From the start of this epistle, John has been warning the believers of the evil that opposes true fellowship with God. Sin, darkness, Satan, and the world can make a person blind and can cause him to stumble. Therefore, believers need to be aware of them. In this passage, John discusses another element of evil-the antichrist-in order to guard the believers against the deception of heresy.
Did You Know...?
- Rise of the Antichrists and Their Separation from Church (2:18-19)
- Anointing and Knowledge of the Truth (2:20-21)
- Antichrist’s Denial of Christ (2:22-23)
- Abiding of the Truth and the Teaching of the Anointing (2:24-27)
- Abiding in God and Practicing Righteousness (2:28-29)
What are the ways and teachings of the antichrist?Hide Answer
They separated themselves from the believers (19). They lied by denying that Jesus is the Christ (22). They tried to deceive true believers (26).
What is “the last hour”?Hide Answer
The term “last hour” should be understood in the context of verse 17, “the world is passing away, and the lust of it.” The author does not seem to imply that the apostolic age was the end of world history. He is teaching that the order of the evil one, including the antichrist, is temporal and coming to an end. The rise of the antichrist, according to the prophecies, is an indication that this world is indeed passing away. (To see how the word “hour” is used to indicate the arrival or fulfillment of a destined time, refer to John 2:4, 4:21; 7:30; 8:20; 12:23).
Explain the meaning of verse 19. Who does “us” refer to ?Hide Answer
The word “us” refers to the church. The antichrist’s departure from the body of Christ shows that they were never part of the body in the first place. True believers will always remain in Christ’s body.
According to this verse, where might the antichrist come from in the last days?Hide Answer
They might come from the community of believers (cf. Mt 13:24- 26), although they were never part of the community.
What is “the anointing”?Hide Answer
Just as anointing served as a sign of being chosen for the priests and kings of the past, anointing in the believer also refers to the status of being chosen. The anointing of God is by the Holy Spirit (3:24; Lk 4:18; Acts 10:38; 2Cor 1:21,22). So the anointing of God means the abiding of the Holy Spirit in believers.
What is the purpose of the anointing? Explain how the anointing accomplishes this purpose.Hide Answer
The Holy Spirit teaches us so we may know the truth (21, Jn 16:13). He gives us spiritual wisdom to reveal to us the things of God and help us remember the teachings of our Lord (1Cor 2:10; Eph 1:17; Jn 16:13; 14:26).
What does it mean by “you know all things”?Hide Answer
“All things” refer to the truth (21,27; cf. Jn 14:26), which is also known as the things of the Spirit (1Cor 2:10-15). The Holy Spirit teaches us to know the things of God. More specifically, the things of God have to do with the gospel of grace and salvation through Jesus Christ (1Cor 2:9).
Do you “know all things”? Explain.
How do we know that the antichrist is from the wicked one?Hide Answer
The Antichrist’s denial of Jesus as Christ shows that they are liars who are opposed to the saving work of God. Since Jesus Christ is the only way to God, denial of Him is denial of the Father (22,23). Satan, the father of lies, stops people from receiving salvation by spreading lies, and he does so through the Antichrist.
How do we acknowledge the Son?Hide Answer
We acknowledge our Lord through our confession and through our obedience to Christ’s commands (3,4; Jn 13:34,35).
Does verse 27 mean that we do not need to be taught by others about anything? What is the context of this statement?Hide Answer
Teaching is among the gifts that the Spirit distributes to some in the church (1Cor 12:28; Eph 4:11). The apostles themselves taught the believers in the church. Believers also need to teach each other with God’s word (Col 3:16). So this verse is not asking us to ignore the teachings of other believers. It is exhorting us to rely on the Holy Spirit rather than listen to deceptive teachings (26).
List all the recordings of “abiding” in this passage.
How can we abide in Christ?Hide Answer
We need to remain faithful to the Lord Jesus, who has promised us eternal life (25). We also need to live according to His teachings and examples (6,29).
Review the passage and write down how we can guard against the antichrist.Hide Answer
Hold on to our confession of Jesus as Lord (23). Hold on to the promise of eternal life (25). Hold on to the truth which the Holy Spirit has taught us (27).