], O thou that walkest with nigh hopeless feet. There are some who, from impulses, or visions, or other delusive imaginations, attain a confidence which they will not for a moment suffer to be questioned. Romans 8:15; Hebrews 2:15). Love is gentle, but it is omnipotent, victor over all. By David H. Roper. Who can tell? The love of God entering into a man's heart destroys fear. Love enlightens, purifies, and elevates the soul. As for death, to such an one it has lost its sting: it is even numbered amongst his richest treasures: “All things, says he, are mine, whether life or death [Note: 1 Corinthians 3:22. Aug.: “Major charitas, minor timor; minor charitas, major timor”. ", Jesus speaking about the final judgment declared “I say to you, My friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body, and after that have no more that they can do. For this he has no, there are four possible conditions of a human soul: (, ) with love, without fear. To those who are under the influence of both fear and love—, [These opposite feelings are compatible with each other, in the earlier period of our conversion. She rejoices in his strength because she has perfect confidence in his love, she cannot fear because she knows and believes fully the love that he has for her. Fear is stirred by our wrong-doing. So John’s point is that as God’s love grows in your life, it casts out the fear of judgment that existed before. We are taught, and we believe, that the world was ordained for the production of happiness. iii. Because of my carelessness, our lovely console TV had fallen out of the trunk of my car and was badly marred. Cole notes "that you cannot draw near to God in love and run from Him out of fear of judgment at the same time. They learn to cultivate the fields, that they may have food in winter. Note that John uses fear as the opposite of love. God is love. One way of trying to banish fear is levity or indifference. It is a question that waits an answer—but not for ever; that suffers itself to be put aside—but only for a time; and the longer that time the more difficult will it be when you come to answer at last—as answer you must! It is emphatically an affection based upon a reasoning perception of worth in the object of its choice, and hence it is a moral power, and not an unintelligent emotion of instinct or habit. Cast it off then; and seek to enjoy the full liberty of the Gospel. The fact is, you have had five husbands, and the man you now have is not your husband. He meant that it is the most important manifestation of a proper relationship with God, not the only manifestation. The Apostle had just spoken of a day of judgment. The fear which is of the baser kind, viz. There may be a less or greater degree of what is perfect in itself; so it is with respect to the love which the followers of God have; they may have measures or degrees of perfect love without its fullness. Dear heart, God is your best Friend, your choicest love. And you will be very unwise if you simply turn away from the question I am speaking of—if you decline to question yourself thus. ), Perfect in Christ Jesus, 104. A truly paranoid person organizes his or her life around a common perspective of fear. Before we can love God truly we must first have learned to obey His will even in the smallest duties of our life. (Word Studies from the Greek New Testament). 2 By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, 3 and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God. ].” I say not, that this feeling is constant, or without any alloy; but that to effect this is the proper influence of love; and that it will be effected in proportion as love abounds in the soul.]. mutilationem; so that the sense is: “metus amorem mutilat atque infringit, aut prohibet, ne se exserat”), and instead of φοβούμενος: κολουόμενος (“qui mutilatur aut impeditur in dilectione, is in ea perfectus non est”); and that of Lamb. Longing for the good of another will carry one through fire and water.1 [Note: R. W. Barbour, Thoughts, 20.]. No, I do not mean the grave! 1 John 4:18 serves to establish the preceding thought, that love has its perfection in παῤῥησία. Confession of faith and love for one’s brothers and sisters … Continue reading "Commentary on 1 John 4:7-21" Love of the world is forbidden by God, and conforming to it shows that a person loves it (Romans 12:2) and therefore hates God.Much of the time, the world equates lust with love, but nothing could be further from the truth. They mistrusted every one. There is no fear in love. That he proveth from the contrary natures of fear and love. A Psalmist could draw an illustration from the wistful looking up of slaves under chastisement, and the fear which “has punishment,” although in this sense “servile” is disciplinary; it marks a stage in the moral progress through which the supreme Educator, divinely equitable and patient, conducts His children by slow steps, in consideration of hearts not fully softened, and consciences not thoroughly enlightened, which, as yet, are