By this we shall know that we are of the truth and reassure our heart before him; for whenever our heart condemns us, God is greater than our heart, and he knows everything. Beloved, if our heart does not condemn us, we have confidence before God; and whatever we ask we receive from him, because we keep his commandments and do what pleases him. And this is his commandment, that we believe in the name of his Son Jesus Christ and love one another, just as he has commanded us. Whoever keeps his commandments abides in God, and God in him. And by this we know that he abides in us, by the Spirit whom he has given us. (1 John 3:19-24 ESV)
John is concerned for his church. He wants them to experience the full freedom that the Gospel provides. If our hearts are condemning us, we need to hear the message that God is greater than our hearts. If our hearts are not condemning us, then we get to walk in total confidence!
This is how we know that we are abiding in God, when we obey the commands to believe in the name of His Son Jesus Christ and that we love one another. We can have an amazing level of confidence in the Gospel!
- What is it about “loving in deed and in truth (v. 18)” that gives us assurance of our hearts before him?
- What are some of the lies that come in when “our hearts are condemning us”?
- Can you think of a time when God’s truth was “greater” than what you were thinking?
- What kinds of things will we be asking for when we are obeying the commands to “believe in Jesus” and “love one another”?
- In your life, what have you seen as the personal fruit or benefits of “abiding in God”?