1 John 3:1-3
See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so, we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is. And everyone who thus hopes in him purifies himself as he is pure.
I’d like to break down the thoughts that have rummaged my mind whilst reading this verse.
See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God
Jesus being God & all knew all about the betrayal of Judas, not only that but precisely because of His deity, He could but only love Judas even whilst He prepared for His death. We often get shocked at Jesus loving Judas when such an incredibly ridiculous display of love is at the very essence of salvation. I think one of the worst things about sin is that it distorts not only the purpose of our creation but it distorts the nature of God in the minds of those who haven’t yet come to know Him.
Now, this part says that the fact that we are called children of God is a testament to His love. He bestowed His name upon us, His reputation on earth and His image. He knew that we would at times misrepresent Him to humanity, that we would present a picture of Him that is different from His Person-hood yet with all that knowledge He still chose us to be “called” His children. That speaks of a love that is beyond anything I can wrap my head around. He put all that on the line to love us.
Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is.
I’ve come to strongly believe that a love that leaves us unchallenged and complacent in our dysfunctions is no love at all. It sounds cheesy and all but the love of God is a perfect kind of love that can love us in our mess and with our dysfunctions and risk it all to have us understand what is being given yet still calls us out of those dysfunctions.
Romans 2:4 – Or do you despise the riches of his goodness, forbearance, and long-suffering, not knowing that the goodness of God leads you to repentance.
Titus 2:11-12 – For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all men. It instructs us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions and to live upright, and godly lives in the present age…
I think at times we feel threatened by talking too much about the love of God because it seems like that is what enables sin and makes us comfortable with living lives that misrepresent Him. I’m of the belief that true understanding and acceptance of that love is what empowers us to become all that He purposed for us. The love of God wouldn’t be a perfect love if it drove us anywhere but to the likeness of Jesus.
So back to the first scripture. I know that it speaks of His second coming and the state of our bodies then and all that but I think it is also applicable to now. I think our hope is in seeing Jesus as He is, when we get a revelation of how Jesus truly is then we are changed into that same image.
Even in this plight, He hasn’t left us to our own devices. John 16:14 – He shall glorify Me, for He shall receive of Mine, and shall show it unto you. I think our prayer should be to have Him revealed, not the one we can make sense of or have all figured out, not as we would like Him to be to fit our world view but as He truly is, whether that messes up our perfect all tucked theology and leaves us with loose ends that we can’t explain. If it is Him then pray for discerning hearts that will embrace Him.
Now what does this mean for us…
If Jesus could love Judas, love us, not based on our reception of Him but out of the reservoirs of who He is; are we willing to love other people not based on their reactions towards us, not based on their beliefs, preferences, similarities to us or even their lifestyles. Are we able to love from Jesus who is love?
Am I able to love my spouse when he acts in a way that I deem wildly annoying, am I able to love the friend who betrays me, the boss who uses me etc.
There’s so much to this but I’ve already written a whole novel, it is my heart’s desire that we would learn let love reign and spill over all we do.