Bible Reference: 1 John 5:1-4
Translation: The Living Bible (TLB)
Bible Text: If you believe that Jesus is the Christ—that he is God’s Son and your Savior—then you are a child of God. And all who love the Father love his children too. So you can find out how much you love God’s children—your brothers and sisters in the Lord—by how much you love and obey God. Loving God means doing what he tells us to do, and really, that isn’t hard at all; for every child of God can obey him, defeating sin and evil pleasure by trusting Christ to help him.
OBSERVATION: Do you love God? How about God’s children, do you love them also? The extent to which you love God, will show how much you love His children! Is it evident how much you love God? Let’s stop and ponder this Scripture today, as we consider these very important questions.
APPLICATION: Through John, God has actually given us the formula for measuring how well we’re doing in loving God, and in loving fellow believers! In fact we are told in these verses today that the degree to which we love fellow believers is proportionate to how much we love and obey God. Ok, so I’m sure that you probably assume you truly love one another, because you are very sure that you really love God. But do you really? The Word declares that the love referenced here is not just a verbal thing, or a feeling, but instead if we truly love God, we will do what He tells us to do. For some that will be easy, because we pray and we seek God’s face through His precious Word. When we truly love God, we will not just listen to His commands, His teachings, His instructions for us, and His example that He set for us to follow, but we will be willing to live out in total obedience all that He commands us to do. Friends, our instructions and our reminders will not just come from the pulpit on the weekend, or from a Bible teacher, but primarily come from a one-on-one relationship with your maker. This might include getting into His Instruction Manual, the Bible, daily; it will include communicating with Him throughout your day; it will include sharing with others about the most important thing that ever happened to you. Friends, if it’s truly on the inside, it will come out in your words, actions and attitudes. Don’t know where to start? You may want to follow a good devotional, such as the one you’re now reading, or you may want to look for a Bible Reading Plan of your own. Whatever you decide, just remember to seek God’s face first – as it takes the Spirit of God to truly open your eyes to the spiritual truths of our awesome God. Not much of a reader? It doesn’t matter, when you seek God’s face first and ask Him to open your mind to His ways and His thoughts, and His teachings, you will find that those simple words on a page, actually reveals the perfect will of God for your life right where you’re at during that very moment. Highlight as He speaks to you, and make notes to remind yourself how He spoke to you. Note that in today’s scripture we are taught that through loving God and obeying all that He instructs us, then we will defeat sin and evil pleasures. Our love for God will become so pure and so real, that we will also love everything that God loves and everyone that He loves. So are you struggling with any part of this today friend? Let me encourage you to try the above ideas for at least seven days, and I believe God will give you a burning desire to continue doing the same for the rest of the time you remain on this earth! Love and obedience to God leads to love for the brethren friend!
PRAYER: Lord Jesus, You not only tell us to love one another, but You have even gone the extra step of showing us just how to accomplish that. How unfortunate, that a God who sacrificed His only Son for us on Calvary, must now tell us how important it is for us to love His Son. How deep the Father’s love for us, even in spite of our unworthiness. Yet how easy it is for us to say that we struggle in loving our Christian Brothers and Sisters, when we don’t fully appreciate the love of our Father, or see fit to obey His simple commands. Please forgive us dear Lord and continue to draw us to Yourself with an even deeper determination to love and obey You. I sincerely thank You for Your love, and for all these things I have asked throughout this devotional, for it is in the precious and loving name of Jesus that I ask, AMEN!