GOD IS LOVE
Today’s Reading: 1 John 4-5
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Key Verses: 1 John 4:8-9
He who does not love does not know God, for God is love. 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.
The words “love,” “loved” or “loves” appear 28 times in today’s reading, and a total of 40 times in the book of 1st John! John quoted Jesus in what is probably the most well-known verse in the entire Bible in John 3:16. We may want to read all of Jesus’ message to Nicodemus, a man who was a Jewish leader (John 3:9-21). In John 20:2, John refers to himself, not by his name, but as the “other disciple whom Jesus loved.” No wonder John is known as “the Apostle of love.”
Because John loved with God’s love, he was compelled to write the most serious warnings about sin and its consequences for all who do not repent and turn from sin. In 1 John 1:8-10, he confirms that we are sinners, including himself. We cannot at any time say, “We have no sin” (present tense), nor can we say, “We have not sinned.” Then in his closing words we read, “Whoever is born of God does not sin.” Is John contradicting himself? No! This is an example of a place where we need to remember Peter’s statement warning us against “private” interpretation of Scripture. Church scholars have consistently interpreted the “does not sin” words with an understanding of the Greek language, in which these words were originally written, to mean, “does not sin deliberately without remorse and confession of sin.” It may be well for us to read again 1 John 1:9, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (the word “cleanse” in Greek is in a grammatical tense which means a constant, ongoing cleansing). Amen!!!
PRAYER FOR TODAY:
Lord God, You have made provision for forgiveness and for an ongoing washing of my life from sin. I pray for a consistent attitude of repentance and trust in Your promise that, as long as I walk in the light of Your Word, I know that the blood of Jesus Christ, Your Son, cleanses me from all sin (1 John 1:7). In the Person of Jesus Christ, and because of His blood, I have confidence that You hear me and that I am righteous in Your sight. Amen!!!
100 PERSONAL WORDS:
I have struggled over the years with John’s love letter to all believers because of the statement, “There is a sin leading to death” (1 John 5:16). What is this? I’m convinced that the only sin which cannot be forgiven is that of rejecting Jesus right up until and including the moment of death. I’ve met people who think they have committed the “unpardonable sin.” If we have any desire whatsoever for God’s forgiveness, we can be forgiven when we pray the sinner’s prayer, “God be merciful to me a sinner” (Luke 18:13). I know this because there is no contradiction in Holy Scripture, and Jesus said, “The one who comes to Me I will by NO MEANS cast out” (John 6:37b)! These are the Words of Jesus that led me personally to believe that Jesus received me and saved me when I was a 16 year old. John writes, in the final words of the Bible, these Words, (click here for Revelation 22:17-21) “Whoever desires” may “Come!” The word “COME!” is repeated twice. It is God’s will that all should be saved, but God will not force anyone to believe. He does not turn people into mindless robots or puppets. I decided to believe God’s promise of salvation, and He did not turn me away!!! According to the words of the Apostle Peter, God is “not willing that any should perish but that ‘ALL’ should ‘COME’ to repentance” (2 Peter 3:9b).
Yours with a fervent prayer that anyone reading this who has not “COME,” will do so now and that you might be helped through the Crossroads telephone prayer number 1-866-273-4444 or e-mail address, firstname.lastname@example.org. A non-judgmental person, who cares deeply about you as an eternal, precious never-dying person, is waiting for the phone to ring or an e-mail to arrive indicating a desire to COME TO JESUS! YES!!! God answers prayer, but it’s too late after death. Please, please, make the call on God and also call the prayer line number.
P.S. If you’ve come to Jesus today, we have some helpful literature to send you, which will help you have complete assurance that you are right with God for time and for eternity. Just ask when you call or write, and May God bless you in a special way!