1 JOHN (IEB; International English Bible Translation)
The Introduction (1 John 1:1-4)
(1) That which existed from the beginning—which we have heard with our ears, which we have seen with our eyes, and which we have touched with our hands—this we proclaim concerning the Word of eternal life. (2) Eternal life has appeared to us (incarnation). We have seen it and give witness to it. We proclaim to you the eternal life which was with the Father and has appeared to us. (3) We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard, so that you also can have fellowship with us. Our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. (4) We write these things so that our joy will be full.
Live in the Light of God (1 John 1:5-10)
(5) This is the message we have heard from Jesus Christ and proclaim to you: God is light! There is no darkness in God at all. (6) If we claim to have a relationship with God and yet continue to live in the darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. (7) If we live in the light as God is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ, his Son, purifies us from every sin. (8) If we claim to have no sin we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. (9) If we confess our sins to God, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. (10) If we claim we have never sinned, we make God out to be a liar and his word is not in us.
Jesus Christ is Our Righteousness (1 John 2:1-6)
(1) My beloved children, I write these things to you, so that you will not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an intercessor (advocate) with the Father—Jesus Christ the Righteous One. (2) Jesus Christ is the atoning sacrifice (propitiation, expiation, substitute) for our sins; not only for our sins, but also for the sins of the whole world. (3) We know that we have come to know God if we obey his teaching. (4) Whoever says, “I know God,” but does not live according to his teaching is a liar, and the truth is not in that person. (5) If anyone obeys his word, then God’s love is truly made complete in them. This is how we know that we live in God: (6) Whoever claims to live in him must live as Jesus Christ did.
Live in God’s Light of Love (1 John 2:7-14)
(7) My beloved friends, I am not writing you a new command but an old one, which you have had from the beginning. This old command is the message you have already heard. (8) But I am also writing you a new command, which is the truth seen in him and in you, for the darkness is passing away and the true light is already shining. (9) Whoever claims to live in the light, but hates a fellow believer is still living in darkness. (10) Whoever loves a fellow believer lives in the light and there is nothing in them to make them stumble. (11) Whoever hates a fellow believer is in the darkness and stumbles around in the darkness, for they do not know where they are going because the darkness has blinded their eyes. (12) I write to you children, for your sins have been forgiven for the sake of the name of Jesus Christ. (13) I write to you fathers, for you know Jesus who is from the beginning. I write to you young men, for you have overcome the evil one. I write to you children, for you know the Father. (14) I write to you fathers, for you know Jesus Christ who is from the beginning. I write to you young men, for you are strong and the word of God lives in you. Yes, you have overcome Satan, the evil one!
Do Not Love This World (1 John 2:15-17)
(15) Do not love this world or anything in this world. The love of the Father does not dwell in those who love this world. (16) For everything in this world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—does not come from the Father, but comes from this world. (17) This world and its sinful passions are passing away, but those who do the will of God will live forever.
Many Antichrists Have Already Come (1 John 2:18-29)
(18) My beloved children, it is the last hour. As you have heard the antichrist is coming—actually, many antichrists have already come. We know it is the last hour, (19) for these antichrists have gone out from the church in Ephesus. Although they did not really belong to the church. For if they had belonged to us, they would have remained with us. But because they departed from us, it reveals that none of them really belonged to us (referring to the antichrists and false prophets described in 1 John 2:22-23, 4:1-3; 2 John 7). (20) But you have an anointing from the Holy One ——- and know the truth. (21) I do not write to you because you do not know the truth, but because you do know it and no lie comes from the truth. (22) Who is the true liar? The true liar is whoever denies that Jesus is the Messiah. It is these liars that are the antichrists—those who deny the Father and the Son. (23) No one who denies the Son has the Father, but whoever confesses faith in the Son has the Father. (24) As for you, make sure that what you have heard from the beginning lives in you. If it does, you also will remain in the Son and in the Father. (25) God has promised us eternal life! (26) I write these things to you about those who are trying to deceive you with false teaching and lead you astray. (27) But as for you, the Holy Spirit’s anointing that you received from God lives in you. You do not need anyone to teach you. For God’s anointing teaches you about all things. This anointing is true and is no lie (counterfeit)—and just as the anointing has taught you, remain in him. (28) My beloved children, remain in Jesus Christ, so that when he appears at his second coming we will be confident and unashamed (not shrink away) when we see him. (29) If you know that Jesus Christ is righteous, you also know that everyone who does what is right (practices righteousness) has been born of him.
We Are the Children of God (1 John 3:1-10)
(1) See what great love the Father has poured out to us, so that we should be called children of God! And that is who we are! The reason why this world does not know us is because it did not know him. (2) My beloved friends, we are God’s children, and what we will be has not yet been revealed. We know that when Jesus Christ appears at his second coming, we will be like him, for we will see him as he truly is. (3) Whoever has this hope in him purifies themselves, just as Jesus Christ is pure. (4) Whoever lives a life of sin breaks the law, for sin is lawlessness. (5) But you know that Jesus Christ came into the world to take away our sins. He was sinless! (6) No one who lives in Jesus Christ keeps living a life of sin. No one who continues to live a life of sin has seen Jesus Christ or known him. (7) My beloved children, do not let anyone deceive you and lead you astray. Whoever does what is right is righteous, just as Jesus Christ is righteous. (8) Whoever lives a life of sin is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God came into the world was to destroy the devil’s works. (9) No one who is born of God will continue to live a life of sin, for God’s seed remains in them. They cannot live a life of sin, for they have been born (born again) of God. (10) This is how we know who are the children of God, and who are the children of the devil: Whoever does not do what is right and does not love their fellow believers is not God’s child.
