Abiding In Love
True Christianity is not about you trying to love God; it is all about discovering how much He loves you. He has demonstrated His love – once for all – by sending His only Son, Jesus, to die for us so that we might live. As we come to know and understand that love more – as we are continually filled with God’s love – we will simply overflow onto others. Loving others becomes easy and effortless. It is the fruit of abiding in God’s love…
John 15:9 NKJV
As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you; abide in My love.
This is exactly how Jesus lived His life. Jesus was able to love us because He first received love from His Father. He continually stood under the waterfall of His Father’s love. He became filled to overflowing. And so, His Father’s love spilled over onto us through Him.
Mark 1:35 NKJV
Now in the morning, having risen a long while before daylight, He went out and departed to a solitary place; and there He prayed.
This instance occurred after a busy day at the start of Jesus’ ministry. In the morning He taught in a synagogue where He also cast a demon out of someone. Straight afterwards He went to Simon and Andrew’s house where Simon’s mother-in-law was sick with a fever. They told Jesus about her at once and He healed her. Then, in the evening, multitudes of sick and demon-possessed people gathered outside the door. Jesus went out and healed them. What a day!
Instead of sleeping in the next day, He got up early to pray. Why? Was He interceding for the world, binding the devil and bombarding the gates of heaven? I don’t believe so. I believe He was simply spending some time with His Father. He was abiding in His Father’s love. The day before He had been loving people left, right and centre. He had been giving a lot. He needed to take some time to refuel and refresh. He took the time to allow His Father to refill His love tank.
Jesus is our Pattern. We are to follow His example. We are to abide in His love. The first eight verses of John 15 are all about abiding. Jesus is the true vine; His Father is the vine-dresser and we are the branches. In order for a branch to bear fruit, it must abide in the vine. As soon as it is cut off from the vine, it can no longer bear fruit.
Galatians 5:22-23 says that the fruit of the Spirit is love… joy, peace, longsuffering etc. There are nine things listed under the “fruit of the Spirit”, but the primary fruit is love. Joy, peace and all the rest are just out-workings, and different facets, of love. If you compare the description of love, in 1 Corinthians 13, to the fruit of the Spirit, then you will see what I mean.
So, if we want to bear fruit – love for God and others – then we are to simply abide in Jesus. It is easy and effortless. Have you ever seen a branch struggle to bear fruit? Me neither. All the branch needs to do is stay connected to the vine. In due time it will bear fruit.
Notice also how the branch only bears the fruit. It doesn’t produce it. All the nutrients that are needed for the fruit to be produced are contained in the vine. The vine produces the fruit; the branches bear it. Likewise, Jesus produces the fruit in our lives. Everything that is needed for us to love is in Him. He is love. And so, all we need to do is simply abide in Him.
1 John 4:16 NKJV
And we have known and believed the love that God has for us. God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him.
To abide in God is to abide in love, because God is love. And so, to abide in God we need to abide in love…
In His love, 😀
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