conveys.


Greek "en toutoi" is a rhetorical device which alerts the reader to a conclusion.  Greek preposition "en" more often signifies "by means of", especially when the object is a conclusion in an exposition, as here.  So "by means of this fact" might not be the best English translation (I'll have to refine it), but it's clearer than "by this" in the typical Bible translation  -- "by this" WHAT?  is not answered in English translations.  Again, the translator is constrained to translate one Greek word with one English word.  In English, John becomes very hard to follow, since you never know WHAT "this" refers to.  No such doubt, in the Greek.  No wonder the translations are snoozy and obtuse!


Sometimes, "en toutoi" refers to what preceded.  More often, it's what follows that is the conclusion, as here.  Then, the conclusion becomes a premise, and is explained.  This reverse pattern of discourse (conclusion first, then explanation) is also common in expositional Greek.  You go from something you KNOW now, to something you'll LEARN now.  Again, John's showing them how to THINK in their daily lives.  Plodding.


Again, the article is used with autos, so I just translated it with a capital "HIS".  Again, Christ's God-Man nature is stressed.  These are HIS commandments, specifically.  That ropes in all of what He said ABOUT the commandments, when He was here (in the Gospels).  That also ropes in what the writer of Hebrews said about the Word Paying so all is IN HIM, He's behind the Veil (Heb Chaps 1-9, showing how the OT covenant was replaced, upgraded IN Christ).  Of course, all the "in Him" discourse of Paul, is likewise roped in.  All by the simple pairing of an article and a possessive, plus the sacred use of "He".


Notice that you have to REASON OUT if you know something.  If you have to reason a thing out, it means you have insufficient or no visible means of knowing, else.  So gone are the flashy, visible spiritual gifts: just as Paul said they would be when Canon was completed.  John already baldly advertised he's the Last Writer Of Canon in 1:4, thus is fulfilled what Christ said in John 16:24, and what God had Paul prophesy in 1Cor13:9-12. (You can't see that Paul is talking about Canon from the English, because most of the "Head" and "Word" wordplay is mistranslated in 1Cor -- the wordplay begins in 1Cor1:5, and 1Cor12:31 plays on the Head being above the Body, so "Perfect" in 1Cor13:9ff means CANON, His Head's Thinking.  Greek word "agape" ONLY means God's Love everywhere in Bible -- and since the translator is forced to use only ONE word for the ONE Greek word, God's Head is effectively cut off, so you don't know from the English WHOSE LOVE it is, in Chapter 13.  Thus Paul equates Word=God's Love.. in writing.  Clever, huh: marital contract, written declaration of Divine Love.  All this gorgeous meaning is missing from every translation language I can read, in 1Cor13.)


Thus John incorporates all of 1Cor by reference, to show its fulfillment:  the temporary gifts are GONE, but the Permanent Gift of Word in Writing is come, just as the writer of Hebrews stressed from Heb8:8-10:17.  So now John elaborates on how Heb10:15-17 and Heb11:1, get done for the reader.  Because, the reader is onstage in God's Trial Rebuttal versus Satan.  More about that Trial will be said as 1 John unfolds.


2:4 "The one alleging, "I know Him", yet His Commandments does not cherish, is a liar; so by means of this fact, [we know] the truth is, NOT [in him]."

1 John 2:4  BGT  ὁ λέγων ὅτι ἔγνωκα αὐτὸν καὶ τὰς ἐντολὰς αὐτοῦ μὴ τηρῶν ψεύστης ἐστίν, καὶ ἐν τούτῳ ἡ ἀλήθεια οὐκ ἔστινˇ


John switched to the impersonal, indefinite pronoun "tis" in 2:1, and now continues with that impersonality by using hos with the participle (translated "the one alleging").  You can translate the Greek participle as a finite verb when it has the same effect as a finite verb; often Bible translations, do just that.  Greek uses the participle form to stress ACTION IN PROGRESS.  Present progress, past progress:  but in all events, the participle is used to show something which BEGAN in the past.  Again, John is talking "firsts". So the participle's stress on the in-progress nature John intends, is translated here literally.  That works well in English, though elegance is sacrificed.