Love One Another (1 John 3:11-24)
(11) For this is the gospel message that you have heard from the beginning: We must love one another! (12) We must not be like Cain, who belonged to the evil one and murdered his brother Abel. And why did he murder him? Cain murdered Abel because his actions were evil, and Abel’s actions were righteous. (13) Therefore, my brothers and sisters, don’t be surprised that this world hates you. (14) We know that we have passed from death to life, for we love one another. Whoever does not love, remains in death. (15) Whoever hates a fellow believer is a murderer, and no murderer has eternal life living in them. (16) This is how we know what true love is: Jesus Christ laid down (sacrificed) his life for us, and we should sacrifice our lives for our fellow believers. (17) If anyone has material possessions and sees a fellow believer in need, but has no compassion (closes his heart) for them, how can God’s love live in that person? (18) My beloved children, let us not love with words or talk but with actions and in truth. (19) This is how we know that we belong to the truth and how we set our hearts at rest in God’s presence. (20) For if our hearts condemn us of sin, we know that God is greater than our hearts. For he knows everything (is omniscient)! (21) My beloved friends, if our hearts do not condemn us of sin, we have confidence in the presence of God. (22) We receive from God whatever we ask, for we live according to his teaching and do what pleases him. (23) God’s command is that we believe in the name of his Son Jesus Christ and love one another as he taught us. (24) Whoever keeps God’s commands lives in him, and he lives in them. This is how we know that he lives in us: We know it by the Holy Spirit that he gave us.
Examine the Spirits (1 John 4:1-6)
(1) My beloved friends, do not believe every spirit, but examine the spirits to discern whether they are from God. For many false prophets have gone out into the world. (2) This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ came became fully human is from God, (3) but every spirit that does not confess Jesus Christ is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist which you have heard is coming, but is now already active in the world (see 1 John 2:18-19). (4) My beloved children, you are from God and have overcome these false prophets, for the one who lives in you is greater than the one who is in this world. (5) These false prophets are from the world. They speak from the perspective of this world and the world listens to them. (6) But we are from God, and whoever knows God listens to us, but whoever is not from God does not listen to us. This is how we know the Holy Spirit of truth and the spirit of falsehood.
God is Love (1 John 4:7-21)
(7) My beloved friends, let us love one another for love comes from God. Whoever loves has been born (born again) of God and knows God. (8) Whoever does not love does not know God, for God is love! (9) This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his only Son Jesus Christ into the world, so that we could live through him. (10) This is love: Not that we loved God, but that God loved us first and sent his Son Jesus Christ as an atoning sacrifice (propitiation, expiation, substitute) for our sins. (11) My beloved friends, since God so loved us, we must also love one another. (12) No one has ever seen God, but if we love one another. God lives in us and his love is made complete in us. (13) We know that we live in God and he lives in us, for he has given us the Holy Spirit. (14) We have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world. (15) Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in them, and they live in God. (16) So we know and trust in the love God has for us. God is love! Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God lives in them. (17) This is how love is made complete among us, so that we will have confidence on the day of God’s judgment, for in this world we live as Jesus Christ did. (18) There is no fear in love, for perfect love drives out fear. For fear has to do with being punished, and whoever fears punishment has not yet been made complete in love. (19) We love, for God first loved us! (20) Whoever says, “I love God,” but hates their fellow believer, is a liar. Whoever does not love a fellow believer whom they have seen, cannot love God whom they have not seen. (21) God has given us this command: Whoever loves God must also love their fellow believers.
Overcome the World by Faith (1 John 5:1-5)
(1) Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Messiah has been born (born again) of God. Everyone who loves the Father, loves whoever has been born of him. (2) This is how we know that we love the children of God: By loving God and living according to his teaching. (3) Love for God is obeying his teaching. His teaching is not burdensome, (4) for whoever is born again of God overcomes the world. The victory that has overcome the world is our faith! (5) It is those who believe that Jesus is the Son of God that overcome the world.
Eternal Life in Jesus Christ (1 John 5:6-12)
(6) Jesus Christ came by water and blood. He did not come by water only, but by water (baptism) and blood (crucifixion). The Holy Spirit is our witness, for the Spirit is the truth. (7) There are three that testify: (8) The Holy Spirit, the water, and the blood, and these three are in full agreement. (9) We accept a human testimony, but God’s testimony is far greater because it is his testimony given about his Son. (10) Whoever believes in Jesus the Son of God accepts God’s testimony. Whoever does not believe God has made him out to be a liar, for they do not believe God’s witness given about his Son Jesus Christ. (11) This is the truth: God gave us eternal life in his Son Jesus Christ. (12) Whoever has the Son Jesus Christ has eternal life, but those who do not have the Son of God do not have eternal life.
The Conclusion (1 John 5:13-21)
(13) I, John, wrote this letter to you who believe in the name of the Son of God. I want you to know with certainty that you have eternal life. (14) This is the confidence we have in approaching God: That if we pray according to his will, he hears us. (15) And if we know that God hears our prayers, we know that we have whatever we asked of him. (16) If you see another believer commit a sin that does not lead to death, you should pray and God will give them life. I am not saying that we should pray for those who commit a sin that leads to death, for there is a sin that leads to death (possibly a total intentional and hostile rejection of Jesus Christ). (17) All wrongdoing is sin, but not all sin leads to death. (18) We know that whoever is born (born again) of God does not keep on living a life of sin, The one who was born of God protects them, and Satan, the evil one, cannot hurt them. (19) We know that we are God’s children, and that the whole world is under the power of the evil one. (20) We also know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, so that we can know the true God. We are in the true God by being in his Son Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is the true God and eternal life. (21) My beloved children, keep yourselves away from idols.