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Whoever Loves His Brother

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Whoever Loves His Brother

Sunday, April 6, 2008

"Whoever loves his brother abides in the light, and in him there is no cause for stumbling." (1 John 2:10, ESV)

1. The words of the text last week, “Anyone who claims to be in the light but hates his brother is still in darkness,” apply to any reader of John’s epistle. Whoever claims to be in God’s light but continues to harbor hatred toward his fellow man demonstrates a life of darkness.

"Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness? What accord has Christ with Belial? Or what portion does a believer share with an unbeliever? What agreement has the temple of God with idols? For we are the temple of the living God; as God said, “I will make my dwelling among them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Therefore go out from their midst, and be separate from them, says the Lord, and touch no unclean thing; then I will welcome you, and I will be a father to you, and you shall be sons and daughters to me, says the Lord Almighty." (2 Corinthians 6:14-18, ESV)

2. Whoever loves his brother abides in the light

"that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world," (Philippians 2:15, ESV)

3. Abide - (Greek word Miene) - literally translates one who continues in the light. Light exposes both evil and good deeds and the true Christ follower will continue to abide in the light.

"No one who abides in him keeps on sinning; no one who keeps on sinning has either seen him or known him. Little children, let no one deceive you. Whoever practices righteousness is righteous, as he is righteous. Whoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil. No one born of God makes a practice of sinning, for God’s seed abides in him, and he cannot keep on sinning because he has been born of God. By this it is evident who are the children of God, and who are the children of the devil: whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor is the one who does not love his brother."

(1 John 3:6-10, ESV)

"And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil. For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed. But whoever does what is true comes to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that his works have been carried out in God.”" (John 3:19-21, ESV)

4. The one who walks in the light has more light day by day. The one who walks in darkness is increasingly darkened.

"for at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light (for the fruit of light is found in all that is good and right and true), and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord. Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them. For it is shameful even to speak of the things that they do in secret." (Ephesians 5:8-12, ESV)

5. John's statement here concerns the members of the church and again offers no middle ground. For him there is no twilight, there is either light or darkness love or hatred. Scripture says "But when anything is exposed by the light, it becomes visible," (Ephesians 5:13, ESV) - in other words it becomes known.

6. Where love is absent, hatred rules in darkness, but where love prevails there is light.

"But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin." (1 John 1:7, ESV)

7. Love is not so much a word as it is a deed. Whoever loves his brother as himself "lives in the light." And when a person lives in the light, he does not stumble, because he is able to see clearly.

"For you are all children of light, children of the day. We are not of the night or of the darkness." (1 Thessalonians 5:5, ESV)

8. One loving his brother not only walks in the light himself, but also is free of having caused others to offend.

"giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light. He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son," (Colossians 1:12-13, ESV)

9. Cause for stumbling - (Greek word - skandalon) A stumbling block or trap in the way of others such as in Matt 18:7 "Woe to the world for temptations to sin! For it is necessary that temptations come, but woe to the one by whom the temptation comes!" (ESV)

"The Son of Man will send his angels, and they will gather out of his kingdom all causes of sin and all law-breakers," (Matthew 13:41, ESV)

"But he turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a hindrance to me. For you are not setting your mind on the things of God, but on the things of man.”" (Matthew 16:23, ESV)

10. A person who loves his brother has no cause for stumbling. However, anyone who hates his brother causes his own downfall. And the cause for his stumbling cannot be attributed to any outside factors but only to one's inner being that is filled with hatred.

" This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth." (1 John 1:5-6, ESV)

"And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil. For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed. But whoever does what is true comes to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that his works have been carried out in God.”" (John 3:19-21, ESV)

11. However, this tragedy of walking in darkenss need not take place, for God's true light in Jesus is available to everyone.

"The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world." (John 1:9, ESV)

" Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life." (John 8:12, ESV)

"I have come into the world as light, so that whoever believes in me may not remain in darkness." (John 12:46, ESV)

We prefer to look heavenward and avoid looking at ourselves.

To dwell in love

with the saints above,

O! that will be glory!

To dwell below

with the saints we know—

Ah! that’s a different story!

GracePointe Baptist Church

2209 N Post Road

Oklahoma City, OK 73141

Phone: (405) 769-5050

http://www.gracepointeonline.com

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