Cycle Complete

I really enjoyed the service on Sunday. It was nice to hear the testimonies from Muncie Reach Week. God’s movement was evident as we served our community through the seven projects. Be sure to check out the pictures on the site.

As we transition from Muncie Reach Week, we will be moving into John’s first epistle. For the next three weeks, we are going to follow the lectionary passages from 1 John. I am looking forward to delving into this letter with you all. John is the same guy who walked with Jesus as a young man. All of the other disciples died martyr’s deaths. John was the only one left alive in the later part of the 1st century. He is writing from a well of experience. After witnessing the life and death of Jesus along with the expansion of the early church, John instructs Christians on how to live in Christ.

In this week’s text (1 John 4:7-21), John describes the important task of loving one another. In fact, he characterizes love for one another as completing the work that Jesus began. On the one hand, we understand Jesus’ death on the cross as finishing his mission. John describes Jesus’ death on the cross,

(John 19:30 NIV11-GK) When he had received the drink, Jesus said, “It is finished.” With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.

At the same time, Jesus’ work was not completed on the cross. After rising from the dead, Jesus called his disciples to more. They would experience the tranformative work of the Holy Spirit. Certainly, God’s plan was to expand Jesus’ life and death through his followers. As an old man, John understands how this works out.

(1 John 4:11–12 NIV11-GK) Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.

John tells us that God’s love is made complete in us as we love one another. John sees the big picture. God loved us enough to send Jesus (John 3:16). Jesus loved us enough to die for us and send the Holy Spirit to live in us. As we love one another, we express God’s love and reveal it to those around us. The cycle is complete.

Join us on Sunday as we study 1 John 4:7-21 together.