The next few posts will be about what it means and requires to be a true and living “community.” To move beyond oneself and truly engage the world around us. To realize that there is more to life than simply waking up, going to work, coming home, and doing it all over again the next day. More than putting on the “Christian suit” each Sunday morning and looking like we have our act together. True community will require much more out of us so come along for the journey.
Meditate on this passage:
1 John 3:11-24 CEV
(11) From the beginning you were told that we must love each other.
(12) Don’t be like Cain, who belonged to the devil and murdered his own brother. Why did he murder him? He did it because his brother was good, and he was evil.
(13) My friends, don’t be surprised if the people of this world hate you.
(14) Our love for each other proves that we have gone from death to life. But if you don’t love each other, you are still under the power of death.
(15) If you hate each other, you are murderers, and we know that murderers do not have eternal life.
(16) We know what love is because Jesus gave his life for us. That’s why we must give our lives for each other.
(17) If we have all we need and see one of our own people in need, we must have pity on that person, or else we cannot say we love God.
(18) Children, you show love for others by truly helping them, and not merely by talking about it.
(19) When we love others, we know that we belong to the truth, and we feel at ease in the presence of God.
(20) But even if we don’t feel at ease, God is greater than our feelings, and he knows everything.
(21) Dear friends, if we feel at ease in the presence of God, we will have the courage to come near him.
(22) He will give us whatever we ask, because we obey him and do what pleases him.
(23) God wants us to have faith in his Son Jesus Christ and to love each other. This is also what Jesus taught us to do.
(24) If we obey God’s commandments, we will stay one in our hearts with him, and he will stay one with us. The Spirit that he has given us is proof that we are one with him.
John writes “that we must love each other” but obviously this is something they already know but he is here to tell them again. “From the beginning you were told” calls them back to the Old Testament commands they learned as children. Sometimes it is good for us to go back to the basics. Life comes at us so fast and furious and can be so complicated that we need to reduce it back down to the core matters. This is what John is doing…back to the basics of loving one another as the foundation for the living community.