1 John 2:15–17, 1 John 3:1–3, 1 John 4:7–12 (read online ⧉)
Don’t love the world or the things of it. That seems to be a strange statement in light of John 3:16-18. On the other hand, it can make a lot of sense. There are two kinds of world, the one of Creation, and the one of earthly power/weakness. The world to not love is the one of earthly power/weakness. This frees us to love those trapped in that world and to work to break the chains that bind them to it. The other point being made is that world of earthly power/weakness will disappear someday (and that someday comes closer moment-by-moment). The underlying question for the reader and us, is why allow ourselves to be bound to that which will disappear, rather than be tied to the one that is eternal?
Of course, many of those bound to the worldly power/weakness would ask why anyone would want to be bound at all? This denies being bound to the world, but it also calls into question the one we bind ourselves to…God. Why would we do that? Love. God is love. We bind ourselves to those that love us, and we love them. Why not be bound to the one who loves us eternally, and whose very nature encompasses love?
What did God do for me, it is often asked. God loved us before time even began. God loved us before we were born. God loves us so much, and knew us so well, that God came down to restore right relationship because we were incapable of it. God loves us so that we can love each other.
1) How does Godly love differ from worldly love?
2) Can worldly love be Godly love if all love comes from God? Why or why not?
3) If anyone loves, are they born of God? Why or why not?