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Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

1 John 3:19

 

 

We will know by this that we are of the truth, and will assure our heart before Him

Adam Clarke Commentary

Hereby we know that we are of the truth - That we have the true religion of the Lord Jesus, and shall assure our hearts - be persuaded in our consciences, that we have the truth as it is in Jesus; as no man can impose upon himself by imagining he loves when he does not: he may make empty professions to others, but if he loves either God or man, he knows it because he feels it; and love unfelt is not love, it is word or tongue. This the apostle lays down as a test of a man's Christianity, and it is the strongest and most infallible test that can be given. He that loves feels that he does love; and he who feels that he loves God and man has true religion; and he who is careful to show the fruits of this love, in obedience to God and humane acts to man, gives others the fullest proof that he has the loving mind that was in Jesus.


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Bibliography
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on 1 John 3:19". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/1-john-3.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

And hereby - Greek, “by this;” that is, by the fact that we have true love to others, and that we manifest it by a readiness to make sacrifices to do them good.

We know that we are of the truth - That we are not deceived in what we profess to be; that is, that we are true Christians. To be of the truth stands opposed to cherishing false and delusive hopes.

And shall assure our hearts before him - Before God, or before the Saviour. In the margin, as in the Greek, the word rendered “shall assure,” is “persuade.” The Greek word is used as meaning to “persuade,” e. g., to the reception and belief of truth; then to persuade anyone who has unkind or prejudiced feelings toward us, or to bring over to kind feelings, “to conciliate,” and thus to pacify or quiet. The meaning here seems to be, that we shall in this way allay the doubts and trouble of our minds, and produce a state of quiet and peace, to wit, by the evidence that we are of the truth. Our consciences are often restless and troubled in view of past guilt; but, in thus furnishing the evidence of true piety by love to others, we shall pacify an accusing mind, and conciliate our own hearts, and persuade or convince ourselves that we are truly the children of God. See Robinson, Lexicon, sub voce πείθω peithōI. b. In other words, though a person‘s heart may condemn him as guilty, and though he knows that God sees and condemns the sins of his past life, yet the agitations and alarms of his mind may be calmed down and soothed by evidence that he is a child of God, and that he will not be finally condemned. A true Christian does not attempt to conceal the fact that there is much for which his own heart and conscience might justly accuse him but he finds, notwithstanding all this, evidence that he is a child of God, and he is persuaded that all will be well.


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Bibliography
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on 1 John 3:19". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/1-john-3.html. 1870.

Coffman's Commentaries on the Bible

Hereby shall we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our heart before him: because if our heart condemn us, God is greater than our heart, and knoweth all things.

In this verse, "heart" is used with the meaning of "conscience." "The heart in St. John's language is conscience; the word conscience is not found in his writings."[42]

"Opinion is much divided on whether these verses are meant to inspire awe, or afford consolation."[43] There does not seem to be any way of arriving at an absolute certainty on this point, so both viewpoints (and translations) will be presented.

AS AFFORDING CONSOLATION

Westcott's paraphrase is: "We shall then still our heart in whatsoever it may condemn us, because we are in fellowship with God, and that fact assures us of his sovereign mercy."[44]

David Smith explained the meaning thus:

The foregoing exhortation may have awakened a misgiving in our minds: "Am I loving as I ought?" Our failures in duty and service rise up before us, and "our heart condemns us." So the apostle furnishes a grand reassurance. The assurance is: (1) the worst that is in us is known to God, and (2) God sees the deepest things, and these are the real things. If our intention is to do his will, he takes account of that.[45]

The translation in the New Catholic Bible also follows this pattern of thought:

A probable rendering of the Greek is: "And in his sight we shall reassure our hearts, whatever our heart may accuse us of, because God is greater."[46]

Orr wrote:

When conscience brings its accusations, we may appeal to the higher and final tribunal of Omniscience. "Lord, you know everything; you know that I love, etc." (John 21:17).[47]

Plummer in his comment on "God knoweth all things ..." has this:

This is an awful thought for the impenitent, a blessed and encouraging thought for the penitent. God knows our sins, but he also knows our temptations, our struggles, our sorrow, and our love."[48]

Despite the above, however, there is another viewpoint that must be considered.

