BIBLE VERSE FOR TODAY… “Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.” 1 John 3:18 NIV
John is called the “Apostle of love.” We find in his letters admonitions about the importance of love for others and of God’s love for us. In one of his straight forward commands about love, he focuses on the fact the love acts. Love is more than a feeling, it is more than an expression of words. At its heart, love is demonstrated by actions and by truth.
We see this in Christ’s coming to the earth. “For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only son….” (John 3:16) I believe of equal impact is 1 John 3:16, “This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us.” We know that God loves us, because of what He did. It was His actions that gave weight to words, and that is true for our lives as well.
Paul said, “The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love.” (Galatians 5:6 NIV) What we believe about God and what we believe about others is a significant factor in “living a life of love.” Paul’s admonition was, “Live a life of love just as Christ loved us and gave himself for us as a sweet-smelling offering and sacrifice to God.” (Ephesians 5:2 NCV)
When we look at the description of love in 1 Corinthians 13, we see a list of things that love does and does not do. Once again love is described at its core as action.
“Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous, it does not brag, and it is not proud. Love is not rude, is not selfish, and does not get upset with others. Love does not count up wrongs that have been done. Love takes no pleasure in evil but rejoices over the truth. Love patiently accepts all things. It always trusts, always hopes, and always endures.” (1 Corinthians 13:4-7 NCV)
As we approach a New Year, may our love for God, be expressed in our actions. This means our obedience to the Lord for Jesus said, “If you love me, you will keep my commandments.” (John 14:15 ESV) May our love for God be expressed in our service to others in Jesus name. For the whole law is fulfilled in one word: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” (Galatians 5:14 ESV)
Prayer for today… Lord, thank You for loving us and showing us the way to love. May our actions reveal our love for you and our love for others.