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123Joh Lesson 10


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1JOHN 4:7-21
LESSON #10
THE COMMAND TO LOVE

MEMORY VERSE: 1JOHN 4:8

JOHN HAS JUST FINISHED TALKING ABOUT FALSE TEACHERS AND THOSE WHO FOLLOW THEM. NOW JOHNRETURNS TO THE SUBJECT OF LOVE ONCE AGAIN. THERE IS A RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN THESE TWOSECTIONS OF SCRIPTURE. BELIEVERS ARE TO DISCERN THE TRUE FROM THE FALSE. WE MUST DISCERNTRUE CHRISTIANS FROM FALSE ONES.

I KNOW THAT SOME PEOPLE SAY WE ARE NOT SUPPOSED TO JUDGE OTHER PEOPLE. (MAT 7:1)HOWEVER, THERE IS A DIFFERENCE BETWEEN JUDGING AND DISCERNING.

TO JUDGE = TO CONDEMN, TO BRING JUDGMENT UPON.

TO DISCERN = TO MAKE AN EVALUATION AS TO TRUTH.

ACCORDING TO 1JOHN WE ARE TO DISCERN TRUE CHRISTIANS FROM FALSE ONES.

READ 1JO 4:7-21 GOD’S KINGDOM IS AGAPE LOVE

HOW ARE WE TO TREAT OTHER PEOPLE?

JOHN SAYS WE ARE TO LOVE OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN CHRIST. BUT HOW CAN WE TRULY KNOWIF A PERSON IS BORN AGAIN OR NOT? WE CANNOT KNOW IT FOR CERTAIN. ONLY GOD CAN KNOW FORCERTAIN. GOD KNOWS THE HEART OF EVERY MAN. THEREFORE, IT IS EASY FOR HIM TO DETERMINE IFHE IS BORN AGAIN. HOWEVER, GOD GAVE US GUIDELINES IN THE BIBLE SO WE CAN MORE OR LESSDETERMINE THE HEART OF A PERSON:

GUIDELINES IN 1JOHN:

1. IF A PERSON IS OBEDIENT TO THE THINGS OF GOD, HE IS PROBABLY A BELIEVER.

2. IF A PERSON LOVES OTHER BELIEVERS AND THE THINGS OF GOD, HE IS PROBABLY ABELIEVER.

3. IF A PERSON HAS RIGHT DOCTRINE (TRUTH), HE IS PROBABLY A BELIEVER.

ANOTHER GUIDELINE:

4. MAT 7:15-20 IF A PERSON HAS GOOD FRUIT IN HIS LIFE, HE IS PROBABLY ABELIEVER.

THEREFORE, IF A PERSON APPEARS TO BE A BELIEVER BY THIS EVIDENCE, YOU ARE TO TREAT HIMLIKE A BELIEVER — WITH LOVE.

IF A PERSON APPEARS TO BE A NON-BELIEVER WHERE THERE IS NONE OF THESE EVIDENCES, YOUARE TO TREAT HIM LIKE A NON-BELIEVER.

HE IS IN NEED OF HEARING THE TRUTH.

TO LOVE (AGAPE) GOD AND OTHERS MEANS TO KNOW GOD.

THE WORD “KNOW” MEANS TO EXPERIENCE GOD INTIMATELY. REMEMBER THAT THEGNOSTICS BELIEVED THEY COULD KNOW GOD BY SOME SECRET KNOWLEDGE THAT ONLY A FEW COULDOBTAIN. JOHN SAYS GOD’S LOVE IS MANIFESTED OPENLY FOR ALL TO OBTAIN.

THE BIBLE TELLS US GOD IS LOVE, BUT WE NEED TO KNOW MORE THAN THAT. UNLESS LOVE ISDEMONSTRATED, MANIFESTED OPENLY, MAN DOES NOT BELIEVE HE IS LOVED. HOW DID GOD DEMONSTRATEHIS LOVE FOR US?

1. HE SENT HIS SON, JESUS CHRIST, TO COME TO THIS EARTH SO WE WOULD HAVE ETERNAL LIFE.(JOH 3:16)

JESUS IS CALLED THE “ONLY BEGOTTEN” SON. WHAT DOES THAT MEAN?

BELIEVERS ARE CALLED THE SONS OF GOD

(1JO 3:2), ANGELS ARE CALLED THE SONS OF GOD IN GEN 6:2.

“THE ONLY BEGOTTEN SON” SETS JESUS APART AS SPECIAL.

