This We Know: The Mark of True Christianity

There is one thing that has stood as the mark of true Christianity for 2000 years…love. This week we study 1 John 2:7-11 where the see the effect of love, the source of love, the definition of love, and the threat to love. We pray that the message of 1 John 2:7-11 would change us all so that we truly shine like lights in a dark world.

1 John 2:7-11 Sermon Guide

As divisiveness continues to define our community, our country, and our world, hatred likewise threatens to hinder the believer’s fellowship with God, the Church’s fellowship with one another, and our witness to a warring world. How is the Church to live and love amidst such hostility? In this week’s message of the This We Know: A Journey in 1 John series, Tyler Briggs delivers a timely call for the Church to live in the Light, live like Christ, and shine amidst the darkness.

Point #1: You shine like lights when you love one another (1 John 2:7-8)

John reminds his “beloved” audience of the “old commandment” they have been taught to love one another, as well as their new understanding of love through the teachings, life, death, and resurrection of Christ. As God’s Son defined and displayed the divine light, God’s people are to likewise shine as lights amidst the darkness with loving attitudes and actions.

  1. Tyler references John 15:13, Romans 5:8-10, and Luke 23:26-34 as passages describing how love was manifested perfectly in Jesus. How is the old commandment to love one another also a new commandment, in light of Christ’s life and love?
  2. Tyler provided an inspiring list of Watermark Fort Worth members who are loving others like Christ. Have you positively displayed God’s love during the pandemic and during a difficult political climate? Who have you loved and how have you loved them?

Point #2: You love one another when you abide in the Light. (1 John 2:9-10)

In 1 John 2:9-10, John proposes love as the 2nd test for fellowship with God. Hatred towards a fellow Christian is a sure sign that you are not walking in fellowship with God – who is Light. In contrast, those who actively love other Christians do so because they are walking in right fellowship with God.

  1. Tyler proposes a biblical definition of hate to include not only one’s actions but attitudes, meaning “to dislike strongly, to have an aversion, to have hostility, anger, or aggression.” Is this definition different than what you’ve previously understood? What relationships in your life have hatred present instead of love?
  2. Read Colossians 3:12-17. How should Christians handle political differences or other issues within community groups or within the Church?

Point #3: You are unable to shine when you harbor hate. (1 John 2:11)

When it comes to hate, the stakes are high. Harboring hatred compromises the believer’s fellowship with God and hinders the Church’s unity and witness to a watching world. Walking in darkness will only multiply the problems of those refusing to confess their hate and repent to love their brother or sister.

  1. What has harboring hatred cost you in your life?


  1. Read 1 John 2:12-17 before next Sunday’s message!
  2. Identify any fellow Christians you personally dislike or have an aversion toward in your life. Go and seek their forgiveness. In areas of conflict, seek mutual understanding and search the Scriptures together to understand the issue at hand. Reread Colossians 3:12-17 and let it serve as a guide for your conduct during the conflict resolution.
  3. Individually or with your community group, watch CityAlight’s live performance of “Ancient of Days,” an incredible song of truth and hope introduced to the church by the Watermark Fort Worth worship team.