God’s Word Goes Forth: Abide in God’s Love
1 John 2:1-17: This passage is an exhortation not to sin. Yet, by the hope of mercy through Christ, encourages those who may have fallen. He who knows God keeps his commandments; he who professes to abide in Christ ought to walk as Christ walked. Our selfish desires are worldly desires, and they get in the way of loving one another. We live in God’s light by loving others as God first loved us.
Today's Scripture: 1 John 2:15
Do not love the world or anything that belongs to the world. If you love the world, you do not love the Father.
1 I am writing this to you, my children, so that you will not sin; but if anyone does sin, we have someone who pleads with the Father on our behalf—Jesus Christ, the righteous one. 2 And Christ himself is the means by which our sins are forgiven, and not our sins only, but also the sins of everyone. 3 If we obey God's commands, then we are sure that we know him. 4 If we say that we know him, but do not obey his commands, we are liars and there is no truth in us. 5 But if we obey his word, we are the ones whose love for God has really been made perfect. This is how we can be sure that we are in union with God: 6 if we say that we remain in union with God, we should live just as Jesus Christ did. 7 My dear friends, this command I am writing you is not new; it is the old command, the one you have had from the very beginning. The old command is the message you have already heard. 8 However, the command I now write you is new, because its truth is seen in Christ and also in you. For the darkness is passing away, and the real light is already shining. 9 If we say that we are in the light, yet hate others, we are in the darkness to this very hour. 10 If we love others, we live in the light, and so there is nothing in us that will cause someone else to sin. 11 But if we hate others, we are in the darkness; we walk in it and do not know where we are going, because the darkness has made us blind. 12 I write to you, my children, because your sins are forgiven for the sake of Christ. 13 I write to you, fathers, because you know him who has existed from the beginning. I write to you, young people, because you have defeated the Evil One. 14 I write to you, my children, because you know the Father. I write to you, fathers, because you know him who has existed from the beginning. I write to you, young people, because you are strong; the word of God lives in you, and you have defeated the Evil One. 15 Do not love the world or anything that belongs to the world. If you love the world, you do not love the Father. 16 Everything that belongs to the world—what the sinful self desires, what people see and want, and everything in this world that people are so proud of—none of this comes from the Father; it all comes from the world. 17 The world and everything in it that people desire is passing away; but those who do the will of God live forever.
This passage says that our desire for worldly pleasures keeps us from loving God. Yet God created the world and calls us to be stewards of creation (Genesis 2:15). How do we live in the world and not love worldly things? How do we love God and care for creation?
God of creation, you call me to live in this world in ways that honor you. Help me to love you, your creation and your people as you have loved me. Amen.