The Basis of Brotherly Love 1 John 4:7-10
Cooper P. Abrams III
INTRODUCTION: John in verses 1-6 is warning against false teachers. Here beginning in verse 7 he is talking about brotherly love. Christians are to love one another.
The word here is not "eros," but "agape" It is not sentimental, sensual or social love. This is the supernatural love of God.
" But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us" (Rom. 5:8).
This is love the God puts in a persons heart when they receive Christ as their Savior. It comes when one is indwelled by the Holy Spirit and received the nature of God. Only God can make it real and only God can enable to us to extend it to others.
This is not a verse that refers to love for friends.
I. EVERYONE THAT LOVETH IS BORN OF GOD, AND KNOWETH GOD. V7-8
A. The love here is true "agape" love and only comes from God.
1. The children of God love one another because God puts that love in them.
2. He that loveth is of God. This maybe hard to understand because we mostly are familiar with "eros" love. But here the Lord is saying that true unselfish love comes only from God.
3. Those who are saved have the nature of God which is to love, because God is love.
B. Those who cannot past the love test are not of God.
1. What is the definition of love? Love is synonymous with God's grace and can be defined, "unmerited favor."
2. Love is showing concern and by action its desire for the well being of another. It is demonstrated in that it seeks the benefit of the other person without regard for that person's worthiness to receive love. It is a love that is a matter of one's will. In other words a person who shows true biblical love decides to the love the other person because he wants too.
3. Agape love is only found in the Holy and Inspired Word of God. It is completely foreign to all cultures outside the Bible. If you did a word study of the word love in other languages and cultures you would not find this concept. The usage of this word in the New Testament is exclusive and the New Testament definition is not found in the cultures of that day. Also in history is it unique to the Old Testament. Pagans and heathens never conceived of favor given without merit.
4. Word love is found 34 times in 1 John 4:7-5:3 alone. It is found 53 times in the Epistle. Only in the Gospel of John is the word use more. Still, it is used more time is 1 John than any other book in the New Testament.
C. The whole of the New Testament carries the message of the love of God.
1. Matt. 5:44-48, 10:37, 22:34-40, John 13:34-35, 15:12-13.
2. Romans 5:5-8, 13:8-10, I Cor. 13:1-13, Gal. 5:6, 5:22-23, 6:2
3. Ephesians 5:15, 5:25-27, 1 Thess 4:9, 1 Tim. 1:5, Heb. 13:1, James 1:12, 2:8, 1 Peter 1:22, Jude 21.
D. How do you describe "agape."
1. Agape is the love of intelligent purpose, always aiming toward and working out the ver best for the object loved, enemies included. (Matt. 5:43-48)
2. Agape loves the unlovely and the unloving. (Eph. 2:1-10)
3. Agape loves without demanding love in return, though desiring it deeply. (Rom. 5:5-11)
4. Agape is the love of selfless self-sacrifice (john 3;16) It involves "the seeking of another positive good at one's own cost."
5. Agape can include "philos" (the affection of mutual attraction), but it always transcends it. (John 21:15-17)
6. Agape makes the loved object beautiful and worthy to have all affection poured out upon it. (1 John 3:1-2)
7. Agape flourishes into the fullest fellowship. (Song of Solomon 6:3)
8. Agape always takes the initiative. (1 John 4:19)
II. THE LOVE OF GOD MANIFESTED. 1 JOHN 4:9-10
A. V9, How was God's love manifested? He sent His Son.
B. in Gen. 22:12, As Abraham raised the knife, God called out to him, "Lay not thing hand upon the lad, neither do thou any thing unto him."
1. A thousands years later at Mt. Moriah, the same place, the Angel of the Lord "stretched out his hand upon Jerusalem to destroy it," but the Lord said, "It is enough: stay now thine hand." (2 Sam. 24:16)
2. A thousand years later at the same mountain sinners were about to crucify God's only begotten Son, but this time God commanded, "Awake, O sword against my shepherd, and against the man that is my fellow...smite the shepherd." (Zech. 13:7)
3. God spared Isaac, He spared Jerusalem, but He would not spare Himself...that we might be saved.
4. "He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?" (Rom. 8:32)
C. In Greek the word, "Propitiate" meant to appease the wrath of the gods by means of a sacrifice.
1. In the New Testament it is used six times in various forms. Luke 18:13, Romans 3:25, Hebrew 2:17, 9:5, 1 John 2:2, 4:10.
2. Still the wrath of God is against all ungodliness, still God loved the world.
3. In the OT, God's love satisfied His wrath, by the "sweet savor" of the offering of faith of those who trusted him.
4. Lev. 1-3, when he smelled the smoke from the altar of the spotless substitutionary sacrifice, God wrath "rested."
5. In love, God Himself paid the debt that was owed. Man could not pay it, nor did he deserve to have his debt paid, but God paid it anyway.....why? Because He loved His creation.
God's love provided what His holiness demanded. What love!
D. Propitiation is the expression of divine love in its noblest achievement.
1. The false teaches who all serve Satan, seek to destroy the blood atonement of Christ. Why? Because it destroys God love for us and the very means of Salvation!
2. Good New For Modern Man and other so-called Bible, have taken the blood out of the Bible. It is blatant heresy against God and God's truth!!!
3. Without propitiation there is no salvation. But God designed the way, the only way, man could be saved. He became sin for us! He paid the penalty.
E. HOW UNRIVALED AND INEXPRESSIBLE IS THE LOVE OF GOD?
1. It was self-initiated. 1 John 4:10
2. It operated with the realm of "the present evil world." Gal. 1:4
3. God gave His very best, His own self incarnate in the Son. John 3:16 4. He came to save His enemies. Roman 5:6-10
5. He did not do it for a few, but for all. Eph. 2:7
6. Having redeemed us by His blood. He sought us, he sought after us and called us (some times over and over again) by His Spirit. (2 Cor. 5:18-21)