December 5th 1 John 4 Test the messengers
1: Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world. 2: Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God: 3: And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world. 4: Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world. 5: They are of the world: therefore speak they of the world, and the world heareth them. 6: We are of God: he that knoweth God heareth us; he that is not of God heareth not us. Hereby know we the spirit of truth, and the spirit of error. 7: Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. 8: He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love. 9: In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him. 10: Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.
John warns the believers to not believe every thing they hear. He explains that false prophets have gone out into the world. These false prophets are allowed by God so that believers might search the scriptures to discover the truth in daily life. John is thinking obviously of the false prophets of his day when he says that those who are false prophets deny that Jesus is come in the flesh. The prevailing false teaching in his day was that Christ was not fully human. John reminds them that Christ is greater than anyone in the world. John encourages his readers to focus clearly on where they stand in relation to Christ and the world. In times of persecution the battle lines are drawn much clearer. Love is the hall mark of the believer. Our love is the response to the love of God.