IF I DON’T LOVE, I DON’T KNOW GOD.
Whoever does not LOVE does not know God, because God is LOVE. 1 John 4.8 (NIV)
Have you ever let that really sink in?
Have you stopped for a minute and thought about the implications of “God is Love.”
We can go to Church each week. We can try our best to follow commandments. We can give a lot of money to the Church.
None of it matters if we do not Love.
The Beloved (cool nickname, eh?) makes it unequivocal: If we don’t LOVE others, then all our little “Christian” behaviors and rule-following makes us . . . moral, I suppose.
But perhaps we need to adopt the nickname we deserve: “CHURCHians”
We are Boy Scouts who attend Church.
Real Christians. Real CHRISTians…LOVE. It is not a platitude, it is a job description.
Real CHRISTians understand that LOVE is a verb, not a noun.
Because how can someone be a real CHRISTian if they don’t do the One Thing that Jesus repeatedly said was most important?
In fact, we often pat ourselves on the back whenever we hear talk of the third commandment since we rarely, if ever, take God’s name in vain . . . by saying His name together with an expletive.
But do we not take His name in vain when we call ourselves CHRISTians, but do not LOVE others?
In verse 8 as we read above, John varies the thought of his previous versus, and again very remarkably. Instead of “love is of God” (verse 7), we have “God is Love” – a far deeper thought; and instead of “knoweth not God,” we have “knew not God,” or, as we would say in English, “NEVER knew God.”
Let that one sink in . . .
If I do not LOVE others than I NEVER KNEW GOD.
Being a CHRISTian is much easier than we make it with our rules and rituals: All we have to do is LOVE.
Conversely, being a CHRISTian is much more difficult than we can imagine: We are called on to actually LOVE people.
The person that is not Loving his brother shows that in no real sense has he ever in the past known God: he is of the world (chapter 3:1), not of God. We must beware of watering down “God is Love” into “God is loving,” or even “God of all beings is the most loving.” Love is not a mere attribute of God; like light, it is His very nature. As “God is Light” sums up the Being of God intellectually considered, so “God is Love” sums up the same on the moral side. Only when this strong meaning is given to the statement does John’s argument hold, that “he that loveth not knoweth not God.”
A person who has no idea of any one of the attributes of God, as order, or beauty, or power, or justice, has an imperfect knowledge of God. But someone who has no idea of Love has no knowledge of God, for LOVE is Himself. God alone Loves in the fullest and highest sense of the word; for He alone Loves with perfect disinterestedness. It is LOVE which alone can explain creation.
Consider this: Why should a Being perfectly blessed in Himself create other beings, but to bestow a blessing upon them?
Next time Life gets you down, try to remember that you were created for one primary reason: Because God couldn’t stand to not have you around and He wants to bless you. He can and will make your Life full of Joy, Truth, and LOVE. But He will not force you to accept what you do not want. Decide you want Joy, Truth and Love.
Decide you want God.
From my heart to yours,