AS INSPIRING AWE

It could mean: since our hearts condemn us and God is infinitely greater than our hearts, God must condemn us even more. If we take it that way, it leaves us only with the fear of God and with nothing to say but, "God be merciful to me, a sinner."[49]

Our conscience is but the faint echo of His voice who knoweth all things: if it condemns us, how much more He?[50]SIZE>

The main objection to this interpretation was stated by Stott who thought that the emphatic purpose of the paragraph was that of healing wounded hearts and not that of "opening the wounds wider ... and striking terror into their hearts."[51] Despite this, we cannot rule out the possibility of this second meaning, for in so doing we might be guilty of presumption. Nevertheless, we dare to hope that the first meaning is correct. It could be that the blessed Spirit who inspired these precious words intended a certain ambiguity.

[42] Ibid., p. 912.

[43] J. R. Dummelow, Commentary on the Holy Bible (New York: The Macmillan Company, 1937), p. 1057. [44] Ibid.

[45] David Smith, op. cit., p. 187.

[46] The New Catholic Bible, op. cit., p. 317.

[47] R. W. Orr, op. cit., p. 616.

[48] A. Plummer, op. cit., p. 75.

[49] William Barclay, op. cit., p. 86.

[50] John R. W. Stott, op. cit., p. 148.

[51] Ibid.


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James Burton Coffman Commentaries reproduced by permission of Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. All other rights reserved.

Bibliography
Coffman, James Burton. "Commentary on 1 John 3:19". "Coffman Commentaries on the Old and New Testament". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bcc/1-john-3.html. Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. 1983-1999.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

And hereby we know that we are of the truth,.... By the saints loving one another in deed and in truth, they know, as the cause is known by the effect, that they are of God, who is the true God, the God of truth, and cannot lie, and is truth itself; that they are the children of God, and are born of him, since they love those that are, and every like loves its like; and that they are of Jesus Christ, who is the way, the truth, and the life; that they belong to him, are his, since they have his Spirit, as appears by his fruits in them, and this, among the rest, love to the brethren; and that they are his disciples, which others, even all men know, as well as themselves, by their mutual brotherly love; and that they are of the Gospel, which is truth, and the word of truth; that they are begotten, and born again, according to the will and grace of God by it, and are on the side of it, and can do nothing against, but all for it; and that they are true, sincere, and upright persons, true believers in Christ, whose faith works by love, and are real lovers of him, and his, since they love not in word only, but in deed and in truth.

And shall assure our hearts before him; or "persuade our hearts": arrive to a full assurance of faith, hope, and understanding, that we are of the truth, do belong to God, are loved by him with an everlasting love, are chosen by him unto salvation, and are his adopted and regenerated ones, having passed from death to life, of which brotherly love is a sure evidence, 1 John 3:14. Some render the words "shall pacify", or "make our hearts tranquil": or "quiet"; this only the blood of Christ can do, and does, being sprinkled on the conscience: he only has a quiet mind, or true peace of conscience, that looks to the righteousness of Christ for justification, and deals with his blood for the full and free remission of his sins: it is true indeed, that one that loves his brother heartily and sincerely, has peace of mind in it, though not for it; when, on the other hand, there is no peace to the wicked man, that hates his brother; for where there is envying, malice, hatred, and strife, there is no true peace, pleasure, and comfort, but confusion, uneasiness, distraction, and every evil work. Or this passage may refer to that holy confidence before God, which true believers in Christ, and cordial lovers of the brethren, have; both now at the throne of grace, where they can come with boldness, intrepidity, and freedom, to ask for what they want, and confidently believe they shall receive what is proper and needful for them; and also hereafter, at the throne of judgment, and in the day of judgment, when they shall have boldness, and not be ashamed before the Judge at his coming; who will particularly take notice of their love in feeding, clothing, and visiting the least of his brethren, which he takes as done to himself.


