I John 5:13- Purpose of Writing The Epistle

1John 5:14

1) Confidence of freedom from shame at the rapture, 2:28,

2) Confidence of a clear conscience in prayer, 3:21-22, and

3) Confidence at the judgment seat of Christ because our love resembles God’s love, 4:17.

Principle: God is accessible to the believer.

Confidence in prayer is for those who are born again yet many experience frustration in prayer. They can trust God for eternal life but they cannot trust Him for this life. We trust God for a life without end but we do not trust Him to meet our financial needs.

We have a general faith in God but very little confidence in Him. We know that we place confidence in God if we have an effective prayer life.

Matt. 7:7 “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.”

Eph 3:20 “Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, 21 to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.”

Application: Our right of asking God for petitions and intercessions is unconditional. Our right rests on the person and work of Christ. That is why we come in Jesus’ name.

John 14:24 “Until now you have asked nothing in My name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full.”

 The Christian today has access to the God of the universe because Jesus broke the barrier between God and the Christian. The Christian has uninhibited boldness in prayer because of the work of Jesus Christ.

Heb. 4:14” Seeing then that we have a great High Priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. 15 For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. 16 Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”

that if we ask anything

“If we ask” presumes expectation. Since the Christian is certain that he possesses eternal life (5:13), he can be confident that God answers prayer.

Principle: We must know the will of God to have confidence in prayer.

because God did not answer their prayer. They assume that prayer fails to meet their needs.

Some Christians use prayer as a genie that persuades God to do what they want. If they rub the genie the right way, they get what they want. This is a parody of prayer. By this they make outlandish demands on God that they believe is their right. God promises to meet our needs, not our “greed”. This is praying “according to our lusts,”

James 4:3 “You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures.”

Genuine prayer prays in God’s will and according to God’s nature. Prayer outside God’s will is an insult to His integrity. There is a wide range wherein we can pray. We pray for what God requires, not what we desire.

 Prayer is not an endeavor to move God to see things our way. It is not an attempt to change God’s values or standards. God is not willing to give His child something that is not good for him. God wants to give what is in the best interest of the child of God. God does not pander to self-gratification.

Phil. 4:19” And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.”

Our prayers must align themselves with the will of God and be consistent with the character and plan of God for the universe. Jesus said, “Not my will but Yours be done”.

according to His will,

God always answers prayer that is asked “according to His will.” God reveals His will in the Word of God. God answers prayer according to certain standards. For example, we must ask in Jesus name (John 14:13; 15:16) and be in fellowship (John 15:7; 1 John 3:22) for God to answer prayer. Another condition is to have confidence that God hears and responds to prayer.

there are many prayers God never hears.

Psalm 66:8 “If I regard iniquity in my heart, The Lord will not hear.”

1 Peter 3:7 “Husbands, likewise, dwell with them with understanding, giving honor to the wife, as to the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life, that your prayers may not be hindered.”

1 John 5:15 “And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him.”

When a child of God believes God’s promises in prayer, God moves His hand for that believer.

Application: God has certain ground rules for answered prayer. Here are a number of qualifications to answered prayer:

  1. Praying in Jesus name (prayer that is consistent with His person and work and based on that authority), John 14:13-14; 16:23-24
  2. Abiding in fellowship (the Spirit-filled life), John 15:7; Ps 66:18; James 4:3
  3. Ask in faith, James 1:5-8; Je 33:33
  4. Ask according to God’s will, 1 John 5:14

God never violates Himself to answer our prayers. He will not contradict His holiness to answer prayer.

Matt. 7:11 “If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him!”

Prov. 15:8, “The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord, But the prayer of the upright is His delight.”

Prov. 15:29 “The Lord is far from the wicked, But He hears the prayer of the righteous.”

Luke 11:1 “Lord, teach us to pray, as John also taught his disciples.”

Luke 18:1 “Then He spoke a parable to them, that men always ought to pray and not lose heart…”

Acts 6:4 “…but we will give ourselves continually to prayer and to the ministry of the word.”

1 John 5:16 “If anyone sees his brother sinning a sin which does not lead to death

John continues his discussion on prayer in this verse but he extends the issue to praying for those in spiritual need.

The object of prayer in this verse is a believer out of fellowship. The word “brother” clearly indicates that the person in need is a Christian (2:9-11; 3:14-15; 5:1). The words “a sin” indicate that the issue at hand is a specific sin or an identifiable sin.

The person who prays about this situation must “see” the sin for himself.

which does not lead to death,

The idea of “death” here is not spiritual death but physical death. Some Christians die prematurely because of protracted unconfessed sin (1 Cor. 5:5; 11:30).

Principle: Some Christians die physically before their time.

Application: Christians begin eternal life at the point of salvation and can never lose that salvation at any future point.

John 10:28 “And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand. 29 “My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father’s hand.”

John 17:11 “Now I am no longer in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to You. Holy Father, keep through Your name those whom You have given Me, that they may be one as We are.”

However, Christians can lose the experience of abundant living.  John 10:10 “The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.”

There are a number of occasions of the “sin unto death” in the Word of God. Ananias and Sapphira are cases in point (Acts 5:1-11). God sentenced them to death for misrepresentation of the facts. Paul assigned a Christian living in incest to death should he not repent (1 Cor. 5:1-5).

Moses committed the sin unto death by striking the rock (Nu 20:8, 12). Achan committed the sin unto death by hiding condemned garments in the book of Joshua. He and his family were put to death for this.

Many Christians do not die in bed. God does not allow them to live out their full amount of years. God jerks them up short and takes them home to be with Him. He takes them home with a dishonorable discharge. That is a miserable way to go home to meet God. God saves their soul so as by fire. He saves some people by the skin of their teeth.

1 Cor. 3:15 “If anyone’s work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire.”

James 5:14 “Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. 15 And the prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. James 5:16 “Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.”

1 Tim. 5:24 “Some men’s sins are clearly evident, preceding them to judgment, but those of some men follow later. 25 Likewise, the good works of some are clearly evident, and those that are otherwise cannot be hidden.”

1 John 5:17

“All unrighteousness is sin, and there is sin not leading to death.”

All unrighteousness is sin,

“All unrighteousness” is an occasion for intercessory prayer except for the sin unto death (5:16).

5:18-20 Final Assurances

1 John 5:18 No one born of God Sins

“We know Principle: Once it was natural to sin but now it is unnatural.

1 John 5:19 - We are Of God

1 John 5:20 - Son of God has come and given us understanding  Heb 1 – Son has spoken to us in these last days.