NOTICE IN HEB 11:17 ABRAHAM’S SON, ISAAC IS REFERRED TO AS “THE ONLY BEGOTTENSON”. ISAAC WAS A PREFIGURE OF JESUS CHRIST IN

GEN 21. “THE ONLY BEGOTTEN” TITLE SET ISAAC APART FROM ISHMAEL ANDABRAHAM’S OTHER SONS.

THIS PHRASE REFERS TO JESUS’ VIRGIN BIRTH AND HIS UNIQUE RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD,THE FATHER.

2. HE SENT HIS SON, JESUS CHRIST, TO DIE ON THE CROSS FOR OUR SINS. (4:10)

HE IS THE “PROPITIATION” FOR OUR SINS.

JESUS IS OUR “MERCY SEAT” OR ATONEMENT.

IN THE OLD TESTAMENT, THE MERCY SEAT LID TO THE ARK WAS SPRINKLED WITH BLOOD TO”COVER OVER” THE SINS OF THE PEOPLE SO GOD ABOVE COULD NOT SEE THE TABLETS OFLAW INSIDE THE ARK AND JUDGE MAN BY THEM.

“MERCY SEAT” MEANS = TO COVER OVER.

GOD IS LOVE, BUT LOVE DOES NOT SAVE US. IF LOVE WAS THE BASIS OF SALVATION, ALL MENWOULD BE SAVED. GOD’S GRACE THROUGH THE SHED BLOOD OF CHRIST SAVES US. THEREFORE,ONLY THOSE WHO IDENTIFY THEMSELVES WITH JESUS’ DEATH AND RESURRECTION ARE SAVED.JESUS MUST BECOME THE PROPITIATION FOR YOUR SINS, PERSONALLY.

WHY IS IT IMPORTANT FOR US TO KNOW THAT GOD LOVED US FIRST BEFORE WE LOVED HIM?

HE LOVED US WHILE WE WERE STILL SINNERS. (ROM 5:8) WE WERE NOT PERFECT, YET GOD LOVEDUS. WE CAN THEREFORE, LOVE OTHER PEOPLE EVEN THOUGH THEY ARE NOT PERFECT.(4:11)

HOW CAN JOHN SAY THAT NO MAN HAS SEEN GOD AT ANY TIME? DIDN’T ADAM WALK WITH GODIN THE GARDEN? DIDN’T MOSES SEE GOD FACE TO FACE? ISAIAH SAID HE SAW GOD SITTING UPONHIS THRONE. GOD APPEARED TO DANIEL AND EZEKIEL. HOW CAN WE EXPLAIN THIS VERSE IN 1JOHN?

THESE OLD TESTAMENT MEN DID NOT SEE THE FULLY MANIFESTED, GLORY-FILLED, PRESENCE OFGOD. THEY SAW ONLY A GLIMPSE OF GOD MANIFESTED IN SOME LIMITED FORM. JESUS SAID, “IFYOU HAVE SEEN ME, YOU HAVE SEEN THE FATHER” (JOH 14:9) HOWEVER, THOSE WHO SAW JESUSSAW GOD VEILED IN HUMAN FLESH.

BECAUSE GOD IS A SPIRIT, MAN CANNOT SEE HIM OR HIS GREAT LOVE. THEREFORE, IT IS ONLYTHROUGH BELIEVERS THAT THE LOVE OF GOD IS MANIFESTED TO OTHER PEOPLE.

THE SOURCE OF AGAPE LOVE:

THE HOLY SPIRIT.

YOU CANNOT PRODUCE THIS KIND OF LOVE BY YOUR OWN EFFORTS.

THE UNIQUE ATTRIBUTE OF AGAPE LOVE:

JESUS MANIFESTED GOD’S LOVE TO THE WORLD. HE TOLD US THAT HE LOVED US. THEN HESHOWED US THAT HE LOVED US. WHEN WE ARE BORN AGAIN CONFESSING JESUS AS OUR SAVIOR,GOD’S LOVE IS MANIFESTED IN US. THAT WAS GOD’S WHOLE PURPOSE FROM THEBEGINNING.

THE WORD “CONFESS” IN VERSE 15 IS A ONE TIME PUBLIC CONFESSION OF YOUR FAITHIN JESUS CHRIST.

WHEN YOU FIRST CAME TO CHRIST, DID YOU LOVE JESUS MORE OR LESS THAN YOU LOVE HIM TODAY?

