Posts Tagged ‘perfect love’

Real love: Perfected love

April 6, 2018

The Verse of the Day for April 6, 2018 presents a “lovely” word of encouragement regarding “real love” found in 1 John 3:16 in the New Living Translation:

We know what real love is because Jesus gave up his life for us. So we also ought to give up our lives for our brothers and sisters.

To understand more fully the depth of  “real love,” let us take a look at verses 16-20:

1 John 3:16-20:

16 We know what real love is because Jesus gave up his life for us. So we also ought to give up our lives for our brothers and sisters. 17 If someone has enough money to live well and sees a brother or sister in need but shows no compassion—how can God’s love be in that person?

18 Dear children, let’s not merely say that we love each other; let us show the truth by our actions. 19 Our actions will show that we belong to the truth, so we will be confident when we stand before God.

This passage on the love of God also brings to mind this anonymous quote: “Love is a verb. Love is doing, saying, showing. Never think just saying you love someone is enough.” There must be corresponding action to show that we love. Another statement reiterates the same point: “Love is a verb. Without action it is merely a word.”

In talking about 1 John 3:16, many connect the verse with one of the most often quoted verses in the Bible, John 3:16 rendered here in the King James Version:

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

This popular verse also reveals that “real love” must be demonstrated with actions and not merely words alone.

The Sound of Music, one of the most popular Broadway musicals of all times, gives us these memorable lyrics from Oscar Hammerstein II:

“A bell is not a bell till you ring it. A song is not a song till you sing it. Love in your heart isn’t put there to stay. Love isn’t love till you give it away.”

The last line reminds us that with love, there must be a demonstration or manifestation to express the reality of that powerful emotion. We speak of the love of God in manifestation which is so clearly demonstrated in one of the most widely recognized verses in the Bible, John 3:16.

The love of God is “perfected” or made complete or brought to maturity in us when we walk in the steps of Jesus Christ, the ultimate example of perfect love.  We must do more than think about love or talk about love; we must demonstrate love by what we do, just as God did in offering His son as a demonstration that He so loved the world.

1 John 2:5 in the Amplified Bible reinforces this message:

But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him

1 John 4:12 puts it this way:

No man hath seen God at any time. If we love one another, God dwells in us, and his love is perfected in us.

This poem speaks of the perfect love of God being perfected in us:

 Perfected Love

No man hath seen God at any time. If we love one another,

God dwells in us, and his love is perfected in us.

1 John 4:12

Jehovah, creator, author and finisher,

Who initiates to nourish perfected love;

Ever-abiding source and resource, publisher

Of declarations of genuine love to move

The soul of man to return to the place of his first

Love, the Beloved, whose heart overflows to give,

For only this passion can satisfy our thirst,

As you refresh us and teach us how we should live.

You have pledged your love through a sacred covenant.

If we maintain your vows of love, you will sustain

Our souls and feed us so that we shall never want.

You will shower with mercy as the gentle rain

And will bless and multiply the fruit of our land

With grain, wine, and oil supplied by your gracious right hand.

To conclude Leeland sings of God’s “Perfect Love”: