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Brotherly Love

By Joe Boot/ August 7, 2016

Series  1 John: Walking in the Light

Context  Westminster Chapel Toronto

Topic  Unity In Christ

Scripture  1 John 4:7-12

Brotherly love is not theoretical; it is seen in our everyday heart attitudes and actions toward one another.

Scripture:  1 John 4:7-12

Sermon Notes:

  1. John’s grasp of the love of God changed him, enabling him to bring us to the summit of biblical revelation in this text on God’s love.
  2. Knowing about God in the Scriptures is not the same as truly knowing the power of God that grips and transforms us.
  3. When the message of the Kingdom of God grips our lives it changes everything.
  4. The Holy Spirit reveals God to us personally so our knowledge is more than a mere analytical knowledge.
  5. John calls us to love one another so that God may abide in us and so that His love may be perfected in us.
  6. We must love one another for three reasons: God is love; God has loved us; God’s love is made complete when we love one another.
  7. The New Testament teaches that a) God is spirit; b) God is light; c) God is a consuming fire; and d) God is love.
  8. Our God is not an abstract being; He is a personal being who not only expresses love but He is love in His own being and love defines all His activity.
  9. The ultimate basis for all reality is the being of God Himself in Trinity: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
  10. There is a profound and eternal mutual self-giving in the being of God among the persons of the Trinity.
  11. God’s attributes exist eternally in the relationship of the Trinity (cf. Jn. 14:7-11).
  12. God’s love for us is an overflow of the unfathomable love within His own person.
  13. When we’re exhorted to brotherly love, our own love is not primary; our love is a reflection of and a response to the love of God.
  14. The atoning sacrifice of Christ on the cross is the ultimate act of love and the means that we might live.
  15. We are to express the self-sacrificing love of Christ toward our brothers; it is not up to us to decide whether they are worthy of our love.
  16. The love of God is brought to completion and perfected in us when we love one another.
  17. The untouchable holy God is manifested to us in the Son (Jn. 1:18) and also in our fellowship with one another (1 Jn. 4:12). When we are glorified and transformed we will see God as He is.
  18. Paul defines the characteristics of Christian love in 1 Cor. 13. These attributes of love are to be part of the day-to-day reality of our lives.
  19. Brotherly love is not theoretical; it is seen in our everyday heart attitudes and actions toward one another.
  20. If we love one another in this way God’s love abides in us.

Application Questions:

  1. Do we just know facts about God and the Bible, or do we know the power of God personally in our lives?
  2. What are the theological reasons behind the imperative to love one another?
  3. Discuss how God’s love exposes and consumes the darkness.
  4. Why is God’s triune nature essential to God’s love?
  5. Identify the practical characteristics of love as it should be expressed in the Christian community.
  6. Review 1 Corinthians 13. How patient, kind, caring, faithful, hopeful, courageous, long-suffering, prayerful are you? How proud, rude, selfish, short-tempered, ungracious, gossipy, covetous, deceitful, self-righteous are you?