International Standard Version
1My little children, I'm writing these things to you so that you might not sin. Yet if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father—Jesus, the Messiah, one who is righteous. 2It is he who is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not for ours only, but also for the whole world's.
3This is how we can be sure that we have come to know him: if we continually keep his commandments. 4The person who says, "I have come to know him," but does not continually keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth has no place in that person. 5But whoever continually keeps his commandments is the kind of person in whom God's love has truly been perfected. This is how we can be sure that we are in union with God: 6The one who says that he abides in him must live the same way he himself lived.
7Dear friends, I am not writing to you a new commandment, but an old commandment that you have had from the beginning. This old commandment is the word you have heard. 8On the other hand, I am writing to you a new commandment that is truly in him and in you. For the darkness is fading away, and the true light is already shining. 9The person who says that he is in the light but hates his brother is still in the darkness. 10The person who loves his brother abides in the light, and there is no reason for him to stumble. 11But the person who hates his brother is in the darkness and lives in the darkness. He does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded his eyes.
12I am writing to you, little children, because your sins have been forgiven on account of his name. 13I am writing to you, fathers, because you have known the one who has existed from the beginning. I am writing to you, young people, because you have overcome the evil one. 14I have written to you, little children, because you have known the Father. I have written to you, fathers, because you have known the one who has existed from the beginning. I have written to you, young people, because you are strong and because God's word remains in you and you have overcome the evil one.
15Stop loving the world and the things that are in the world. If anyone persists in loving the world, the Father's love is not in him. 16For everything that is in the world—the desire for fleshly gratification, the desire for possessions, and worldly arrogance—is not from the Father but is from the world. 17And the world and its desires are fading away, but the person who does God's will remains forever.
18Little children, it is the last hour. Just as you heard that an antichrist is coming, so now many antichrists have appeared. This is how we know it is the last hour. 19They left us, but they were not part of us, for if they had been part of us, they would have stayed with us. Their leaving made it clear that none of them was really part of us. 20You have an anointing from the Holy One and know all things. 21I have not written to you because you do not know the truth, but because you do know it and because lies don't come from truth. 22Who is a liar but the person who denies that Jesus is the Messiah? The person who denies the Father and the Son is an antichrist. 23No one who denies the Son has the Father. The person who acknowledges the Son also has the Father. 24What you have heard from the beginning must abide in you. If what you have heard from the beginning abides in you, you will also abide in the Son and in the Father.
25The message that the Son himself declared to us is eternal life.
26I have written to you about those who are trying to deceive you. 27The anointing you received from God abides in you, and you do not need anyone to teach you this. Instead, because God's anointing teaches you about everything and is true and not a lie, abide in him, as he taught you to do.
28Even now, little children, abide in him. Then, when he appears, we will have confidence and will not turn away from him in shame when he comes. 29Since you know that he is righteous, you also know that everyone who practices righteousness has been fathered by God.