The New Life Mission

Sermons

Subject 3 : The Gospel of the Water and the Spirit

[3-19] (1 John 1:1-10) The Real Precondition For Sharing Fellowship In Christ

(1 John 1:1-10)
“That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, concerning the Word of life—the life was manifested, and we have seen, and bear witness, and declare to you that eternal life which was with the Father and was manifested to us—that which we have seen and heard we declare to you, that you also may have fellowship with us; and truly our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son Jesus Christ. And these things we write to you that your joy may be full. This is the message which we have heard from Him and declare to you, that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us.”
 
 
Warm greetings to you all. When we read the Word of God we must treat it exactly as it is and believe in it just as it is. Sadly, there are still people who turn the Word of God into an instrument of wickedness by deliberately misinterpreting it, all to serve their own purposes. We must, therefore, stand against all such misinterpretations and lies. It’s of paramount importance for us to believe in the Word of God and preach it exactly as it is. 
 
 
Those Who Misinterpret Today’s Scripture Passage
 
It’s written in 1 John 1:8, “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.” Romans 3:10 also says, “There is none righteous, no, not one.” Quoting these passages incorrectly, many Christians think that no one can become sinless. Based on their misunderstanding they say it’s wrong for people to claim they are sinless even if they believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. In fact, they go further in their ignorance and wrongfully denounce all those who believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Quoting 1 John 1:9 which says, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness,” these ignorant people also claim they can be cleansed from all their sins if they just confess them in their repetitive prayers of repentance. But their claims are all baseless, nothing but lies. 
The word “confess” used here in 1 John 1:9 means something entirely different from what most Christians have come to understand. The scriptural meaning of this word “confess” means to admit our true selves exactly as we are before God. However, when Christians who believe in Jesus only as a matter of religion read the Bible which says, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness,” they interpret it according to their thoughts believing that if they just confess their sins to God in their many prayers of repentance, the Lord will cleanse them from all their transgressions. They are so very wrong. 
The Word of the water and the Spirit as recorded in the Bible must be accepted exactly as it is, but tragically, the vast majority of Christians mistakenly think that the gospel is constituted solely by the shed blood of Christ on the Cross. So, when I give a sermon on 1 John, I often point out this misunderstanding afflicting most Christians today. Since you are all well aware of this issue by now, I would like to focus on the text of the Word of God that is written in 1 John.
 
 
The Purpose for Which the Apostle John Wrote This Epistle
 
Here in 1 John 1:1-4, the Bible speaks of the righteousness of Jesus Christ. It says here that this righteousness of God is the Light: “That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, concerning the Word of life—the life was manifested, and we have seen, and bear witness, and declare to you that eternal life which was with the Father and was manifested to us” (John 1:1-2). Of whom is this passage speaking about? It is speaking of Jesus Christ. John is testifying here that the disciples of Jesus Christ, the Word of life, could see Him with their own physical eyes and touch Him with their own hands. The Creator who made this universe was born on this earth, so that the disciples could see Him with their own eyes and touch Him with their own hands, and this Creator was none other than Jesus, the only begotten Son of God. It’s for this reason that the Apostle John said, “That which we have seen and heard we declare to you, that you also may have fellowship with us; and truly our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son Jesus Christ. And these things we write to you that your joy may be full” (1 John 1:3-4).
The disciples of Jesus, including the Apostle John, had seen Jesus with their own eyes, touched Him with their own hands, and heard the Word of life from the lips of Jesus with their own ears. Having fulfilled the gospel of the water and the Spirit by being baptized, shedding His blood on the Cross, and rising from the dead again, Jesus then ascended back to Heaven; and now, the Apostle John was preaching this very gospel to those in need of hearing it through his three Epistles. In other words, he is bearing witness of the righteousness of Jesus to Christians of today who profess to believe in Jesus as their Savior. 
What is the core message of the testimony that the disciples sought to give? They wrote their epistles in such a way that we may truly have spiritual fellowship with Jesus. That’s why the Apostle John said, “Truly our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son Jesus Christ.” And for Christians to share the true fellowship of faith with one another, they must share in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, the gospel through which God has saved mankind from all their sins. In other words, we must have fellowship with one another through the gospel of the water and the Spirit, learn from each other, come to understand this gospel in a deeper way, and to believe in it 100%. 
Only then can we have real fellowship with one another. That’s what the Apostle John is teaching us here. The ultimate purpose for his letter is explained in 1 John 1:4: “And these things we write to you that your joy may be full.” Put differently, when it comes to sharing fellowship, it is imperative for us to realize what it means to have true faith in the gospel, what kind of gospel we believe in, and whether or not our faith indeed rests in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. So John said here that he was writing this letter in order that we may have the joy of becoming God’s children. 
John then explains this issue in detail in verses 5-7. It’s important for us to realize that, even among Christians, there still are many who have not received the remission of sins, and whose hearts therefore remain defiled and sinful, even though they all profess to believe in Jesus. So the Apostle John is writing his letter to such people. Verse 5 says, “This is the message which we have heard from Him and declare to you, that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all.”
God is light. In Him is no darkness at all. Just as the Bible says here, God is light, the Truth, completely sinless, and holy. Just as God is light and has no darkness at all, all those who truly know and believe in the righteousness of God, the Apostles of the past and today’s believers alike, have no sin. In other words, we who believe correctly are also completely sinless, just as God is light. As mentioned, even among those who believe in Jesus as their Savior, there are many whose hearts remain sinful. However, the salvation fulfilled by God is not an imperfect salvation, it’s flawless. 
If we truly have received Jesus as our Savior with the correct understanding of His righteousness, then it’s impossible for there to be any darkness in our hearts at all, just as God is light. It’s simply not possible for us who believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit to have any sin in our hearts. That’s because God is light, and in Him is no darkness at all. God our Father has blotted out all our sins through Jesus Christ, and if we know and believe in this true gospel of the water and Spirit, then there can’t be any sin at all in our hearts. The Apostle John is speaking of true fellowship here.
 
