1 John 4:17-21 (New International Version)
17In this way, love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment, because in this world we are like him. 18There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.
19We love because he first loved us. 20If anyone says, “I love God,” yet hates his brother, he is a liar. For anyone who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot love God, whom he has not seen. 21And he has given us this command: Whoever loves God must also love his brother.
When God perfects His love in us, we should not fear or feel insecure. We remain secure in His grace. We don’t fear punishment or judgment. We are free to love others (1 John 4:19).
Only these kind of believers can empower others. Only secure people give power and authority away. Insecure people focus on themselves and feel consumed with how they look and whether people like them. The love of God is the only source of absolute security – and all of us can have it. Consider what John teaches us about living secure in God’s love:
1. Embracing God’s love gives confidence (v.17).
2. We can show God’s security and peace even now (v.17).
3. Enjoying God’s love eliminates fear and insecurity (v.18).
4. We can love others only because God has given us His love v.19).
5. Our love for others is a sign that we love God (v.20).
6. If I can’t get along with people, I can’t get along with God (vv.20,21).
5And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us. Romans 5:5
22But the fruit of the Spirit is love… Galatians 5:22a
4Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. 8Love never fails. 1 Corinthians 13:4-8a