This is how love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment: In this world we are like Jesus. 1 John 4:17
Backing up and reading the entire chapter of 1 John 4, we see that he is talking about how to know that we are God’s children. The evidence of the Holy Spirit inside of us gives way for our promised eternity.
There are many many teachers, leaders and ministers that are claiming to preach the truth but are in fact preaching false doctrine.
We see this alot in terms of the big self care moment, Love yourself. Do what makes you happy. Do something for you.
On the surface this seems harmless. Of course we need to have confidence in ourselves, right? So what is so wrong with doing what we need to do to make ourselves happy.
Self-made confidence is counterfeit confidence.
What I mean by that is, as children of God, we already have #HolyConfidence inside of us so the Spirit of truth within us attracts the Spirit of truth that exists in the world.
Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. 2 This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, 3 but every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you have heard is coming and even now is already in the world.
4 You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world. 5 They are from the world and therefore speak from the viewpoint of the world, and the world listens to them. 6 We are from God, and whoever knows God listens to us; but whoever is not from God does not listen to us. This is how we recognize the Spirit[a] of truth and the spirit of falsehood. 1 John 4:1-6
This is one of the passages of scripture where people refer to when then say, “We are called to be in this world, not of this world.”
I do want to note a type of disclaimer though, just because the truth within us recognizes the truth in the world, doesn’t mean that Satan doesn’t try to deceive us through impersonating the real thing.
We actually are surrounded by several version of the real thing vs. counterfeit.
Money is one example. But what about name-brand food vs. knock-off brand foods?
Can you tell the difference between imitation food (off- brands) and name brands?
My daughter can. She loves graham crackers (so does her little brother) but she does not love the store brand type. I speak from experience as I have tasted them also.
They seem to have a cardboard and artificial taste, definitely not like the honey maid kind we all know and love.
I can’t fool her, she knows when I’m trying to give her the off brand graham crackers.
The second piece of evidence we have of Holy Confidence inside of us is our ability to love one another.
Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us. 1 John 4:7-12
Love is not a feeling, it is an action.
To love someone is to love to them by putting them first, or showing kindness and compassion.
Sometimes loving someone is easy, and sometime it’s quite challenging.
The same is true for those that love us, and the one whose complete love is inside of us.
He loves us on our good days, our bad days and all the days in between.
Because of the love he demonstrated for us through Jesus, we are able to love others. To extend grace and mercy to those around us.
God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them. This is how love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment: In this world we are like Jesus. There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love 1 John 4:16-18
We just talked about punishment and fear yesterday. Discipline comes from a place of love, where punishment comes mainly from control and power (wanting to drive fear into the other person)
The confidence referred to in verse 17 is the confidence that we have the Holy Spirit inside of us, that we have been sealed with a promise for eternity on the day of judgement.
This idea of the day of judgement and being judged is discussed in much more detail in Romans 2.
For now, know this. God loves you. His love is inside of you and from that love (His love) is what gives us confidence to live confidently in this world.
What is one thing you can do today to live confidently in this world?
How does knowing your eternity is promised through Christ, influence your Holy Confidence?