Specific Text - 1 John 4:13-16
A couple of themes recur throughout John's first letter. Tomorrow we'll look at how it's impossible to not show love since God's love is in you. Today, though, notice how important it's been for John to tell you that you can be absolutely certain of what you believe.
John uses the phrase "This is how you know" over 10 times just in this short letter, including 5 times just in today's chapter. We're going to focus on the statement in v13. So many people are waiting for some huge spiritual experience to occur in their life before they know they are a Christian, but you don't need to be one of these people.
v13-16 shows just how simple it is to be certain that you are a Christian:
v13 - You can know that you live in Christ because you've been given the Spirit;
v14-15 - You can know that you have the Spirit because 1) you testify that God sent Jesus to be the Savior of the world, and 2) you acknowledge that Jesus is the Son of God;
v16 - If you know these simple truths, you can know and rely (be deeply convinced of) the love God has for you.
Tomorrow we'll see in chapter 5 that knowing these things results in some really big obligations in how you live, but for today, just celebrate the fact that you can know that you belong to Jesus.
This does not mean you will never have any doubt, but the best way to overcome this doubt is to remind yourself often of what you know to be true. This is why it's so important for you to be reading God's Word and praying every day, and why it's so important that you come together to meet with God's people each week.
Prayer For The Day - Dear Father in Heaven; thank you for the assurance you have given me that I belong to you. Help increase that confidence in my life each day, and thank you for giving me your Word and your Church to help me know you more and more. Help me to model the love that you have shown to me. In Jesus' name, Amen.