 
Who Is a Liar before God?
 
It’s written in 1 John 1:6, “If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth.” This means, if we claim to have fellowship with God, but our hearts remain sinful even as we believe in Jesus as our Savior and try to follow Him, then we would be lying. Believing like this is not the proper faith before the Lord. Such people are lying, even though they say that they believe in Jesus. And, they do not practice the truth. When people say their hearts are sinful even as they believe in Jesus, what they are essentially saying is that they have fellowship with God even as their hearts remain dark and sinful, and, this is a blatant lie. In other words, it’s a lie to say that God is their Father and their Savior even as their hearts remain sinful. 
And if anyone claims to be preaching and serving the gospel even though his heart remains sinful, then this person is lying. Such people are not serving the Lord, but rather themselves. And, they are not practicing the truth, but following their own thoughts. Many Christians nowadays are following their own human fleshly thoughts. This is what the Apostle John is speaking about here. He is saying that those who have true fellowship with God are those who are sinless, just as God is light and sinless. 
 
 
What Does It Mean to Walk in the Light?
 
It’s written in 1 John 1:7, “But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin.” This means, the Lord has blotted out all our sins with the gospel of the water and the Spirit, just as God is in the light and has no darkness at all—that is, just as God in completely sinless. That we are walking in the light means, we have received the remission of sins by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and we are following God by this faith. We with sinless hearts are therefore serving and spreading the true gospel on the earth by believing in Gods gospel of the water and the Spirit. This is what it means to walk in the light.
By doing this we are having fellowship with God, as well as sharing true fellowship with the saints. And, we are able to call God our Father, and God calls us His children. We can then realize fully that God has indeed blotted out each and every sin we commit while carrying on with our lives in this world, even in our weaknesses, with the gospel of the water and the Spirit. God the Father is telling us that the blood shed by His Son Jesus Christ has cleansed us from all our sins. The shed blood here means, God the Father has saved us the believers in the gospel of the water and the Spirit through the life of His Son Jesus Christ. In other words, it teaches us that Jesus Christ has saved us perfectly by laying down His own life. But this verse does not mean that God has saved us only through the shed blood of Jesus? We must understand this properly, for when the Scripture says that Jesus Christ has saved us through His blood, it’s speaking of the final result of all the work of salvation Jesus fulfilled by being baptized by John the Baptist, shedding His blood on the Cross to death, and rising from the dead. 
 
 
Who Overcomes the World?
 
