My little children, I am writing you these things so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate(A) with the Father—Jesus Christ the righteous one. He himself is the atoning sacrifice[a](B) for our sins, and not only for ours, but also for those of the whole world.(C)

God’s Commands

This is how we know(D) that we know him: if we keep his commands.(E) The one who says, “I have come to know him,” and yet doesn’t keep his commands, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoever keeps his word,(F) truly in him the love of God is made complete. This is how we know we are in him:(G) The one who says he remains in him(H) should walk just as he walked.

Dear friends, I am not writing you a new command(I) but an old command that you have had from the beginning. The old command is the word(J) you have heard. Yet I am writing you a new command, which is true in him and in you, because the darkness is passing away(K) and the true light(L) is already shining.(M) The one who says he is in the light but hates his brother or sister(N) is in the darkness until now. 10 The one who loves his brother or sister(O) remains in the light, and there is no cause for stumbling in him.[b] 11 But the one who hates his brother or sister(P) is in the darkness, walks in the darkness,(Q) and doesn’t know where he’s going,(R) because the darkness has blinded his eyes.

Reasons for Writing

12 I am writing to you, little children,
since your sins have been forgiven
on account of his name.(S)
13 I am writing to you, fathers,
because you have come to know
the one who is from the beginning.(T)
I am writing to you, young men,
because you have conquered the evil one.(U)
14 I have written to you, children,
because you have come to know the Father.
I have written to you, fathers,
because you have come to know
the one who is from the beginning.
I have written to you, young men,
because you are strong,
God’s word(V) remains in you,
and you have conquered the evil one.

A Warning about the World

15 Do not love the world(W) or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16 For everything in the world—the lust of the flesh,(X) the lust of the eyes,(Y) and the pride(Z) in one’s possessions—is not from the Father, but is from the world. 17 And the world with its lust is passing away,(AA) but the one who does the will of God(AB) remains forever.(AC)

The Last Hour

18 Children, it is the last hour.(AD) And as you have heard that antichrist(AE) is coming, even now many antichrists have come. By this we know that it is the last hour. 19 They went out from us, but they did not belong to us; for if they had belonged to us, they would have remained with us. However, they went out so that it might be made clear that none of them belongs to us.

20 But you have an anointing(AF) from the Holy One,(AG) and all of you know the truth.[c] 21 I have not written to you because you don’t know the truth, but because you do know it, and because no lie comes from the truth. 22 Who is the liar, if not the one who denies that Jesus is the Christ?(AH) This one is the antichrist: the one who denies the Father and the Son. 23 No one who denies the Son has the Father;(AI) he who confesses the Son has the Father as well.(AJ)

Remaining with God

24 What you have heard from the beginning is to remain in you. If what you have heard from the beginning remains in you, then you will remain in the Son(AK) and in the Father.(AL) 25 And this is the promise that he himself made to us: eternal life.(AM)

26 I have written these things to you concerning those who are trying to deceive you. 27 As for you, the anointing you received from him remains in you, and you don’t need anyone to teach you. Instead, his anointing teaches you about all things(AN) and is true and is not a lie; just as it has taught you,[d] remain in him.(AO)

God’s Children

28 So now, little children, remain in him so that when he appears(AP) we may have confidence and not be ashamed before him at his coming.(AQ) 29 If you know that he is righteous, you know this as well: Everyone who does what is right(AR) has been born of him.(AS)

Footnotes

  1. 2:2 Or the propitiation
  2. 2:10 Or it
  3. 2:20 Other mss read and you know all things
  4. 2:27 Or as he has taught you

My dear children,(A) I write this to you so that you will not sin. But if anybody does sin, we have an advocate(B) with the Father—Jesus Christ, the Righteous One. He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins,(C) and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world.(D)

Love and Hatred for Fellow Believers

We know(E) that we have come to know him(F) if we keep his commands.(G) Whoever says, “I know him,”(H) but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in that person.(I) But if anyone obeys his word,(J) love for God[a] is truly made complete in them.(K) This is how we know(L) we are in him: Whoever claims to live in him must live as Jesus did.(M)

Dear friends,(N) I am not writing you a new command but an old one, which you have had since the beginning.(O) This old command is the message you have heard. Yet I am writing you a new command;(P) its truth is seen in him and in you, because the darkness is passing(Q) and the true light(R) is already shining.(S)

Anyone who claims to be in the light but hates a brother or sister[b](T) is still in the darkness.(U) 10 Anyone who loves their brother and sister[c] lives in the light,(V) and there is nothing in them to make them stumble.(W) 11 But anyone who hates a brother or sister(X) is in the darkness and walks around in the darkness.(Y) They do not know where they are going, because the darkness has blinded them.(Z)

Reasons for Writing

12 I am writing to you, dear children,(AA)
    because your sins have been forgiven on account of his name.(AB)
13 I am writing to you, fathers,
    because you know him who is from the beginning.(AC)
I am writing to you, young men,
    because you have overcome(AD) the evil one.(AE)

14 I write to you, dear children,(AF)
    because you know the Father.
I write to you, fathers,
    because you know him who is from the beginning.(AG)
I write to you, young men,
    because you are strong,(AH)
    and the word of God(AI) lives in you,(AJ)
    and you have overcome the evil one.(AK)

On Not Loving the World

15 Do not love the world or anything in the world.(AL) If anyone loves the world, love for the Father[d] is not in them.(AM) 16 For everything in the world—the lust of the flesh,(AN) the lust of the eyes,(AO) and the pride of life—comes not from the Father but from the world. 17 The world and its desires pass away,(AP) but whoever does the will of God(AQ) lives forever.

Warnings Against Denying the Son

18 Dear children, this is the last hour;(AR) and as you have heard that the antichrist is coming,(AS) even now many antichrists have come.(AT) This is how we know it is the last hour. 19 They went out from us,(AU) but they did not really belong to us. For if they had belonged to us, they would have remained with us; but their going showed that none of them belonged to us.(AV)

20 But you have an anointing(AW) from the Holy One,(AX) and all of you know the truth.[e](AY) 21 I do not write to you because you do not know the truth, but because you do know it(AZ) and because no lie comes from the truth. 22 Who is the liar? It is whoever denies that Jesus is the Christ. Such a person is the antichrist—denying the Father and the Son.(BA) 23 No one who denies the Son has the Father; whoever acknowledges the Son has the Father also.(BB)

24 As for you, see that what you have heard from the beginning(BC) remains in you. If it does, you also will remain in the Son and in the Father.(BD) 25 And this is what he promised us—eternal life.(BE)

26 I am writing these things to you about those who are trying to lead you astray.(BF) 27 As for you, the anointing(BG) you received from him remains in you, and you do not need anyone to teach you. But as his anointing teaches you about all things(BH) and as that anointing is real, not counterfeit—just as it has taught you, remain in him.(BI)

God’s Children and Sin

28 And now, dear children,(BJ) continue in him, so that when he appears(BK) we may be confident(BL) and unashamed before him at his coming.(BM)

29 If you know that he is righteous,(BN) you know that everyone who does what is right has been born of him.(BO)

Footnotes

  1. 1 John 2:5 Or word, God’s love
  2. 1 John 2:9 The Greek word for brother or sister (adelphos) refers here to a believer, whether man or woman, as part of God’s family; also in verse 11; and in 3:15, 17; 4:20; 5:16.
  3. 1 John 2:10 The Greek word for brother and sister (adelphos) refers here to a believer, whether man or woman, as part of God’s family; also in 3:10; 4:20, 21.
  4. 1 John 2:15 Or world, the Father’s love
  5. 1 John 2:20 Some manuscripts and you know all things

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