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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rightes Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855

Bibliography
Gill, John. "Commentary on 1 John 3:19". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/1-john-3.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

19 And hereby we know that we are of the truth, 20 and shall assure our hearts before him.

(19) He commends charity, by three effects: for first of all, by it we know that we are indeed the sons of God, as he showed before.

(20) Therefore it comes that we have a quiet conscience, as on the opposite side he that thinks that he has God for a judge, because he is guilty to himself either he is never or else very rarely quiet, for God has a far sharper sight then we, and judges more severely.


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Bibliography
Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on 1 John 3:19". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/1-john-3.html. 1599-1645.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

herebyGreek, “herein”; in our loving in deed and in truth (1 John 3:18).

we know — The oldest manuscripts have “we shall know,” namely, if we fulfil the command (1 John 3:18).

of the truth — that we are real disciples of, and belonging to, the truth, as it is in Jesus: begotten of God with the word of truth. Having herein the truth radically, we shall be sure not to love merely in word and tongue. (1 John 3:18).

assure — literally, “persuade,” namely, so as to cease to condemn us; satisfy the questionings and doubts of our consciences as to whether we be accepted before God or not (compare Matthew 28:14; Acts 12:20, “having made Blastus their friend,” literally, “persuaded”). The “heart,” as the seat of the feelings, is our inward judge; the conscience, as the witness, acts either as our justifying advocate, or our condemning accuser, before God even now. John 8:9, has “conscience,” but the passage is omitted in most old manuscripts. John nowhere else uses the term “conscience.” Peter and Paul alone use it.

before him — as in the sight of Him, the omniscient Searcher of hearts. Assurance is designed to be the ordinary experience and privilege of the believer.


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These files are a derivative of an electronic edition prepared from text scanned by Woodside Bible Fellowship.
This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.

Bibliography
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on 1 John 3:19". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/1-john-3.html. 1871-8.

Robertson's Word Pictures in the New Testament

Shall we know (γνωσομεταgnōsometha). Future middle indicative of γινωσκωginōskō at any future emergency, we shall come to know by this (εν τουτωιen toutōi) “that we are of the truth” (οτι εκ της αλητειας εσμενhoti ek tēs alētheias esmen).

Before him (εμπροστεν αυτουemprosthen autou). In the very presence of God we shall have confident assurance (πεισομεν την καρδιαν ημωνpeisomen tēn kardian hēmōn either we shall persuade our heart or shall assure our heart) because God understands us.


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The Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament. Copyright Broadman Press 1932,33, Renewal 1960. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Broadman Press (Southern Baptist Sunday School Board)

Bibliography
Robertson, A.T. "Commentary on 1 John 3:19". "Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/rwp/1-john-3.html. Broadman Press 1932,33. Renewal 1960.

Vincent's Word Studies

Shall assure ( πείσομεν )

Two renderings are possible; the primitive meaning persuade (Acts 19:26; Acts 17:4; 2 Corinthians 5:11); or the secondary and consequent sense, assure, quiet, conciliate (Matthew 28:14). Render as A.V., and Rev. as sure. See critical note at the end of the commentary on this Epistle.

Before Him ( ἔμπροσθεν αὐτοῦ )

Emphatic, the order being, before Him we shall assure our heart. These words are to be kept in mind as the key-note of what follows.


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Bibliography
Vincent, Marvin R. DD. "Commentary on 1 John 3:19". "Vincent's Word Studies in the New Testament". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/vnt/1-john-3.html. Charles Schribner's Sons. New York, USA. 1887.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

And hereby we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before him.

And hereby we know — We have a farther proof by this real, operative love.

That we are of the truth — That we have true faith, that we are true children of God.