To help us understand this more clearly 1 John 5:4 says, “This is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.” What faith is this faith of ours then? It’s the faith that rests in the truth of being saved by the Lord by Him coming to this earth, being baptized by John the Baptist, dying on the Cross, and rising from the dead again. It’s all about believing in the love of Jesus Christ and the righteous work He accomplished for us by blotting out all our sins once and for all with His baptism and His blood. ‘This faith’ is what enables us to overcome all our sins and all our weaknesses. Like this, it’s by faith that we are perfectly saved, and it is also by faith that we are victorious. 
Let’s turn to 1 John 5:5-8, “Who is he who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God? This is He who came by water and blood—Jesus Christ; not only by water, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit who bears witness, because the Spirit is truth. For there are three that bear witness in heaven: the Father, the Word, and the Holy Spirit; and these three are one.” What is the evidence of our faith in God’s eyes? It is our faith that rests in the water, the blood, and the Spirit. The water, the blood, and the Spirit are One. Believing in the righteousness of Jesus Christ, the Son of God who came by the water and the blood, is the very faith that enables us to receive the remission of sins. 
It’s for this reason that the Apostle John said in 1 John 1:7, “If we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another.” Such is the relationship we have with God. Such is the relationship between Jesus and the believers in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. In contrast, those who do not know this Truth of salvation constituted by the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and have therefore not received the remission of sins, cannot share fellowship with Jesus even if they claim to believe in His righteousness. They are still estranged from Him. True fellowship with God can be shared only by those who believe that Jesus is the only begotten Son of God, that He came to this earth to blot out all our sins, that He bore all our sins by being baptized by John the Baptist, that He was condemned for these sins on the Cross, that He rose from the dead again, and that He has, through all these righteous acts, cleansed away all our sins and become our true Savior. And the Apostle John and other apostles who had received the remission of sins shared this true fellowship. 
In summing up this point, the Apostle John said that the blood of Jesus the Son of God cleanses us from all our sins. He said this because Jesus has saved us by laying down His own life. Although the Scripture summarizes the gist of salvation like this, but when we take a closer look, we can see that the Apostle John believed in the water, the blood, and the Spirit. The Spirit here refers to God, and this God was conceived in the body of Mary. Having come to this earth incarnated in the flesh of man as our Savior, Jesus bore all our sins once and for all by being baptized by John the Baptist. He was then crucified to death to bear the condemnation of our sins in our place. He then rose from the dead, thereby, becoming our Savior. It is through the water and the blood that the Lord has saved us from our sins. The Lord Himself took upon all our sins by being baptized, and while shouldering the sins of the world, He was crucified to bear their condemnation. He has thereby become our Savior. 
Everyone must of necessity believe that God is light as the precondition to sharing true fellowship with Him. God is light. Light means there can be no darkness at all—that is, the believers in the gospel of the water and the Spirit have absolutely no sin in their hearts. You, too, must believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit so that you may share fellowship with those who have received the remission of sins. You must also become sinless by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Only then can you be freed from all transgressions. Can you truthfully testify with absolute certainly with a clear conscience, that no sin can be found your heart at all? If you are indeed completely sinless, then you have become a true child of God. 
 
 
Those Who Still Have Not Received the Remission of Sins Despite Believing in Jesus 
 
