Expressions & Key Words in John’s Epistles & Gospel

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Some Expressions & Key Words Used Both in John’s Epistles & Gospel

John Hepp, Jr.

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Some Expressions & Key Words
Used Both in John’s Epistles & Gospel
John Hepp, Jr

This chart is designed to help you study 1 John, which harmonizes with John’s Gospel. In the order of their first use in 1 John, it lists from the King James Version many of the key words and expressions also used in that Gospel. Each such item is listed in the first column in all-capital letters. A few expressions are marked * as sample indications that 1 John was written to give tests of eternal life, not just exhortations to holy living.

1. FROM THE BEGINNING 1:1—was from the beginning (=was with the Father, v. 2)
2:13,14—him that is from the beg.
2:7—commandment you had from the beginning
2:7,24; 3:11—(word/message) you heard from the beginning
3:8—devil sins from the beginning 15:27—You have been with me from the beginning.
8:44—said of the devil 1:1,2—The Word was in the beginning with God.
2. ETERNAL LIFE 1:2—Eternal life was with the Father and has appeared.
2:25—is his promise to us
3:15—has eternal life abiding in him
5:11—eternal life is in the Son
5:13—know you have eternal life
5:20—true God and eternal life Used often (3:15,16,36; 4:14,36; 5:24,39; 6:27,40,47,54,68; and others). Usually seen as present, but implied to be future in 5:29.
3. FATHER & SON (OR GOD & SON) 1:3; 2:22-23,24; 4:9,10,14; 5:19-20; many others 4:15; 5:5,11,13, 20—Jesus is the Son of God. 1:18; 3:35; 5:20; many oth¬ers, espe¬cially in chs. 5, 6, 8
*4. WALK IN THE DARKNESS 1:6-7—Those who walk in the darkness have no fel¬lowship (do not participate) with God; they lie and do not do the truth.
2:11—One who hates his broth¬er is in darkness, walks in darkness, and doesn’t know where he goes, because darkness has blinded him. 8:12—A follower of Jesus shall by no means walk in the darkness.
12:35-36—Walk in the light while you have it. The one who walks in the darkness does not know where he goes. Believe in the light to become sons of light. 3:17-20—The judgment on the un¬believer is that he chooses dark¬ness over light, be¬cause his deeds are evil and he does not want to be reproved.
12:46—Jesus came as light so that no believer will stay in the darkness.
5. DO THE TRUTH 1:6—Those who walk in the dark¬ness do not do the truth.
(The truth=God’s revelation, espe¬cially the gospel, in 1:8; 2:4,21,22; see col. 5) 3:18-19—Loving in truth shows that we are of the truth. John 3:20-21—One who does the truth comes to the light, is con¬trasted to one who does evil (hates the light, avoids it—will rise from death to judgment, 5:29). 8:32—You shall know the truth; the truth shall make you free.
8:44—The devil did not stay in the truth—no truth in him.
18:37—Jesus came to bear witness of the truth; every¬one of the truth hears him.
6. HAVE NO SIN 1:8—If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves…. 3:8-9—One born of God does not or cannot sin. 9:41—if blind…would have no sin =guilt; also 15:22,24 9:34—Thou wast altogether born in sins
19:11—has greater sin=
*7. THE TRUTH IS NOT IN (US/HIM) 1:8—If we say we have no sin, the truth is not in us.
2:4—He that says he knows him and doesn’t keep his commands is a liar and the truth is not in him. 2:27—anoint¬ing is truth
4:6—Spirit of truth
Cf. 2 Jn 2—Truth abides in & will be with us for¬ever. 8:44—The devil is a mur¬derer and abode not in the truth, be-cause no truth is in him, a liar.

(from column 5)
17; 15:26; 6:13), which Spirit would be in them.
17:17,19—Sanctify them in the truth…Thy Word is truth. Christ is full of truth (1:14),
is the source of truth (1:18),
sees that his dis¬ciples know the truth (8:32),
spoke the truth (8:40,45,46; 16:7; 18:37),
is the truth (14:6),
would re¬quest the Spirit of truth for be¬liev¬ers (14:16-
 (continued in column 4)
*8. HIS WORD IS NOT IN (US/THEM) 1:10—If we say we have not sinned, his word is not in us. 2:3—Keep his com¬mand¬ments
2:14—The word of God abides in you. 5:38—Proof God’s word was not dwelling in them is that they did not believe the one he sent.

