The Old and New Commands

God’s word for me today is in 1 John 2:7-8 which says:

Dear 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. Yet 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.”

I must admit, these verses were extremely confusing to me when I first read them. However, my dad helped me to understand what John is talking about. The “old command” that John is talking about is referring to the Gospel “which you have had since the beginning”. And the old command is the application of the Gospel in our daily lives, to love our brothers and obey the Lord.

So lets first talk about the “old command”. My dad explained that John is telling us that the “old command” is the Gospel because they had heard it since the beginning of when Jesus had come into the world. Jesus was constantly telling His disciples that He would be handed over to Pilot and would die. He was always telling His disciples that a time would come when He would have to die, even though His disciples didn’t want Him to. So we can see that verse 7 talks about the Gospel that Jesus died for our sins to save us.

Now we will talk about the “new command”. My dad explained that this is referring to the application of the Gospel in our daily lives by looking at the verses after verse 8. Those verses talk about loving your brothers and sisters, living in the light, and obeying the Lord. Now, if you have lived for about an hour trying to obey the Lord perfectly I’m sure you’ll understand that it is impossible to always obey the Lord in never sin. The reason for that is this: we have flesh so we cannot live perfectly. And when we were not believers we had sinful nature, but that was taken away from us when Jesus died to save us. So what John is talking about is that we are supposed to focus on Jesus and set our mind on Him, we cannot obey Him perfectly, but we can trust in Him and set our eyes on Him.

So, the old command: the Gospel that Jesus died for us. The new command: application of the Gospel in our daily lives.

Grace and truth, Charity Cleveland

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