Such sinful people are described in verse 8-10. Verse 8 says clearly, “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.” God is light. And to blot out all our sins, He sent His Son and He has indeed eradicated our sins with the water and the blood. He has thereby made us sinless. He has also made us righteous. This is the will of God. Just as God is light, we the believers are also light. That’s why God told us that we are the light of the world. It’s because we have no sin that we can now with boldness preach the gospel to others. 
However, for those who still have not received the remission of sins, those who still walk in darkness, and those whose hearts remain sinful even as they profess to believe in Jesus, if they claim to be sinless, then they are only deceiving themselves. Those whose hearts remain sinful even as they believe in Jesus must admit their sinful state and confess, “I am sinful even though I believe in Jesus as my Savior. I am still a sinner.” It’s only then can they start believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit when they hear it preached. You must be able to ruminate on the gospel of the water and the Spirit to remind yourself of how the Lord has blotted out your sins. This is absolutely necessary for you to realize God’s love when you read His Words in the Bible. It’s when you realize that Jesus Christ has blotted out all your sins with the gospel of the water and the Spirit that you can receive the true remission of sins. 
The God-spoken gospel Word of the water and the Spirit dwells in our hearts and enables us to realize that we have received the remission of sins. The evidence showing that we have received the remission of sins into our hearts is obtained only if we have God’s gospel Word of the water and the Spirit in our hearts. It’s because this Word of salvation is in our hearts that we are qualified to share fellowship with our Lord in this Word. It’s because this Word of salvation is in our hearts that we have become sinless. And it’s because this Word of salvation is in our hearts that the Holy Spirit has come into our hearts to dwell with us. If this Word of salvation is not found in your heart, then you are still sinful just as you were before you believed in Jesus. That’s because it is the Word of God that blots out your sins. Indeed, your sins do not disappear just because you believe in Jesus emotionally. 
It’s very difficult to discover the righteousness of Jesus and to receive the remission of sins by refusing to believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. It is in fact extremely difficult if not impossible. Does your heart have faith in the gospel Word of the water and the Spirit? If you believe in this Word wholeheartedly, then you have received the remission of sins into your heart, for you have the Word of salvation testifying in your heart. On the other hand, if you do not have this Word of salvation in your heart, then you have not received the remission of sins. Why is this so? It’s because you do not have the Word of testimony in your heart which bears witness that the Lord has indeed blotted out all your sins. 
Those who have not received the remission of sins do not have the testimony of the Word of salvation, and therefore, Satan can easily occupy their minds. It’s absolutely indispensable for us to hang on to the Word of God by faith. If you want to be truly saved, then you must hold on to the Word of salvation rather than your own emotional thoughts and feelings. You ought to realize and believe in the Word of the Lord, which confirms, “This is what the Lord said. The Lord has blotted out my sins with the gospel of the water and the Spirit. When He was baptized by John the Baptist, He said, ‘Permit it to be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.’ Just as all sins were passed on to a live sacrificial animal when the High Priest laid his hands on its head, and in the same way when John the Baptist baptized Jesus, all the sins of mankind were passed on to Jesus. My sins were also passed on at that time.” 
Unless you have God’s Word of salvation in your heart, you have not received the remission of sins. You have not been remitted from your personal sins either. Deliverance from all your personal sins also requires that you believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Therefore, only if you and I hang on to God’s Word of salvation does this Word protect our hearts and souls. Even though you and I have many shortcomings, the Word of salvation reigns over our souls, with Jesus telling us, “Although you are imperfect, I have nevertheless blotted out all your sins. I accepted all your sins and washed them away when I was baptized by John the Baptist. It was to bear all the sins of the whole world that I was baptized by John the Baptist. Because I shouldered the sins of the world like this, I bore the condemnation of your sins by being crucified to death. And rising from the dead again, I have given you new life.” Like this, the Word of salvation bears witness on our behalf. It’s because you and I have this Word of salvation that we have been freed from all our sins. The gospel Word of the water and the Spirit is what makes us into light just as God is light, and by coming to this Word, we can receive the remission of sins. You and I must therefore hang on to the Word always. 
 
