1 John 4:3 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

1 John 4:3, NIV: but every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you have heard is coming and even now is already in the world.

1 John 4:3, ESV: and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you heard was coming and now is in the world already.

1 John 4:3, KJV: And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world.

1 John 4:3, NASB: and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God; this is the spirit of the antichrist, which you have heard is coming, and now it is already in the world.

1 John 4:3, NLT: But if someone claims to be a prophet and does not acknowledge the truth about Jesus, that person is not from God. Such a person has the spirit of the Antichrist, which you heard is coming into the world and indeed is already here.

1 John 4:3, CSB: but every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you have heard is coming; even now it is already in the world.

What does 1 John 4:3 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

A second test John gives is related to confessing Christ as Lord. If a person confesses Jesus as Lord, he or she has publicly professed becoming a Christian (Romans 10:9). If a person refuses to confess Jesus is the Christ, that person cannot be a true believer. This also reflects back to verse 2 and the necessity to "confess" that Jesus has come in the flesh.

John has harsh words for false teachers who do not confess Christ in these ways. He refers to this spirit as that of "antichrist." This is different from the world ruler described in the end times. John specifically notes that this is a spirit—and attitude—which was already working in the world of his readers.

The spirit of antichrist is a false teaching. This teaching promotes a phony godliness which exists apart from the biblical Jesus (2 Timothy 3:5). John also mentioned the antichrist previously in 1 John 2:18 and 1 John 2:22. In 2 John 1:7, he also writes, "For many deceivers have gone out into the world, those who do not confess the coming of Jesus Christ in the flesh. Such a one is the deceiver and the antichrist." Those who reject the humanity of Jesus are considered against Christ or antichrist.