(from column 5)
room in you (v. 43—can’t hear).
12:48—his word will judge
15:7—if my words remain in you
17:14,17—I have given them your word=truth. 5:24—He who hears & be¬lieves has eternal life.
8:31—(to “believers”) If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, shall know the truth, which will make you free.
8:37—You seek to kill me because my word finds no
 (continued in column 4)
*9. KNOW HIM/ GOD/THE FATHER 2:3,4—We know we know (have come to know, egnokamen) him if we keep command¬ments.
2:13,14—“Fathers” & “chil¬dren” know him.
3:1—World didn’t know Christ.
3:6—Whoever sins has not seen or known him.
4:6—Whoever knows God hears us (and nega¬tive).
4:7-8—Whoever loves knows God (and nega¬tive).
5:20—know him that is true 1:10—World didn’t know him.
8:55—(to liars, not God’s children, v. 42) You do not know him but I know (oida) him.
14:7—(to disci¬ples) If you had known me, you would have known the Father. From now you know him and have seen him.
14:17—World can’t accept the Spirit because it neither sees nor knows him, but you know him.
16:3—They will perse¬cute you be¬cause they haven’t known the Father nor me.
(continued in column 5)  8:32—know the truth
10:14,27—I know my sheep and they know me.
10:15—I know the Father and the Father knows me.
14:9—Don’t you know me af¬ter such a long time?

