Summary: The real test of love is when things are offensive, trying, tough and tiring. Jesus did His best work under offense. John says this is a test of our true supernatural nature.
A Test for Living in the Light
"Beloved, I am writing you no new commandment, but an old commandment that you had from the beginning. The old commandment is the word that you have heard. 8 At the same time, it is a new commandment that I am writing to you, which is true in him and in you, because the darkness is passing away and the true light is already shining. 9 Whoever says he is in the light and hates his brother is still in darkness. 10 Whoever loves his brother abides in the light, and in him there is no cause for stumbling. 11 But whoever hates his brother is in the darkness and walks in the darkness, and does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded his eyes."
Tests can be tricky.
1) How long did the Hundred Years War last?
2) Which country makes Panama hats?
3) From which animal do we get cat gut?
Sheep and Horses
4) In which month do Russians celebrate the October Revolution?
5) What is a true camel's hair brush made of?
6) The Canary Islands in the Pacific are named after what animal?
7) What was King George VI's first name?
8) What colour is a purple finch?
9) Where are Chinese gooseberries from?
10) What is the colour of the black box in a commercial airplane?
Orange, of course.
Mat 24:12 And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold.
The Old and The New
1Jn 2:7-8 Beloved, I am writing you no new commandment, but an old commandment that you had from the beginning. The old commandment is the word that you have heard. 8 At the same time, it is a new commandment that I am writing to you, which is true in him and in you, because the darkness is passing away and the true light is already shining.
John begins this passage with somewhat of a riddle. This is not a new commandment because it is the old commandment. At the same time, it's all brand new because it's new "In Him". And it is new because it is new "in you".
Although we have saw the commandment newly perfected Him and newly shared in us, it was here from the beginning. It always was. The command for God’s people to love each other has been around since the Jewish Old Testament Law. Even in the Noahic Law, we saw Love:
Gen 9:1-6 And God blessed Noah and his sons and said to them, "Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth. 2 The fear of you and the dread of you shall be upon every beast of the earth and upon every bird of the heavens, upon everything that creeps on the ground and all the fish of the sea. Into your hand they are delivered. 3 Every moving thing that lives shall be food for you. And as I gave you the green plants, I give you everything. 4 But you shall not eat flesh with its life, that is, its blood. 5 And for your lifeblood I will require a reckoning: from every beast I will require it and from man. From his fellow man I will require a reckoning for the life of man. 6 "Whoever sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed, for God made man in his own image."