GodReflection: Guardrails for Living
. . . we may know him who is true. And we are in him who is true by being in his Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life. 1 John 5:20
As I’ve looked at John’s guardrails elevated for my protection in his first letter, I’ve felt as if I were by the side of a flowing stream of ice cold high mountain water with only a miniature spoon to quench my thirst. So much water—so little capacity—to take it all in.
In the next reality high on my coffee drinking list is time with the Apostle of Love. The 90-year old apostle seeps with wisdom gained from a life-long encounter with the resurrected Jesus. Is it too hard to believe that he will still be enriching others in a new sinless world?
It isn’t an overstatement to say that these five short chapters totaling only 105 verses are at the very core of the entire message of Scripture.
The few “Guardrails” I’ve highlighted are only a token of the wealth in John’s letter.
Love flows from Jesus as a guideline I must use to treat my siblings in Jesus.
It is in love that I learn how to live with the Holy while walking through my stay on planet earth.
As I finish this series of posts I discover one more—GOD PROTECTS.
John closes his first letter with these words:
We know that anyone born of God does not continue to sin;
the One who was born of God keeps them safe, and the evil one cannot harm them.
We know that we are children of God, and that the whole world is under the control of the evil one.
We know also that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, so that we may know him who is true.
And we are in him who is true by being in his Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life. Dear children, keep yourselves from idols.
So John reminds me again that Jesus is truth personified.
Being in Jesus is paramount to safety. Holy God protects me inside the safe embrace of Jesus love.
I am certainly free to reject my safe state by leaving Jesus’ path. Why would I dare go to where God no longer protects?
It is true that the whole world is controlled by the evil one. How could I possibly doubt that? Only the naïve could question such a conclusion. Were it not for the pockets of God and His goodness across the globe there is no safety.
Idols abound. They may not take the form of wood or stone but they call out with promises they cannot fulfill. To live within God’s sphere of protection I must keep myself free from 21st Century idols.
Anywhere I place my trust is to worship. Should that not be Father and Son, I’ve just moved from the save zone to an idol.
So I leave John’s letter for now, knowing that within its pages I have confidence to live life in the present and look forward to the time when I will live life in the eternal. For I’m covered under the umbrella of God’s love.
How could I dare love the world, deny Jesus, fail to love my sibling in Jesus, fail to honor right living, allow the Devil to sneak up on me, forget God’s sacrifice that provides His great love to me, fail to live love, fail to live faith, and fail to basks within the shadow of God’s protection?
No, I don’t do perfection. Yes, I do trust.
I think I will attempt to do a better job at keeping my eyes wide open for John’s guardrails for living.
Dr. Gary J. Sorrells
A GodReflection on God Protects.