What I am learning from John 15:9-12

This morning began my 6-week journey with Proverbs 31 Ministries Online Bible Study, using Lysa TerKeurst’s book Becoming More Than a Good Bible Study Girl as a backdrop.  In the weeks leading up to today’s kick-off, we were encouraged to memorize Jeremiah 29:13 “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.”  That’s what Bible study is:  an intentional seeking of God in His Word.

So when I opened to John 15:9-12 this morning, I knew I would learn something of God.  What He revealed to me is what I would like to share with you in this blog post.

Let’s start with the Word:  “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you.  Abide in my live.  If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love.  These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full.  This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.”

Verse by Verse:

9.   As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love.

Reference verses:  John 17:23-24, Ephesians 3:18, and 1 John 2:28

What is God saying to me in this verse?

A little background:  God is PERFECT.  He cannot tolerate SIN.  I am a sinful being.  I fully acknowledge that I have sinned and fallen WAY SHORT of the glory of God.  That being said, if God cannot be near dirty, sinful things, and Jesus loves me as the Father loves Him, then I AM RESTORED!  I am made new!  Truly, I am a new creation (as in 2 Corinthians 5:17, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.”).  Praise God!  I am covered, I am redeemed, I am LOVED!!!

10.   If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love.

Reference verses: John 14:15, 1 John 5:3, 1 Thessalonians 4:1

What is God saying to me in this verse?

Sometimes, it can seem impossible to keep God’s commandments.  But, if I remember that all of them boil down to LOVE (as an action), it doesn’t seem as hard.  LOVE (extend grace, encourage, teach, provide, extend hospitality…) is so much more than just a word!

11.  These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full.

Reference verses: 1 Peter 1:8, Romans 15:13, John 16:33, and Zephaniah 3:17

What is God saying to me in this verse?

True JOY is more than being happy.  It is confidence and knowledge that I rest in the presence of the King of kings!  This JOY never fades, in spite of the circumstances of life.  Sometimes, it gets covered up by the junk of life, by grief, by pain.  And still it remains.  It burns through and helps get rid of the dross left by sin and experiences.

12.   “This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you…” 

Reference verses: John 13:34, 1 John 4:21, Romans 12:10, 1 Peter 4:8, and 1 John 3:23

What is God saying to me in this verse?

God says, “This is my commandment.”  SINGULAR!  LOVE!  That’s IT!  LOVE!  It all boils down to LOVE.  Love God, love people, love ME.  Yes, even love myself.  See?  It’s not so complicated, people!

How does this all apply to my life???

First, I am forgiven.  Nothing can even begin until that holds true.  Jesus Christ has paid the price for MY sins.  For me, He died.  He conquered Death, and He ROSE AGAIN.  Second, LOVE!  Not frivolous, St. Valentine’s Day love, but DO LOVE.  Give, treat others with respect, shower with grace, pray for, encourage, feed, walk alongside–LOVE.

Holy Father, thank you for reminding me that everything boils down to LOVE.  May Your Spirit reveal to me throughout my day (today and everyday) where and how to show Your love to those I meet and interact with.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Proverbs 31 Ministries Online Bible Studies

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