1John 2:28-29 And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming. If you know that he is righteous, you know that every one that does righteousness is born of him.
‘Little children’ a term used nine times in this epistle (2:1, 12, 13, 18, 28; 3:7, 18; 4:4, 21). It is used elsewhere only in John 13:33 and Galatians 4:19. There are four stages of Christian experience: infants; newborn (1Jn. 2:12); little children; those able to walk and talk (1Jn. 2:13); young men; those grown to the prime of life and no longer tossed about like children by fallacies (1Jn. 2:13-14); fathers; those who are matured in the Lord (1Jn. 2:13-14).
‘Abide in him’ two such commands are given in Scripture: Abide in Him (1Jn. 2:28) and abide in Me (John 15:4). Keeping the commandments is the only guarantee of constant abiding (John 15:10). Abiding is the condition of fruit-bearing (John 15:4, 7). If one does not abide he is cut off and destroyed like a branch (John 15:6).
‘That, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming’ this is the 3rd New Testament prophecy in 1 John unfulfilled – to be found in Him at His coming is one of the purposes of abiding in Christ. To this end, Paul counted all loss for Christ and made every known consecration (Php. 3:7-16).
‘Confidence’ the Greek word parrhayseeah, all outspokenness, that is, frankness, bluntness, publicity; by implication assurance and bold – boldness in speech.
‘At his coming’ this coming refers to the rapture when Christ will come for the saints who will rise to meet Him in the air (John 14:1-3; 1Cor. 15:23, 15:51-58; Php. 3:20-21; Col. 3:4; 1Thess. 4:13-17; 2Thess. 2:7-8).
‘If you know that he is righteous, you know that every one that does righteousness is born of him’ here three things are mentioned that Christians can know: That Christ is righteous; that every born-again person is righteous and that doing righteousness is proof of the new birth (1Jn. 3:6-10; 5:1-4, 18).
‘Does righteousness’ the blessings of those who do the will of God are: entrance into the kingdom (Matt. 7:21); being kept from falling (Matt. 7:24-29); confirmation that one’s deeds are of God (John 3:21); answers to prayer (John 9:31); being blessed (Jas. 1:22-25); never moved (Ps. 15:1-5); to abide forever (1Jn. 2:17); the new birth (1Jn. 2:29); righteousness like Christ (1Jn. 3:7) and confirmation of sonship (3Jn. 1:11).