(from column 4)
17:3—Eter¬nal life is to know you, the true God.
17:25—World does not know you, but I do, and these have known that you sent me.
10. KEEP HIS/MY COM¬MAND¬MENTS 2:3-4—is proof that we know him
3:22—is the reason all our prayers are answered
3:24—Whoever keeps his com-mand¬ments abides in him, and he in him.
5:2—We love God’s chil¬dren if we keep his commandments.
5:3—The love of God is to keep his commandments, which are not burdensome. 14:15—If you love me, keep my commandments (v. 28—if you loved me).
14:21—Whoever has and keeps my commandments is the one who loves me… will be loved by the Father and Son.
15:10—If you keep my command¬ments you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Fa¬ther’s commandments and re¬main in his love. 8:51—keep my word, not see death
8:55—I know him & keep his word
12:50—The Father’s com-mand¬ment is (leads to?) eternal life.
14:23-24—Whoever does not love me does not keep my words.
15:12—My command-ment = love
15:20—if they obeyed my word, will obey yours
17:6—Dis¬ciples have obeyed God’s word.
11. THE LOVE OF GOD IN (US) 2:5 and 4:12—His love is per-fected in us. (See 4:16-18; “per-fect”—teleioo means fin¬ish [John 4:34, 5:36, 17:4] or bring to com¬ple¬tion [John 17:23, 19:28].)
2:15—The love of God is not in one who loves the world.
3:17—How does his love abide in one who lacks prac¬tical love? 3:1—love the Father has be-stowed on us
4:9-11—not our love but his 5:42—(to unbeliev¬ers) You don’t have the love of God in your hearts.
17:26—He makes the Father known to disciples in or¬der that the love with which the Father loved him may be in them, and he in them. 13:33-35—Love is proof we are his dis¬ciples.
15:9-10—Abide in my love.
17:23—unity in order for world to see that the Father sent the Son and loved them as he loved the Son
12. (BE) IN HIM/ ME 2:5; 5:20—We know we are in him. 15:2—Every branch in me that beareth not fruit. . . . (often in Paul’s writ¬ings)
13. ABIDE IN HIM/ ME/THE SON/GOD 2:6,27,28; 3:6,15,24; 4:13,15-16, etc.
See separate study of “Abiding.” See separate study of “Abiding.”
14. NEW COM-MAND¬MENT (OR, COMMANDMENT FROM HIM) 2:7-8—The new commandment is the same as the old command-ment, heard from the beginning.
4:21—His command¬ment is to love your brother. (Cf. 3:23.) 3:11—This is the message you heard—love.
(4:7-12—love) 13:34—A new commandment I give you, to love one another as I have loved you.
16. OF (ek) THE WORLD 2:16—These lusts and pride are of the world.
4:5—The false spirits are of the world. John 8:23—You are of this world; I am not of this world.
15:19; 17:14,16—Disciples are not of the world.
17. DO THE WILL OF GOD 2:17—He that does the will of God abides forever. 4:34; 5:30; 6:38,39,40—Jesus said, I do the will of him that sent me (or, of the Father).
7:17 (cf. 9:31)—if anyone desires to do his will
18. KNOW THE TRUTH 2:21—I have not written to you because you know not the truth but because you know it. 8:32—You will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.
*19. OF (ek) THE TRUTH 2:21—No lie is of the truth.
3:19—By practical love we know we are of the truth. 18:37—Everyone who is of the truth listens to me.
(OR JESUS CHRIST IS COME IN THE FLESH) 2:22; 4:2,3—A liar denies that Jesus is the Christ; he is not of God, is antichrist. The spirit that confesses it is of God.
5:1—Whoever believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God. 1:3; 2:1; 5:6—Jesus Christ
4:15; 5:5—Jesus is the Son of God. 11:27 and 20:31 have the same structure and meaning.
1:41; 4:25-26,29; and others have the same meaning.
21. ANOINT-ING/SPIRIT (ABIDES &) TEACHES ALL THINGS 2:27—The anointing abides and teaches/ has taught you all things. 3:24; 4:13—We know he abides in us by the Spir¬it he has given us. 14:16,26—Spirit of truth will be with you for¬ever, will teach you all things.
22. BEGOTTEN (BORN) OF GOD 2:29—Since God is righteous, those born of him will be righteous.
3:9—Whoever is born of God does not and cannot sin.
4:7—Whoever loves is born of God.
5:1—Whoever believes that Jesus is Messiah is born of God. If we love the one who begat, we love the one begotten.
5:4—Whatever is born of God overcomes the world.
5:18—The one born of God doesn’t sin but keeps himself (?). 1:13—who were born…of God
1:14—We beheld his glory…as of the only-begotten of the Father. 3:16—the only begotten Son
*23. HE THAT COMMITTETH SIN 3:4,8,9—He that commits sin com¬mits lawlessness, is of the devil. 8:34—He that committeth sin is a slave to sin.
*24. OF (ek) THE DEVIL 3:8—He that commits sin is of the devil, for the devil sinneth from the begin¬ning.
3:10—children of the devil 3:12—Cain was of that wicked one. 8:44—of your father the devil, a murderer from the beginning
(when said of persons) 3:10; 4:1,2,3,4,6; 5:19—said of spirits, Spirit, and “we”
[3 John 11—Whoever does what is good is of God; whoever does evil has not seen God.] 2:16—These lusts and pride are of the world, not of the Father.
4:7—Love is of God. 7:17; 8:42,47—con¬trast¬ing those of (ek) God with those of the dev¬il (v. 44). Jesus’ own origin from God is ex¬pressed using the prepo¬si¬tions para (16:27) or apo (16:30).
Yet, see ek in 7:52—from Gali¬lee.
26. LOVE ONE ANOTHER 3:11,23—His message/command¬ment is to love one another.
4:7—Let us love one another.
4:11—God’s love prompts our love.
4:12—Such love shows that he lives in us. 3:14; 4:21—love brother 13:34—new commandment, to love one another
27. WORLD HATES YOU 3:13—Marvel not that the world hates you. 15:18,19; 17:14—as it hates Jesus, who has chosen us from the world
*28. PASSED FROM DEATH TO LIFE 3:14—We know we have passed from death to life because we love the brethren; he that does not love abides in death. 5:13—know that you have eternal life 5:24—passed from death to life (equivalent to salva¬tion)
29. IS A MURDERER 3:15—Whoever hates his brother is a murderer. 8:44—The devil is a murderer.
(See #2.) 3:15—No murderer has eternal life abiding in him.
5:13—know you have eternal life 3:15,16,36; 5:24,39-40; 6:40,47,53,54; 10:10; 20:31
31. SPIRIT OF TRUTH 4:6—He that knows God hears us, by which we know the spirit of truth. 2:27—The anointing is truth.
5:6—The Spirit is truth. 14:16-17—The Son will ask the Father to give this Paraclete.
15:26; 16:13—He proceeds from the Father, guides into all truth.
32. NO ONE HAS SEEN GOD 4:12—No one has ever seen God; our love shows he dwells in us.
4:20—If we don’t love our brother whom we have seen, how can we love the unseen God?
3 John 11—He that doeth evil hath not seen God. 1:18—No one has ever seen God; the Son has declared him.
5:37—You have neither heard his voice nor seen his shape.
6:46—None has seen the Father except the one who is of God. 3 John 11—He that doeth evil hath not seen God.
33. OVER¬COME THE WORLD 5:4-5—Whatever is born of God overcomes the world. 2:13-14—“Young men” have overcome the wicked one.
4:4—Those of God have over-come the spirits that don’t confess that Jesus is Christ. 16:33—I have overcome the world.
34. (GOD) BEARS WITNESS 5:6—The Spirit bears witness.
5:7-8—The spirit, water, and blood bear God’s witness about his Son.
5:9-11—God’s witness 1:2—The life was manifested. 1:7-8,15,19; 3:11,26,28,32,33; especial¬ly 5:31-39; etc.

