How WE Know if We Love

1 John 3:16-18 “By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers. But if anyone has the world’s goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God’s love abide in him?  Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth.”

It is so easy to say that we love someone.   We can sign a note with “Love.”  We can say “love you” to someone as it seems such a nice way to hopefully make someone feel good – to wish them well.  However, if that’s where love stops, it isn’t the love spoken about in the Bible.  The only way we know if we really love others, is by our actions toward them. Apparently, we can be so deceived about this issue that the Bible must explain it to us in no uncertain terms.  If we see someone in need and we have the means to help them but don’t, it doesn’t matter how much compassion we feel in our heart towards them, nor does it matter what we say to them or about them – we aren’t really loving them.   Of course, real love towards others will include what we say about or to them, but if that’s where it stops, the Bible says, “how does God’s love abide in us?” 

God’s love includes words, but it is words backed up by and verified by action.  God so loved the world that He gave, and we, if we really love, will give as well.   That’s what God’s Word says, and that’s what God’s Word made flesh showed us in every act of His life of love. 

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