1 John 4

“God is Love”

This is the third of John’s three great statements concerning the nature of God.

The others are found in: John 4:24, I John 1-5.

In the original language the word God is persuaded by an article and would read, “The God is love”. This means that the statement is not reversible; it cannot read “Love is God”.

How do we know that God is love?

v. 9: tells us that God’s love towards us was manifested or revealed in Jesus Christ. John 3:16. God sent His Only begotten Son into the world. Christ is the only begotten Son in sense that He has no brothers or sisters.

The purpose for sending Christ was “that we might live through Him”. There are two important truths revealed her

1. The pre-existence of Christ

2. The eternal Sonship of Christ

“God sent his Son into the world. Isaiah 6. Christ existed before He was sent into the world. If He had not Never could have been our Life (v.9) our propitiation (v.10) or our Savior (v.14)

v. 10: “Herein is love” literally “the love” – perfect love. This love is unrelated to anything which humans could do. “Not that we loved God” “But that He loved us”. This perfect love flowed “toward us” and is expressed in the gift of Jesus Christ. Ezekiel 47. God’s love cannot be compared with or related to human love. These are rare examples, says Paul of a person dying for an upright man. There are other examples of people who have given there life for a good person. There cares are very rare indeed. According to Romans 3, in God’s eyes no person on earth is righteous. In His eyes no one is good “There is none that doeth good” yet God loved us, but there is more.

Romans 5 assures us that it was when we were without strength, i.e. morally weak (v.6), Sinners (v.8) and Enemies (v10), that Christ died for us. “God is love”. This is not only amazing but incredible. This love cannot be measured – scale – plumb – length – breadth. It is a love which transcends all humans thoughts. Ephesians 3:18-19. Maybe able to comprehend … And to know love, etc. God’s love is “a depth without a bottom” “A see without a shore”. Like shoreless seas, thy love can know no bounds; deep, vast, immense, unfathomed, hard profound, hard I love thee!

What shall separate us from the love of Christ. See v. 17. “Boldness in the day of judgment.” He came to seek and to save that which was lost. The woman with the issue of blood and the woman taken in sin. He came to save you. Luke 15.

False Teachers And Prophets

2 Peter 2; They will bring into the church destructive heresies. They will deny the Lord that brought them (Cain). They are presumptuous – self willed – speak evil of authority. They speak great dwelling words of vanity. All this is done in the name of religion. 2 Timothy 3. They creep into houses and lead captive silly women.

The men profess Christianity but they preach another gospel. See Galatians 1, 6 & 9. Describe what the Gospel is: 1 Corinthians 15. He died for out sins etc. – was buried – and raised the third day, etc.

In v. 2-3 John gives the test that is to be given these false teachers. “What think ye of Christ?”

v.2: Every spirit or teacher who confesses Jesus is Christ who has come in the flesh is of God.

v. 3: And every teacher who does not confess that Jesus is Christ, who is God manifest in flesh is not of God.

This attitude to the person and work of Christ determines whether they are of God or not. Quote the verse of poetry here. “What think ye of Christ is the test” etc.

What some men did with Jesus

1. The rich young rulers rejected Christ and His claims outright.

2. The rich farmers excluded Him from His life and thoughts.

3. The multitudes totally and absolutely rejected Him

4. Felix declined Him as Savior

5. Agrippa was almost persuaded to believe in Him.

Describe Paul’s commission

Philippians jailer’s commission

Thomas’ attitude

What do you think of Christ?

v. 8: God is love. See verses 9, 10, and 14

See v. 17 now. “Herein is love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment.”

v. 1: All believers have the Holy Spirit. Ch 3:24. But there are other spirits….. Teachers (false); Peter and Jude. We have to test – try – prove, these false teachers. These men profess to accept Christianity, but they preach another gospel. Galatians 1:6-9.

What is the Gospel? 1 Corinthians 15. We wrestle not against flesh and blood… but against principality and powers. Against rulers of the darkness of this world.

v. 2-3: John gives the test by which these teachers are to be proven. The incarnation. The virgin birth – the person of Christ. The confession – God in Christ reconciling the world. Every spirit or teacher who confesses that Jesus is the Christ incarnate comes from God. And every teacher that does not thus acknowledge Jesus Christ is not of God. “What think ye of Christ: is the test. To try both your state and your scheme: you cannot be right in the rest, unless you think rightly of Him”

v. 4: Greater is He that is in you, etc.

v. 8: God is love. The following verses give us a description of God’s love.

1. In the past God’s love was manifested to us as sinners in the gift of His Son. V. 9-11.

2. In the present God’s love is manifested to us as saints in His dwelling in us. V. 12-16.

3. In the future God’s love will be manifested to us in giving us boldness in the day of judgment. V. 17-18.

Firstly we have God’s love for sinners. He sent His “only begotten” Son. Unique Son. Quote v. 10, God’s love is linked with redemption.

v. 11: Since God so loved us, we ought also to love one another.

v. 12: If we love on another… God dwelleth in us and His love is perfected in us. i.e. God’s love has reached its goal. “No man hath seen God at any time,” see John 1:18. God made himself known to the world through the Lord Jesus. God is now making His love know to the world through believers.

v. 13: We dwell in Him and he dwells in us. We know this because he has given us his Spirit. His Spirit bears witness with our spirit, etc. The importance of the person and ministry of the Holy Spirit.

v. 14: Divine love in action.

1. The Father sent the Son. The heart rending price paid.

2. The Savior of the world. The boundless scope of Christ’s work.

v. 15-16: God swelling in the believer. The believer dwelling in God.

v. 17: Herein is love made perfect. It is not our love that is made perfect. It is God’s love that is made perfect with us. John is now taking us to the future when we will stand before the Lord. “We will stand before Him with confidence and boldness… because the sin question has been settled once and for all. Glorious truth: “As He is (now in heaven) so are we in the world.”

v. 18: There is no fear in love: perfect love casteth our fear. Perfect love:

1. He sent His Son to die for me.

2. He loves me enough to dwell in me.

3. I can now look to the future with confidence and without fear.

v. 19: We love. Because He first loved us. The only reason we can really love is because His love is perfected in us v. 12. Quote vs. 20-21.