1 John 4:7-12
Feb 15, 2015
1 John 4:7-12 Dear friends, let us love one another, because love is from God, and everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. The one who does not love does not know God, because God is love. God's love was revealed among us in this way: God sent His One and Only Son into the world so that we might live through Him. Love consists in this: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Dear friends, if God loved us in this way, we also must love one another. No one has ever seen God. If we love one another, God remains in us and His love is perfected in us. Ephesians 4:10-16 The One who descended is also the One who ascended far above all the heavens, that He might fill all things. And He personally gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors and teachers, for the training of the saints in the work of ministry, to build up the body of Christ, until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of God's Son, growing into a mature man with a stature measured by Christ's fullness. Then we will no longer be little children, tossed by the waves and blown around by every wind of teaching, by human cunning with cleverness in the techniques of deceit. But speaking the truth in love, let us grow in every way into Him who is the head - Christ. From Him the whole body, fitted and knit together by every supporting ligament, promotes the growth of the body for building up itself in love by the proper working of each individual part.
Big Idea - God's steadfast and unchanging character should be the primary source of truth and direction in our lives.
Hebrews 6:13-20 For when God made a promise to Abraham, since He had no one greater to swear by, He swore by Himself: I will indeed bless you, and I will greatly multiply you. And so, after waiting patiently, Abraham obtained the promise. For men swear by something greater than themselves, and for them a confirming oath ends every dispute. Because God wanted to show His unchangeable purpose even more clearly to the heirs of the promise, He guaranteed it with an oath, so that through two unchangeable things, in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled for refuge might have strong encouragement to seize the hope set before us. We have this hope as an anchor for our lives, safe and secure. It enters the inner sanctuary behind the curtain. Jesus has entered there on our behalf as a forerunner, because He has become a high priest forever in the order of Melchizedek.
1. Your love of fellow believers is a reflection of your relationship with God.
Genesis 1:26 Then God said, "Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness. They will rule the fish of the sea, the birds of the sky, the livestock, all the earth, and the creatures that crawl on the earth." 1 John 4:20 If anyone says, "I love God," yet hates his brother, he is a liar. For the person who does not love his brother he has seen cannot love the God he has not seen. James 2:14 What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can his faith save him? Galatians 5:22-23 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faith, gentleness, self-control. Against such things there is no law.
2. God models His love for us through the sacrifice of His Son.
1 John 4:9-10 God's love was revealed among us in this way: God sent His One and Only Son into the world so that we might live through Him. Love consists in this: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. John 15:12-13 This is My command: Love one another as I have loved you. No one has greater love than this, that someone would lay down his life for his friends. Romans 5:6-11 For while we were still helpless, at the appointed moment, Christ died for the ungodly. For rarely will someone die for a just person - though for a good person perhaps someone might even dare to die. But God proves His own love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us! Much more then, since we have now been declared righteous by His blood, we will be saved through Him from wrath. For if, while we were enemies, we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, then how much more, having been reconciled, will we be saved by His life! And not only that, but we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ. We have now received this reconciliation through Him. Ephesians 5:25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave Himself for her.
3. God's love is perfected in us when we love each other the way God loves us.
John 8:19 Then they asked Him, "Where is Your Father? " "You know neither Me nor My Father," Jesus answered. "If you knew Me, you would also know My Father." 1 John 3:16-18 This is how we have come to know love: He laid down His life for us. We should also lay down our lives for our brothers. If anyone has this world's goods and sees his brother in need but closes his eyes to his need - how can God's love reside in him? Little children, we must not love with word or speech, but with truth and action.
God defines love, God models love, and God calls us to love each other sacrificially.
What does the quality of your love for other believers indicate about your relationship with God?
Spend time in prayer and reflect on this question: "If God 'is' love and all His activity is loving, then how does this impact our view of the God of the Old Testament?"
Love each other sacrificially.
Note: all scripture references are in HCSB