“And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure.”
John’s purpose in writing is both doctrinal and ethical. Genuine doctrine always affects how we live our lives. The word “purifies” means to cleanse from anything inconsistent with the character of Christ. Believers in fellowship accept the responsibility of keeping themselves clean for Christ’s sake.
Cleansing does not obtain hope. On the contrary, hope begets cleansing. Anyone who knows about and engages with the imminent return of Christ purifies himself.
just as He is pure
The word “He” is emphatic – “Just as He Himself is pure.” How pure is Jesus? He is perfect purity. Jesus is free from any contamination of sin. Christ was infinitely and immutably holy in Himself as God, but he maintained freedom from sin in His humanity.
Cleansing of sin is crucial for fellowship with the Lord and growth in Christ.
We could be a good secretary, an employer, or medical doctor and do a good job without being a Christian, but we cannot be good Christians and maintain malice in our hearts. “Let every man examine himself first,” then we partake of the Lord’s Supper. If we have hard feelings in our heart toward anyone when we dial heaven, we will get a busy signal (1 Pe 3:7). We cannot afford these things as Christians, for they will oxidize our spiritual apparatus.
No one on earth is important enough to hate. If we carry hate in our hearts, joy will depart from our souls. The thrill of the Christian life will depart from us. Do you have your books balanced in this area before you meet the Lord face to face?
Your enemy does not have to like you. They may never come to the place where they deal with their problem or sin. They may never dance to your tune. Leave them with God. Their problems are none of your affairs. Do not let them ruin your Christian life. Your main concern is pleasing the Lord and meeting Him with a clear conscience. We want to be a blessing, not a curse, to people.
2 Co 7:1, “Therefore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.”
The crisis of salvation triggers a life-long process of conformity to Christ. Salvation sets in motion a process of progressively becoming more like Jesus Christ. This is the unfinished work of Christ in us. We are not now as our Lord Jesus, so we need to grow in grace
2 Pe 3:18, “…but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory both now and forever. Amen.”
God preordained that we would eventually become just like our Lord Jesus Christ. That goal will culminate in death or the Rapture.