‘Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God.’
So what is this love of God that believers are to love one another with?
Let’s dig a little deeper…
‘Beloved, let us love’ is translated from two Greek words
agapētos – dearly beloved, well beloved, esteemed, favourite, worthy of love.
agapaō – to welcome, entertain, love dearly, beloved.
So friends, we’re to love one another with a love that welcomes and treats others as worthy of being dearly loved and highly esteemed.
How, especially if others act in a way that makes them hard to love?
With God’s love because this unconditional love ‘is of God’! If we know and love God we have something others don’t, we love Him because He first loved us and when we received His love we also received the Holy Spirit to live in us as our helper.
We’re all made in the image of God and are capable of loving others but this love is marred by sin but the more we feast upon God’s love as believers the more our love will grow like His and we begin to produce that fruit of the Spirit ‘love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance.’
Many of us are facing new challenges at the moment and there’s so much extra patience needed as we try to carry on as normal, in a life that has changed so much in just a few weeks.
But Friends the Christlike love we need to be joyful, gentle and patient in this time is freely available to us if we believe and know God.
So how do we grow in this love? By growing in our knowledge of God.
The word ginōskō translated in our verse as knoweth means to feel, perceive and understand. This word was also used among Jews to describe the intimate knowing between a husband and wife. This isn’t a head knowledge but a heart and soul knowledge that comes from intimacy with God.
So again we see our need to draw near to God. Yes, drawing near to God when we can get a moment with our Bible is important but draw near Friend in the middle of you muddle, in those crazy, pulling your hair out moments of frustration, when you want to shout and scream like a two year old or burst into tears, draw near and rest in His love, ‘for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.’ There’s everything we need in God Friends if we just draw near and seek it from Him.
1 John 4:7, Gal 5:22,23, Heb 13:5