And shall assure our hearts before him — Shall enjoy the assurance of his favour, and the "testimony of a good conscience toward God." The heart, in St. John's language, is the conscience. The word conscience is not found in his writings.


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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.

Bibliography
Wesley, John. "Commentary on 1 John 3:19". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/1-john-3.html. 1765.

Abbott's Illustrated New Testament

And hereby; that is, by the habitual temper and spirit of our minds.


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Bibliography
Abbott, John S. C. & Abbott, Jacob. "Commentary on 1 John 3:19". "Abbott's Illustrated New Testament". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/ain/1-john-3.html. 1878.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

19And hereby we know, or, by this we know. The word truth, he takes now in a different sense; but there is a striking similarity in the words, — If we, in truth, love our neighbors, we have an evidence that we are born of God, who is truth, or that the truth of God dwells in us. But we must ever remember, that we have not from love the knowledge which the Apostle mentions, as though we were to seek from it the certainty of salvation. And doubtless we know not otherwise that we are the children of God, than as he seals his free adoption on our hearts by his own Spirit., and as we receive by faith the sure pledge of it offered in Christ. Then love is accessory or an inferior aid, a prop to our faith, not a foundation on which it rests.

Why then does the Apostle say, We shall assure our hearts before God ? He reminds us by these words, that faith does not exist without a good conscience; not that assurance arises from it or depends on it, but that then only we are really and not falsely assured of our union with God, when by the efficacy of his Holy Spirit he manifests himself in our love. For it is ever meet and proper to consider what the Apostle handles; for as he condemns feigned and false profession of faith, he says that a genuine assurance before God we cannot have, except his Spirit produces in us the fruit of love. Nevertheless, though a good conscience cannot be separated from faith, yet no one should hence conclude that we must look to our works in order that our assurance may be certain.


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Bibliography
Calvin, John. "Commentary on 1 John 3:19". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/cal/1-john-3.html. 1840-57.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

19 And hereby we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before him.

Ver. 19. And shall assure our hearts] This, saith father Latimer, is the desert of the feast of a good conscience. There are other dainty dishes in this feast, but this is the banquet.


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Bibliography
Trapp, John. "Commentary on 1 John 3:19". John Trapp Complete Commentary. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/1-john-3.html. 1865-1868.

Sermon Bible Commentary

1 John 3:19

The Good and the Bad Conscience.

There is many a text concerning which it may be said that, without an earnest study of the whole chapter, of the whole context, or of the whole Epistle to which it belongs, it would be impossible to get at its depth and fulness. But happily, as St. Augustine says, if Scripture hath its depths to swim in, it hath also its shallows. Just as the geologist may mark the beauty of the crystal without attempting to set forth all the marvellous and subtle lines of its formation, so, without any possibility of showing all which a text articulates, a preacher may yet be thankful if he be enabled to bring before you with it only one or two thoughts such as may serve to the building up of the Christian life. St. John is dealing in our text with tests of sonship. He is telling us how we may decide the infinitely important question whether or not we are children of God. He is speaking to Christians, Christians, it may be, wavering, but still Christians, who shone as bright lights in that dark heathen world. However, the Apostle St. John makes love—that is to say, absolute unselfishness, a perfect and intense desire to devote our lives to the good of others—the one supreme test of spirituality. "My little children," he says, "let us not love in word, neither in tongue, but in deed and in truth." And then he adds, "And hereby we recognise that we are of the truth, and that truth shall assure our hearts before Him." The word "truth" in St. John, as in many other places of Scripture, means reality. If we belong to the truth, the real and eternal world, then, having God as our hope and strength, we are safe, and the world cannot hurt us; no storms can wreck our inward happiness. If we belong to a false world, our life is a failure, our death a terror. We are on the path that leads to destruction. There are in this world two paths: one a condition of fear and peril, wherein a man walketh in a vain shadow and disquieteth himself in vain; but the other is the hope that maketh not ashamed. St. John refers to conscience as the supreme arbiter in this awful question. Who does not know the use of the conscience? It is to the supreme honour of Greek thought that it brought into use that word, which first occurs in the Apocrypha, that word which describes self-knowledge, to describe that voice of God in the heart of man, a prophet in its information, a priest in its sanctions, and a monarch in its imperativeness. The Hebrews in the Old Testament use the word for truth and spirit to convey the same meaning. And the conscience of each one of us either condemns us or condemns us not.