 
What We Must Know
 
It’s written in 1 John 1:9, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” This passage, too, should be accepted just as it is. If we have any sin, then we should confess it. The Lord is faithful and just to have already cleansed us. The Lord promised in the Old Testament that He would blot out all our sins, and in the days of the New Testament, the Lord indeed came to this earth, and sent John the Baptist as well. And John the Baptist passed all the sins of mankind to Jesus by baptizing Him. Having thus borne the sins of the world, Jesus was crucified to death. And rising from the dead again, He has saved us. 
Therefore, if anyone whose heart is sinful confesses to God and honestly admits, “I indeed am a sinner,” this person can be remitted from all the sins of his entire lifetime, thanks to the God-given gospel of the water and the Spirit. But, what would happen if one were not to confess his sins to God even as they remain intact in his heart? This person would not receive the remission of sins. Even if someone gave you delicious food, if you were to rather look at it instead of eating it, it will never become yours. As a descendant of Adam, everyone was born with sins, just as the Bible says that everyone has sinned against God and fallen short of His glory. Human beings therefore reject the will of God in their lives, and rather seek after the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life. 
Like this, by our very nature we cannot help but sin in every possible way, whether it is with our hearts, thoughts, or acts. Yet despite this, our Lord has blotted out all our sins with the gospel of the water and the Spirit. There is only one thing we can do then, and that is, we ought to accept this salvation with thanksgiving, saying to the Lord, “Lord, You are right. You have indeed blotted out all my sins with the gospel of the water and the Spirit. I had been a sinner before your face until I came to know this gospel of the water and the Spirit. I had sins in my heart. And for that reason I had to be cast into hell. Standing before You like this, I should be thrown into hell. But You have blotted out all the sins of the world. You bore all my sins by being baptized by John the Baptist, saying to him, ‘It is thus fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness.’ Thank You, Lord. I believe in Your righteousness. You are indeed the Lamb of God who took away the sins of the world. And You indeed finished all the work of salvation. I believe You, Lord. I believe in the Word when it says, ‘Now where there is remission of these, there is no longer an offering for sin.’ I believe in every Word of salvation. Thank You, Lord.” 
Like this, when we realize, believe, and accept that our Lord has blotted out all our sins with the gospel of the water and the Spirit, then we are made sinless even though our hearts were sinful. Because the Lord loved us first with the gospel of the water and the Spirit, He has already blotted out all our sins on His own in the passed tense. Therefore, if you just believe in this Truth of salvation constituted by the gospel of the water and the Spirit, you will surely be saved from all your sins. 
We reach our true salvation only through the Word of God. Whoever wants to share true fellowship with God and His righteous must first of all confess his sins. One must first confess himself as a sinner. The Bible says that it is appointed for man to be born once, and to face the judgment afterwards. Once born, everyone is appointed to die once, but after this the judgment. All human beings are born with sin, they all live in sin, and are trapped in sin, therefore, all are destined to be cast into hell. That is precisely why we need the Savior. This Savior is none other than Jesus, and therefore His work of salvation is indispensable. In particular, it’s absolutely indispensable for us to have faith in the baptism Jesus Christ received from John the Baptist and the blood He shed on the Cross. The baptism the Lord received and the blood He shed on the Cross are the works of salvation that is indispensable for us. Do you accept the Lord’s gospel work of the water and the Spirit as your salvation? If you truly do, then you will be saved from all your sins. If sinners confess their sins in this way, they will be saved by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit that constitutes the Lord’s work of salvation. 
 
 
The Right Faith to Have
 
It is wrong not to confess even as your heart is sinful. If anyone says, “I have sins in my heart even though I believe in Jesus. But still, because I believe in Jesus, I will go to Heaven,” then such people will go to hell without fail. Instead, one ought to admit and confess, “Even though I believe in Jesus, there are still sins in my heart. I must have misunderstood something and misbelieved along the way. I was a sinner both before and after believing in Jesus, and I am still a sinner now. This can only mean that I have not yet been saved from my sins. Lord, I still have not received the remission of sins. I remain a sinner. You said that You have saved me through the gospel of the water and the Spirit, so I looked these things up in the Bible and pondered upon them, and now I realize that Your Word is true. You are right, Lord. I now believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. You have already blotted out all my sins. I’ve finally realized it now, and I accept this truth into my heart with all sincerity. I believe in You, Lord.” It’s only then that one receives the true remission of sins. 
The Bible says, “If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us” (1 John 1:10). Is there anyone who has not sinned before God? Even among those who know and believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, is there anyone who can say confidently that he or she has not committed any sin at all since receiving the remission of sins? What about those who do not believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit? Can any of them say, “I have never missed a single morning prayer meeting? I have done all kinds of good works. At most, I might have committed a few sins, and these sins were remitted by the blood of the Cross. While I was praying, the Lord appeared before me and told me that He had forgiven my sins. So I have received the remission of sins.” Is this you, your confession?
My fellow believers, there is no one who has never sinned at all, whether we are speaking of sinners or the righteous who have received the remission of sins. Everyone commits sin. If we say that we have not sinned before God, then we are making Him a liar. It’s only because the Lord took away all our sins that we have no sin; it’s not because we have not sinned. The Scripture says that Jesus is the Lamb of God who took away the sins of the world, and it is precisely for this reason that we are sinless. So how could we say to God that we have not sinned? Although we have not fully lived our lives in this world yet, the Lord nevertheless took away all the sins of this world once and for all through the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Can we then say to God that we have not sinned? Didn’t God say that He took away all the sins of this world, even though our lives in this world are not over? If we say that we have not sinned ever since we received the remission of sins, how can we square this up with the Word which says, that the Lord has blotted out all the sins of this world? It’s a lie to say that we have not sinned. After all, don’t we still commit sin even after receiving the remission of sins? Of course we do. 
Whoever claims to have not sinned before God does not have the gospel Word of the water and the Spirit in his heart, the Word of God. If God tells us that we are sinful, then we ought to admit this and turn ourselves in just as God says. I can’t emphasize enough just how important it is for us to admit ourselves, recognizing that we are sinners, that our consciences are full of sins, that we are incapable of doing good despite trying hard, and that we are destined for hell. It’s then that we can truly share fellowship with God. And it’s then that we can have genuine fellowship with the righteous and the saints of God also. 
 
