Devotion #154

By this we know that we abide in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit. And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world. Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God.

1 John 4:13-15 ESV

Throughout this passage, John is trying to teach us that the love we see surfacing in our relationships with others is the very evidence of God abiding in us, most especially in those moments when our flesh desires to be antagonistic and selfish because love has failed us. When our instinct is to lash out at our spouse for the hurtful way they have treated us, but instead we respond in genuine kindness, compassion, forgiveness, and love, it is confirmation that the Holy Spirit is dwelling inside of us.

It’s important to note that verse 13 doesn’t say God has given us His Spirit, the translation actually says He has given us of His Spirit. While it is true He has given us His Spirit, it’s worth our time to meditate on that of for a moment. The Greek work used in the original text actually means ‘out of’, indicating John wants us to recognize what we get out of the Spirit. God has given us out of His Spirit.

God’s Spirit is truth and love. When we receive Jesus as the Son of God and the Savior of the world, this Spirit of truth and love comes to dwell in us, but it is only evident when we see it in action. Its only value is action. Being a Christian doesn’t just mean you subscribe to a certain set of values and beliefs, it isn’t going to church on Sundays and reading your bible, it isn’t serving the homeless or running a ministry at church, being a Christian is love and truth in action.

John is referencing what God has given us out of His Spirit – He has given us love and truth. He doesn’t want us to just know that God’s Spirit dwells in us, he wants us to understand the love and truth that embody the very Spirit of God must pour out of us for His Spirit to be evident. God has given us out of His Spirit, and what must come out of us is His love and truth. The outpouring is the very Spirit of God.

Is there evidence of God’s Spirit in your marriage? He has given you of His Spirit—He has given you love and truth. Does His love and truth pour out of you? Daily, we must ask ourselves these questions. Daily, we must hold what pours out of us up against what God has given us of His Spirit and correct the wrongs.

Press on ~ you are loved 💗

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