1 John 3:19-20

1 John 3:19-20 has John reminding us yet again what it means to really love others in life.  “Then we will know for sure, by our actions, that we are on God’s side, and our consciences will be clear, even when we stand before the Lord.” John will not allow us to merely talk about love; real love is demonstrated in actions.  Love is a choice, not merely a feeling.  In fact, it isn’t a feeling at all according to what scripture teaches us.  Love is an action word that requires us to DO something.  It is the mark of a true Christ Follower.  And someday, it will be part of God’s standard regarding our judgment as we stand before Him at heaven’s gates.

When we see this love at work in our lives, we can know that we are walking in the truth – and this brings assurance to our hearts before God, that we are standing in Him. Our assurance is two-fold:

  1. First, God already knows everything about you and He loves you, He cares for you, He desires you;
  2. second, God knows all things, and knows who we truly are in Jesus Christ.

If we are truly born again, than the real self is the one created in the image of Jesus Christ.

How much does this kind of love cost?  What’s the price tag of this kind of love? What is the limit to this kind of love? The only limit is the one that love itself imposes. When giving to a person, meeting his perceived or immediate need, does him harm instead of good – then the loving thing to do is to not give him what he asks for, but to give him what he really needs instead. Condemnation can build up inside us that has nothing to do with our standing before God. The enemy sits on our shoulder whispering lies into our ears that we aren’t doing enough, or we’re doing the wrong things, or it doesn’t matter so why do anything.  We need to realize that the command is clear – we are to love one another through word and most importantly our deeds.

We can go to God and have Him give us clarity around how we’re doing in this area. “But if we have bad consciences and feel that we have done wrong, the Lord will surely feel it even more, for he knows everything we do.” If someone is in true fellowship with God – not deceiving oneself or listening to the enemy, then the assurance that comes to his heart while fellowshipping with God is a precious thing. God will validate our love if we listen to Him and follow His direction.  We can know for sure that love takes action.  But God is watching and knows exactly what we are doing, so He can bear witness to our spirit through the Holy Spirit that we are walking in His will!  Are you loving the people He has put in your patch?  Are you DOING love?

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