 
From Where Does True Fellowship Come?
 
Knowing that God is light, we must be washed from our sins by believing in the God-spoken Word, the gospel of the water and the Spirit. When we recognize and admit to God that we are sinners, and when we believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, the Word of the true light, it is then that we are able to have genuine fellowship with God. God is saying to us, “You are sinners. You were born into this world with sins, and you will sin throughout the rest of your lives.” Like this, God is telling us that we are depraved sinners. Do you admit this? The Bible says that if the Law of God were to be strictly applied to us, we would all be cast into hell. We must accept this Word of God into our hearts, and believe that God has blotted out all the sins of such depraved people like us with the gospel of the water and the Spirit. To do so is to reach salvation. It is, therefore, by faith that we receive the remission of sins. It is by believing in the God-spoken gospel Word of the water and the Spirit that we become the light of the world. We are made God’s children by believing in His righteousness. 
Has our Lord blotted out all your sins and mine with the water and the Spirit? He has indeed blotted them all out once and for all. Has God made us the believers in the gospel of the water and the Spirit into the light? He has indeed turned us into the light of the world. We are also the children of the light in God’s Kingdom. Our Lord said that those who turn many people to the right path will shine like the stars for ever and ever in His Kingdom. We are the light of the world. The Lord Himself called us the light of the world and the salt of the earth. This means we are absolutely indispensable to the world. That’s who we are. 
If you and I were instead darkness, then we would cast darkness upon the world and be completely useless. Out of seven billion people living in this world, even if six billion of them believed in Jesus, if they do not know the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and as a result their hearts remain sinful, they are not the light of the world but just darkness. That is why so many Christians nowadays are unable to be the light of the world. Even though there are countless Christians trying hard to live piously, they cannot be the light. They are devoid of light. So they lie to each other and defraud one another, yet think they have not sinned? 
However, the Lord has blotted out all our sins and raised us to be the light of the world. God has made us the believers in the gospel of the water and the Spirit preach this gospel throughout the world. As a result, those who have fellowship with us—that is, those who hear this Word of God preached by us—are finding unspeakable joy. This is so marvelous and wonderful that it never ceases to amaze me. 
My fellow believers, we must consider and ask ourselves if we really are the light or darkness in God’s sight. Even after receiving the remission of sins, our thoughts and acts still go astray, and we still have many shortcomings. In times like these, we must confess to God right away and ruminate on the gospel of the water and the Spirit once again. We must look towards the Truth and think about how the Lord has blotted out our sins. And in doing so, we must believe that the Lord has already turned us into the light of the world and made us sinless. The Lord has given us the faith to overcome this world. He has given us the faith to overcome ourselves also. He has blotted out each and every sin committed by you and me. From the sins that we have committed to the sins that we will commit in the future, the Lord bore them all and blotted them out when He was baptized. He has thereby turned us into someone who can follow the Lord. 
 
