Letter Writing

So much communication is carried out today by text or email and the art of letter writing is being lost. Receiving a personal letter, hand written, is very rare today and when it does happen it can be a very special experience.

An elderly fisherman wrote a letter to a catalogue company. “Please send me one of those engines for my boat you advertise on page 438, and if it is any good I will send you a cheque for the amount of £899.99.” In a few days he received a reply from the catalogue company. It read as follows: “Please send the cheque for £899.99 and if it is any good we will send the engine.”

Both the fisherman and the catalogue company had a reason for writing the letter.

In John’s 1st epistle he clearly tells us he has a threefold purpose or reason for writing his letter.

1) That our joy might be full. In 1 John 1:4 he writes “and these things write we unto you, that your joy may be full.”

There are times in life when the joy experience is difficult to maintain, but we have learned like the Psalmist in Psalm 30:5, “weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.” John shows us the plan of God is fullness of joy.

2) His second reason for writing is that we might not sin and if we do sin we would know what to do about itIn 1 John 2:1  John writes “My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not.  And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.

There are also times in life when we fail and sin. What are we to do, give up? No not at all, John reminds us of our great advocate who represents us before our heavenly father, “yes they are guilty but I have paid the price.” Because of what Jesus Christ the righteous did for us at the place called Calvary we receive forgiveness and pardon. What a great saviour Jesus is.

3) His third reason for writing was that we might know that we have eternal life. In 1 John 5:13  John writes: “These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.”

This is what many people really want to know. John tells us in his letter that you can know for sure that you have eternal life. Notice the words carefully. He is writing to those who “believe on the name of the Son of God.” If you believe, put your trust in Jesus Christ you can know for sure that you have eternal life. It is not putting your trust in John the writer, nor is it trusting any preacher or Church, but it is in putting you complete trust in Jesus Christ and Him alone that guarantees that you have eternal life.

What a great letter John pens, I am so glad he tells us why he wrote it. I am truly glad I have joy, and an advocate in Jesus to represent me, and eternal life because of Jesus. All of this is available to all who are now reading this letter.

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Roy Leith was born in Ballymena, Northern Ireland, in 1951. He married Daphne in 1972 and has two daughters and four grandchildren.
In forty years of ministry he has pastored churches in Randalstown, Ballymena, Portrush and Belfast. He attended the Assemblies of God Bible College in England, and was ordained by the Assemblies of God, Great Britain and Ireland. As chairman of the Irish Regional Council he played a major role in the establishment of the Assemblies of God Ireland, and served as National Council Chairman for a number of years.
In September 2016 having completed twenty two years as Pastor of a thriving Church in Belfast, and having reached retirement age, he stepped down from the Leadership and now serves the body of Christ as an itinerant Bible teacher. Read Roy’s Previous Blog posts for Mustard Seed Blog: Give Us This Day Our Daily Bread. Do You Love Me?

 

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