Theme of the Week: God’s Perfect Love
Bible Verse: “By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” John 13:35
Scripture Reading: 1 John 4:13-19
It was Dionne Warwick who sang that beautiful song, “What the world needs now, is love, sweet love, it’s the only thing there is just too little of.” Thirty years later, I don’t think anything has changed. And it is not just the world and the nations that need love, we all crave the kind of connection that allows you to open up and without the risk of rejection.
The fear of rejection makes us raise walls of self-protection, which keeps us from talking to each other on an intimate level. Is there a way to break through these walls? Can that be done? Can the Bible help? I think so, and that’s what 1 John 4:13-19 is all about. We are talking about perfect love!
This kind of love needs external expression to become mature. That’s why Jesus said He gives his disciples a new commandment to “love one another as I have loved you.” That commandment is like a golden parrot hopping from branch to branch in this book, repeating itself over and over. Jesus says when we learn to love each other this way, then the whole world will know that we are His disciples (His fully-devoted followers). This is mature, perfect love.
When we see this kind of love demonstrated in our midst, we can know with certainty that God abides in us. That’s when we sense God’s love. When we observe sacrificial love in the community of believers, John seems to be saying that we have a reincarnation of the Father’s love which was perfect love, a love that sent His only begotten Son into the world to save the world through His own sacrificial love on the cross. Thanks to this fresh vision of Christ on the cross, and God’s perfect love for me, I am able to enter into a sacrificial love for my brothers. Tear down the walls of self-protection and love as He loved us—sacrificially. “By this, everyone will know that you are my disciples if you love one another.”
— Dr. Dave Anderson, author of Maximum Joy
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