1 See what wonderful love the Father has bestowed on us in letting us be called God's children, and that is what we are! This is why the world does not know what we are, because it has never come to know Him. 2 Dearly beloved, we are now God's children, but what we are going to be has not been unveiled. We know that if it is unveiled, we shall be like Him, because we shall see Him as He is. 3 And everyone who has this hope in him tries to make himself as pure as He is.
4 Everyone who commits sin commits lawlessness; sin is lawlessness. 5 You know that He appeared to take our sins away, and that there is no sin in Him. 6 No one who continues to live in union with Him practices sin. No one who practices sin has ever seen Him or come to know Him.
7 Dear children, avoid letting anyone lead you astray. Whoever practices doing right is upright, just as He is upright. 8 Whoever practices sin belongs to the devil, because the devil has practiced sin from the beginning. This is why the Son of God appeared, to undo the devil's works. 9 No one who is born of God makes a practice of sinning, because the God-given life-principle continues to live in him, and so he cannot practice sinning, because he is born of God. 10 This is the way to distinguish God's children from the devil's children. No one who fails to do right is God's child, and no one who fails to love his brother. 11 it is so because the message that you have heard from the beginning is this: We should love one another. 12 We must not be like Cain who belonged to the evil one and butchered his brother. And why did he butcher him? Because his own actions were wicked and his brother's upright. 13 You must not be surprised, brothers, if the world hates you. 14 We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we love our brothers. Whoever does not continue to love continues still in death. 15 Anyone who keeps on hating his brother is a murderer; and you know that no murderer can have eternal life remaining in him.
16 We know what love is from the fact that He laid down His life for us; and so we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers. 17 But if anyone has the world's means of supporting life and sees his brother in need and closes his heart against him, how can love to God remain in him?
18 Dear children, let us stop loving with words or lips alone, but let us love with actions and in truth. 19 In this way we shall know by experience that we are on the side of the truth, and satisfy our consciences in God's sight, 20 because if our consciences do condemn us, God is greater than our consciences, and He knows everything.
21 Dearly beloved, if our consciences do not condemn us, we come with perfect confidence to God, 22 and we obtain from Him whatever we ask for, because we practice obedience to His commands and do what pleases Him. 23 His command is this, that we should believe in the name of His Son Jesus Christ and practice loving one another, just as He commanded us to do. 24 Whoever practices obedience to His commands remains in union with Him and He in union with him; and in this way we know that He remains in union with us, by the Spirit that He has given us.