Three Little Words
O Lord, it’s hard to imagine the great love You have for me and all Your children, but I’m so grateful!
Read 1 John 4:7-21
 Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God.  Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.  This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him.  This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.  Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.  No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.  This is how we know that we live in him and he in us: He has given us of his Spirit.  And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world.  If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in them and they in God.  And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them.  This is how love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment: In this world we are like Jesus.  There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.  We love because he first loved us.  Whoever claims to love God yet hates a brother or sister is a liar. For whoever does not love their brother and sister, whom they have seen, cannot love God, whom they have not seen.  And he has given us this command: Anyone who loves God must also love their brother and sister. Scripture taken from the Holy Bible, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. All rights reserved throughout the world. Used by permission of International Bible Society.
ReflectWhat do you learn about love and God's love here?
GOD IS LOVE. The words leap off the page (8,16). John does not say, “God is loving.” That would be wonderful enough, but what he actually says is that love defines the character of God. His whole being is love. His very nature is love. The love John speaks of is no sloppy, sentimental love, but the far more robust agape love. Agape love is based on commitment, not feelings; it is love which wants the very best for others and nothing for itself. It is interested in what it can give, never in what it can get. It is constant and unchanging. God loves us not because we are particularly lovable, but because it is his nature to love. John spells out for us both the cost and the consequences of that love. The cost is that God sent his Son and made him our “atoning sacrifice” (10), the one through whose sacrificial death we are put right with God. The consequences are far-reaching, too. Before leaving today’s passage, go over it once more, listing the demands God’s love makes on your life.
Reflect prayerfully on these words: “Love so amazing, so divine, demands my soul, my life, my all” (Watts).
Lord Jesus, I see what a tremendous price You paid because You love me. Thank You for loving me so!
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