December 5

1 John 4

The Basis for Fellowship 1:5-2:2, cont’d.

We Must Listen to the Apostles (4:1-6)

Here again is a strong statement that Jesus had a literal, actual physical nature.  He came "in the flesh".  Those who did not believe this are "not from God".  We are to "test" the spirits concerning this matter.  In other words, this fact is to be used to identify whether, or not, a person who claims to be a "prophet", to have a word from God, is to be believed.

If someone refuses to listen to and believe this truth...they are from the world, and not from God.

 

We Must Love One Another (4:7-21)

John tells us that one of the unmistakable qualities of a believer in Christ is love.  He then makes it perfectly clear that we cannot confess that we love God…of we do not love other believers.  The love that God has given to us must be expressed through us to other believers because…

  • God is Love (:7-8,16)
  • God Loved Us First (:8-11,19)
  • We Love God by Loving One Another (:12)
  • Through Love We Abide in God (:13-16)
  • Love Overcomes Fear of Judgment (:17-18)
  • God has Commanded us to Love One Another (:19-21)

We should love one another because God loved us, first...and we should follow in His pattern.  Because God's love is "perfected"  (made complete) in us, we will love others as He does.  And, this will give us confidence in the day of judgment.

Prayer: Father, I pray that Your love will so consume me that there will be nothing to inhibit its flow from me to others.  As I relate to other people, I pray that they would experience Your love, as if they were relating to You, Yourself.

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