We are loved so we love

By June 1, 2024

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1 John 4:19 We love, because He first loved us.

We are encouraged today from this verse as we learn why those who know God, love. They love because they have been loved first by God. It’s like the testing the wind as John mentioned in verse 1 of this chapter. Where is the wind blowing from and where is it blowing to? The wind of the Holy Spirit is love, and it blows from God. The wind of the Spirit blows through people who are His and moves them to love those who are His.

Who are the “we” and “us” of whom John wrote? One possibility is that he had Jesus’ apostles in mind. He may also have had true believers in mind—those who know God. Both would be true, but since he had been equipping the saints to discern between the spirit of truth and the spirit of error, and had been describing those through whom God’s love is completed, it seems to me we might best consider the subjects to be members of the body of Christ. If that is the case, then John was testifying about the love that flows among those who truly know Jesus and are born of God. The love of the saints for one another directly flows out of the love they have received from God.

We love because we are reservoirs of love created by God for his glory. He loved us by coming to be with us. He took on our sin and removed its power to separate us from Him. And He sent us His Son to dwell inside of us in the person of the Holy Spirit so that we would be caught up in the tsunami of His love. That’s how we know we are loved by God—He is with us! His purpose for living in us is to glorify His name through His Son, Jesus, as we adopt His purpose and live to love with Jesus for His glory.

I use the phrase “live to love with Jesus” repeatedly because the love we have for one another comes from our relationship with God through Jesus who abides in us and we in Him. To be clear, we don’t love one another so that God will love us. We know God loves us because we have His Spirit abiding in us. We know His Spirit abides in us because we love. We want to love, we choose to love, we love to love. It’s why we live—why we were saved, why we wake up each day, and how we glorify God. We choose to live to love one another with Jesus because He chose to love us by laying down His life for us and becoming a propitiation for our sins. If we get this with the understanding of our hearts, we love all our brothers and sisters in Christ with the same sacrificial, self-denying, humble love with which we have been loved. Are you one of “us?” Has your purpose for living changed since you met Jesus? I hope you’ll check out www.livetolovewithjesus.com. I think you’ll be encouraged by the resources there. They are meant to help us be disciples of Jesus, love with Him, and make disciples who love to love with Jesus.