I. Let us take the case of the absolving conscience: "Brethren, if our heart condemn us not, then have we confidence toward God." The Apostle defines wherein this confidence consists; it is boldness of access to God; it is a certainty that our filial prayers will, in their best and highest sense, be heard and answered. It is the consciousness of a life which leans on the arm of Christ, and keeping His commandments, is so transformed by the spirit of Divine life as to be conscious it is one with God. Yet there is such a thing as a spurious conscience. But when the oracle of conscience has been so tried, it can neither stand John's test nor give us peace. When our conscience acquits us, malediction becomes of none effect. It is simply impossible for any good and great man to go through the world, whether on the lighted stage of a public career, or in the office, or in the workshop, or in the back street, without the chance of suffering from unkindness and misconception, without not only his real errors, which all men do commit, being exaggerated, but his honest intentions, his most blessed and most intense actions, being depreciated. Yet he will all the while remember this was the case of the Master, Christ. However much reviled, He calmly and humbly committed Himself to Him who judgeth righteously. "Beloved, if our heart condemn us not, then have we confidence toward God."

II. Now turn to the other case—the case of the condemning conscience: "Brethren, if our heart condemn us, God is greater than our heart, and knoweth all things." What do these words mean? Are they merely a contemplation? Do they mean to warn us? Do they mean that we stand self-condemned in that silent court of justice which we ever bear about within ourselves, ourselves the judge and jury and ourselves the prisoner at the bar? If we stand thus self-condemned by the incorruptible judge within us, in spite of all our ingenious pleadings and infinite excuses for ourselves, how much more searching, more awful, more true, must be the judgment of Him who is "greater than our heart, and who knoweth all things." Or, on the other hand, is it a word of hope? Is it the cry, "Lord, Thou knowest all things; Thou knowest that I love Thee"? Is it the affirmation that if we be but sincere we may appeal to God and not be condemned? I believe this latter is the meaning. The Christian's heart may turn to a gracious, pardoning Omniscience, and be comforted by the thought that his conscience is but a water-pot, whereas God's love is a deep sea of compassion. He will look upon us with larger and other eyes than ours, and make allowance for us all.

F. W. Farrar, Family Churchman, Aug. 1st, 1883.


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Bibliography
Nicoll, William R. "Commentary on 1 John 3:19". "Sermon Bible Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/sbc/1-john-3.html.

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

1 John 3:19. And hereby we know, &c.— "And by a constant prevalence of this excellent temper and conduct, we may be well satisfied that we are begotten with the word of truth (James 1:18.), and are brought to understand, believe in, and live under, the government of the true principles of the gospel, as sincere Christians: and, in the consciousness of this, we shall assure our hearts before him, when we draw nigh in the exercises of devotion."


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Bibliography
Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on 1 John 3:19". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tcc/1-john-3.html. 1801-1803.

Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament

1 John 3:19. ἐν τούτῳ, in this) Hence depends we know and shall tranquilize; and to this refers, since He is greater, 1 John 3:20.— ἐκ τῆς ἀληθείας, of the truth) Of expresses the beginning or origin: Romans 2:8. For the truth makes love also true: 1 John 3:18.— ἔμπροσθεν αὐτοῦ) before Him who knows all things in truth, we shall tranquilize our hearts in prayer: 1 John 3:22.— πείσομεν, we shall tranquilize) so that they shall cease to condemn. The same word is used, Matthew 28:14.— τὰς καρδίας ἡμῶν, our hearts) The word συνείδησις, conscience, is used by Peter and Paul alone of the sacred writers: nor is it used in the Septuagint more than once, and that in another sense, Ecclesiastes 10:20. For the Hebrew לב is rendered καρδία, the heart, for instance, 1 Kings 2:44; 1 Kings 8:38. And so John nowhere uses the word συνείδησις, conscience; but here he implies it, in making mention of the heart: for it is the conscience which is tranquilized, and which condemns. Comp. Apparatus,(10) p. 588.


