Bible Study

1 John Bible Study, Day 12: Holy Spirit Anointing

Today’s passage: 1 John 2:26–29

Focus verse: The anointing you received from him remains in you, and you do not need anyone to teach you. (1 John 2:27)

Our verse for today contains two words that we’ve already read in 1 John 2: anointing and remain

In verse twenty, John reminds us of the fact that we received the anointing from the Holy One, that is, the Holy Spirit (1 John 2:20). John builds on this truth in today’s passage.

The other word is remain. John has encouraged us—implored us—to hold on to what we’ve heard from the beginning, to ensure it remains in us. In this way we’ll remain in the Son and the Father so that we may receive the eternal life Jesus promised (1 John 2:24–25).

Now John ties these two thoughts together. 

He wants to make sure that the anointing we received—the Holy Spirit—remains in us. This anointing is real and not fake. We can count on it. We need to remain in him just as we need to be certain this anointing stays with us.

The reason to remain in Holy Spirit anointing is in the middle of this passage and is easy to pass by. But don’t skip it. It’s important.

When the Holy Spirit’s anointing remains in us, we do not need anyone to teach us. Instead of needing human instructors, the Holy Spirit will tell us all we need to know.

I repeat, through the Holy Spirit we do not need anyone to teach us. The Bible says so.

Most people who go to church do so for the music or the message. For the latter, they go so they can hear a professional member of the clergy teach them about God. 

Yet John makes it clear that when we have the anointing of God’s Holy Spirit, we don’t need ministers to teach us. We need to teach ourselves—to feed ourselves—not depend on someone else to do it (1 Corinthians 3:2, Hebrews 5:12–14, and 1 Peter 2:2–3).

This isn’t to suggest that listening to sermons is bad. But we shouldn’t depend on other people as our only source of biblical teaching. Instead, we should rely on the Holy Spirit as our principal source of spiritual truth. Teaching from others should come secondary, if needed at all.

Jesus confirms this. 

He promises that Father God will send to us the Holy Spirit, who will teach us all things and help us remember what Jesus said (John 14:26). The Holy Spirit arrives at Pentecost, just as Jesus promised. And the Holy Spirit is still in our world today, teaching us what we need to know.

As we read, study, and meditate on Scripture, we should do so in tandem with the Holy Spirit. We should seek his guidance to help us understand the Bible. Some things he reveals right away, and other things unfold over time. And when we struggle to recall a passage of Scripture—especially the words of Jesus—the Holy Spirit will remind us of the text.


  1. What does Holy Spirit anointing mean to you?
  2. How is the Holy Spirit at work in your life?
  3. How well do we do at relying on the Holy Spirit to teach us? 
  4. If we depend on others to instruct us, while excluding the Holy Spirit, what must change?
  5. What is your practice to read, study, and meditate on Scripture?

Discover more about God sending us the Holy Spirit in John 6:63, John 14:16–17, and John 15:26.

Tips: Check out our tips to use this online Bible study for your church, small group, Sunday school class, or family discussion. It’s also ideal for personal study. Come back each Monday for a new lesson.

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Discover practical, insightful, and encouraging truths in Love One Another, a devotional Bible study to foster a deeper appreciation for the two greatest commandments: To love God and to love others.

Peter DeHaan writes about biblical Christianity to confront status quo religion and live a life that matters. He seeks a fresh approach to following Jesus through the lens of Scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices.

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