Thursday, May 2, 2019

Do You Know Him?

And by this we know that we have come to know him, if we keep his commandments. Whoever says “I know him” but does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him, but whoever keeps his word, in him truly the love of God is perfected. By this we may know that we are in him: whoever says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he walked.  1 John 2:3-6
Do You Know Him?In his first letter, John uses the word know 25 times.  He wanted the early church – and us - to know what we know, and to know God, without a doubt.  He also wanted believers to know that obedience is the true mark of someone who knows God. 
There was a dangerous heretical ideology at the time called Gnosticism, which proclaimed that the world and everything in it – including human bodies – was evil and the only path to salvation was only achievable through knowledge (gnosis), or enlightenment.  Gnostics did not believe that their behavior had anything to do with their knowledge of God. John was passionate to make sure believers knew that moral behavior and their love for God go hand in hand.  He wanted them to know you can’t have one without the other. You can see why this was a threat to the early church.  
Love ISa Verb
John’s message to the early church had three points that were clear and simple.  He gave them three truths that proves that our love for the Lord and our actions are intertwined.  We can know that we truly know Himby these three things:
·      We know that we have come to know Him when we obey His commands. V 2:3-4Knowing Himis different than salvation.  We are saved by faith, but we know that we know Him when we are obedient to His commands.
·      When we obey His word, God’s love is made complete is us.  V 5  We can know that we truly know Christ if we walk in obedience to His word.  This is an extension of the first statement that we know Him if we obey His commandments, but it goes a step further saying that when we do obey – God’s love is made complete in us.  Obedience shows how completely we love Him. In John 14:15Jesus said “If you love me, you will keep my commandments
We know we are in Him when we walk like Jesus v 
– Do we act like Jesus would act?  Do we live a lift of complete obedience to God and loving and serving others?  If we say we love God, our lives should reflect it.  It is a verb!  Action is required. 
We tend to gauge our relationship with God like we do our other relationships – on our feelings.  There are many times in life when we don’t necessarily “feel” the love of God in our lives.  And there will be times we may not “feel” like being obedient.  These are the times we act on our faith and love for Him. In the three truths above John does not say anything at all about feelings. Instead, he says that our actions reflect our love for God completely.  If we love Him, we obey Him. We can never live a flawless life following God because we are human, but we striveto because we love Him.  An unbeliever who is rebellious does not love God and does not want to obey His commandments. 
More than anything, God wants our obedience and love.  Abiding in Him – spending time in His word and in prayer – will produce godly characteristics in our lives and we will “walk” like Jesus did. 
But Samuel replied: Does the Lord delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as much as in obeying the Lord? To obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed is better than the fat of rams.
1 Samuel 15:22

Devotional Archive