|1 John 4:7-10 (GNT)|
|7 Dear friends, let us love one another, because love comes from God. Whoever loves is a child of God and knows God. 8 Whoever does not love does not know God, for God is love. 9 And God showed his love for us by sending his only Son into the world, so that we might have life through him. 10 This is what love is: it is not that we have loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the means by which our sins are forgiven.|
|I believe that we have always learned that God is love, and that we should use His example when explaining the word ‘love’. However in our Scripture today, John is helping us to understand that if we claim to know Jesus as Lord, then we must be identified as being a person of that same genuine love as Jesus. Easy? No, but let’s try to apply this today…..|
|After growing into a teenager, I remember being far from home, and someone at a gas station shouted across identifying me with my dad. I was floored, as I never knew that I looked so much like my dad! We often hear people tell couples that they look like sister and brother. I wonder if that’s as much in looks, or how they act so much alike after being together so many years? Friends, with God’s help, I want to especially share with you the unconditional love that Jesus has for us, and I want to remind you that when we identify ourselves with Him – that we are a Christian, then folk should often mistake us for Jesus, because we act so much like all they have read, heard or know about Jesus. This passage today is telling us that we can’t hate a brother or a sister and claim to be Christ-like, for that would be totally opposite to His character trait. Let me remind you that He loved the men that came to arrest Him in the garden where He went to pray, because He reached out and healed the ear of the one whose ear was severed by one of Jesus’ men. On the cross He pleaded with God to have mercy on the folk responsible for His crucifixion, as He felt they really didn’t know what they were doing. He could have called a multitude of angels to clean up the scene at the crucifixion, much like He did at His birth when He reached out to the shepherds, but He sought the Father’s will instead. These few points lead to the fact that just as Jesus loved, in spite of the circumstances, and in spite of the hatred showed to Him, then as His child, we too must seek guidance, strength and boldness to love those who are easy to love, and those who really don’t want anyone to love them. Our witness to them will be most effective when they see Jesus in our words and in our actions, otherwise we come across to them as just another hypocrite. For those of us that represent our Savior, our relationship with Him is way too important to mess up on this. Verse 8 clearly identifies those who choose not to love. I trust that no one reading this blog today will walk away acknowledging that they are not a child of the King. Friends, please know Him and know true love for one another. If you are challenged to show love for everyone, then have a personal meeting with Jesus and analyze Your relationship with Him. There may be some decisions or cleanup that He may want you to do in your life.|
|Dear Jesus, thank You for another identifier, and reminder for those of us that claim You as Lord and Master. You portrayed love to everyone, much to the dismay of church leaders in Your day. Yet You have forgiven us of our sin, and we still look down our noses at some, assuming that we could never love them. Your Word is clear – that attitude highlights one who is not a child of the King. Lord Jesus, please help us to seek Your face, Your strength and Your love each and every day, and please help us to never assume that anyone is not worthy of our love. As Your representative, may we learn to love everyone with the same love that You showed to us when a holy and righteous Savior held out His hand and accepted a sinner like me. May You be honored in all that we say and do today, is my humble prayer that I ask in faith, AMEN!|
|There are two more pages on my blog that will provide you with additional information, one of them being ‘To Know Jesus’. If you have been challenged to make a decision today after reading this devotional, please click on the above page, or speak with a local Bible Teaching Pastor, or contact me at NuggetsFromGodsWord@outlook.com. Please allow someone to pray with you and give you help and/or encouragement as you begin, or continue your walk with Jesus. Words underlined in my blog could indicate a link to a song that came to mind as I wrote the devotional. Feel free to click on the link and listen as you continue to read or pray. If this devotional was forwarded to you and you would like to see more, please go to Nuggets From God’s Word and read more, or you may freely to subscribe for a daily email conveniently containing each day’s devotional. If you are anywhere near the Highlands County, Florida area and do not have a church home, I would be thrilled to welcome you at Bible Fellowship Church, located at 3750 Hammock Rd, Sebring, FL 33872! Click the link to check out service times and/or other special activities. God is at work among us! Please consider coming to worship with us!|
I believe that we have always learned that God is love, and that we should use His example when explaining the word ‘love’. However in our Scripture today, John is helping us to understand that if we claim to know Jesus as Lord, then we must be identified as being a person of that same genuine love as Jesus. Easy? No, but let’s try to apply this today…..