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24 May

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 do testify that the Father has sent his Son as the Savior of the world. God abides in those who confess that Jesus is the Son of God, and they abide in God. So we have known and believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and those who abide in love abide in God, and God abides in them. Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness on the day of judgment, because as he is, so are we in this world. There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear; for fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not reached perfection in love. We love because he first loved us. Those who say, “I love God,” and hate their brothers or sisters, are liars; for those who do not love a brother or sister whom they have seen, cannot love God whom they have not seen. The commandment we have from him is this: those who love God must love their brothers and sisters also. (1 John 4:13-21, NRSV)

The commandment we have from Jesus is: those who love God must love their brothers and sisters also.

So that begs the question who are my brothers and sisters?

Is it just those in my church?

Is it just those in my denomination?

Is it just those in my same flavor of Christianity, i.e. Lutheran, Methodist, Presbyterian, etc?

Who are my sisters and brothers?

Is it all of God’s created people?

We have to love those who are God’s because we say we love God and if we love God then we must love as He loves. And we are able to love because He first loved us. So if you hate your brothers and sisters and say you love God you are a liar.

We must love as He loved.

So go and love the world, not because they deserve it, but because God loves the world!

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