[Maximum Joy Series] Love Your Brother And Know Your Real Enemies

Day 2 of 8 • This day’s reading


The Premise: Love = Keep my Commandments (2:3)

Are you experiencing the maximum joy that is the result of a deep and meaningful relationship with God? If you are not experiencing this type of joy, it is because there is a barrier blocking your way. In our second series of devotionals, we analyzed the first principle, “Right Living,” in which we were introduced to basic principles of how to deal with our sin since we are not sinless after we are justified (position). We still sin (condition), and that is why confessing our sin and acknowledging our need for an intercessor before God (Jesus) is essential. 

The structure John uses is simple; he presents the truth in triads. In chapter 2 verse 3, a new section begins with the main message followed by three responses signified with the words “Whoever says…” (NIV) in verses 4,6 and 9. The vital truth we see in this chapter does not stand alone; it begins a new section that ends in chapter 2 verse 11. The primary topic in this section is love. John’s words quickly resonate to the upper room discourse.  

The premise: “We know that we have come to know him if we keep his commands” (2:3) NIV. 

The context in which the premise is set is love and, especially, loving our brothers and sisters. Our personal sin is the first barrier blocking our way to fellowship with God (not relationship). Difficulty with other Christians is the second big barrier in John’s mind. Our love for God is perfected when we keep His Word, and loving our brothers and sisters is crucial. 

Let us remember that in order to walk in the light, we need to confess the sins we know about. This level of fellowship is something that a new Christian can walk out. 

In chapter 2, we have fellowship at a deeper level. As we communicate with God in His love language (keep His commandments), He reveals more and more of His love for us. Jesus tells us that His Father loves us and that He will manifest Himself to us. This is precisely the way it works with deepening love relationships. We reveal a little of ourselves at a time, and our feelings tend to intensify as each reveals or makes manifest a little more of him/herself. 

My question for you today is, would you like to have such a deep relationship with God that He will show Himself to you? If the answer is yes, then love Him, keep His commandments. A new level of intimacy awaits.