By This

I have learned over the past few years the importance of knowing good English when writing. I failed HS English because I was lazy and didn’t care. I wish I had paid much closer attention in those days. Most, if not all of my current English understanding is from one year of college English and self learning through reading college English books. I love the language. It has helped me learn the Greek language, which I am still learning, and have a love for the wonderful language of the Bible.

Over the years I have developed different Bible study methods. For example, when preaching through books of the Bible, I try to parse the chapters to gain an understanding of the subject, main point, verbs, etc. Why? It helps me to see the context. It helps me see the passion in the writer and why he was writing the text. One of the words that came out in a recent study of I John was the words “by this” in I John 2:3 in which the text says, “And by this we know that we have come to know him, if we keep his commandments.” The words “by this” are from the Greek words “en houtos.” What amazes me is the word en is a preposition which defined is “a word that describes the relationship between two things.” The next question is what two things does the word “by” describe?

In I John 2:2 Jesus is described as the propitiation of our sin, the appeasement of God’s wrath, by being born again by this great work of Christ, we keep His commandments – vs. 3. Being born again in vs. 2 and keeping His commandments in vs. 3, the word “by this” ties those two together. Its a wonderful hope we have that His word is true.