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Summary: John has once again returned to the main theme of this epistle/sermon – love, the sum of righteousness and the test of salvation! John never stray too far from this theme, and yet once again provides us with a rich bounty of biblical truth meant to guid

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CAN’T GET AWAY FROM LOVE

1 John 4:7-21

INTRODUCTION: John has once again returned to the main theme of this epistle/sermon – love, the sum of righteousness and the test of salvation! John never stray too far from this theme, and yet once again provides us with a rich bounty of biblical truth meant to guide our lives in the real world.

PROPOSITION: if you ain’t got love, you ain’t got nothin’!

I LOVE IS THE CENTRAL WHEEL OF MY SPIRITUAL LINEAGE – 4:7-8

A God is the embodiment of Love

1 God is FUNDAMENTALLY love, not loving

a Part of His Nature

b Part of His essence

B All love comes from God

1 Revealed in God’s desire to regenerate us

2 Revealed in God’s desire for continued fellowship with us.

C The presence of love indicates

1 That we have known God EXPERIENTIALLY

2 That we have known God SPIRITUALLY

3 That we know god HABITUALLY

D The absence of love indicates

1 Our deficiency of God

2 Our ignorance of the nature of God

a Not just God is love

b Love is God

II LOVE IS AN ACTIVE MODEL FOR THE CHRISTIAN – 4:9-12

A God directed a demonstration of his love towards us by sending Christ

1 God’s love is revealed in the believer by sending Jesus

2 God’s love is revealed through the believer by sharing Christ

B God act of self-initiated love is the model for the Christian community

1 God was the sole initiator

2 God did what we could not do

3 No reason for us not to love considering that God loved us unconditionally

a None of us will ever do to each other what we did to God

C How God is known

1 God is not known by sight

2 God is known by love

3 We experience the love of God by salvation

D God love in us reaches its proper maturity when it is seen in our love towards others

1 God has appointed each of us to be the visible representation of his love

III LOVE IS MEANT TO BE RESIDENTIAL IN OUR LIVES – 4:13-16

A Love is in us ONLY if God is in us!

B The presence of God in us is the Spirit of God in us!

1 John 3:24 Those who obey his commands live in him, and he in them. And this is how we know that he lives in us: We know it by the Spirit he gave us.

1 The natural progression of God’s Spirit on us is to produce fruit

2 The first fruit of the Spirit that should be evident according to Scripture is love!

THE THREE LEGGED STOOL OF ASSURANCE

Leg #1 – our confession of Christ

Leg #2 – The presence of the Spirit

Leg #3 – Out love for other believers

IF YOU ARE MISSING ONE LEG, YOUR STOOL DOES NOT WORK – IF YOU ARE MISSING ONE LEG, YOUR ASSURANCE IS NOT COMPLETE!

C God meant His love to be the foundation of our lives

1 God meant us to know his love in our hearts

2 God meant us to rely on His love in our walk

a To trust it

b To entrust

IV LOVE UNLEASHES US FROM FEAR – 4:17-18

A A complete love brings confidence when God judges

1 Love allows us to act as Jesus did in this world

2 To be in the world, but not of the world

B An unloving Christian is NOT like his Lord

1 He has reason to fear

C To fear God’s judgment is a sure sign that we have not understood God’s love

1 Failure to understand God’s love brings a fear of punishment

D God’s love was designed to deliver me from fear

1 The death of Christ was designed to deliver me from fear

Psalm 23:4 Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.

Hebrews 2:14-15 Since the children have flesh and blood, he too shared in their humanity so that by his death he might destroy him who holds the power of death--that is, the devil-- 15and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death.

E If we love God we will do what God wishes us to do

1 If I really love God there is no need to fear Him

2 If I am really acting as he has instructed me to act there is no reason to fear Him!

3 If we do not love the visible representations of God’s love that we see, how can we love God who we do not see

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