“Dear children don’t let anyone deceive you about this. When people do what is right it shows that they are righteous just as Christ is righteous.
But when people keep on sinning it shows that they belong to the devil who has been sinning since the beginning. But the Son of God came to destroy the works of the devil. Those who have been born into God’s family do not make a practice of sinning because God’s life is in them, so they can’t keep on sinning because they are children of God. So now we can tell who are children of God and who are children of the devil. Anyone who does not live righteously and does not love other believers does not belong to God.” – 1John 3:7-10
Our lives prove to the world to whom we belong. We are either children of the devil or children of God. Let me clearly state here that we are not talking about earning your salvation. No John is not saying you are saved by your works. John is saying this is how we can know if one is a for real believer or not. Your actions are the result of the relationship you have with your father. Children of the devil remain in their sin patterns. Children of God have their chains broken and thus sinful patterns or practices can be stopped. As a popular song says, “He’s the chain breaker.”
I stress this morning that we do not speak here of perfectionism. You and I will not be perfect until we join with Christ in eternity. We do have a sin nature to grapple with on a daily basis. Still John speaks of continuing to practice sin. Thus he speaks of habits and not one time mess ups or accidents. While I do not have the right to call you a child of God or a child of the devil, he does give us a standard with which to examine ourselves. Just who are you listening to, God or the devil?
And thus we also see that some things just cannot truly be. I cannot be a practicing abortion doctor, promoting the killing of babies, encouraging young girls to do this, and call myself a believer and be honest. To keep on killing would reveal that you are a child of the devil. Sorry if that upsets you, but actions speak louder than words.
What about other known sin patterns? Can you be a Christian and also be a practicing LGBT activist and gay marriage promoter? Can you be a Christian drug dealer? What about a murderer for hire, a practicing prostitute, a modern day Bonnie and Clyde? I think we all know the answer here, however, our world wants to say otherwise.
John has given us this guidance to use in our ever confusing world. It can help us decide who is speaking and living the truth and who is not, thus helping us know who to listen to. Look at actions and not just nice words. Are you a child of God or a child of the devil? And if you happen to be a child of the devil would you like to be adopted into God’s family? You can be. Let us go out today and live as children of our God, doing what is right and loving one another.