 
Misinterpretation of Verse 8
 
Those who are ignorant of the gospel Truth of the water and the Spirit misinterpret verse 8 continuously, claiming that the remission of sins is received just by repenting. Although these people believe in Jesus, because they know and hang on to just the blood of the Cross for salvation, whenever they sin, they turn themselves into sinners once again and beg the Lord in tears to forgive their sins. By doing so, no one can follow the Lord properly. If you are bound by your personal sins, you cannot follow the Lord. Regarding our sins, the Lord said in Isaiah 1:18:
“‘Come now, and let us reason together,’
Says the Lord,
‘Though your sins are like scarlet,
They shall be as white as snow;
Though they are red like crimson,
They shall be as wool.’”
The Bible says here that our sins are scarlet, red like crimson, and thick like the fog. That’s just how many sins we commit. This implies that, since our sins are so many, if we try to be remitted from them just by offering our own prayers of repentance, we will be bound by our sins and not be able to follow the Lord. What, then, should we do to follow the Lord? What must we do to be freed from our personal sins? Knowing that the Lord is light, we must realize and believe that the Lord has turned us into the light as well. We must follow the Lord knowing and believing that He has blotted out all our sins with the gospel of the water and the Spirit. But should we by chance sin, then we ought to admit this sin immediately, and know and believe that the Lord has blotted out even this sin. 
By believing that the Lord has blotted out all our sins, we are able to avoid being bound by sins. It is by having this faith that we can continue to serve the Lord’s righteous work and follow Him. Whoever believes in Jesus naturally wants to do the righteous work. It’s only a matter of course for the believers to do what is right. However, no one who remains sinful can carry out any righteous work. After all, such people are destined to die for their sins, so how could they ever do any righteous work, it’s not possible?
My fellow believers, if we allow ourselves to be bound by our sins, it would simply not be possible for us to live as proper Christians. Jesus is light. He told us to follow Him, for He is the light of the world; and for us to do so, we must first free ourselves from our sins by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. We must follow the Lord by believing that He has saved us by bearing all our sins through His baptism, dying on the Cross, and rising from the dead again. We cannot afford to fall into our own weaknesses or our own thoughts. Nor should we fall into the dogmatic faith of the world. Our co-workers abroad say that many Christians around the world believe in popularly held doctrines. But this is in fact the wide-way. Faith is not a popularity contest. No matter how many people might say that there is nothing wrong for Christians to be sinful despite believing in Jesus, if the Scripture says that it is wrong, then it is wrong. 
The narrow way is believing that the Lord has blotted out all our sins with the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and this is the correct way. The basis of our faith should be what the Word of God says, not what everyone else says. God is holy. It is a huge mistake for sinners to call the holy God their Father. This constitutes a grave sin. Jesus came to this earth when we were sinners. He bore our sins by being baptized in obedience to the will of God the Father. He was then crucified to death, rose from the dead again, and has thereby saved us wholly from the condemnation of our sins. We should therefore not place our faith in our weaknesses, our fleshly thoughts, or commonly taught Christians doctrines. Instead, we should open the Word of God and make sure that our faith is consistent with the Bible.
We have received many emails from abroad bearing witness of salvation. One of them, a sister, said that when she read our first volume, she compared it to the Scripture to see if it was biblically accurate. She was fair-minded, just like the Bereans. The Bible says that the Bereans “were more fair-minded than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so” (Acts 17:11). I can’t emphasize enough just how important it is for us to confirm our beliefs with what the Bible says. 
Many Christians, however, commonly believe in the blood of the Cross alone for salvation even as they seek fellowship with God. Trapped in their sins, such people cannot escape from their sinful condition. They were sinners when they did not believe in Jesus, they remain sinners even after believing in Jesus, and they will die as sinners. Many Christians are fond of confessing to God, “Lord, I am a sinner,” as though this were something to be proud of. But these people will perish as sinners in the end. It is absolutely indispensable for us to discover and believe in the righteousness of the Lord while we are still alive. We must make the righteousness of the Lord ours by faith. 
When God Himself is telling us that He has blotted out our sins and that we are His children, we cannot then say to Him, “Lord, I still have many sins left. I am a sinner. I am grateful that You are calling me Your child, but there still are sins in my heart, and I can’t say that I am Your child. I can’t even tolerate myself.” Are we going to decline like this? There are times when such modesty is appropriate, but this is not one of them. What reason do we have to decline what God is offering us? We are in no position to do so. If God is saying to us that He has blotted out our sins with the gospel of the water and the Spirit, then we ought to accept it right away with thanksgiving. That is the right thing to do. Who are we to decline this offer? Given our wretched state as sinners, why would we decline God’s grace? What basis do we have to decline when we have absolutely no righteousness nor any merit of our own? 
