In his first epistle, John the apostle addressed a problem—gnostics had entered
the church and were undermining the faith by redefining the knowledge of God.
John's purpose in this epistle? “That you may know you have eternal life.” This
is an important and helpful teaching, especially for those who have to rebuild
faith in these days of neo-gnostics. The burden of this teaching is not “new
truths”, but re-establishment and deepening of the original faith. As John writes,
“I write no new thing to you ... but that which you heard from the beginning”.