7537 - No Fear In Love

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Audio transcript

We’re so glad you’ve joined us today for a short study in God’s Word. Let’s talk about “No Fear In Love.”

This subject comes from 1 John 4:18, which reads, “There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The man who fears is not made perfect in love.”

We need to get the picture in our mind of what the word ‘fear’ means. Fear comes from the Greek word ‘phobos’ which carries the picture of dread or terror.

You might profit by knowing that in some context this same word may be a reverential respect of God. Often this relates to a dread of displeasing God and breaking fellowship with Him. But this is not the way its used in this passage.

Since in context the prior verse talks about the believer having confidence when we stand before the judgment seat of Christ, verse 18 shows that some believers will stand before that judgment seat with knocking knees because of fear of what Jesus is going to say.

However, there is no fear in godly, sacrificial love. Within those who have experienced the full measure of “agape” love, that supernatural, sacrificial love which is characteristic of God; they know that God is always relating to His children out of love.

The word from which the English word ‘perfect’ is translated means complete or brought to fullness. That’s the objective of God within the life of every saint. He desires to see His supernatural, unselfish love brought to fullness or to maturity within every one of His children. As we remain yielded and available to God, then His Spirit continues to shape and mold us into this level of complete maturity for which God aims.

The statement in this verse tells us that as God’s love is brought to fullness or completeness within His saint, then fear is driven out.

Fear seems to be tied to expected punishment within people. They know or sense that they have resisted God’s leadership and empowerment in their life and they surmise that they are going to be zapped because of their sins.

The last part of this verse tells us, “The man who fears is not made perfect in love.” Notice the correlation is that this person has not come to fullness in “agape” love. The reason for such a condition within a Christian is that this person has not yielded and claimed a Spirit-filled life.

Some people express this truth by saying such a person has the fire insurance policy, but have not accepted the life insurance policy. This means they have professed Jesus Christ as Savior so they escape hell, but they have not accepted His Lordship in their life, so they have not experienced the abundant life in Christ. Is this possible?

Only God knows the condition of any person’s heart. But Jesus shared with the multitude (Mt. 7:21) that not everyone who calls Jesus Lord is on the way to heaven. In fact Jesus ties obedience to His commands and desires as an indication that a person is on the way to heaven.

However, we understand from Scripture that even a believer may sin (1 John 2:1), and God tells us that (1 John 1:9) we should quickly confess and agree with Him about these matters, and then He will cleanse us and restore us to fellowship.

This last group of people are the ones, which are described at the end of verse 18 when we are told, “The man who fears is not made perfect in love.”
This epistle is written to believers so these people know Jesus, but have not come to maturity. Thus they may carry fear in their hearts.

In Vine’s Dictionary he relates that fear within a Christian may be caused by the adversary. The devil loves to rob God’s children of the peace, which has been given to them by Jesus. He would also delight in destroying the testimony of a person who leaves a beachhead for him in their life.

Friend, are you living an obedient, peaceful life of love in Christ? Or are you resisting His love and running your own life? It’s your choice. But don’t miss out on God’s blessings.