Sunday, November 15, 2009

NTC Day 56: 1 John 1-5

We write this to make our joy complete. – 1 John 1:4

God takes joy seriously. Read that again because we often miss that important truth. We understand that God takes sin seriously. There’s probably a whole list of things that you think of God taking seriously, but joy probably isn’t on there. Jesus was serious about joy and John learned that emphasis from Him (see John 15:10-12).

We take joy seriously. Billions of dollars are spent each year on things that we think will bring us joy. I’m sure you have a list of ideas (in your head at least). You’ve probably been going through that list, experimenting and trying each thing. They may bring a passing pleasure, but they don’t produce true, deep, enduring joy. John writes to tell us how to have joy that comes from God and remains.

True joy comes from community with the Father and his family – our brothers and sisters. It involves receiving God’s love and sharing it with others. The love of God creates a deeper and richer community of love than blood or affinity ever could.

To know this joy, we must obey the commands of God:

And this is his command: to believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ, and to love one another as he commanded us. – 1 John 3:23

Joy comes down to this – Love God. Love others. We love God through Jesus, who gave Himself for us. We love others as we live like Jesus, giving ourselves for them. When we do, we know true joy and experience community with God and His family.

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