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First John: 1 John 4:12c-God’s Love Accomplishes Its Purpose When the Believer Obeys the Command to Love One Another Lesson # 172

First John   •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  56:29
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First John: 1 John 4:12c-God’s Love Accomplishes Its Purpose When the Believer Obeys the Command to Love One Another

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1 John 4:12 No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God abides in us and his love is perfected in us. (ESV)
And his love is perfected in us” is composed of the following: (1) conjunction kai (καί), “and” (2) articular nominative feminine singular form of the noun agapē (ἀγάπη), “love” (3) genitive third person masculine singular form of the intensive personal pronoun autos (αὐτός), “His” (4) preposition en (ἐν), “in” (5) dative first person plural form of the personal pronoun ego (ἐγώ), “us” (6) nominative feminine singular perfect passive participle form of the verb teleioō (τελειόω), “perfected” (7) third person singular present active indicative form of the verb eimi (εἰμί), “is.”
The conjunction kai means “consequently, thus” since the word is functioning as a marker of result which means that it is introducing an assertion which presents the result of the Father living in fellowship with the believer as a result of the latter obeying the command to love one another.
The articular nominative feminine singular form of the noun agapē means “divine-love” since it pertains to one of the attributes of God the Father.
The articular construction of this noun agapē is employed with the intensive person pronoun autos which means “His” referring to the Father to denote possession expressing the idea that love is an attribute of God the Father or in other words it belongs to His character and nature.
The verb eimi means “to exist in a particular state or condition” which would indicate that the Father’s love is existing in the state of accomplishing its purpose for being revealed through the Father’s sacrifice of His Son at the cross for the believer if the latter obeys the command to love one another.
The present tense of the verb eimi is a gnomic present referring to a general, timeless fact.
This would indicate that God the Father’s attributive of love is “as an eternal spiritual truth” existing in the state of accomplishing its purpose for being revealed through His sacrifice of His Son at the cross for the believer if the believer obeys the command to love one another.
The verb teleioō means, “to accomplish a particular purpose” expressing the idea that God the Father’s attribute of love “accomplishes its purpose” if the believer obeys the command to love one another.
The genitive first person plural form of the personal pronoun ego means “us” since the word refers to John and the recipients of this epistle as a corporate unit and is the object of the preposition en, which is a marker of location.
Therefore, this prepositional phrase is expressing the idea of God the Father’s purpose for revealing His love through the sacrifice of His Son on the cross on behalf of His children is accomplished in the believer who divinely loves their fellow-believer.
1 John 4:12 Absolutely no one at any time has observed God (the Father). If any of us at any time does divinely love each other, this God (the Father) is living in fellowship with us. Consequently, His love is accomplishing its purpose in us. (Author’s translation)
1 John 4:12 contains three assertions.
All three are designed to emphasize with the recipients of First John the critical importance of continuing to make it their habit of obeying the Lord Jesus Christ’s Spirit inspired command in John 13:34 and 15:12 to love one another as He loves them.
The first is presented in a declarative statement.
The second is presented in a fifth class conditional statement and the third is found in a result clause.
The first assertion states that absolutely no one at any time has observed God the Father.
The second teaches that if any believer does at any time divinely love their fellow-believer, then God the Father is living in fellowship with them.
Third asserts God’s love is accomplishing its purpose in the believer if they divinely love their fellow-believer.
The third and final assertion which appears in 1 John 4:12 presents another result of the believer obeying the command to love one another, namely, the Father’s love is accomplishing its purpose.
What does John mean that God’s love accomplishes its purpose if the believer obeys the command to love one another?
It means that God the Father accomplishes His purpose for revealing His attribute of love through the sacrifice of His Son on the cross if the believer obeys the command to love one another.
This interpretation is indicated by John’s teaching in 1 John 4:9-10.
1 John 4:9 By means of this, God (the Father’s) love entered into the state of being revealed because of each one of us: namely that, God (the Father) dispatched into the world with authority His one and only Son in order that each one of us would conduct our lives through Him.
Now, in 1 John 4:9, the prepositional phrase en hēmin (ἐν ἡμῖν) “because of each one of us” at the end of this first assertion teaches that John and the recipients of First John were the reason why God revealed His love through the incarnation, subsequent hypostatic and death of His one and only Son, Jesus Christ.
Thus, John is teaching the recipients of First John and all God’s children that they were the reason why the Father sent His one and only Son into the world in that they might live through His Son.
In other words, they were the reason why the Father sent His Son into the world because He wanted them to live through His Son.
The prepositional phrase en toutō (ἐν τούτῳ), “by means of this” is connected to the hoti clause “that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him.”
It expresses the means by which God the Father’s love for the apostle John and the recipients of First John was manifested because of them.
Consequently, it indicates that God the Father sending His Son into the world in order that they might live through Him was the means by which His love for them was manifested because of them.
This hoti clause is appositional which means that it is defining for the reader the means by which God the Father’s love was revealed because of John and the recipients of First John and all His children.
It expresses the idea that He dispatched or sent His one and only Son, Jesus Christ and invested Him with His sovereign authority to planet earth for the benefit of John and each of the recipients of First John and all God’s children might live through Him in order that they might live through His Son.
In order that each one of us would conduct our lives through Him” is a purpose-result clause which presents both the purpose and the result of the Father dispatching into the human race with authority His one and only Son.
It emphasizes that John and the recipients of First John living their lives on planet earth through His one and only Son accomplished the Father’s eternal purpose for dispatching Him into the world with authority.
It emphasizes that the Father’s eternal purpose for the incarnation and subsequent hypostatic union of His one and only Son, Jesus Christ has been accomplished and is being accomplished through John and the recipients of First John and all of God’s children.
It is accomplished because they were experiencing fellowship with Him through obedience to His Word.
Therefore, this purpose-result clause teaches that by experiencing fellowship with God and thus experiencing eternal life, John and the recipients of First John were accomplishing the Father’s eternal purpose for the incarnation and subsequent hypostatic union of His one and only Son, Jesus Christ.
They were experiencing eternal life because of their identification with Jesus Christ in His death and resurrection and through obedience to His command to love one another as He loves them.
Consequently, it speaks of them experiencing fellowship with God since experiencing eternal life is synonymous with experiencing fellowship with God.
Therefore, they were fulfilling the Father’s eternal purpose for the incarnation and subsequent hypostatic union of His one and only Son, Jesus Christ by conducting themselves in a godly manner on planet earth in the devil’s world through the Father’s one and only Son, Jesus Christ.
1 John 4:10 Love is defined by means of this: By no means that we are loving God (the Father) but rather that He Himself in contrast to us loved each and every one of us. Specifically, He dispatched with authority His Son to be the propitiatory sacrifice for each and every one of our sins. (Author’s translation)
The apostle John is teaching in 1 John 4:10 that this love, which each and every believer is obligated to practice with their fellow-believer, is defined by the Father sending His Son to the cross to be the propitiatory sacrifice for each and every sin committed by each and every believer during the course of their lifetime.
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