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Thomas F. Fischer, M.Div., M.S.A., Editor
The Seventh Sunday After Easter
Option #1: "God's Complete Love"
1 John 4:13-21
Rev. Wayne Dobratz, M.Div.
NOTE: It is crucial to a proper understanding of this text to give an accurate definition of "agape" love--the love that loves the unlovable, love that is grounded not in the worthiness of the recipient, but in the will of The Loving One.
1) Is evidenced by the recognition that Jesus is Gods Son and our Savior--vv13-15; John 10:36-38, 15:26; 1 Cor 2:12, 3:16, 6:19; John 1:14, 3:32-36; 1 John 1:1-3, 2:1-2, 5:9; v15: the Spirit enables confession of Jesus as the Christ--cf Lk 12:8; Rom 10:9.
2) Gives confidence for the Day of Judgment--vv16-17; cf Rom 8:15-17; 1 John 2:1-2, 28, 3:2-3, 19-21; Heb 12:2-3.
3) Allows us to express love for each other--vv19-21; cf John 13:34-35, 15:16-17; 2 Cor 5:14-15; Eph 4:31-5:2; Gal 5:6b; 1 Peter 3:8-9, 4:8; 1 John 2:3-6, 4:12.
Adam Clarkes Commentary on the New Testament:
May have boldness in the day of judgment: parreesian--freedom of speech, and liberty of access; seeing in the person of our Judge Him who has died for us, regenerated our hearts, and who Himself fills them.
As he is--pure, holy, and loving; so are we in this world; being saved from our sins, and made like himself in righteousness and true holiness. No person can contemplate the day of judgment with any comfort or satisfaction but on this ground, that the blood of Christ hath cleansed from them all sin, and that they are kept by the power of God, through faith, unto salvation. This will give them boldness in the day of judgment.
Vincent's Word Studies, Volume 2: The Writings of John 1, John 2:28:
We may have confidence, boldness. For the phrase have boldness, see 1 John 3:21; 4:17; 5:14; Hebrews 3:6; 10:19; Philemon 8. It is opposed, as here, to to be ashamed, in Proverbs 13:5, where the Septuagint reads "a wicked man is ashamed and shall not have boldness." Also in Philippians 1:20. Compare 2 Corinthians 3:12. The idea of free, open speech lies at the bottom of the word: coming before Gods bar with nothing to conceal. The thought is embodied in the general confession of the Book of Common Prayer: "That we should not dissemble nor cloak them before the face of Almighty God our Heavenly Father, but confess them." So John Wesleys Hymn:"Jesus, Thy blood and righteousnessmy beauty are, my glorious dress:midst flaming worlds, in these arrayed,with joy shall I lift up my head.Bold shall I stand in Thy great day,for who aught to my charge shall lay?Fully absolved through these I am--from sin and fear, from guilt and shame."+ + +Lamb's MessageVisual aid: one balloon blown up with air; another filled with water."God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God and God in him. In this way, love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment ...there is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment." (1 John 4:16-18)I want to tell you about a time when I was accused of something I did not do. My grandmother had a house to rent. A woman and her three children lived there and paid rent every month. One month she told my grandmother she had given the check to me. She didnt. Now I knew that I didnt take the money. I knew I wasnt guilty, no matter what this woman said. My grandmother questioned me about the rent money, but she knew me well enough to know that I would not steal from her. Besides, she could see that I didnt have 2,000 more baseball cards that month than I had before!The point is that I knew my grandmother loved and trusted me and I wasnt worried about being punished for something I didnt do. The Bible says that because Jesus did everything the Law required, He took our punishment for us when He died on the cross. Thats why the Bible says we can have CONFIDENCE on the day of judgment. You know that you are not guilty in Gods eyes and that He will take you to heaven just as he promised.John says that perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. See for yourself. This balloon is full of air. Now if I were to let out the air and fill it with water, like this one, the water has driven out the air. Gods perfect love drives away our fear, the way the water drives out the air. The Bible says: "And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love." Say it with me: "God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him will not perish, but will have eternal life."+ + +
Option #2: "Truth's Troops"
Rev. Kelly Bedard, M.Div.
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This page was revised on: Friday, January 20, 2006 12:10:32 PM