“But you have an anointing from the Holy One, and you know all things. I have not written to you because you do not know the truth, but because you know it, and that no lie is of the truth.” 1 John 2:20-21
The biggest problems we have with truth are not about the truth we don’t know. It’s my observation that most often our biggest struggles are with the truth we know but don’t want to follow.
I could site some specific examples but it occurs to me that it doesn’t really matter if the struggle is theological, philosophical, emotional, physical, mental, sexual, or social. The fact is that we don’t become conflicted about things that we don’t believe are wrong; and right and wrong touches every part of the list of categories I’ve just sited.
I’ll grant you that there’s a lot of wrong in everyone of us that we’re unaware of and because of that unawareness we don’t experience guilt over it. That ignorance, however, doesn’t shelter our lives, and the lives of others, from being negatively impacted by those unknown faults. Because of God’s love for us he wants to see us prosper and to this end God desires to cleanse us from all the faults in our lives. To accomplish this he instructs us regarding truth and righteousness, so that he can bring to light everything that’s hiding in the darkness.
But we don’t always want to give up the sin in our lives. There are times when we yield to God’s teaching easily and there are times when the cleansing and changes come only as the result of intense struggle.
It’s in regards to this struggle to yield that John is writing in our focus text today.
First, he affirms the Christian’s connection with the Holy Spirit and then he points out that they don’t need him to come and teach them the truth. And since they don’t need either conversion or instruction John doesn’t write to them as an evangelist or a teacher. Instead, he presents himself as a father reminding them of what they already have and know, and exhorting them to yield and experience the full blessing of the light of God shining in their lives.
It’s only as we open every part of our lives to the light of God that we’re able to experience the fullness of his healing power. So long as we hold onto and hide parts of our lives from God we resist his healing and hinder ourselves from abiding with him. Eventually that darkness we conceal will cause us to become lost again in even greater darkness.
Jesus provides the knowledge, the strength, and the desire to become like him. But he doesn’t make us use them. That choice is ours. It’s time to choose to do the right we know.