When was the last time you heard a sermon on gossip, or on slander? Think for a moment how much your life has been hurt by the words of other people. By the assault of the tongue against your character. Love bites the tongue! The Holy Spirit is not a slanderer. Satan is given the title that means slanderer. Slander is of the flesh. Gossiping, running down another person’s name, tearing them apart is in contrast and in opposition to the operation of love. Love edifies. Love builds up. It is not destructive towards ones neighbor. – RC Sproul
As we prepare to meet next Wednesday, we are going to look at the final words regarding love that John writes about but with a much wider and deeper message – a message that reveals exactly what love will look like when the source is God; when the source is knowing God. This is a love that the unregenerate cannot know or experience. Yet, God’s common grace allows them to love their spouses, love their children, love their friends and families with a love that may be sincere, but it is not the love John writes about to those who have been born of God.
Those who are partakers of God’s divine nature, by the monergistic regenerating work of God through faith in Christ, are born by and into a love that is only for those who are His own. So, what is this love that we are allowed to know and be partakers of, resulting in how we love? What will love look like as this holy and sacred nature of God is abiding in us and is being manifested through our life? What is the primary purpose of this love, and what is secondary? We will study this on Wednesday and again, when you see in Scripture what the primary purpose is of THIS love that originates with and ‘is’ God (meaning equal to God), you will be so incredibly humbled, honored and inspired because it is not of this world! And the fact that you get to possess it, experience it, and know it … will completely change how you love!
To prepare for this Wednesday night, read 1 John 4:7-21 and all of 1 John 5. We will cover these Scriptures (obviously not in great detail) but we will look at the main themes addressed:
Love – The Humility Required to Even Know Love, Much Less Demonstrate Love: The World Defines Love One Way, and God Defines Love Completely Different
Living Certain – 7 times John uses the word ‘know’ in Chapter 5 – We will look at 5 Christian certainties that John desperately wanted for the believers of Asia Minor, as well as what we are to possess in our relationship with the Holy Trinity. As we look at these certainties, we will also look at the reasons why doubting and questioning genuine salvation is not that uncommon. What causes people to doubt if they have truly ever experienced being born of God?
November 2 will be out last time to meet together for Bible study and here’s the schedule:
1. October 19 – 1 John 4:7-21 and 1 John 5 – “What Love Will Actually Look Like When the Source is Knowing God” and “Living Certain in an Uncertain World” – John provides once again this distinguishing mark of a true child of God in giving reasons as to WHY we love and HOW that love will be expressed. This is the deepest lesson on love.
John closes his first epistle with the key verse for the entire letter – “These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life, and that you may continue to believe in the name of the Son of God.” 1 John 5:13 – This lesson will provide us with the certainties in living a victorious life and the characteristics of an overcomer.
2. November 2 – 2 and 3 John – “The Basis, Behavior, Bounds and Blessing of Christian Hospitality – Commendations and Condemnations Regarding Biblical Hospitality”
In His Grace and Love,