Read: 1 John 1:1-10
Centering Verse: This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light and in him there is no darkness at all. (1 John 1:5)
- Why can we trust the writer of this letter?
- In what ways have you continued to hide in the spiritual darkness?
- How do we walk in the light? What does this look like?
- In what ways have you experienced the forgiveness of God? How might you be an ambassador of that forgiveness?
One of the things that sets Methodism apart from other Christian traditions is its prominent focus on sanctification. Sanctification is that process by which God takes unholy people and makes them holy. Perhaps it can be better understood as God drawing people closer to Godself in love and intimacy. The closer we get to God, the less drawn we are to the darkness of sin and evil. God’s ultimate desire is to free us from sin and evil – as well as its power over us. God does not desire punishment for us, but relational closeness. Therefore, God has created a clear pathway to restoration for us. If we confess our sins, God will forgive us and transform us into people of holiness and godly love. John reminds his readers that it is only spiritual pride that will stand in the way of this process. In fact, spiritual pride is stronger than any other force of sin or evil. If we cannot recognize our own sinfulness, then we are doomed to stay stuck within it. The God of holy love has opened the divine life to us. Will you enter in?
LORD God, who has shined your light of grace upon us while we were still lost in the darkness, purify us and make us whole. May our lives shine brightly in the world as a testimony to your goodness. Amen.