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Bibliography
Bengel, Johann Albrecht. "Commentary on 1 John 3:19". Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jab/1-john-3.html. 1897.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

And hereby we know that we are of the truth; i.e. this shall demonstrate to us, that we are the children of the truth, begotten by it, James 1:18, when we resemble it, have the correspondent impress of the gospel (that great representation of the love of God) upon us.

And shall assure our hearts before him; so shall our hearts be quieted, and well satisfied concerning our states God-ward.


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Bibliography
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on 1 John 3:19". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/1-john-3.html. 1685.

Justin Edwards' Family Bible New Testament

Hereby; by loving the brethren in reality, and being disposed, as we have opportunity, to do them good.

Are of the truth; belong to the side of the truth, believe and love it.

Assure our hearts; quiet their fears by the assurance of his gracious acceptance.


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Bibliography
Edwards, Justin. "Commentary on 1 John 3:19". "Family Bible New Testament". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/fam/1-john-3.html. American Tract Society. 1851.

Cambridge Greek Testament for Schools and Colleges

19. ἐν τούτῳ γνωσ. Herein we shall know. The omission of καί by [699][700], Syriac, and Vulgate, is probably right. Ἐν τούτῳ sometimes refers to what follows (1 John 3:16; 1 John 4:2; 1 John 4:9), sometimes to what precedes (1 John 2:5). Here to what precedes: by loving in deed and truth we shall attain to the knowledge that we are morally the children of the Truth. Ἡ ἀληθεία here is almost equivalent to ὁ Θεός. Ἐκ τῆς ἀληθ. εἶναι is to have the Truth as the source whence the guiding and formative influences of thought and conduct flow. Comp. 1 John 2:21; John 3:31; John 8:47; and especially John 18:37.

The construction and punctuation of what follows is doubtful; also the reading in the first and second clauses of 1 John 3:20. Certainty is not attainable, and to give all possible variations of reading and rendering would take up too much space. The conclusions adopted here are given as good and tenable, but not as demonstrably right.

ἔμπρ. αὐτοῦ. First for emphasis. It is in His presence that the truth is realised. The self-deceiver, who walks in darkness, hating his brother (1 John 2:11), can quiet his heart, ‘because the darkness has blinded his eyes’: but this is not done ἔμπροσθεν τοῦ Θεοῦ.

πείσομεν τὰς καρδίας ἡμ. As the Rhemish, shall persuade our hearts. This clause is probably coordinate with γνωσόμεθα, not dependent on it. The meaning is not ‘we shall know that we shall persuade,’ but ‘we shall know and we shall persuade.’ The powerful combination of [701], Peschito, and Thebaic, coupled with the fact that everywhere else in both Gospel and Epistle S. John uses the singular and not the plural, inclines one to prefer τὴν καρδίαν to τὰς καρδίας. “The singular fixes the thought upon the personal trial in each case” (Westcott). Obviously it means, not the affections (2 Corinthians 7:3; Philippians 1:7), but the conscience (Acts 2:37; Acts 7:54). S. Paul’s word, συνείδησις, emphasizes the knowledge of what the man recognizes in himself. S. John’s word, καρδία, emphasizes the feeling with which what is recognized is regarded. ‘Shall persuade our heart’ of what? That it need not condemn us: and hence the rendering in A.V. and R.V., ‘assure.’ But this is interpretation rather than translation; for πείθειν in itself does not mean ‘assure.’ Tyndale and the Genevan have ‘quiet’; Beza secura reddemus. And if the context in the Greek shews that πείθειν means this here, then let the context speak for itself in the English. Comp. ἡμεῖς πείσομεν αὐτὸν καὶ ὑμᾶς ἀμερίμνους ποιήσομεν (Matthew 28:14): and πείσαντες Βλάστον (Acts 12:20).


