1 John 3:1-3

1 John 3:1-3
All Saints’ Day A


SeeA whatB loveC the Father has given us,

Notes on verse 1a

A “see” = horao. To see, perceive, experience. To stare at so, implicitly, to discern and then attend to. Often carries the metaphorical meaning of seeing and understanding.
B “what” = potapos. 7x in NT. This is what kind of, what manner of, how great, what sort of.
C “love” = agape. From agapao (to wish well, take pleasure in, long for; love of preferring one, loving socially or morally, divine love). This is love, goodwill, benevolence, love feasts. Divine love – what God prefers.

that we should be called childrenD of God;E and that is what we are. The reason the worldF does not knowG us is that it did not know him. 

Notes on verse 1b

D “children” = teknon. From tikto (to beget, bring forth, produce, yield). This is a child, descendant, or inhabitant. In the ancient world, children were first considered those who were fully dependent on others to live (rather than our first association, which is often innocence).
E “God” = theos. From Proto-Indo-European (to do, put, place). This s God or a god.
F “world” = kosmos. Probably related to komizo (to bear, carry, recover); from komeo (to take care of). This is order, the world, the universe, worldly affairs, orderly arrangement, adornment, inhabitants of the world. Literally, it is something ordered, as an ordered system like the universe. This is where we get “cosmos” and “cosmetics” from (cosmetics as intended to bring order and thus beauty to a face).
G “know” = ginosko. This is to know, recognize, perceive, take in knowledge, learn. This is knowing especially by direct experience or firsthand acquaintance.

Beloved,H we are God’s children now; what we will be has not yet been revealed.I What we do knowJ is this: when he is revealed, we will be like him, for we will see him as he is. 

Notes on verse 2

H “beloved” = agapetos. Related to “love” in v1. From agape (see note C above). This is beloved, loved, or very dear. It is a title of the Messiah and a term for his followers since we are loved by God and each other with a divine love that is personally experienced.
I “revealed” = phaneroo. From phaneros (visible, manifest, apparent, clear, shining); from phos (light, source of light, radiance); from phaos (light, daylight); from the same as phaino (to bring to light, shine, shed light, become visible, appear, seem). This is to make visible, make manifest, make known, show. Properly, it is to illumine. Figuratively, to make plain or apparent.
J “know” = eido. To be awake, perceive, know, remember. Properly, to see with physical eyes – metaphorical see as understanding, as knowing.

And all who have this hopeK in him purifyL themselves, just as he is pure.M

Notes on verse 3

K “hope” = elpida. From elpo (to anticipate, welcome, expect; usually anticipate with pleasure). This is expectation, hope, trust, confidence faith. An abstract or concrete expectation, a confidence.
L “purify” = hagnizo. 7x in NT. From hagnos (free from ceremonial defilement, holy sacred; originally, prepared for worship; pure ethically, ritually, ceremonially; chaste. Pure to the core – not defiled by sin. Figurative for innocent, modest, perfect); from the same as hagios (sacred, holy; set apart by God or for God; different; sacred physically, morally, ceremonially; blameless, consecrated). This is to purify, cleanse, sanctify. To cleanse ceremonially, literally, or morally.
M “pure” = hagnos. Related to “purify” in v3. See note L above. This is holy, sacred, pure, chaste, innocent – prepared for worship. Pure ethically, ritually, or ceremonially. Pure inside and out. Figurative for innocent, modest, perfect.

Image credit: “Because of your Love, I am Free!” at Lingnan University in Hong Kong, 2010.

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