Reposted from Pr. Stout:
(24 verses, 3:03 to read)
What I am about to READ
- A child of God is born from the love of the Father. Those children love righteousness and the Lord’s Law. The world hates the children of God even as it hates their Father. As we wait for the resurrection, we are called to love, faith, and hope and to hear from our Lord a Word that is greater than our condemned hearts.
MARK & LEARN
- 1-3: We are children of God because of the love of the Father. Being a child of God now has several implications: 1.) The world doesn’t know us because it doesn’t know our Father and 2.) We wait with hope what we shall be in the resurrection. This hope purifies because it clings to the One who is pure.
- 4-10: Two wonderful statements on why Christ appeared: 1.) To take away sins and 2.) To destroy the works of the devil. These works of Christ and the gift of the Holy Spirit given through Baptism and the Lord’s Word gives birth to the Christian, and helps him to begin to love the Lord’s Law (after all, sin is lawlessness) and practice righteousness.
- 11-15: One of the reasons for the world’s hatred is they have a conscience that is accused and bothered by the good that comes through the Lord’s Word and His Christians. As the Christian begins to love the Lord’s Word and hate lawlessness, she will also show fruit by not approving and consenting in lawlessness. This will bring the world’s rage! Do not be surprised at this and do not allow hate to enter your heart because of their hatred towards you. You have passed from death to life by believing and abiding in the One who has passed from death to life to bring you with Him.
- 16-18: We know the love of God toward us supremely in Him giving Himself for us. Love always gives. Thus the call to love one another is a call to give to others.
- 19-24: A heart that is reassured that he is of the truth is a heart that hears the Lord’s forgiveness. He believes that God is greater than his feelings when his heart condemns him. Our God, who gives us a confident heart, calls us to use that confidence in asking things of Him for ourselves and for others in accordance with His will. That will, once again, can be summed up as faith toward God and love toward others.
- As your heart considers the Lord’s Word, you will find that you have loved His Word and His Law. You will find that you love Jesus because you have begun to know the depth and breadth of Jesus’ love that is founded in giving Himself for you to make you a child of His Father. However, that heart will also be condemned. We have practiced lawlessness too often because we believed that outside the Lord’s law was freedom. We have approved of the world’s morality too often because we believed we would gain respect and love and we hate to be hated. Yet, as that heart is condemned, hear that God is greater than your heart. He has sent His Son to destroy the works of the devil. The devil’s works are to both tempt and accuse you. His works are destroyed by your Jesus. You have passed from death to life even now as you wait for what you shall be when he appears, knowing that when He appears, you shall be like Him and you shall see Him as He is.
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Pastor Christopher Stout