To Love, or not To Love? (Part 1)

Is it obvious to others that you know God because you love them?

February 14, 2020

"Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God, and every one that loveth is born of God and knoweth God.  He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love."

1 John 4:7-8

Part 1

“Beloved, let us love one another.”
In this verse, believers are called to love each other.  John says it in an inventive way that, “those who are loved, let us love”[1] (Guzik).  Some might think that John is saying in this passage that we must love others to have God’s love on us.  This is not true.  The meaning is that because we have God’s love given to us, we “love one another.”

“Love, the sum of righteousness, is the test of our being born of God.  Love flows from a sense of God’s love to us…”[2] (JFB).

And His love should flow through us to others.

“For love is of God.”

“Even human love comes from God, ‘a reflection of something in the Divine nature itself’”[3] (Brooke).

John clearly shows us that:

“Love is of God” (1 John 4:7).
“Ye are of God” (1 John 4:4).
“We are of God” (1 John 4:6).

If we are genuinely a part of the family of God, He has blessed us with His love, and we should act in some measure like our caring Father.  He’s loving, so ought we to be.

“And every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God.”
Here’s why it is so essential for a believer to be loving.  To love others points to our “knowing God.”

“…knoweth God — spiritually, experimentally, and habitually”[4] (JFB).

“If God is the source of all love, then whatever love a man has in him comes from God; and this part of his moral nature is of Divine origin.”[5]

“All love is from God as its fountain: especially that embodiment of love, God manifest in the flesh.  The Father also is love (1 John 4:8).  The Holy Ghost sheds love as its first fruit abroad in the heart”[6] (JFB).

“Persistence in loving…is proof that one ‘has been begotten of God’ as in 1 John 2:29 and is acquainted with God.  Otherwise mere claim to loving God accompanied by hating one’s brother is a lie (1 John 2:9-11)” (Robertson).

What does a lack of love prove?  Come back tomorrow as we look at the next verse.

 

 

 

[1] Guzik, David. David Guzik’s Enduring Word Commentary, the electronic version in eSword.  He says, “The ancient Greek sentence begins strikingly – agapetoi agapomen, ‘those who are loved, let us, love.’”
[2] Jamison, Fausset, and Brown.  Jamison-Fausset-Brown’s Commentary, the electronic version in eSword.
[3] Brooke, as quoted by A.T. Robertson, Word Pictures in the New Testament, the electronic version in eSword.
[4] Ibid.
[5] Cambridge Bible, the electronic version in eSword.
[6] Jamison, Fausset, and Brown, ibid.