1 John 2:13 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

1 John 2:13, NIV: I am writing to you, fathers, because you know him who is from the beginning. I am writing to you, young men, because you have overcome the evil one.

1 John 2:13, ESV: I am writing to you, fathers, because you know him who is from the beginning. I am writing to you, young men, because you have overcome the evil one. I write to you, children, because you know the Father.

1 John 2:13, KJV: I write unto you, fathers, because ye have known him that is from the beginning. I write unto you, young men, because ye have overcome the wicked one. I write unto you, little children, because ye have known the Father.

1 John 2:13, NASB: I am writing to you, fathers, because you know Him who has been from the beginning. I am writing to you, young men, because you have overcome the evil one. I have written to you, children, because you know the Father.

1 John 2:13, NLT: I am writing to you who are mature in the faith because you know Christ, who existed from the beginning. I am writing to you who are young in the faith because you have won your battle with the evil one.

1 John 2:13, CSB: I am writing to you, fathers, because you have come to know the one who is from the beginning. I am writing to you, young men, because you have conquered the evil one.

What does 1 John 2:13 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Verse 13 features three sentences in John's six-sentence poem addressing various audiences. First, John writes to "fathers," and refers to God's eternal existence. These "fathers" are those older, more mature, more experienced believers. They both know Christ as Lord and "know" Him in the deepest sense of having walked with Him long-term, likely for several years.

The third phrase of John's poem targets a third audience: "young men," who have "overcome the evil one." These young men are distinct from the "young children"—new believers—of verse 12, but are not yet the "fathers" of the church. These younger warriors for Christ have "overcome," an idea John mentions again in verse 14. This letter also refers to "overcoming" in 1 John 4:4, 5:4, and 5:5. John defines an "overcomer" in 1 John 5:5 with a question: "Who is it that overcomes the world except the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?" Every true believer in Christ is an overcomer.

The fourth phrase of the poem begins its second half. In this half, the same groups are mentioned in the same order. First are the "little children," who know God (1 John 2:12).