The First Letter of


The Word of Life

11That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon and our hands felt of, concerning the word of life--2the life was made apparent, and we have seen [it], and are testifying [to it], and are declaring to you the eternal life which was with the Father and was made apparent to us--3that which we have seen and heard we are declaring also to you, so that you also may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship [is] with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. 4And we are writing these things so that our1 joy may be made full.

The Test of Righteousness

5And this is the message which we have heard from him and are disclosing to you, that God is light and in him is no darkness at all. 6If we say that we have fellowship with him and we are walking in darkness, we are lying and are not doing the truth; 7but if we are walking in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son keeps cleansing us from all sin. 8If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9If we keep confessing our sins, he is faithful and righteous to forgive us [of our] sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 10If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.

21My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you might not sin; and [yet] if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous; 2and he is the atonement1 for our sins, and not for ours only but also for [the sins of] the whole world. 3And by this we know that we have come to know him, if we are keeping his commandments. 4The one who says "I have come to know him" and [yet] is not keeping his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him. 5But whoever is keeping his word, in him truly love for God has been perfected. By this we know that we are in him: 6the one who says he is abiding in him ought also himself to be walking like this, just as he walked.


Chapter 1: 1Other ancient authorities read your

Chapter 2: 1Or, propitiation

I John 2

The Test of Love

7Beloved, I am not writing a new commandment to you, but an old commandment which you had from the beginning; the old commandment is the word which you have heard. 8Again, I am writing a new commandment to you, which is true in him and in you, because2 the darkness is passing away and the true light is already shining. 9The one who says he is in the light and hates his brother is in the darkness even now. 10The one who loves his brother abides in the light, and there is no snare [to sin] in him. 11But the one who hates his brother is in the darkness and is walking in the darkness, and does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded his eyes.

12I am writing to you, little children, because [your] sins have been forgiven you on account of his name. 13I am writing to you, fathers, because you have come to know the One [who is] from the beginning. I am writing to you, young men, because you have overcome the evil one. I have written to you, children, because you have come to know the Father. 14I have written to you, fathers, because you have come to know the One [who is] from the beginning. I have written to you, young men, because you are strong, and the word of God abides in you, and you have overcome the evil one.

15Do not keep loving the world nor the things in the world. If anyone keeps loving the world, the love for the Father is not in him. 16Because all that is in the world, the desire of the flesh and the desire of the eyes and the arrogance of life, is not from the Father but is from the world. 17And the world is passing away, and so is its desire; but the one who does the will of God abides forever.

The Test of True Faith

18Children, it is the last hour; and just as you have heard that antichrist is coming, even [so] now there have become many antichrists; from this we know that it is the last hour. 19They went out from us, but they were not of us. For if they had been of us, they would have continued with us; but [they went out], so that it might be made apparent that none of them are of us. 20And you have an anointing from the Holy One, and you all know.3 21I have written to you, not because you do not know the truth, but because you

2Or, that
3Other ancient authorities read you know all things

I John 2

know it, and because no lie is of the truth. 22Who is the liar if it is not the one who denies the Father and the Son. 23Anyone who denies the Son does not have the Father either; the one who confesses the Son has the Father also. 24Let what you heard from the beginning keep abiding in you. If what you heard from the beginning abides in you, [then] you will also abide in the Son and in the Father. 25And this is the promise he has promised us,4 eternal life.

26I have written these things to you about those who are trying to lead you astray. 27And [yet] the anointing which you received from him abides in you, and you have no need that anyone should teach you; but as his anointing teaches you about all things, and is true, and is no lie, and just as it has taught you, keep abiding in him.

The Practice of Righteousness

28And now, little children, keep abiding in him, so that whenever5 he appears we may have boldness and not shrink from him in shame at his advent. 29If you know that he is righteous, you know6 that indeed everyone who does righteousness has been born of him.

31See what wonderful love the Father has given us, that we should be called children of God; and [so] we are. For this reason the world does not know us, because it did not know him. 2Beloved, we are now children of God, and it has not yet been made apparent what we shall be. We do know that whenever he appears1 we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is. 3And everyone who has this hope in him purifies himself as he is pure.

4Everyone who commits sin is also doing lawlessness; indeed sin is lawlessness. 5And you know that he appeared to take away sins,2 and in him there is no sin. 6Anyone who abides in him does not keep sinning; anyone who keeps sinning has neither seen him nor known him. 7Little children, let no one be leading you astray. The one who keeps doing righteousness is righteous, as he is righteous. 8The one who keeps committing sin is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the beginning. For this [purpose] the Son of God appeared, that he might destroy the works of the

4Other ancient authorities read you
5Lit., if
6Or, [then] know
1Or, if it is made apparent
2Other ancient authorities read our sins

I John 3

devil. 9Anyone born of God does not keep committing sin; because his seed abides in him, and he cannot keep sinning because he has been born of God. 10By this it is apparent [who are] the children of God, and [who are] the children of the devil: anyone who does not keep doing righteousness is not of God, and [neither is] the one who does not love his brother.