A destitute beggar should gratefully accept the kindness shown by those offering help to him. Refusing to do so is just being arrogant. The Scripture says that pride goes before destruction (Proverbs 16:18). It also says that a haughty spirit goes before a fall (Proverbs 16:18). Rejecting God’s grace is the height of arrogance. God the Father has saved us by sending His Son to this earth and making Him bear our sins and be crucified. This is what we must believe. We must not reject this salvation. We ought to believe with thanksgiving. We ought to be grateful to God. And we ought to glorify God in our lives. Even though we ourselves are full of shortcomings, the Lord has still saved such undeserving people like us. 
He has saved the entire human race. You and I have therefore reached our salvation. We must preach this true gospel to everyone. We must spread this blessed news, the joyous news that the Lord has blotted out all our sins. We must preach this gospel that frees those who are bound by sins and open the eyes of the blind. 
Even now, Christians are unable to follow the Lord because of their personal sins. They remain unable to be freed from their personal sins. For them to be liberated from their personal sins, they must realize and believe that the Lord is light. They must follow Him with the knowledge and faith that the Lord has blotted out all their sins with the gospel of the water and the Spirit, and that He has made them into the light. This is absolutely indispensable. One of our books is titled, Are You Still Suffering Because of Your Personal Sins? What is the cause of suffering for most of today’s Christians? They are suffering and tormented by the fact that despite believing in Jesus, they are still bound by the sins they’ve committed. And they sincerely yearn to be remitted. Many of them say that if they could obtain the true remission of sins, they would have nothing more to wish for even if they were to die right now. Some people even commit suicide over their sins. 
My fellow believers, you must not reject the love of the Lord. Through His Son, God the Father has blotted out all the sins of mankind with the gospel of the water and the Spirit. What will you do then? Will you reject this love or believe in it? You must believe in it with all your heart. You must believe in the righteousness of God before His presence. You should never boast of your own righteousness of the flesh. Do not take pride in your own piety boasting about such mundane things as the offerings you gave to your church, the equipment you donated, the contribution you made to foreign mission, the service you rendered as a volunteer, or the diligence with which you attended every worship service. 
Even if you really did all these things, it was all because of God’s help. You could not have done them unless God had permitted fortuitous circumstances to you. We must break down our own wills and believe in the righteousness of God. We must exalt God’s righteousness. Only then will the Lord be pleased. It is then that the Lord can use us as His willing and faithful workers. We should never boast of our own righteousness before God. The believers in the gospel of the water and the Spirit boast of only the righteousness of the Lord, and they spread and serve this righteousness alone. In contrast, those who still remain sinful even as they believe in Jesus boast of their own righteousness before Him. And when they have nothing to boast of, they are disheartened and dejected. 
What pleases God? God is pleased when we believe that He has blotted out all your sins and mine with the gospel of the water and the Spirit, exalt this Truth of salvation, spread it, and serve it. Would God be pleased with you if you were to continue boasting of your own righteousness? No, of course not. We ought to praise God. We ought to have the faith that is pleasing to God. We ought to throw away our own righteousness. The Book of Isaiah says that all our righteousnesses are like filthy rags (Isaiah 64:6). 
Jeremiah 2:22 says, “For though you wash yourself with lye, and use much soap, Yet your iniquity is marked before Me.” If the Lord had not blotted out your sins and mine with the gospel of the water and the Spirit, our sins would remain intact with us. If the Lord had not already blotted out your sins and mine, these sins of ours would still be with us. Thankfully, however, the Lord had already blotted out your sins and mine about 2,000 years ago. When He came to this earth incarnated in the flesh of man, He bore all our sins by being baptized by John the Baptist in the Jordan River. He was then crucified to death, rose from the dead again, and has thereby blotted out all our sins and fulfilled all righteousness. The Lord is telling us now that there is no more offering for sin, for He has blotted out all our sins, just as He said, “Where there is remission of these, there is no longer an offering for sin” (Hebrews 10:18). 
Therefore, realizing that the Lord has blotted out all our sins, you and I ought to thank God and praise Him. We should never cling to our personal sins and repent from them constantly. As the Bible warns us in 1 John 1:8-10, do not say, “When I believed in Jesus, I became sinless. But if I sin again, then I’d be sinful again. But, even so, I will still go to Heaven since I believe in Jesus. Sure, since I still sin, I’m still a sinner, but the Lord calls on sinners. So sinners can go to Heaven.” No never! Not a single sinner can ever enter Heaven. Although it is to call on sinners that God came to this earth, among those who have been saved by Him, there is absolutely no sinner at all. They have all become sinless. None of them has any sin left at all.
Do not end up deceiving yourself. Do not try to deceive God when you stand before Him. Because we cannot help but sin constantly before God, the Lord already blotted out all our sins once and for all about 2,000 years ago with the gospel Truth of the water and the Spirit. It is with this knowledge that we confess all our wrongdoings and sins to the Lord, realizing and believing that the Lord has already blotted out all these sins also with the water and the Spirit. So let us dwell in the light by this faith and give glory to God in our lives. Know and believe that it is then that God is joyful.