unfit for a high religious standard. Total forgiveness is also necessary for a transparent relationship ( Ephesians 4:31-32). But this is a long course. Then, as they grow assured of His grace and see His love working itself out in their lives, they cast out fear and grow into love without fear. that is servile, and depresses the spirit, hath no place with love, but is excluded by it, by the same degrees by which that love grows up to perfection, and shall be quite excluded by that love fully perfected: inasmuch as love is a pleasant, fear a tormenting, passion, which, as such, while it remains, shows the imperfection of love. They say that there is no fear in love, because, when we voluntarily love God, we are not constrained by force and fear to serve him. Despite the apparent chaos of the present moment, God does reign. The themes we have come to know for Christmas preaching are certainly present in how John begins his gospel. Fear is the parent of love in the work of education. He that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. “Fear of punishment never goes along with love; but perfect love to God and man drives out all fear of punishment from our mind! So that we fear displeasing Him Yet home was the place I wanted to be. Augustine speaks of fear as the needle, sharp and painful, but bringing in the thread; the needle passes, and the pain is gone, and then comes the thread which forms the union and joins the soul to God. They bask lazily in the sun, and gorge themselves with food when they have it, and suffer the pangs of famine when they have it not. He that loveth not knoweth not God. All rights reserved). There is no real love in that kind of man; he has only the mere pretense of love. ii., p. 355; G. J. Proctor, Ibid., vol. St. John, than whom no inspired writer more fully unfolds the glories of the Gospel, abounds, more than any other Apostle, in exhortations to love. When a man loves with a perfect love, he escapes from bondage. Yet nothing is more masculine than to express love to our loved ones. (Mt 25:46), Kolasis - 7x in Septuagint - Jer 18:20; Ezek 14:3-4, 7; 18:30; 43:11; 44:12. By the following words: ἀλλʼ ἡ τελεία ἀγάπη ἔξω βάλλει τὸν φόβον, the preceding thought is confirmed and expanded: love not only has no fear in it, but it does not even endure it; where it enters, there must fear completely vanish. In love - Literally "the love" referring to that perfected love of which John has been speaking. Hart (H. G.), Sermons Preached in Sedbergh School Chapel, 20. At night he would say, “Bye-bye, Poo-ah!”—“Goodnight, Out-of-doors!” Another went in mortal dread of a feather from the eider-down or a fluff of the wool in which a banana had been packed, and he would flee with a yell when it moved towards him on a breath of air. Jesus said to her, "You are right when you say you have no husband. The explanation is very simple which depends on the meanings of the original Greek word-phohos. 1 JOHN 4:16 “God is love” KING JAMES VERSION (KJV) TRANSLATION, MEANING, CONTEXT. (1 John 4:17-19: Perfect Love Casts Out Fear). He that feareth is not made perfect in love. It is fear that in the beginning promotes civilization. John and the other apostles (the “we” of 1:1-4) had heard the very words of Jesus, and what amazing words they were! Love is no weak thing, no mere sentiment. Banks (L. 17 This is how love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment: In this world we are like Jesus. Is that true? So long as we are still under probation, there must be the possibility of ultimate failure even on the part of the grey-haired saint, as Bunyan in his dream saw that there was a way to hell from the gate of heaven as well as from the City of Destruction, as before now men have fallen from God at their very last hour, as once, according to a most impressive story, an ail-but martyr became through unforgivingness an apostate. 1 John 4:16, CSB : "And we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. Love is fruitful in good works; it inspires the mind to keep the commandments of Christ, and imparts power to surmount the greatest difficulties, while fear takes away our strength, enervates the soul, and deprives us of our moral and spiritual energy. love casteth out fear, because fear hath torment, but he that feareth hath not been perfected in, ὁ δὲ φοβούμενος οὐ τετελείωται ἐν τῇ ἀγάπῃ, Isaiah, of course, the person over whom God is exercising His controlling influence (i.e, an abiding Christian). We cannot love a noble human character without in some degree becoming like that character; and if we love Christ, and God in Christ, we shall be changed into the same image from glory to glory. And how often, as the years go on, we fail; and know that the reason for our failure was that we had not yet learned the meaning of Christ’s words, “Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven”—those words which should teach us that we cannot know what perfect love is until we know something of love in its simplest form, as love for our work and love for those around us. The crown and perfect work of our love of God is shown in this, that it enables us to look forward even to the dreadful day of judgment with courage and boldness. A religion which professes to dispense with this kind of fear, on the ground that Christianity has discarded it as a permanent motive and that rational piety involves an assurance which makes it needless, may be very attractive and become widely popular, but it is not the religion of Scripture and the Church. Sometimes he is like a forsaken child, wandering hopelessly and alone at midnight in a desolate place, far from the habitations of men. It is more comprehensive, more fruitful, more beneficent. 