August 30: The Love of God and the Church (1 John 4:7-11)
This Sunday Josh Herring will continue teaching a series on church history at 9:00am in the youth room, focusing on the roots of the Reformation and how theology develops over time. Ray Rutledge will be in the Adult 1 classroom continuing through The Gospel Project.
1 John 4:7-11
Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God. Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love. In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him. In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. (ESV)
People love 1 Corinthians 13. Even non-Christians enjoy quoting it. With good reasons, it is a beautiful description of love. But it doesn’t tell us where we can find love or who is the source of love.1 John 4:7-11 tells us not only what love is, but also that we can become people of love and how we become people of love. John urges the Church to love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God. In the new birth, that supernatural work of the Spirit in us, love becomes part of who we are. God is love and those who are united to God will be people of love. True love is always grounded in Him who is love. As Jonathan Edwards beautifully puts it:
Because God is not only infinitely greater and more excellent than all other being, but he is the head of the universal system of existence; the foundation and fountain of all being and all beauty; from whom all is perfectly derived, and on whom all is most absolutely and perfectly dependent; of whom, and through whom, and to whom is all being and all perfection and whose being and beauty are, as it were, the sum and comprehension of all existence and excellence: much more than the sun is the fountain and summary comprehension of all the light and brightness of the day.
Review and Apply
1. Why can we and ought we to love one another?
2. Do you struggle to love others?
3. Do you regularly think of God’s grace in loving you in Christ Jesus?
4. How can we show God’s love in practical ways?