Today, Tuesday August 31
“We Have Known and Believed…”
1 John 4:12-16 “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. Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. And we have known and believed the love that God has for us. God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him.
For some reason as I write this devotion this morning, I can’t help but think about what are people, in this mixed up and confused world really looking for. And the only answer that keeps coming to my mind is that they are looking for God. Paul seems to mention this when he was on Mars Hill in Athens in Acts 17. As he noticed all their idols and altars that they had made and even one that was called the “To The Unknown God”, he was moved to say, “So that they should seek the Lord, in the hope that they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us..” (v. 27).
People are looking for God but they are looking for Him in all the wrong places. And we must admit that it difficult to find a God that you cannot see (1 John 4:12). So how can people find a God they can’t see? That’s what John is talking about in this passage.
God is invisible (1 Tim. 1:17), and no man can see Him in His essence. Jesus is "the image of the invisible God" (Col. 1:15). By taking on Himself a human body, Jesus was able to reveal God to us. But Jesus is no longer here on earth. How, then, does God reveal Himself to the world?
He reveals Himself through the lives of His children. Men cannot see God, but they can see us. If we abide in Christ, we will love one another, and our love for one another will reveal God's love to a needy world. God's love will be experienced in us and then will be expressed through us.
Jesus did not simply preach the love of God; He proved it by giving His life on the cross. He expects His followers to do likewise. If we abide in Christ, we will abide in His love. If we abide in His love, we must share this love with others. Whenever we share this love, it is proof in our own hearts that we are abiding in Christ. In other words, there is no separation between a Christian's inner life and his outer life.
Abiding in God's love will produce two wonderful spiritual benefits in our life as a believer: We will grow in knowledge, and we will grow in faith (1 John 4:16). The more we love God, the more we understand the love of God. And the more we understand His love, the easier it is for us to trust Him. After all, when you know someone intimately and love him sincerely, you have no problem putting your confidence in him.
Three different witnesses are suggested in these verses: First, the witness of the believer that Jesus Christ is God's Son (1 John 4:15); Second, the witness in the believer by the Spirit (1 John 4:13); and third, the witness through the believer that God is love and that He sent His Son to die for the world (1 John 4:14).These witnesses cannot be separated. The world will not believe that God loves sinners until they see His love at work in His children's lives.
Honestly, that’s the purpose of these Pastor Chat’s. And that is to encourage all of us to truly love God and to love others in such a visible way that the world is able to see “God in and through us”! Please join me in this great mission and share this chat and our ministry with your family and friends!