Summary: Message 17 from 1 John focusing on our love for one another.
Love One Another 1John 3:11-23
God proved His love by sending His Son to this earth. He came to restore life. He came to bear the penalty for our sin.
Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. 1 John 4:7,11
Almost everything in this letter could be organized under the two headings of light and love.
The logic of the letter is really quite simple.
God is light (pure) and God is love (passionate).
Because of His great love, He invited us into His community or family.
Through the sacrifice of Jesus and ministry of the Holy Spirit we are reborn into His family.
As children of God we are encouraged and enabled to live purely and passionate.
We are to walk in the light and love the brethren.
I. THE GOD OF LIGHT AND HIS CHILDREN OF LIGHT 1-2
II. THE GOD OF LOVE & HIS CHILDREN OF LOVE 3-4
There are five factors to consider in relation to genuine children of God.
A. The ¡§Likeness¡¨ factor 2:29-3:3
B. The ¡§righteousness/sin¡¨ factor 3:4-10
C. The ¡§Love factor¡¨ 3:11-23
For this is the message which you have heard from the beginning, that we should love one another; not as Cain, who was of the evil one and slew his brother. And for what reason did he slay him? Because his deeds were evil, and his brother's were righteous. 1 John 3:11-12
The central theme of Jesus¡¦ message was love.
A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another. John 13:34-35
Love for one another is a principal command for followers of Christ.
Love is a relational term. It is a term that describes our relationship with people or even things.
At the core of ¡§love¡¨ is a sense of or desire for meaningful connection. God is love. We call it connection, bonding, intimacy, relationship. Our sense of connection may be driven by different things.
The Greeks distinguished between the causes for that sense of connection.
Feeling Love (eros)
Sense of or desire for connection based on common pleasure
Family Love (storge)
Sense of or desire for connection based on common heritage (blood relationship)
Friendship Love (philos)
Sense of or desire for connection based on common interests, goals and friendship
Foundational Love (agape)
Sense of or desire for connection based on internal character.
Only the ¡§foundational love¡¨ functions and survives apart from mutual benefit. It alone is truly sacrificial. It seeks to give something rather than get something.
An evil heart generates evil acts.
John illustrates his point from an Old Testament example.
not as Cain, who was of the evil one and slew his brother. And for what reason did he slay him? Because his deeds were evil, and his brother's were righteous. 1 John 3:12
Cain murdered (slit his throat) his brother Abel out of jealousy. Rather than a desire to connect with his brother and live in community, Cain sought to eliminate his brother because he exposed his evil heart and motives. Cain demonstrated his evil heart and relationship to Satan by His actions. His actions did not make him evil. Cain did evil because his heart was evil.
Evil deeds are initiated by the Evil One.
Those who practice evil hate those who practice righteousness.
Another principle clearly evident here is that those who were evil cannot stand to be exposed by those who live godly.
Don¡¦t be surprised if you are hated by evil people.
Stop being surprised, brethren, if the world hates you. 1 John 3:13
John instructs his readers to ¡§stop being surprised¡¨ by the response of the word. They were actively engaged in loving people, feeding the poor and needy, demonstrating goodness and kindness and expected the world to appreciate this breath of fresh air in a polluted world. Righteous living stirs the devil¡¦s anger. Satan hates those who practice godliness. Actually, the devil hates the children of God. Since he can¡¦t hurt God directly, he seeks to hurt God by siring up hate against his children.
If the world hates you, you know that it has hated Me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, because of this the world hates you. John 15:18-19
He stirs people to hate those who practice righteousness.
Indeed, all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will be persecuted. 2 Timothy 3:12