1 John 3

  (Redirected from 1 John 3:16)

1 John 3 is the third chapter of the First Epistle of John in the New Testament of the Christian Bible. The epistle is traditionally attributed to John the Apostle from early date, although there remains an open question about the authorship.[1][2][3]

1 John 3
End of 2 Peter and Beginning of 1 John in Alexandrinus.JPG
The end part of the Second Epistle of Peter (3:16–18) and the beginning of the First Epistle of John (1:1-2:9) on the same page of Codex Alexandrinus (AD 400–440).
BookFirst Epistle of John
CategoryGeneral epistles
Christian Bible partNew Testament
Order in the Christian part23


The original text was written in Koine Greek. This chapter is divided into 24 verses.

Textual witnessesEdit

Some early manuscripts containing the text of this chapter are:

What we shall be (3:1–3)Edit

The present and future eschatology is presented as a combination of affirmation and exhortation in this section.[4] John 'leaves no doubt' that the divine call of God is 'an effectual call': "we are what God calls us".[5]

Verse 1Edit

Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! Therefore the world does not know us, because it did not know Him.[6]
  • "The world does not know us": This statement about the incompatibility of the world and the Christian way appears multiple times in John's writings (for examples: John 15:18–16:4).[5] The world generally fails to know Christ's followers, because the world did not know Christ.[5]

Verse 2Edit

Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is.[7]

Being the "children of God" is the 'precondition of the greater conformity' which will yield the privilege to see God (cf. Matthew 5:8).[8]

Sin and Righteousness (3:4–10)Edit

This section contrasts "'sin' with 'righteousness', 'love' with its 'failure' (or later, 'hate', verse 3:13), and the 'children of God' with the 'children of the devil'".[8]

Community within Love (3:11–17)Edit

Verse 16Edit

By this we know love, because He laid down His life for us. And we also ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.[9]

'We can know what love is' (specifically in a Christian sense) only because Jesus Christ ("He") laid down His life for us on Calvary (cf. John 3:16), so 'we in our turn' ought to lay down our lives for our brothers, which is 'no less a quality of love demanded' of Christians.[10] The only certain evidence of "love for God" is thus "the more visible love for a fellow believer".[11]

Condemnation and Confidence in God (3:18–24)Edit

Verse 23Edit

And this is His commandment: that we should believe on the name of His Son Jesus Christ and love one another, as He gave us commandment.[12]

Referring to: John 13:34
Belief in the "Son" ("Jesus Christ") and the "love for one another" establishes a 'permanent relationship' between God and believers.[13]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Lieu 2007, p. 1274.
  2. ^ Davids, Peter H (1982). I Howard Marshall and W Ward Gasque (ed.). New International Greek Testament Commentary: The Epistle of James (Repr. ed.). Grand Rapids, Mich.: Eerdmans. ISBN 0802823882.
  3. ^ Evans, Craig A (2005). Craig A. Evans (ed.). Bible Knowledge Background Commentary: John, Hebrews-Revelation. Colorado Springs, Colo.: Victor. ISBN 0781442281.
  4. ^ Lieu 2007, pp. 1276–1277.
  5. ^ a b c Morris 1994, p. 1403.
  6. ^ 1 John 3:1 New King James Version
  7. ^ 1 John 3:2 NKJV
  8. ^ a b Lieu 2007, p. 1277.
  9. ^ 1 John 3:16 NKJV
  10. ^ Morris 1994, p. 1405.
  11. ^ Lieu 2007, p. 1278.
  12. ^ 1 John 3:23 NKJV
  13. ^ Coogan 2007, p. 410 New Testament.


External linksEdit