Have you ever wondered how you can know who is true and who is false?
Do you know that the Bible tells us we can know for a certain?
1 John 4:1
"Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out out into the world."
If you will notice the verse above says we are not to believe every spirit...that word spirit is not capitalized so we know it is not talking about the Holy Spirit which is God..but a spirit that comes from a man/woman. We are to try/test the spirit to see whether they are of God..the reason being that many false prophets have gone out into the world.
You may wonder how can I test/try that spirit so I will know for a certainty? Verse 2 and 3 of 1 John 4 has the answer for us.
"Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God: And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world."
When John penned down these words he said that the spirit of antichrist was already in the world at that time. Now don't get misled..he was not talking about the Antichrist who will come on the scene during the great tribulation..but he was talking about his spirit..his spirit was in the world at that time..and sure is in the world today..and comes through many false religions that do not teach that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh. What that means is they do not believe that Jesus Christ was the Son of God ..or that He in fact was God come in the flesh...through the virgin birth. You can believe it..anyone..any religion in the world today who does not believe that Jesus ( God the Son) came in the flesh and born of a virgin..that person is a deceiver..it is the spirit of the antichrist. Of course everyone knows that anti...means against..so any one with an antichrist spirit has the spirit of deception in them, because they are against Christ. That is why we must look at a person's statement of faith..or listen very carefully..to their teachings...to the things they confess..the things that come out of their mouth.
1John 4: 4
"Ye are of God little children, and have overcome them; because greater is he that is in you than he that is in the world."
That is probably one of the greatest encouraging verse for believers everywhere..in John's time as well as today. He was telling the believers that they were of God..(not of the devil) and that they had over come them..overcome who? The false teachers who were teaching that Christ had not come in the flesh. Why had they overcome them? Because greater is He (God) that was in them (and us) then he ( the devil) who was (is) in the world.
1John 4: 5
"They are of the world: therefore speak they of the world, and the world heareth them."
The "they" is that verse is talking about the false teachers..the antichrist spirit. They are not born again believers in Christ.."they are of the world" means they are not of God..Because they are not of God they will speak from their wordly understanding..there is no way they can hear from the Spirit of God...because they are not of God..."they are of the world"..and who listens to them? Wordly people do..."and the world heareth them." People who are not born-again cannot understand the things of God..they can only understand things of this world.
1John 4: 6
"We are of God: he that knoweth God heareth us; he that is not of God heareth not us. Hereby know (or recognize) we the spirit of truth, and the spirit of error."
John is telling the believers.."We are of God"..they were born again...they were Holy Spirit filled...they were following Christ..they had communion with Him. John goes on and tells the believers that he that knoweth God hears them ( John and the other teachers annointed of God).This part... "he that knoweth God" talks about some one who has a personal relationship with God..the word "knoweth"..means intimacy. Anyone who has intimacy with God will hear annointed Holy Spirit led teachers ..anyone who does not have intimacy with God does not listen to and will not hear or receive the teachings of annointed men of God. This is how we as believers can know the "spirit of truth" and the "spirit of error". Whether or not they will hear..and obey the teachings of godly Holy Spirit annointed teachers, preachers, evangelists, ect.
1 John 4: 7-21
"Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and everyone that loveth is born of God.
He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.
In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him.
Here in is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us, and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins.
Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another.
No man hath seen God at any time. If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and His love is perfected in us.
Hereby know we that we dwell in him, and he in us, because he hath given us of his Spirit.
And we have seen and do testify that the Father sent the Son to be the saviour of the world.
Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him, and he in God.
And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him.
Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is so are we in this world.
There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.
We love Him. because he first loved us.
If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar; for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen?
And this commandment have we from Him, That he who loveth God love his brother also."