Sermon Outline On 1 John 4:7-21
Beloved, let us love one another, because love is from God; everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, for God is love. God’s love was revealed among us in this way: God sent his only Son into the world so that we might live through him. In this is love, not that we loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the atoning sacrifice for our sins. Beloved, since God loved us so much, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God lives in us, and his love is perfected in us. By this we know that we abide in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit. And we have seen and do testify that the Father has sent his Son as the Savior of the world. God abides in those who confess that Jesus is the Son of God, and they abide in God. So we have known and believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and those who abide in love abide in God, and God abides in them. Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness on the day of judgment, because as he is, so are we in this world. There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear; for fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not reached perfection in love. We love because he first loved us. Those who say, “I love God,” and hate their brothers or sisters, are liars; for those who do not love a brother or sister whom they have seen, cannot love God whom they have not seen. The commandment we have from him is this: those who love God must love their brothers and sisters also.
There is a song, “What the world need now is love sweet love.”
Right on, John. Tell these evil people about the love of God!. Tell these evil people about loving one another. Tell these self-absorbed individuals they ought to love. That is who John is addressing isn’t it?
John is writing to those who are Beloved. John is writing to the church. John is encouraging the church members to love one another. John recognized the need for the church to be more loving. Why? Just because!
Beloved, love one another, because love is from God. Those who love are born of God and know God. Non-lovers do not know God — for God is Love.
Is there a need for the church to be more loving? Listen to this story of a down and out Chicago woman told by Philip Yancy in his book, What’s So Amazing about Grace. The story came from one of his friends.
A prostitute came to me in wretched straits, homeless, sick, unable to buy food for her two-year-old daughter. Through sobs and tears, she told me she had been renting out her daughter–two years old! She made more renting her daughter for an hour than she could earn on her own in a night. She had to do it, she said, to support her own drug habit. I could hardly bear hearing her sordid story. For one thing, it made me legally liable–I’m required to report cases of child abuse. I had no idea what to say to this woman.
At last I asked if she had ever thought of going to a church for help. I will never forget the look of pure, naive shock that crossed her face. “Church!” she cried. “Why would I ever go there? I was already feeling terrible about myself. They’d just make me feel worse.”
Yancy then writes, “What struck me about my friend’s story is that women much like this prostitute fled toward Jesus, not away from him. The worse a person felt about herself, the more likely she saw Jesus as a refuge.” And then he asks, “Has the church lost that gift?” “Evidently the down-and-out, who flocked to Jesus when he lived on earth, no longer feel welcome among his followers. What has happened?”
Beloved, since God loved us so much, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God lives in us, and his love is perfected in us. 1 John 4:11-12
Love is the evidence of God. No one has ever seen God; no one has ever seen the wind, but we have seen tall grass bent over, leaves in the trees rustling in the wind. Trees uprooted – roofs blown off. While we may not see the wind, we see the evidence of its presence. John says, “Love is evidence of the presence of God.”
Yes, indeed. “God is love, and those who abide in love abide in God, and God abides in them.”