Same strawman is in view;  in the PAST, this strawman just can't hack the idea he's not in the Light, not in with God, from 1:6;  so by now you have a string of fantasies this strawman lives on, to justify his not using 1Jn1:9:  he lives on the rationales of 1:6, 1:8, 1:10, and now, 2:3.  Fancying himself in fellowship, no longer a sinner, no longer sinning, knowing God.  Kinda devastating, huh.  Thus John had hooked the reader into recognizing oh!  I do those same sins!  So now John can simply use the impersonal mode of exposition, to keep the reader who WANTS to get out of that fantasizing, objectively learning.  As needed, John will change back and forth from the "dear children" reassurance clauses and this impersonal method, from here on out.  Thus he anticipates the reader's reactions, to what he says.  Of course, only God is omniscient.  So of course, only God could be so smart as to anticipate so well, how a reader will react to the letter.  Of course, then the reacting reader knows the letter comes from God, as it has a 'live' effect of 'answering' the THOUGHT which occurs in the reader's mind, real-time.  Thus the reader gets the reassurance he needs, that GOD wrote this Book.


"Cherish" is the first meaning of terew listed in 2:3.  Instead of repeating all four meanings in that verse, I just list the first meaning.  John's letter is about first, and "cherish" is the root idea behind "terew", from which all the guarding, keeping, protecting, etc. are motivated.  That's also a Greek rhetorical technique:  when the full list has been presented or is already known to the reader, you only mention the first item IN the list, to remind the reader of ALL of it.  John will use this very Greek rhetorical technique, in the next verse.


Again notice the proleptic position of "His Commandments", heroic accusative.  Just as in 2:1, "THE Hero Advocate".  Columnar parallelling continues, same rhetorical structure as in 1:6-10.


Economy in English, just as economy in Greek, often means you don't repeat something the reader already knows.  The reader already knows what John said in 1Jn1:10, only a few sentences back.  So he just repeats "is a liar" and "truth is not", literally.  So "we know" and "in him" don't need to be repeated either.  Again, this is an impersonal style of exposition, to keep the reader calm -- so the personals ("we know" and "in him") are left out.


And wow, the reader needs to KEEP his calm (pun on terew intended), here.  Who of us could really say we keep His Commandments?  We all know we fall short.  But again, John is talking of the strawman who FANCIES he's 'in' with God.  One has to be quite insane to fantasize that he keeps the commandments.  So the reader needs to be calm.  Hence the cutoffs, with only the relevant keywords in 1Jn1:10, threaded forward.


It now becomes a BURNING question, "What are HIS commandments?"  After all, everyone and his brother both then and now, would be quick to TELL someone else what they should do, claim to speak for God.. lots of people then and now were living regularly in 1:6,8,10,2:3-type rationales (John will say more about them, later in the Chapter).  So WHOSE 'commandments'  are being 'cherished'?  John answers that question, next.


2:5 "By contrast, if [another] one himself cherishes His Word, in reality by means of this fact, the Love of God is being teleio'd, fulfilled, completed (John switched to dramatic perfect);  and by means of this [same] fact we know we are in Him."

1 John 2:5  BGT  ὃς δ᾽ ἂν τηρῇ αὐτοῦ τὸν λόγον, ἀληθῶς ἐν τούτῳ ἡ ἀγάπη τοῦ θεοῦ τετελείωταιˇ ἐν τούτῳ γινώσκομεν ὅτι ἐν αὐτῷ ἐσμεν.


The Greek here is completely awesome.  One of my webpages translated this verse, I think it's Caveat2.htm.  Throw out that translation, it's too shallow. Where does one begin?  The whole BIBLE is in this verse.


In 2:4, John used the article plus the participle to denote the strawman.  Yet here in 2:5, he suddenly switches to Attic Drama portrayal, using what would ordinarily be the second part of a clause; and he upgrades the pronoun to "hos".  This one.  This one on stage.  Not the other one, who is clearly off the playing field, living in his fantasies.  Usually the clause is rendered second, so "this" would be the first-listed, and "that" would be the second.  JOHN REVERSES THEM here.  The first one doesn't even rate a "hos", but is a mere "ho".  How can anyone TRANSLATE this insult of 2:4 versus 2:5, in English?


John NEXT reverses the word order he's repeated of article + his, which I've been translating "HIS" in caps.  In Attic, koine "autos" had a different meaning.  It was an intensive pronoun, not a third person.  So kinda like the French "moi, toi, soi" it EMPHASIZES the person, isn't a mere pronoun.  Like in French you'd say, "parles-toi", meaning, "YOU speak!" or.. "speak for yourself!"  So too, "autos".


Thus in John's economy, he accomplishes two goals simultaneously, simply by reversing the position of autos:  1) he stresses that the believer himself must cherish the Word, and 2) that the LORD's Word, is FIRST.  As in, First in the phase.  In :10, it was "ho logos autou", but here it's "autou ton logon".  That's not a mistake or merely stressing the believer himself 'doing' a thing.  It's clever wordplay.