The Practice of Love

11[That is] because this is the message which you have heard from the beginning, that we should keep loving one another, 12[and] not [be] like Cain [who] was of the evil one and slaughtered his brother. And for what [reason] did he slaughter him? Because his [own] works were evil and his brother's righteous. 13And [so] quit marveling, brothers, if the world hates you. 14We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we keep loving the brothers. The one who does not love abides in death. 15Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him. 16By this we have come to know love, that he laid down his life for us; and we ought to lay down [our] lives for the brothers. 17But whoever has the world's goods and observes his brother in need, and [yet] closes his heart3 against him, how does God's love abide in him? 18Little children, let us not be loving in word nor in tongue but in deed and in truth.

19And by this we shall know that we are of the truth, and reassure our heart before him 20in whatever our heart may condemn us; because God is greater than our heart, and he knows everything. 21Beloved, if our heart does not condemn [us], we have boldness before God; 22and we receive from him whatever we ask, because we keep his commandments and do the things that are pleasing in his sight. 23And this is his commandment, that we should keep believing in the name of his Son Jesus Christ and keep loving one another, just as he gave us a commandment. 24And the one who keeps his commandments abides in him, and he in him. And by this we know that he abides in us, by the Spirit which he has given us.

The Practice of Faith

41Beloved, do not be believing every spirit, but be examining the spirits [to see] whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world. 2By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit which confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God, 3and every

3Lit., internal organs

I John 4

spirit which does not confess Jesus1 is not of God. And this is the [spirit] of antichrist, of which [spirit] you heard that it is coming, and now it is in the world already. 4You are of God, little children, and have overcome them; because the One in you is greater than the one in the world. 5They are of the world; because of this, they speak what is of the world, and the world listens to them. 6We are of God: the one who knows God listens to us, and he who is not of God does not listen to us. From this we know the spirit of truth and the spirit of error.

Love from God

7Beloved, let us keep loving one another; because love is of God, and everyone who keeps loving has been born of God and knows God. 8The one who does not keep loving does not know God, because God is love. 9In this the love of God was made apparent among us, that God has sent his only unique Son into the world, so that we might live through him. 10In this is love, not that we have loved2 God but that he loved us and sent his Son [to be] the atonement3 for our sins. 11Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to keep loving one another. 12No one has ever looked on God; if we keep loving one another, God abides in us and his love has been perfected in us.

13By this we know that we abide in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit. 14And we have looked on and testify that the Father has sent the Son [to be] the Savior of the world. 15Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. 16And we have come to know and believe the love God has for us.

God is love, and the one who abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him. 17In this love has been perfected with us, so that we may have boldness in the day of judgment, because as he is so are we in this world. 18There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear, because fear has [to do with] punishment, and the one who fears has not been perfected in love. 19We love, because he first loved us. 20If anyone says, "I love God," and hates his brother, he is a liar; for the one who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot4 be loving God whom he has not seen. 21And this

1Other ancient authorities read which annuls Jesus
2Other ancient authorities read we loved
3Or, propitiation
4Other ancient authorities read how can he

I John 4

commandment we have from him, that the one who loves God should keep loving his brother also.

Victory through Faith

51Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ has been born of God, and everyone who loves the One of whom he was born also loves the one born of him. 2By this we know that we love the children of God, whenever we are loving God and doing his commandments. 3For this is the love of God; that we keep his commandments. And his commandments are not burdensome, 4because everything that has been born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that overcomes the world, our faith. 5And who is the one who overcomes the world except the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?

6This is the One who came through water and blood, Jesus Christ, not by the water only but by the water and by the blood. 7And the Spirit is the One who testifies, because the Spirit is the truth. 8[That is] because there are three who testify:1 the Spirit, and the water, and the blood; and [these] three agree as one. 9If we receive the testimony of men, the testimony of God is greater, because this is the testimony of God that he has testified about his Son. 10The one who believes in the Son of God has the testimony in himself. The one who does not believe God has made him a liar, because he has not believed in the testimony that God has testified about his Son. 11And this is the testimony, that God gave us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. 12The one who has the Son has life; the one who does not have the Son of God does not have life.

Things to Know

13I have written these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life. 14And this is the boldness which we have toward him, that if we ask anything in accordance with his will he hears us. 15And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have [obtained] the requests which we asked from him.

16If anyone sees his brother sinning [with] a sin [which is] not to death, he shall ask, and [God] will give him life for those who are not sinning to death. There is sin [which is] to death; I am not saying that he should make

1A few late authorities insert in heaven: the Father, the Word, and the Holy Spirit; and these three are one. 20And there are three who testify in the earth:

I John 5

a request about that. 17All unrighteousness is sin, and [yet] there is sin [which is] not to death.

18We know that anyone who has been born of God does not keep sinning, but the One who was born of God keeps him,2 and the evil one does not touch him. 19We know that we are of God, and the whole world is lying in [the power of] the evil one. 20And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, so that we may know the One who is true; and we are in the One who is true, in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life. 21Little children, guard yourselves from idols.

2Other ancient authorities read the one who was born of God keeps himself
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