Obedience and Love
by Dr Gregory Magruder | September 30, 2018
Gregory Magruder Parkview Baptist Gainesville, FL 09/30/18
“Obedience and Love"
1 John 2:3-6
INTRODUCTION: Christian fellowship and authentic relationships are possible in Christ. But sin blocks fellowship with God and others. John writes, “My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin” (1 John 2:1). We can deny sin, excuse sin, or confess sin. We can find forgiveness of sin through Jesus Christ. Jesus is our Advocate and our Atonement. He secures our fellowship with God and he maintains our fellowship with God (1 John 2:1-2). Jesus is the foundation of our fellowship with God. But how can we be sure that we are walking in fellowship and resisting sin? Are there indications that our fellowship with God is on the right track? John says yes and gives us two clear indicators that we know God and are maintaining fellowship with him.
OBEDIENCE IS THE ESSENCE OF FELLOWSHIP.
*Obedience overcomes sin. “And by this we know that we have come to know him, if we keep his commandments. Whoever says “I know him” but does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him” (1 John 2:3-4).
*Obedience proves our love for God. God fills his obedient children with increasing love. “but whoever keeps his word, in him truly the love of God is perfected” (1 John 2:5).
*Obedience assures us of our salvation. The ultimate evidence of fellowship is when we walk as Jesus walked. “By this we may know that we are in him: whoever says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he walked” (1 John 2:5-6).
The person who obeys God’s Word experiences God’s love.
LOVE IS THE EVIDENCE OF FELLOWSHIP.
*Jesus commanded us to love one another. Love for one another indicates that we are followers of Jesus. “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another” (1 John 13:34-35).
*Love overcomes sin. Obedience puts Jesus’ command into action and darkness flees. “Beloved, I am writing you no new commandment, but an old commandment that you had from the beginning. The old commandment is the word that you have heard. At the same time, it is a new commandment that I am writing to you, which is true in him and in you, because the darkness is passing away and the true light is already shining” (1 John 2:7-8).
*Love of neighbor confirms our love for God. To love is to walk in the light. To hate is to walk in the darkness. How we treat one another shows whether we are in the light or in the darkness. “Whoever says he is in the light and hates his brother is still in darkness. Whoever loves his brother abides in the light, and in him there is no cause for stumbling. But whoever hates his brother is in the darkness and walks in the darkness, and does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded his eyes” (1 John 2:9-11).
The mark of the Christian is love for God and for others.