John is again repeating what he wrote in the Gospel of John 1:18, when he says no one has seen God at anytime. By this he is referring to God the Father. This means all the times in the Bible when people are having personal encounters with God, it is Jesus they are interacting with. Yet, don’t miss John’s point! This same God that no one has seen, can be seen! He is seen in you as you love one another! The most compelling evidence we can give is to love one another, because …
God’s Love Abides in You
Through the Holy Spirit.
We don’t have the power to produce God’s love in us on our own. It is given to us through the transforming power of the Holy Spirit abiding on the inside us.
You know, the iPhone is a pretty cool piece of technology. There are so many things you can do with it that the phone is actually just a small part of what it can do. Yet it doesn’t matter what it can do if I don’t charge up my iPhone. And even when I’ve charged up my iPhone, if I don’t regularly charge up my iPhone after much use, I can’t just pick it up next month and expect it to have any power! It’s the same thing with the Holy Spirit. If you don’t charge up everyday, like an the electrical current, you can’t expect to have the power of God’s love abiding in you unless you connect with the Holy Spirit.
Paul says it best in his letter to the church in Rome, “…the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.” Romans 5:5 NKJV It’s the Holy Spirit's role to pour the love of God in you, so that it may flow through you to others. Are you finding it difficult to love one another at church, in your marriage, with your children, at school or on the job? Why don’t you just ask.
This is really quite simple and yet so powerful. Everyday as your deepening your relationship with Jesus through prayer, reading and meditating on the word, just close your time with Jesus with a prayer that includes asking for the Holy Spirit to fill you with the power and love of God, so He can help you love well that day. That’s it. Just make this request apart of your daily experience with Jesus first thing in the morning and watch the difference it makes in how we love one another.
They say that as someone is getting ready to die they say to their loved ones some of the most important things they want you to hear. Loving one another was so urgently important to Jesus, listen to what He prayed to the Father, in the presence of His disciples, on the night just before His crucifixion the next morning…
Jesus believed it was so critical that we love one another, because this is how the world will believe and know, not just in the reality of God’s existence, but that He did, in fact, send Jesus into the world and loves us as much as He loves Jesus! Just let the weight of that just settle into your mind right now. This is what the world is waiting for! There is something compelling about us revealing the very life and nature of the Godhead when we are united in loving oneness. Listen to this powerful statement from the prophetic pen of Ellen White… “the strongest witness that God has sent His Son into the world is the existence of harmony and union among men of varied dispositions who form His church.” AA p. 549 She expresses the same truth again in this one potent sentence… “The strongest argument in favor of the gospel is a loving and lovable Christian.” Counsels on Sabbath School Work p. 100.1
Loving one another is the most compelling evidence to the reality of God and the truth of the gospel of Jesus Christ! And we love each other, because we know the love of God revealed in Christ, which is poured into us by the Holy Spirit and out to each other.
But it all starts when you humble yourself and in brokenness, you recognize your inability to love. You keep stumbling into the same pattern of sin that keeps breaking your relationship with God and your relationship with others. And in your heart and mind, you come to cross of Christ and you confess your unfaithfulness. Then you lift your head to see the eyes of the Savior hanging there and to your surprise you do not see condemnation in His eyes, but an inexpressible compassion, empathy and forgiveness. And then it hits you like a tun of bricks, nearly taking your breath away, as you realize He’s hanging there for you! He lived the holy life of faithful love you’ve failed to live and now His life is being crushed out in your place. He’s dying there for you, as you, drinking the bitter cup of the condemnation you deserve. And in exchange He gave you credit for the holy life of faithful love He lived. This is the love of God.