JOY MADE FULL (1:4; John 3:29; 15:11; 17:13; cf. 16:22)
IS A LIAR (2:4,22; 4:20; cf. 1:10; 5:10; John 8:44)
WHATEVER WE ASK (3:22; 5:14-15; see John 15:16-17)
ONLY BEGOTTEN SON (4:9; John 3:16)
UNTO DEATH (5:16-17; see John 11:4)
?GIVE…THE SPIRIT (3:24B; 4:13)


1. First John and the Gospel of John were clearly written by the same person, with many identical thoughts and expressions.

2. First John was written to give tests of eternal life, not just exhortations to holy living. Some of the expresssions showing this are marked *.

3. Eternal life is a main theme. See the verses near the beginning and the end, also the promise in 2:25.
The Main Greek Word for Abiding
To Help in Studying 1 John
John Hepp, Jr.

Here are lists of nearly all the New Testament occurrences of the verb meno, the main word translated “abide” and determining the concept of abiding. Of 117 (or 118) uses of this verb in the New Testament, well over half (67) of them are in John’s writ¬ings: 40 in his Gospel, 23 in 1 John, 3 in 2 John, and 1 in Revelation. Of the 50 uses else¬where, 12 are in other Gospels, 13 in Acts, 25 in other epistles. There are intensified forms of meno: prosmeno, used seven times; parameno, used four times; and katameno, used once. But since John uses none of these, I will not list them.

Meno means to stay (remain, continue) either in a place, in a condition, or in existence. Every time it is used outside of John’s writings and often in John’s Gospel, it refers to continuing in a physical or mental sense (sense A). But over half of the time in his Gospel and usually in his epistles, it refers to continuing in a moral or spiritual sense (sense B). From these moral and spiritual uses of meno we learn the theological concept of abiding.

The two lists below represent my tentative classification of meno as sense A or sense B. In each case the words corresponding to meno will be in all caps. Any comments I have added will be in parentheses and follow my translation or para¬phrase. In John’s epistles I have not translated meno but simply indicated the form(s) used in each verse.


Matt. 10:11 STAY at a worthy person’s house until you leave town.
11:23 Sodom would have REMAINED (i.e., CONTINUED IN EXISTENCE) to this day.
26:38 STAY and keep watch.
Luke 1:56 Mary STAYED with her about three months.

8:27 LIVED in a house
19:5 today STAY at your house
John 1:32,33 Holy Spirit STAYED on Jesus.
1:39-40 Where are you STAYING?
2:12 There they STAYED a few days (also 4:40; 10:40; 11:6,54).
3:36 God’s wrath REMAINS on him.
7:9 He STAYED in Galilee (11:54).
12:24 If a seed doesn’t die, it REMAINS alone.
12:34 The Messiah CONTINUES forever.
14:25 I have spoken these things to you while still LIVING with you.
15:4 unless a branch CONTINUES in the vine
19:31 in order that the bodies not STAY on the cross
21:22,23 if I want him to CONTINUE
Acts 5:4 While it REMAINED, didn’t it REMAIN yours?
9:43 STAYED many days in Joppa (Acts has other uses of meno in this sense: 16:15; 18;3,20; 20:5,15; 21:7,8; 27:31,41.)
20:23 bonds and troubles AWAIT me
28:16 Paul was allowed to LIVE by himself.
Rom. 9:11 in order that God’s purpose in election MIGHT STAND
1 Cor. 3:14 if anyone’s work SURVIVES
7:8 good for them to CONTINUE like me
7:11 let her REMAIN unmarried (also vv. 20,24,40)
13:13 Faith, hope, and love REMAIN (i.e., CONTINUE IN EXISTENCE?).
15:6 majority REMAIN ALIVE till now
2 Cor. three times meaning REMAIN (3:11,14; 9:9)
Phil. 1:25 I will REMAIN and continue (parameno)
1 Tim. 2:15 if they CONTINUE in faith and love
2 Tim. three times meaning REMAIN or CONTINUE (2:13; 3:14; 4:20)
Heb. six times meaning REMAIN or CONTINUE (7:3,24; 10:34; 12:27; 13:1,14)
1 Peter two times meaning REMAIN or CONTINUE (1:23,25)
Rev. 17:10 when he comes he must REMAIN a short time (i.e., CONTINUE IN EXISTENCE?)


