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Marvelous, Matchless, Miraculous Love! (1 John 4:7-13)
Sermon Notes
Sunday, 20 October 2013 00:00

On Sunday we considered 1 John 4:7-13. In vv. 7-8, we read the following:
7 Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. 8 He who does not love does not know God, for God is love.
It follows from v.7 that two things may be said of everyone who loves:
(1) Such a person is born of God, and
(2) That person also knows God.
Notice that John treats these two concepts (being born of God, and knowing God) as two separate things. This becomes plain as we read on in v.8 where John says that He who does not love does not know God.

If John had intended to make loving one’s fellow Christian “a test of relationship” as many tell us he did, then it would have been easy for him to say it here by writing: “He who does not love is not born of God and does not know God,” for that would have been a direct antithesis of what he said in v.7. But this, of course, cannot be said.
John has already talked to us about a person who hates his brother, which is a feat totally impossible for a non-Christian since a Christian is not his brother! {2:11; 3:10b, 3:15; 4:20)

Those who teach that a Christian cannot hate another Christian are teaching a myth.
But that’s the point! Since a born-again Christian can fail to love his brother, that is, if he in fact does not love, as it says in v.8, it would then show that such a Christian has not really come to know his heavenly Father (cf. 2:3).
The God who has begotten him is love. When I fail to love, it shows me that I have a ways yet to go in coming to know my Heavenly Father, who IS LOVE!

A human baby doesn’t do adult things, think adult thoughts or hold adult conversations like his parents. This is not because he is not a legitimate human being, but because he’s a baby human being, and he doesn’t yet know his parents in that full way, to where, once he does, he will be able to enjoy fellowship with them on that adult kind of level.

In 1 John 2:3-11, John used the word know in the sense of intimacy with God. Here he comes back to the same thought. A person can be born of God but grieve the Spirit. He could be walking in darkness. If so, he is grieving the Spirit, not walking with the Spirit, and therefore not enjoying the fruit of the Spirit like love and joy. If this is true of him, we can certainly say he is not close/intimate with God. He has not come to know God in this intimate sense.

May we obey God’s Word so that we come to know our heavenly Father better every day!






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