1John 1:5-10 This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto 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 the truth: But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanse 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.
‘This then is the message which we have heard of him … God is light, and in him is no darkness at all’ This is the chief message Christ came to deliver, of which John can testify in person, that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all. Neither Moses nor the prophets ever gave the fullness of this message (John 1:16-17). Christ Himself is the chief manifestation of God’s light to men (John 1:1-9; 3:16-20; 8:12; 12:35-36).
‘God is light’ God is a person and dwells “in the light that no man can approach unto; whom no man has seen (in all His glory) nor can see” (1Tim. 6:16). The phrase “God is light” does not constitute the being of God. It must be understood in the same sense that we understand God is love, God is good, God is a consuming fire, and other statements about Him. In the same sense, we understand that Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life, or the door (John 10:9; 14:6). These expressions don’t do away with the reality and personality of God and Christ.
‘Darkness’ as the source of wisdom, knowledge, holiness, and truth, God cannot have the least degree of ignorance, imperfection, sinfulness, and darkness. God is to man what the sun is to our world, hence the importance of the message that God is light and no darkness at all.
‘If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie’ there are 5 “If’s” of Human experience given: The hypocrite – (1:6) if we say we know God and still walk in darkness, our sins prove we are liars. The Christian – (1:7) if we walk in the light, we have fellowship with the Father and the Son (1:3) and the blood of Jesus Christ keeps us cleansed from all sin. The self-deceiver – (1:8) if we say we have no sin to confess, that is, we are not sinners, we deceive ourselves because we know better, and we lie. Gnostics and other heretics deny that they are sinners and that Christ’s death atones for sin. The penitent sinner – (1:9) if we confess our sins, that is, if we will be honest and acknowledge we are sinners (Rom. 3:23), God is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. The wilful rebel against God – (1:10) if we say that we have never sinned, we make God a liar and His Word is not in us. In 1John 1:8 the idea is of contending that we are not guilty before God; here it is that we were never guilty.
‘Blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanse us from all sin’ we are cleansed from all sin from the time of confession of sin (1:9) and as long as we walk in the light (1:7).
‘If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness’ if we do one thing – confess our sins – God will do four things: Be faithful to us; be just with us; forgive our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.