1John 3:1-4 Behold, what manner of love the Father has bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knows us not, because it knew him not. Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it does not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is. And every man that has this hope in him purifies himself, even as he is pure. Whosoever commits sin transgresses also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law.
‘Behold, what manner of love the Father has bestowed upon us’ look upon it and wonder at the kind and quantity of love the Father has given freely and without merit to men (Rom. 8:35-39; Eph. 3:17-19).
‘Sons of God’ sons by adoption (Rom. 8:15; Gal. 4:5; Eph. 1:5) not by begetting as in the case of Christ, who is the only begotten Son of God (John 1:14, 18; 3:16, 18).
‘World knows us not, because it knew him not’ the world will not acknowledge or approve of doctrines and manner of life of the adopted sons because it did not approve of Christ, the only begotten Son.
‘Now are we the sons of God’ John here addresses the adopted sons who work righteousness (2:29).
‘Does not yet appear what we shall be; but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is’ this is the 4th New Testament prophecy in 1 John that is unfulfilled. It is not yet manifest what we shall be like except that we shall have bodies like His glorified human body. This will be at the rapture (Php. 3:20-21; 1Cor. 15:51-54; Col. 3:4). Every person will have his own body, colour, features, and characteristics, as on earth (1Cor. 15:35-54).
‘Every man that has this hope in him purifies himself’ the hope of the rapture is an incentive to purify one’s self even as Christ is pure (1:7, 9; 2:6; 3:3; 5-10; 5:1-4, 18).
‘Even as he is pure’ many proofs are given in the Word that purity is now possible: He shall save … from … sins (Matt. 1:21); for the remission of sins (Matt. 26:28); dead to sin (Rom. 6:2) and reckon ourselves dead to sin (Rom. 6:11); that the body of sin might be destroyed, that we should not serve sin (Rom. 6:6); let not sin reign in your body (Rom. 6:1-23); sin shall not have dominion over you (Rom. 6:14-23); being made free from sin (Rom. 6:18; 8:1-4). They that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts (Gal. 5:16, 24); and that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love (Eph. 1:4). We are commanded to live soberly, righteously, and godly in this present world (Tit. 2:12). Purged our sins (Heb. 1:3; 9:14); be you holy; for I am holy (1Pet. 1:16). The blood of Jesus Christ cleanses us from all sin (1:7, 9). We ought to walk even as He walked (2:6). Whosoever abides in Him sins not . . . is righteous, even as He is (3:6-7). He that commits sin is of the devil (3:8-10; John 8:44). Whoever is born of God sins not (4:17; 5:4-5, 18). Without holiness, no man shall see the Lord (Heb. 12:1-29).
‘Whosoever commits sin transgresses also the law’ whoever sins breaks the law and incurs the death penalty (Ezek. 18:4; Rom. 6:23; 8:12-13).
‘For sin is the transgression of the law’ the sin in man is twofold: transgression of the law (3:4) and the spirit and nature of the devil in sinners (2Cor. 5:17)
In 2 Corinthians 5:17 we read “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature” Therefore, in view of the fact that we do not know any man after the flesh, not even Christ, it is vain for any man to profess a relationship with Christ according to the flesh, while he is unchanged in heart and life and dead in trespasses and sins.