Speaker: Don Guthrie
1 John 3:11-17
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(11) "For this is the message which you have heard from the beginning, that we should love one another; (12) not as Cain, who was of the evil one and slew his brother. And for what reason did he slay him? Because his deeds were evil, and his brother's were righteous. (13) Do not be surprised, brethren, if the world hates you. (14) We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we love the brethren. He who does not love abides in death. (15) Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him. (16) We know love by this, that He laid down His life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. (17) But, whoever has the world's goods, and sees his brother in need and closes his heart against him, how does the love of God abide in him?
NOT a new lesson. We are to LOVE. Love God. Love others.
The story of Cain--Genesis 4
After the fall. East of Eden (Genesis 3:24).
Abel brings an offering in obedience--a confession of his need for God.
Cain is PROUD and ANGRY and DEFENSIVE and RESTLESS.
He hurts others rather than helps others. Pays a high price.
The story of Christ--
He laid down His life (v. 16). Cross? Incarnation?
True love is ALWAYS sacrificial. It pursues the good of another at a high cost to self. He gives Himself for us. We give ourselves to Him (and to others).
His Call to Love--
Sees his brother in need (v. 17). Closes his heart (kleio splagchnon--bowels, gut).
The Benefits of Love--
"Little children, let us not love with word or tongue, but in deed and truth. (19) We will know by this that we are of the truth, and will assure our hearts before Him (20) in whatever our heart condemns us; for God is greater than our heart and knows all things. (21) Beloved, if our heart does not condemn us, we have confidence before God; (22) and whatever we ask we receive from Him, because we keep His commandments and do the things that are pleasing in His sight."
"If I do not have love, I am nothing" (1 Corinthians 13:2).
"Simon, son of John, do you love Me more than these?" (John 21:15).
Decision. Commitment. Will you?