- Galena Bible Church posted an announcement
Young Adults BonfireIt's time for some fun! Date: August 14th Time: 7:00 PM What : Outdoor party with games, snacks, bonfire and worship Where: Reiblings 9257 Route 52 South Dubuque, IA Please bring: A lawn chair, snack to pass, friends. (This event will be held outside)
1 John 4:8
1 John 4:8
“Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love.”
God is love. What I understand this to mean is that God the Father and God the Son love each other with an infinite, all-powerful, and all-encompassing love for one another. And this love between the two persons is the person of the Holy Spirit as we saw in Romans 5:5. This is the Spirit that is given to each and every believer from the moment of saving faith.
And it is because the Spirit is the love of God, and the Spirit has been given to us, the Christian loves with God’s love. This is why the apostle says that anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love. But we who have the Spirit, now can love God and others. Now believer, because you have the Spirit of God, you have the very love that God has for Himself in you.
Of course, sin remains. We live in a broken and cursed world. Our bodies break down and eventually die. So now we get tastes of the love of God. But some day soon, we will experience God’s presence, the fullness of God’s love without sin or curse. There will be fullness of His joy and pleasures forevermore! But we have the Spirit now such that Paul says, the Love of God has been poured out into our hearts. And because of this we have hope enough to love God and others today. So our worship is true worship because we worship God in Spirit and truth. We really experience God’s presence, we really experience God’s love, all in the person and work of the Holy Spirit
“…and hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.”
According to Paul here, our hope is grounded in the love of God being poured out into our hearts. How the love of God is poured out into our hearts is through the gift of the Holy Spirit. This is why many Christians down through the church history recognized the Holy Spirit as the Love of God.
We saw this in our study in John 14–17. Jesus was magnified by the work of the Spirit and the Word of God. God the Father loves God the Son and the Son loves the Father and has done so from before creation. And this infinite love between the person of the Father and of the Son is eternal, it is personal. And this love, Jesus promises to make known in His people and continue to make known the name of the Father (John 17:25–26). The Holy Spirit is the love of God standing forth from eternity as the third person of the Trinity. And, wonder of wonders, He has been given to us!
And not only is the Holy Spirit love of God given to us, it’s poured out into our hearts. Don’t think this pouring out is like a dripping faucet. Oh no. Think Niagra Falls! God floods our hearts with His love so that we have those moments where we say like Peter does, “Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory.”
And so Romans 5 makes sense that because we have this Spirit-wrought, Spirit-filled hope, “We rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, 4 and endurance produces character, and character produces hope.”
25 O righteous Father, even though the world does not know you, I know you, and these know that you have sent me. 26 I made known to them your name, and I will continue to make it known, that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them.”
I love the promise Jesus makes in this text! He promises to make God’s name known to us so that at the least, we would know the love God has for His Son and the love the Son has for God the Father. But it goes further. He says the love that God the Father and God the Son have for each other will be in us, in you and me, believer. Jesus promises the love that God has for Himself would be in you. How awesome it that!
The promise is so incredible to me because Jesus bases it on Himself. He says that He Himself will make God’s love to dwell in us. Jesus is the Christ, which means He is the King now (Psalm 2). He ascended to His throne in heaven (Hebrews 1:13). Jesus is now King over the rulers of the earth (Revelation 1:5). And as the reigning King, Jesus pours out His Spirit into His people. And Paul calls this pouring out of the Spirit, the pouring out of the love of God into our hearts (Romans 5:5). He did the work on the Cross in dying for our sins. Jesus works now to pours out His Spirit into His people and this Spirit is the Love of God given to us.
So now because of this work because of the present ruling and reigning Christ, His people love Him from the depths of their souls. Yes sin is still present, but we get tastes by the Spirit’s power to love Jesus. The Spirit helps us to cry out to the Father saying, “Abba Father.” This is the love of God Jesus promises to continually work in our hearts. The love of God is the presence of Christ made manifest in us. What comfort! What hope! What glory we have in Christ!
So Jesus ends His prayer for us here. In the midst of hard times, tribulation, any sort of difficulty, we can have peace because Jesus has promised to continually work in us. Do we believe His promise? Let us receive Jesus’ promises here with fresh faith. The love that God the Father loves the Son and the Son loves the Father is in us and Jesus will continually work it in us. And knowing this love it to know the one true God and His Son. And this is eternal life, to know the love of God through Christ, no matter what circumstances we find ourselves in. We can have His peace, because we have Him