September 01 2021
Today, Wednesday September 1
Knowing, Believing and Growing
1 John 4:16 “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.
Today, we want to take one last look at this pivotal verse in this little epistle. Knowing, believing and growing in the love and grace of our Lord Jesus Christ should be the desire and goal of every believer. Remember Paul’s statement in Philippians 3:10, “That I might know Him and the power of His resurrection…” I trust this is your hearts yearning too.
As we abide in Christ and spend time in fellowship with Him, we comes to love God more and more. We also grows in our love for other Christians, for the lost, and even for our enemies. As we shares the Father's love with others, we experience more of the Father's love himself. We understand the Father's love better and better.
"God is love," then, is not simply a profound biblical statement. It is the basis for our relationship with God and with our fellow man. Because God is love, we can love. His love is not past history; it is present reality. "Love one another" begins as a commandment (1 John 4:7), then it becomes a privilege (1 John 4:11). But it is more than a commandment or a privilege. It is also the thrilling consequence and evidence of our abiding in Christ (1 John 4:12). Loving one another is not something we simply ought to do; it is something we want to do.
Some practical applications grow out of this basic truth: First, the better we know God's love, the easier it will be to live as a Christian. Bible knowledge alone does not take the place of personal experience of God's love. In fact, it can be a dangerous substitute if we are not careful.The Bible is a revelation of God's love; and the better we understand His love, the easier it should be for us to obey Him and love others
A second consideration is that unless we love the lost, our verbal witness to them will be useless. The Gospel message is a message of love. This love was both declared and demonstrated by Jesus Christ. The only way we can effectively win others is to declare the Gospel and demonstrate it in how we live. Too much "witnessing" today is a mere mouthing of words. People need an expression of love.
Have you ever thought of one reason why God permits the world to hate Christians is so that Christians may return love for the world's hatred. "Blessed are you when men revile you, and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely, on account of Me.... But I say to you, love your enemies, and pray for those who persecute you" (Matthew 5:11&44).
I’ll never forget the story that Watchman Nee told of a farmer in China who was a believer. The farmer would work hard to pump water up to his rice paddies every day only to find out that at night the farmer below him would break the dykes and let the water down to his fields. The believing farmer did his best to pray for his neighbor and be nice to him but the longer this happened the angrier he became. Then one day the Lord spoke to his heart and led him to first pump up water to his neighbor’s paddies before pumping water for his. After a few days the farmer who was stealing his water came to him and ask him why he was doing this. He was able to share the love and message of Jesus Christ with him and he too became a follower of Jesus.
Today, may the Lord help us to share God’s love with the broken and hurting people around us in both word and deed!