Today, Saturday August 14
We Can Know Love, Truth and His Presence 1 John 3:16, 19 & 24 “By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers.”
“By this we shall know that we are of the truth and reassure our heart before him;”
“Whoever keeps his commandments abides in God, and God in him. And by this we know that he abides in us, by the Spirit whom he has given us.”
In 1 John 3:11-24 we see four possible "levels of relationships," on which a person may live: murder (1 John 3:11-12), hatred (1 John 3:13-15), indifference (1 John 3:16-17), and Christian compassion (1 John 3:18-24). Yesterday we talked about the first three. Today we will look at the last level, compassion. In verses 17 & 18 we are told that if the love of God abides in us we will not just talk about the need of our brother, but we will personally, sacrificially, and willingly give to meet that need. Verse 16 tells us that Jesus set the example of love by how He gave His life for us and now we “ought to give our lives for others”. Jesus said that the world would know that we are His disciples by how we show our love to one another! This is genuine compassion!
Now, notice what happens when we are living out our relationships on the “level of compassion”. Instead of living a haphazard life of uncertainty, we can live a full, real life with great assurance and confidence in knowing at least three things!
We can genuinely experience the reality of love. If there is something every human being is looking for, it is love. To know that we are loved and accepted for who we are and not for what we do. When we have truly received the love of God through the cross of Jesus Christ we have the ability and power to love others the way God loves us. If there is one lie the devil whispers in our ear over and over, it is, “God doesn’t really love you. If He did, He wouldn’t have let this tragedy or suffering come into your life.” The devil wants you to doubt God’s love by what happens in the circumstances of life. But my friend, you can settle this one, once and for all, by remembering how much God loves you by giving His Son to die for you. Then as you assist and help others in sacrificial Christian love you are assured that God loves you.
Also, we then can know are of the truth, instead of the lie, because we are treating and loving others with the love of God. By nature we are selfish and self-centered creatures! We will be amazed at ourselves at the change that we have experienced because we have accepted the love of God and now can we share it with others. Instead of living a lie and trying to please ourselves, we begin to live to please God and others! We know we are of the truth!
And then last, we “know that he abides in us, by the Spirit whom he has given us.” We experience His abiding Presence! We know that God, Immanuel, is with us wherever we go!
In this crazy world of uncertainty today, isn’t it wonderful to know that there are some things that you can know and be assured of? And when you know these things, you with confidence, can pray and ask God for grace, mercy and for help in any time of need and know that He will hear and answer your prayers! (1 John 3:21-22)