For those who have been with us on Wednesdays, we have been in a study called, “Walking With God”. While we are looking at several scripture references the backdrop for our study is the book of 1 John. What happens when Christ comes into a life? What difference does faith in Christ make? These are the type of questions we are exploring. To get an answer to these questions, catch up by listening to past teachings because tonight, we are expanding on those answers by talking more about the manifestation of God in your life.
If fellowship with us is God’s reason for sending Christ, then love is the consummation of knowing Christ. “Whoever confesses (agrees with God) that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides (fellowships) in him, and he in God. And we have known and believed (rely upon) the love that God has for us.” (1 John 4:15-16) Fellowship with God begets the knowing of love. We are finite beings who fellowship with the Infinite. But one day, our fellowship will be complete in His appearance and revelation of God causes those who abide in Him to experience constant transformation so since our revelation will be complete so will our transformation.
His becoming like us has given us confidence that we will become like Him through continued fellowship with Him. Here are a few points brought out in these passages:
We love because He first loved us.
You cannot give away something you do not possess. God loves us, therefore, we have love to give to others, including God Himself. Since His Spirit is in us, then we would be being false to His nature if we did not love; “And this commandment we have from Him: that he who loves God must love his brother also.” (1 John 4:21) You cannot be commanded to love but you can be empowered to love through fellowship with God. Fellowship with God is created by revelation. Love is more than a feeling – it is a reality created by a revelation. Love for others is a revelation of fellowship with God!
A state of revelation of God will become evangelistic.
Christ is the revelation of God. Jesus said, “He who has seen Me has seen the Father.” Fellowship with God creates revelation of God which makes creates a revelation of God to those around us. “No one has seen God at any time. If we love one another, God abides in us, and His love has been perfected in us. By this we know that we abide in Him, and He in us, because He has given us of His Spirit. And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent the Son as Savior of the world.” (1 John 4:12-14) Fellowship creates revelation which creates love which creates evangelism.
Ungodly relationships work against evangelism.
“If anyone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen, how can he love God whom he has not seen?” (1 John 4:20) In this usage, we can call it ungodly relationships: Those which are not based out of the love of God and empowered by the love of God. Those not based out of the love of God and empowered by the love of God are so because people don’t know God. When you are young, a foundation for knowing God is established in you by having godly parents. If your parents didn’t know God, then they couldn’t adequately reveal Him to you. Since what you have had revealed to you was ungodly, then it can create a foundation within you which makes it difficult to trust relationships not known (seen; revealed) to you.
On the other hand, there is a miracle at work in our relationship with Jesus. Fellowship with Jesus creates a revelation of Jesus which creates a revelation of love. Love creates an ability to love others even when they are not loving us because Jesus creates the ability to have a revelation we couldn’t have without Him!!! Not knowing God makes it difficult to love that which we see. Knowing God makes it possible to love that which we do not see.
Fear is the product of an absence of love.
“There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love.” (1 John 4:18) Love creates security. An absence of love creates instability. Where love is not present, fear enters the vacuum. You don’t have to know what is going to happen to be without fear. You simply have to know who controls the outcomes. If we experience fear or anxiety, then we don’t truly know who God is. A remedy for fear is to receive the love of God!
1 John 4:7-21
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