Category Archives: Love in Action
This is the last place in 1 John that specifically mentions love. There are some themes repeated and emphasized here about the nature of this love in action.
Before I proceed, I would like to pause while you read the whole letter of 1 John again. It takes less than 15 minutes. I will wait while you read.
Now, let’s take a look at this passage at the end of chapter 4 and the beginning of chapter 5.
This is a passage that I have read many times, but as I take more time now to meditate about it and work to understand what it is saying, I discover more about how different and amazing this love is.
These are the verses:
17 Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness in the day of judgment; because as He is, so are we in this world. 18 There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love. 19 We love Him because He first loved us. 1 John 4:17-19 (NKJV)
The 4th chapter of 1 John has a lot to say about love. This is a theme that is repeated throughout 1 John. It is evidently important. In this post, I want to talk about verses 7-11.
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. 9 In this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him. 10 In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. 11 Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. 1 John 4:7-11
So what real example do we have of this love we are studying in action? That is the question answered in the latter part of 1 John 3. For context, reread 1 John 3. In the last few posts I have written about what 1 John tells us about the practical significance and importance of this agape love. Now we see a real example.
Reading through chapter 3 of 1 John, we see a lot that is written about love. Many times in this letter we see the phrase “…by this we know…” This is part of a repeating theme that tells us how we can distinguish certain things. For example, in this chapter, we are told how we can know who is a child of the devil and who is a child of God. Let’s look at this passage more closely.
First read the whole chapter of 1 John 3 to keep the context in mind.
Let’s focus on verses 10-15:
In the last post I talked about love in action in 1 John 3:1-3. It is a powerful and amazing look at God’s expression of love toward us. I want to make a couple of other comments about this set of verses.
Here are those verses again:
“Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! Therefore the world does not know us, because it did not know Him. Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is. And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure.” 1 John 3:1-3
The first 3 posts in this series looked at the first 2 chapters of 1 John. There are several more places in the last 3 chapters of this letter that talk about love, with several repeated themes. I want to focus on the beginning of chapter 3 in this post.
But first, I would suggest that you take a couple of minutes to reread the epistle of 1 John. It will only take a couple of minutes. I’ll wait.
Now let’s look at the beginning of chapter 3.