112 (Ayre); xliv. John! Fear is cast out of the sphere of the fellowship of love. A. G. Brown, Penny Pulpit, New Series, No. To report dead links, typos, or html errors or suggestions about making these resources more useful use the convenient, Baker Evangelical Dictionary of Biblical Theology, Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament, Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary, International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, He that feareth, is not made perfect in love -. "This perfect love is of such a delightful nature, that though it be ever attended with a holy filial reverence of God, and cautious filial fear of offending; yet there is no distrustful or terrifying fear of God in it, as if he were our enemy. 18.] It’s often a factor in causing a person to believe in Christ, and it may also keep a Christian from serious sin. Love affects the honour of God; and is infinitely more anxious that he should be glorified, than that its own defects should be concealed. And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. is the desire to please Him. If our love is not a reflection of His love, if it is so weak and feeble that, when the cloud passes over it and darkens the sunlight, it cannot keep our heart from failing because of fear; then let us look up to Him who is our life, and seek that gift of love which He alone can bestow, and the dominion of fear will end. A list of the best commentaries on John ranked by scholars, journal reviews, and site users. John 4 is the fourth chapter of the Gospel of John in the New Testament of the Christian Bible. They do not find any comfort in their thought of God; always speculating as to what God will think of this or that, they know not the blessed joy of an uncareful, God-delivered soul. After this, therefore, we should aspire: and, whatever our attainments in it be, we should be labouring daily to increase more and more; having more of a Spirit of love; and more of that “Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.”], Of its precise measure we may judge, by the remains of fear abiding in us—. 18 There is no fear in love, but d perfect love casts out fear. The one way to get deliverance is to go to Jesus Christ and keep close by Him.1 [Note: A. Maclaren, Triumphant Certainties, 303.]. 19–21. How few there are who seem to climb the mount of love until they attain a sublime, position. We are taught, and we believe, that God is a God of benevolence. So let us boldly declare our love, not only for our loved ones but for the One who gave His life for us. Fear, guilt, and shame cannot coexist alongside faith, hope, and love. There is enough majesty to overawe a universe, but not too much for the weakest saint to joy in. Fear hath torment—And this shows that the exclusion of the apostle’s fear is not the exclusion of that reverential fear which “is the beginning of wisdom.”. - 1 John 4:16. Goodwin (H.), Parish Sermons, iv. We learn to contemn what we do not fear; and we cannot love what we contemn. A Christian who loves others may have other fears, but he need not fear the judgment seat of Christ. Dear heart, God is your best Friend, your choicest love. It makes heroes as its natural work. But even of that, the soul which loves and cleaves to God can face the thought, can wait for it with calmness and quiet. The soul that is filled with love cannot come to God trembling like a slave. When we love others we have no basis for fear as we anticipate the judgment seat of Christ (cf. 15 Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him, and he in God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made." Unless the principles of Divine light and the powers of Divine love have wrought their influence upon the sinful heart, men carry about with them, everywhere and always, the consciousness of those dark secrets which linger from the earliest age of responsibility in the inmost recesses of the heart. We now face no condemnation. All this you say is perfectly natural. All the attributes of God come to be on our side. It is the final result. Barclay - Fear is the characteristic emotion of someone who expects to be punished. If we are afraid, it is for fear of punishment, and this shows that we have not fully experienced his perfect love. 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