“7 Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. 8 Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.” – 1st John 3: 7-8
The beginning of verse 7 in the ancient Greek is so clear: agapetoi agapomen, means “Those who are loved, let us love.” We live in the light of the fact that God first loved us. In turn, we must be compelled to share that love with others. If you want to learn to love others, you must first understand how God loves you. Once you are born again (born of God), you should have something imparted to you that you did not have before. God’s love consists of His forgiveness of your sin, His mercy, His grace, His personal attachment to who you are and who you are yet to be. God loves you so much He gave His life for you! This is a self-sacrificing, unconditional type of love that we just aren’t used to, but we must try to learn how to show it. Our God IS love. Even His judgement and His wrath are done in love.
Do you know any people in your life that are sarcastic, judgmental, angry, and always putting other people down instead of loving others? Please try to look at them how God sees them. These people are putting others down because they constantly put themselves down. They don’t feel good about themselves, they do not feel loved, or forgiven.
Maybe you are one of those people. You cannot give to others what you do not have. Rick Warren says “hurt people hurt people.” You have to learn how much God loves you, and you have to let God’s love heal your heart until you can love anyone else.
- Would you say that you love others with the love of God? How do you show that love to others?
- Why would understanding God’s love help you show grace to others?
- What hurt from your past is keeping you from accepting God’s love and showing it to others?