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Bibliography
"Commentary on 1 John 3:19". "Cambridge Greek Testament for Schools and Colleges". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/cgt/1-john-3.html. 1896.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

4. This love is evidenced to ourselves by assurance through faith in Christ and witness of the Spirit given unto us, 1 John 3:19-24.

19. Hereby—By our real good-doing in deed.

Of the truth—Our deeds are seal of the truth of our religion. So that love and truth identify into one, taking external form in deeds of goodness.

Assure… hearts— Literally, persuade our hearts; that is, produce in our hearts the persuasion that we are all right before God our judge.


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Bibliography
Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on 1 John 3:19". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/1-john-3.html. 1874-1909.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

-20

And in his sight we shall persuade our hearts. That is, if we love God and our neighbour in deed, as he said before, we may rest satisfied in conscience that we follow the ways of truth, and may have a well-grounded confidence in God. --- But if our hearts reprehend us, for not complying with this duty and precept of charity, God is still greater than our heart; i.e. he sees and knows the interior dispositions of our heart, even better than we know ourselves, and therefore we have more reason to fear him, especially when even our heart and conscience reprehend us. (Witham)


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Bibliography
Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on 1 John 3:19". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/1-john-3.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

assure. App-150.


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Bibliography
Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on 1 John 3:19". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/1-john-3.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

And hereby we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before him.

Hereby - `herein;' in loving in deed and truth (1 John 3:18).

We know. 'Aleph (') A B C have 'we shall know,' namely, if we fulfill the command (1 John 3:18).

Of the truth - real disciples of, belonging to, the truth, as it is in Jesus: begotten of God with the word of truth (James 1:18). Having the truth radically, we shall not love merely in word and tongue (1 John 3:18).

Assure - persuade, so as to cease to condemn us; satisfy the doubts of our consciences as to whether we be accepted before God or not (cf. Acts 12:20, "having made Blastus ... their friend," 'persuaded'). The "heart," the seat of the feelings, is our inward judge; the conscience, as witness, acts either as our justifying advocate, or our condemning accuser, even now. John nowhere (except John 8:9, rejected by the oldest manuscript) uses conscience. Peter and Paul alone use it.

Before him - in the sight of Him, the omniscient Searcher of hearts. Assurance is the designed experience and privilege of the believer.


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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on 1 John 3:19". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/1-john-3.html. 1871-8.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

And hereby we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before him.
hereby
14; 1:8; John 13:35; 18:37
shall
21; Isaiah 32:17; Hebrews 6:10,11; 10:22
assure
Gr. persuade.
Romans 4:21; 8:38; 2 Timothy 1:12; Hebrews 11:13

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These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on 1 John 3:19". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/1-john-3.html.

The Bible Study New Testament

This, then. "Only by this kind of behavior, acting out our love, can we know that we belong to the truth and the fellowship of the Father and the Son." Will be confident. No need to be ashamed! See 1 John 2:28.


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Bibliography
Ice, Rhoderick D. "Commentary on 1 John 3:19". "The Bible Study New Testament". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/ice/1-john-3.html. College Press, Joplin, MO. 1974.

E.M. Zerr's Commentary on Selected Books of the New Testament

Nothing can give a disciple any stronger confidence than to know that he is proving his love by actions that benefit the brethren. He thereby

manifests his relationship with the truth of the Lord which requires us to show practical love.


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These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Zerr, E.M. "Commentary on 1 John 3:19". E.M. Zerr's Commentary on Selected Books of the New Testament. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/znt/1-john-3.html. 1952.

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