USUALLY PEOPLE WILL SAY THAT THEY LOVE HIM MORE TODAY. THAT IS BECAUSE OUR CAPACITY FORLOVE GROWS THE CLOSER WE GET TO THE LORD. WE START OUT WITH A LITTLE CUP AND THE HOLYSPIRIT FILLS IT. THEN AS WE GROW CLOSER TO HIM, OUR CUP GETS BIGGER AND THE HOLY SPIRITFILLS THE BIG CUP. OUR CAPACITY FOR LOVE CONTINUES TO GROW UNTIL WE GO TO BE WITH THELORD.

THIS IS WHAT JOHN MEANT WHEN HE SAID GOD’S LOVE IS MADE “COMPLETE INUS”. (17)

GOD’S LOVE WAS PROCLAIMED BY THE PROPHETS, PROVED ON THE CROSS AND PERFECTEDIN US.WE HAVE AN EVER-INCREASING CAPACITY FOR LOVE, AND THE HOLY SPIRIT HAS ANEVER-INCREASING CAPABILITY TO FILL OUR CAPACITY.

THIS GROWING CAPACITY FOR DEMONSTRATING GOD’S LOVE TO OTHERS GIVES US BOLDNESSBEFORE GOD AND BEFORE MEN. WHEN WE WATCH OUR CAPACITY FOR LOVE GROW, WE KNOW FOR A FACT ITIS GOD DOING IT THROUGH US.

DISCUSSION: WHY DOES FEAR INTERFERE WITH THIS “PERFECT LOVE”? (18)

SUMMARY:

JOHN SUMMARIZES THIS WHOLE SECTION IN THESE 3 VERSES:

1. GOD LOVED US FIRST.

2. HE GIVES US THE CAPACITY TO LOVE HIM AND TO LOVE OTHERS.

3. IF WE DON’T LOVE OTHERS, WE DON’T BELONG TO GOD.

4. LOVE FOR OTHERS IS A COMMAND, NOT AN OPTION. THEREFORE, WE LOVE BY ADETERMINATION OF OUR WILL NOT BY FEELINGS.

REMEMBER, WE WALK BY FAITH, NOT BY SIGHT.

THAT COMMAND BECOMES A PRIVILEGE AS OUR CAPACITY GROWS (4:11).

THAT PRIVILEGE BECOMES A CONSEQUENCE AS WE SEE THAT LOVE TOUCH OTHERS ANDASSURES US OF HIS PRESENCE IN US (4:12).

APPLICATION: — A BIBLICAL TRUTH —

IF YOU LOVE GOD, YOU WILL LOVE OTHERS. IF YOU LOVE OTHERS YOU WILL GROW IN YOUR LOVEFOR GOD.

HOMEWORK

1JOHN 5:1-5

THIS IS A SELF-STUDY. PLEASE DO NOT SEND HOMEWORK ANSWERS TO THE TEACHER FORCORRECTION.

APPLICATION OF 1JO 4:7-21

GENERALLY SPEAKING, HOW WOULD YOU GRADE THE AMOUNT (CAPACITY) OF GOD’S LOVE THATFLOWS THROUGH YOU?

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

LOW MEDIUM HIGH

IF YOU GRADED YOURSELF LOW TO MEDIUM, YOU NEED TO DEVELOP A BIGGER CAPACITY FORGOD’S LOVE. HOW CAN YOU DO THAT? GET CLOSER TO THE LORD IN PRAYER…LEARN MORE ABOUTHIM IN HIS WORD.

THE MIND MUST UNDERSTAND SPIRITUAL TRUTH.

THE HEART MUST LOVE AND APPRECIATE IT.

THE WILL MUST ACT ON WHAT YOU BELIEVE.

PREPARATION FOR 1JO 5:1-5

READ 1JO 5:1-5

THE SUBJECT OF THIS CHAPTER IS: GOD IS LIFE!

WHAT DO YOU LEARN IN THIS SECTION ABOUT LIFE?

WHAT DOES THIS PASSAGE TELL YOU ABOUT HOW TO HAVE VICTORY IN YOUR LIFE?

MEMORY VERSE: 1JOHN 5:4

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About Joyce

Joyce
I came to faith in the Lord Jesus Christ in 1963 giving my heart to Jesus in a Billy Graham crusade in Los Angeles, CA. I have been teaching the Word of God since 1964, Usually two to three adult classes a week.

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