For the Love of God
1 John 4:7 - 5:21
Feb. 18, 1996
I. The Source of Love: God
A. From the Nature of God the Father
7* Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God.
8* Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.
B. From the Gift of God the Son
9* This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him.
10* This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.
11* Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.
12* No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.
C. From the Testimony of God the Spirit
13* We know that we live in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit.
14* And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world.
15* If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in him and he in God.
16* And so we know and rely on the love God has for us.
II. The Fruit of Love: confidence
A. Confidence in Our Relationship to God
God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him.
17* In this way, love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment, because in this world we are like him.
18* There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.
19* We love because he first loved us.
B. Confidence in Our Relationship to Others
20* If anyone says, "I love God," yet hates his brother, he is a liar. For anyone who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot love God, whom he has not seen.
21* And he has given us this command: Whoever loves God must also love his brother.
III. The Evidence of Love: obedience
A. Obedience to Faith in Christ
1* Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God, and everyone who loves the father loves his child as well.
B. Obedience to God's Commands
2* This is how we know that we love the children of God: by loving God and carrying out his commands.
3* This is love for God: to obey his commands. And his commands are not burdensome,
C. Obedience to Overcome Sin
4* for everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith.
5* Who is it that overcomes the world? Only he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God.
IV. The Assurance of Testimony
A. The Nature of the Testimony
6* This is the one who came by water and blood-- Jesus Christ. He did not come by water only, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit who testifies, because the Spirit is the truth.
7* For there are three that testify:
8* the Spirit, the water and the blood; and the three are in agreement.
9* We accept man's testimony, but God's testimony is greater because it is the testimony of God, which he has given about his Son.
B. The Results of the Testimony
10* Anyone who believes in the Son of God has this testimony in his heart. Anyone who does not believe God has made him out to be a liar, because he has not believed the testimony God has given about his Son.
11* And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.
12* He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life.
13* I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life.
V. Assurance of Faith
A. Answered Prayer
1. Confidence of Prayer
14* This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us.
15* And if we know that he hears us-- whatever we ask-- we know that we have what we asked of him.
2. Ministry of Prayer
16* If anyone sees his brother commit a sin that does not lead to death, he should pray and God will give him life. I refer to those whose sin does not lead to death. There is a sin that leads to death. I am not saying that he should pray about that.
17* All wrongdoing is sin, and there is sin that does not lead to death.
B. Deliverance from Sin
18* We know that anyone born of God does not continue to sin; the one who was born of God keeps him safe, and the evil one cannot harm him.
19* We know that we are children of God, and that the whole world is under the control of the evil one.
C. Knowledge of God
20* We know also that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, so that we may know him who is true. And we are in him who is true-- even in his Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life.
VI. The Conclusion of the Matter
21* Dear children, keep yourselves from idols.