Summary: God’s love for us
The Love of God
May 1, 2011
God is the Author of love (:7)
Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God;
He is the author of love. He isn’t the author of hatred or strife; He hates those things. But every good and every perfect gift comes from Him (Jas. 1:17), including the gift of love.
God’s love is a fruit which proves He lives within us (:7-8)
and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. 8He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.
Love shows we have His Spirit. Think of Galatians 5:22.
When we love the brethren we show that we have His Spirit and that we are His. If He is love, and if He lives in us, then it’s no wonder that we love His children! We used to hate and backbite, but God’s love is poured out into us so that we bear this fruit for all to see and enjoy.
God’s love was demonstrated at the cross (:9-10)
9In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him.
How much does God love us? He sent His only begotten Son into the world so that we can have life. He could have left us in our predicament, but His love would not let Him.
10Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.
Now here we see even more of His love for us. Did He love us because we loved Him? No! The carnal mind is at enmity with God! The very reason we hated God was the reason He sent His Son. We were in bondage to sin and incapable of loving Him, but Christ was the propitiation (the appeasement) which satisfied God’s wrath towards us and took away our enmity towards Him.
This is the demonstration of His love for us! Not that we loved Him, but that He loved us!
God’s love is displayed when we love the brethren (:11-12)
11Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another.
The disciple is not above his master (Lk. 6:40). If God has loved us this way, then who are we to do less?
This isn’t just a generic call to love anything because, obviously, all men love something (even the wicked love their children). The context here specifically is that we love the brethren (:20).
And look at how we love them:
For this is the message that ye heard from the beginning, that we should love one another. 12Not as Cain, who was of that wicked one, and slew his brother. And wherefore slew he him? Because his own works were evil, and his brother’s righteous. 13Marvel not, my brethren, if the world hate you. 14We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. He that loveth not his brother abideth in death. 15Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer: and ye know that no murderer hath eternal life abiding in him. 16Hereby perceive we the love of God, because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. 17But whoso hath this world’s good, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him? 18My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth (I John 3:11-18).
God provides for us in our time of need, and so we love in the same way.
12No man hath seen God at any time.
We’ve never laid our eyes on God, but we become very acquainted with Him by love. He authors it, puts His Spirit in our hearts who bears it, and then we see His work flowing from our lives! By this we see God!
If we love one another, God dwelleth in us,
Again, we can’t see Him, but we’re sure of Him by the love in us.
and his love is perfected in us.
Think about this verse:
Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world (I John 4:17).
If God’s love is in us, then we’ll love one another. A love that’s received but not given isn’t perfect love—it’s incomplete. But when we love each other “as He is, so are we in this world.” He dwells in us, and our love is perfect.
May we love each other in this way, and may He be glorified by it!