Love: A Key to Spiritual Growth

GUEST POST

The post below was written by my dear friend and fellow worker in Christ Jesus who chose to remain anonymous. She is a beautiful woman of God, a wife and mother who has an insatiable desire for the things of God. She has been at my side since the inception of this blog serving as my accountability partner and content editor. I bless God for her life.

Spiritual growth

 Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. 1John 4:7-8 (NIV)

The Apostle John tells us three important truths in the verse above:

  1. Everyone who loves is born of God
  2. We should love one another because love is of God
  3. He who does not love does not KNOW God

A great way to measure our spiritual growth and test whether we are in the faith is by closely examining our love walk on a continual basis.

Our love walk is a clear sign that not only are we born again, but that we know God and are growing in our knowledge of Him.

The Greek word for love used in these verses is agape, which is the highest form of love. It means self-less, unconditional, God-kind of love. Believers in Jesus are commanded to love people, not based on how we feel at the moment or whether they deserve it or not. On the contrary, we love people because:

  • God has loved us unconditionally (Ephesians 5:1-2).
  • We love God (1 John 4:11).
  • Our desire as God’s children is to please Him (John 14:21).

We are commanded to love

In John 15:12, Jesus commands us to love one another as He has loved us. In John 13:34-35, he takes it further by telling us an important truth: his disciples will be identified by the visible demonstration of their love for one another!

Meditate and ponder on 1 John 4:20, then reflect on these questions.

Can we truly say we love God……..

  • but can’t stand our sister/brother in Christ?
  • but are quick to gossip, back bite, harbor envy and remain unforgiving in our hearts toward one another?
  • yet viciously attack with our words and thoughts people who have hurt us instead of responding according to Matthew 5:44?
  • and refuse to respond in obedience to His instructions on how to live our lives by His word?

In Matthew 22:38-40 Jesus gave us two commandments. “Love God with all of your being and love your neighbor as yourself.”

We understand that to love God is to obey Him. To love people is to treat everyone in a manner that demonstrates the presence of the fruit of Spirit in our lives (Galatians 5: 22-23, 1 Corinthians 13:4-8). To treat people this way is to obey God (1Corinthians 16:14, Hebrews 13:1).

As our love for God grows and our knowledge of Him deepens, so should our obedience to Him increase (Philippians 1:9-11). The way we treat others should reflect our ever increasing love for our God. Our hearts should become more tender and responsive to the leading of His Holy Spirit in us, never making excuses to remain in willful disobedience to the One whom we say we love.

One of the ways to determine if we are growing spiritually is to examine our selves in this area. We should be able to look back and see if we are growing in our obedience to Him and therefore growing in our love for Him, and our love for all people.

TEST YOURSELF TODAY!!! 

Love: A Key to Spiritual Growth

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Except where indicated, Scriptures are taken from the NIV.

Other posts on Fruit of the Spirit:

 

Through this blog, my hope is to encourage you to grow up spiritually so that you may fulfill your calling and destiny in life.

2 comments

  1. I have lived a life where most times people return my kindness with evil and it keeps re occurring and as a result am hurt inside that I find it difficult sometimes to let go but I believe now through this teaching that am to continue doing good despite what. It is truly a right way to go,thanks a lot for the encouragement.

    1. Hello Edison,
      Thanks for stopping by and reading the post.
      I thank God that He has spoken to your heart through this post and I definitely encourage you to do good to all men irrespective of how they have treated you.
      -We love people because God has loved us unconditionally.
      -We love people because we love God and
      -we love people because our desire as God’s children is to please Him.

      I pray that God will encourage your heart and I pray that you will continue to allow His love to flow from you to the people in your world. Amen!

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