God Is Love

1 John 4:7-21

Good News Translation (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.
11  Dear friends,
   if this is how God loved us,
   then we should love one another.
12  No one has ever seen God,
   but if we love one another,
   God lives in union with us,
   and his love is made perfect in us.
13  We are sure that we live
   in union with God and that he lives
   in union with us,
   because he has given us his Spirit.
14  And we have seen and tell others that
   the Father sent his Son to be
   the Saviour of the world.
15  If we declare that Jesus is the Son of God,
   we live in union with God
   and God lives in union with us.
16  And we ourselves know and believe
   the love which God has for us.
   God is love, and those who live in love
   live in union with God and
   God lives in union with them.
17  Love is made perfect in us in order
   that we may have courage on the Judgment Day;
   and we will have it because our life
   in this world is the same as Christ's.
18  There is no fear in love;
   perfect love drives out all fear.
   So then, love has not been made perfect in
   anyone who is afraid,
   because fear has to do with punishment.
19  We love because God first loved us.
20  If we say we love God,
   but hate others, we are liars.
   For we cannot love God,
   whom we have not seen,
   if we do not love others,
   whom we have seen.
21  The command that Christ
   has given us is this:
   whoever loves God
   must love others also.

 Taken from
'The Applied New Testament Commentary'

God's Love and Ours

1 John 4:7-21

Whoever loves his brother, lives in the light.
God is love. Everyone who loves
has been born of God.

Only those who walk in light (faith)
and love are born of God. His nature is love.
He doesn't love us because
we are worthy to be loved,
but because it is His nature to love.

This is the great news of the Gospel of Christ!
In order to know God, one has to meet Him personally.
One must be able to call Him Father.
We must receive love into our hearts;
otherwise, we cannot know love.

It is not enough just to receive love;
we must give it.
To the extent that love flows out from us,
to that extent love will flow in from God.
Notice, all true love comes from God.
We don't love others with our own human love,
but with God's love.

True love is spiritual;
it comes not from man, but from God.
God demonstrated his own love for us in this:
While we were still sinners,
Jesus died for us.
He died for our sins and offered up His own life
as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.
How can we refuse to love others,
whom Jesus loved so much?

God is in our hearts.
We don't need to look for Him with our eyes.
As we continue to obey His word -
his love is made complete in us.
God doesn't give an unlimited measure
of His Spirit to men.
God gave His Spirit without limit to Jesus.

God is in our hearts.
We testify that the Father has sent his Son
to be the Saviour of the world.

Not everyone in the world is saved.
A person must acknowledge that Jesus
is the Son of God.
To believe in Him - is to live in God.
To know God is to have eternal life.

Because God lives in us,
we experience it, and rely on it.
As God's love is made complete in us,
we become more like Jesus.

That is the main goal of our Christian lives.
When His love is made complete in us,
then we will have confidence
on the final day of judgment.
We will not have to fear God's judgment;
for us there will be no condemnation,
no punishment.

In this world we are like him (Jesus).
Because of sin, we cannot be fully like Him
in this life. Only at the end of the world,
when Jesus has come again,
will we become completely like Him.

If we fear God's judgment, it means that
we have not been made perfect in love;
it means that Christ's love has
not been made complete in us,

To become a child of God,
we begin to fear God.
We begin to experience God's love,
but fear still remains.
Finally, we lose our fear;
only the love of Jesus remains.

Then we will have confidence before God,
because we will know with certainty
that we are indeed His children.

The fear of the Lord
is the beginning of wisdom.
The 'fear', mentioned in Proverbs,
is more a feeling of awe and respect;
such 'fear' comes from an awareness
that God knows everything about us,
and that He has the power to
punish those who disobey Him.

We cannot truly love until God
has poured out His own love into our hearts.
It is only because God first loved us
and gave us His Holy Spirit that we can now
love Him and love others.

Love for God and love for others
cannot be separated.
If we truly love God, we will also love men.
In one way, it is easy to love God.
He is a Spirit. We can't see Him.
"I love God" is easy to say.

But to love men is different.
Men give us trouble. They oppose us.
They make us angry.
It is difficult for us to love them.
So we say: "I love God, but I can't love men."
We can only show our love for God
by showing love to men.

All men are made in God's image.
There is something of God in every man.
If we cannot love the image of God (man)
which we can see,
how can we love God Himself,
whom we can't see?

To love God is the highest and most
important and most difficult
work in all the world.
How, then, can we love God?

We can love Him, because He has poured out
His own love into our hearts.
It is only as we receive God's love
that we are able to love Him
and to love others.

We love, not with our own love,
but with His love.

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