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You must be in fellowship prior to your Bible study, so that the spiritual information you receive can become a source, of blessing to your soul and produce spiritual growth.
1 John 3:3
3 And [kai] every man [pas] that hath [echo] this [taute] hope [elpis] in [epi] him [autos] purifieth [hagnizo] himself [heautou], even as [kathos] he [ekeinos] is [esti] pure [hagnos]. KJV-Interlinear
3 And everyone who has this hope fixed on Him purifies himself, just as He is pure. NASB
The concept of allotted portions to those who advance to spiritual maturity is not a new concept. It was certainly clear in the days of Isaiah, of Abraham, of Job (who probably preceded Abraham, historically), and so on.
12 Therefore, I will allot Him a portion with the great, And He will divide the booty with the strong; Because He poured out Himself to death, And was numbered with the transgressors; Yet He Himself bore the sin of many, And interceded for the transgressors. NASB
But to whom much is given, much is expected. You cannot expect to live your live in total indifference toward God, and expect to gain much of His favor.
Being an unbeliever and un-saved means tremendous loss in eternity. The Lake of Fire awaits you. Believing in Christ gains you a place in heaven and that is infinitely greater than facing the Lake of Fire for all of eternity.
Likewise, being saved and growing up to spiritual maturity brings you great reward which is infinitely (after the same fashion) greater than not growing up and not receiving any of the 'greater' reward (booty) in eternity. Review our study of the Parables of Christ, which we finished not that long ago.
Therefore, John now suggests that knowing this (knowing that you will receive a huge reward in heaven if you grow up in your spiritual life), then you should have an incentive for actually making an effort in growing up spiritually.
Also, if you put eternity into perspective with time as we know it now, then receiving a huge reward, receiving huge blessings, receiving huge privileges and so forth at the beginning of eternity, means that for all of eternity you will have more wealth and prosperity, and happiness than you could ever imagine.
Not having these huge blessings does not mean that you will not be happy, for everyone who goes to heaven will have tremendous happiness of course. But think of it as if you were going to Disney World for all of eternity. On the one hand as an immature believer you would have a free pass to most of the park. Plenty to see and do. You would never get bored - never ever.
But then if you are a mature believer, then you not only have the free pass, but you will have access to many private park features that not everyone else while have access to, likewise you will enter the park as a billionaire, and not as a mere commoner (if you will). See our study of Rev. 1-3.
So now, there are great incentives for growing up spiritually. Spiritual growth translates into great profit. Great profit translates into even greater blessings as eternity advances forward. Another example is to consider having royal ownership of vast estates in the middle ages, and being able to live forever here on earth. You would have the 'old' money of generations and you would be extremely wealthy. Compare this to the commoners who just get by from pay check to pay check. There is a big (infinite) difference between the life styles available to the two.
These are just examples of course, but the point is that life as an immature believer means great loss of blessing. Life now in time is but a blink of an eye. Try it. Blink twice right now. Ok, I'll wait. Ok, so that represents your life in time and after the blink, time continues on forever in eternity. The difference between your life in time and your life in eternity is so great that you cannot even calculate it.
Would you want to have all of your pleasures of this world during the span of those two blinks, and give up all of the pleasures of eternity? If you ignore Bible doctrine and your spiritual life, then you are doing just that. Sooner or later those two blinks will be over and lost to history and soon forgotten. The bulk of your life is ahead of you. Wouldn't you want to live it to the maximum? Or would you trade all of your future for all the pleasure you can get from those two blinks?
So, here John asks the question. If your future is important to you, and if you are convinced that Gods promises are indeed true, then you should pursue your spiritual life as though it is the only thing you have in life. Because it is.
The life of the 'pure' is the life in fellowship as God has defined the spiritual life.
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End Of Lesson
Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.