1My dear children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. But if anybody does sin, we have an advocate with the Father – Jesus Christ, the Righteous One. 2He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world.
Love and hatred for fellow believers
3We know that we have come to know him if we keep his commands. 4Whoever says, ‘I know him,’ but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in that person. 5But if anyone obeys his word, love for God2:5 Or word, God’s love is truly made complete in them. This is how we know we are in him: 6whoever claims to live in him must live as Jesus did.
7Dear friends, I am not writing you a new command but an old one, which you have had since the beginning. This old command is the message you have heard. 8Yet I am writing you a new command; its truth is seen in him and in you, because the darkness is passing and the true light is already shining.
9Anyone who claims to be in the light but hates a brother or sister2:9 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. is still in the darkness. 10Anyone who loves their brother and sister2:10 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. lives in the light, and there is nothing in them to make them stumble. 11But anyone who hates a brother or sister is in the darkness and walks around in the darkness. They do not know where they are going, because the darkness has blinded them.
Reasons for writing
12I am writing to you, dear children,
because your sins have been forgiven on account of his name.
13I am writing to you, fathers,
because you know him who is from the beginning.
I am writing to you, young men,
because you have overcome the evil one.
14I write to you, dear children,
because you know the Father.
I write to you, fathers,
because you know him who is from the beginning.
I write to you, young men,
because you are strong,
and the word of God lives in you,
and you have overcome the evil one.
On not loving the world
15Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, love for the Father2:15 Or world, the Father’s love is not in them. 16For everything in the world – the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life – comes not from the Father but from the world. 17The world and its desires pass away, but whoever does the will of God lives for ever.
Warnings against denying the Son
18Dear children, this is the last hour; and as you have heard that the antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have come. This is how we know it is the last hour. 19They went out from us, 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.
20But you have an anointing from the Holy One, and all of you know the truth.2:20 Some manuscripts and you know all things 21I do not write to you because you do not know the truth, but because you do know it and because no lie comes from the truth. 22Who is the liar? It is whoever denies that Jesus is the Christ. Such a person is the antichrist – denying the Father and the Son. 23No-one who denies the Son has the Father; whoever acknowledges the Son has the Father also.
24As for you, see that what you have heard from the beginning remains in you. If it does, you also will remain in the Son and in the Father. 25And this is what he promised us – eternal life.
26I am writing these things to you about those who are trying to lead you astray. 27As for you, the anointing 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 and as that anointing is real, not counterfeit – just as it has taught you, remain in him.
God’s children and sin
28And now, dear children, continue in him, so that when he appears we may be confident and unashamed before him at his coming.
29If you know that he is righteous, you know that everyone who does what is right has been born of him.
3我們若遵行上帝的命令，就知道自己認識祂。 4若有人說「我認識祂」，卻不遵行祂的命令，這人是說謊的，他心中沒有真理。 5遵行主話語的人是真正全心愛上帝的人，我們藉此知道自己是在主裡面。 6所以，自稱住在主裡面的，就該在生活中效法基督。
9若有人說自己在光明中，卻恨他的弟兄姊妹，他就仍然活在黑暗裡。 10愛弟兄姊妹的人活在光明中，沒有什麼可以絆倒他2·10 「沒有什麼可以絆倒他」或譯「他也不會絆倒別人」。。 11恨弟兄姊妹的人活在黑暗中，走在黑暗中，不知何去何從，因為黑暗弄瞎了他的眼睛。
15不要愛世界和世上的事，因為人若愛世界，就不會再有愛父的心了。 16凡屬世界的，如肉體的私慾、眼目的私慾和今生的驕傲都不是從父那裡來的，而是從世界來的。 17這世界和其中一切的私慾都要過去，但遵守上帝旨意的人永遠長存。
20你們從那位聖者領受了聖靈2·20 「聖靈」希臘文指「膏抹」。，所以你們明白真理。 21我寫信給你們不是因為你們不明白真理，而是因為你們明白真理，並且知道真理裡面絕對沒有謊言。 22誰是說謊的呢？不就是那否認耶穌是基督的嗎？那不承認父和子的就是敵基督者。 23凡否認子的，也否認了父；凡承認子的，也承認了父。
24你們務要把起初所聽見的教導謹記在心，這樣，你們必住在子和父裡面。 25主應許給我們的是永生。 26以上的話是針對那些引誘你們離開正道的人寫的。
27你們既然從主領受了聖靈，聖靈又住在你們心中，就不需要其他人來教導你們，因為聖靈必會在一切事上指引你們。聖靈的教導是真實的，沒有虛假，你們要按聖靈的教導住在主裡面。 28孩子們，你們要住在主裡面。這樣，當主顯現的時候，就是祂再來的時候，我們便能坦然無懼，不會在祂面前羞愧。 29既然你們知道主是公義的，也該知道所有按公義行事的人都是上帝的兒女。