Walk in Love.
1 John 4:13-21
By this we know that we abide in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit. 14 And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world. 15 Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. 16 So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him. 17 By this is love perfected with us, so that we may have confidence for the day of judgment, because as he is so also are we in this world. 18 There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love. 19 We love because he first loved us. 20 If anyone says, "I love God," and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen. 21 And this commandment we have from him: whoever loves God must also love his brother.
There is a lot in this passage. Let's break this down verse by verse in bite size pieces today.
Verse 13: The Holy Spirit is in every true believer (Ephesians 1:13-14). The Holy Spirit is teaching, rebuking, correcting and training us in righteousness (John 14:26; 2 Timothy 3:16). We know that we abide in Jesus because this is happening in our lives as believers.
Verse 14: John speaks for the apostles that were trained and sent out by Jesus. He states for them, “We have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world.” We have, in John’s statement, the testimony of eyewitnesses that Jesus is the Savior of the world.
Verse 15: People who confess that Jesus is the Son of God abide in Him and He in them. Jesus called Himself the Son of God which was understood by the Jews to be God (John 10:33, 36). Believers have God in them and thus the ability to live the life God calls each believer to live.
Verse 16-21: Every true believer has the capacity to love his brother, that is, other believers. Loving our brother is a valid indicator that we love God and that He lives in us. The love we have is given us by the Holy Spirit (God) who dwells in us. The love we have for people gives us confidence that we will not experience eternal judgment. The love we have for people also removes the fear of God’s disciplinary judgment that is meant to turn us away from sinful behavior to godly practice (Hebrews 12:5-11).
If a person says he loves God and hates his brother, he is a liar. If he loved God, he would obey His commands (1 John 5:3) and obey the command to love his brother, even if he didn’t feel like it. Feelings are a poor indicator of love. Obedience to God’s commands are the true expression of love for people (1 John 5:2).
May you love others even if you do not feel like it today.
Three key questions to ask as we prayerfully read the scriptures:
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