John 5:38 You don’t have his word DWELLING in you. (This was the defect that kept them from believing the One God sent and, as a result, not having life—v. 40—nor the love of God—v. 42.)
6:27 food that REMAINS to eternal life (This true bread from heaven—v. 33—is Jesus himself—vv. 35,41—namely, his flesh—v. 51. Therefore, the food that must REMAIN in someone for him to have eternal life would seem to be Jesus REMAINING in him. Cf. v. 56.)
6:56 He that eats my flesh and drinks my blood REMAINS in me and I in him. (Since this eating and drinking give eternal life—vv. 54-55—it would seem that all who have obtained eternal life REMAIN in him and he in them.)
8:31-32 If you CONTINUE in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will come to know the truth, and the truth will make you free. (These were people who had believed; but they later tried to kill Jesus—v. 59—were not Abraham’s children nor God’s children but the devil’s—v. 44.)
8:35 The slave doesn’t CONTINUE forever (i.e., have a permanent place) in the family, but the son does.
9:41 Your sin REMAINS.
12:46 in order that (a believer) not CONTINUE (or, STAY) in the darkness (Cf. 8:12, which makes it clear that his followers do not walk in the darkness.)
14:10 The Father who LIVES in me does his work. (This follows the statement that the Father and Son are in each other.)
14:17 You know him (i.e., the Spirit) because he LIVES with you (that is, in the person of Christ?) and will be in you. (Vv. 18,20 identify this with his own coming to be in them.)
(Notice in John 15:1-10 that the purpose of the vine is to bear fruit, which ac¬tiv¬ity marks out his disciples—v. 8. Those that do bear fruit are pruned to bear more—v. 3. Those that don’t bear fruit are taken away—v. 2. Since the only place where fruitbearing is possible is in the vine, the first command—v. 4—is for mu¬tual indwelling.)
15:4 REMAIN in me and I in you. Neither can you (bear fruit) unless you REMAIN in me.
15:5 The person that REMAINS in me and I in him, he bears much much fruit.
15:6 If anyone doesn’t REMAIN in me, he is like a branch that is thrown away and dries up…and they are burned.
15:7 If you REMAIN in me and my words (rhemata) REMAIN in you, you will ask whatever…and it shall be done.
15:9 As the Father has loved me, I have loved you; REMAIN in my love.
15:10 If you obey my commands, you WILL REMAIN in my love—just as I obeyed…and REMAIN in his love.
15:16 I chose you to…bear fruit, and your fruit WILL REMAIN.

1 John 2:6 He that says he MENEIN in him, ought to walk as he walked.
2:10 He that loves his brother MENEI in the light.
2:14 because…God’s word MENEI in you
2:17 He that does God’s will MENEI forever.
2:19 for if they had been of us, they would have MEMENEKEISAN with us
2:24 What you have heard from the beginning, MENETO in you; if it MEINE in you…you also MENEITE in the Son and in the Father.
2:27 The anointing you received from him MENEI in you. Just as it has taught you, MENETE in it.
2:28 And now, little children, MENETE in him.
3:6 Everyone that MENON in him doesn’t sin.
3:9 because his seed MENEI in him
3:14 He that doesn’t love MENEI in death.
3:15 Every murderer doesn’t have eternal life MENOUSAN in him.
3:17 How does God’s love MENEI in him?
3:24 He that keeps his commands MENEI in him.
By this we know that he MENEI in us, because He has given us of (ek) His Spirit..
4:12 If we love one another, God MENEI in us.
4:13 By this we know that we MENOMEN in him.
4:15 Whoever confesses…God MENEI in him.
4:16 He that MENON in love, MENEI in God and God MENEI in him.

2 John 2 on account of the truth that MENOUSAN in us
9 Everyone who goes on and doesn’t MENON in the teaching of Christ doesn’t have God. He that MENON in the teaching, this one has both the Father and the Son.

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