Tag Archives: 1 John 5:11-13

Who is the God you love?

Do you love God? Does celebrating his love serve as your purpose in life?

Our response determines every aspect of our life. If I don’t love God, then who is the focus of my devotion? If not, “In God we trust,” then who?

It seems the default answer is to trust in ourselves: our own abilities to think, philosophize, communicate with others, earn a living, make things with our hands, set goals and agendas, and become the captain of our own destiny. Is it possible to believe in God and trust in yourself?

We all trust to some degree in our good health, our intellect, the faithfulness and devotion of our friends and family. We trust in our leaders, our wealth, or the comfort and safety of our home. But who is the God we truly love and trust above all else? Who is the God of your daily schedule and life ambitions?

Maybe your view of God is formed by the God of the Bible. Over the years you’ve come to grasp an understanding that he is who he reveals himself to be in his Word, that he is who he says he is. You believe what he says, that he gave his only begotten Son, Jesus, to die for the forgiveness of our sins; that this same Jesus rose from the dead and gave his very Spirit to reside in the hearts and minds of his true followers. Ah, the name of Jesus; perhaps you’ve noticed how the mention of his name dramatically changes the conversation of God from one of intellectual belief to personal conviction.

But have you personally experienced his truth, grace, and power in your life? Have you discovered his transformational power to make you free from the bondage to sin, even while you remain ever so imperfect like me and everyone else around you? Have you experienced his power to find real peace in the middle of life’s difficult storms? When the world shakes around you, have you found him to be your unshakeable foundation, your solid rock? Have you found the secret of being content, realizing that your circumstances don’t define you? Do you know for sure that you are the beloved child of the King of Kings, and that his inheritance is yours for all eternity?

This is what the God of the Bible says:

By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you love one another.  John 13:35

Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. The one who does not love does not know God, for God is love. By this the love of God was manifested in us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world so that we might live through Him. 1 John 4:7-9

But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God. John 1:12-13

And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life. I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life. 1 John 5:11-13

God is more than an idea, more than an emotional feeling. The God above all gods call you and me to a life of love. Believe in him and find peace. Experience his love.



In the classic movie, The Sting, the characters played by Paul Newman and Robert Redford ran an illegal betting operation that conned gamblers into thinking they were watching a live broadcast of a horse race, when in fact the trickster duo had it delayed – just enough so they knew the outcome of the race while the gamblers speculated.

What if you could know how things turn out? Tomorrow’s stock market closing, an impending crime that could be prevented, the outcome of a surgery before it began, or if you could be certain during the turbulent teenage years that things would indeed turn out okay.

Knowing some things brings patience, assurance and peace in the midst of anxiety, hope in the darkness of despair.  Knowing the lessons from the past, we save ourselves from making the same mistakes. Sometimes knowing things changes the future. In It’s a Wonderful Life, George Bailey turned his whole life around after seeing the future consequences of his planned choices.  What if you knew at the moment, that a simple act of compassion or a generous gift would make such a profound difference in someone’s life? Or the calamity of a poor choice that had a farther reaching grip than you imagined? But to a large degree we simply don’t know the specifics of what the future holds for us.

I don’t know what the future holds, but I know who holds my future.

You and I might have all kinds of theories about what happens after death, but God is the one who knows. And he assures us that we can know too:

And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life. I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life. 1 John 5:11-13

Knowing Jesus makes all the difference, not just knowing him for your salvation but knowing him for your victory over the troubles and challenges you face today.

Whether it be political elections, or threat of war or famine, financial disaster or climate change, we know how it all really ends. We’ve read the last chapter of Revelation, the headlines of the last newspaper ever written. They say “God wins!” We know because we know God and we know he knows.

Ponder the words of Graham Kendrick’s song, taken from Philippians 3 and consider how knowing Jesus impacts even the routine aspects of your day today. Reflect on what it means to weigh all you hold dear against the weight/importance of knowing Jesus in your moment to moment life.

“All I once held dear, built my life upon
All this world reveres, and wars to own
All I once thought gain I have counted loss
Spent and worthless now, compared to this

Knowing you, Jesus
Knowing you, there is no greater thing
You’re my all, you’re the best
You’re my joy, my righteousness
And I love you, Lord

Now my heart’s desire is to know you more
To be found in you and known as yours
To possess by faith what I could not earn
All-surpassing gift of righteousness

Oh, to know the power of your risen life
And to know You in Your sufferings
To become like you in your death, my Lord
So with you to live and never die.”


Who’s your daddy?



In the movie, Master of Disguise, Dana Carvey plays a wimpy guy who becomes amazingly strong and talented when he assumes roles using various disguises. In one scene he successfully intimidates a larger, stronger opponent by repeating the line, “Who’s your daddy?!” Carvey’s character’s success comes from knowing who he is in relationship to his daddy. Do you remember this taunt as a kid: “MY dad can beat YOUR dad!” Our courage was based on whose kid we were – on the basis of our dad’s ability.


Have you ever thought about how things might have gone differently in the garden with Adam and Eve with the whole scene with the serpent’s lies? WHAT IF Adam had intervened, as he well should have, and said to the lying beast, “Wait just a minute! Let me check with my Dad about this.” That solitary act could have saved everyone a lot of grief because Adam’s Dad would have set things straight. There wouldn’t have been any conniving, confusion, or convoluting of the truth. Adam would have been victor of the day!


And so, let me respectfully ask, “Who’s your Daddy?”  Is He the King of Kings, the Creator of all you see and know? Is He the strong tower in whom you find safe refuge? Is He the firm foundation on which you build your life, one that cannot be shaken? Is He the always faithful one?


I ask this, because if He is, then that tells me who you are:


Holy and righteous in His sight (Ephesians 1:4)


Redeemed and forgiven (Ephesians 1:7)


Able to find rest at any time (Matthew 11:28)


Filled with hope (Jeremiah 29:11-13)


Filled with love, joy, peace, patience, kindness and so much more (Galatians 5:22-25)


Guided by wisdom (Psalm 48:14)


Secure forever (1 John 5:11-13)


You don’t need to be a master of disguise. Knowing who you are and who your Daddy is – that’s all you need to have power over the day before you.


“Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God.” John 1:12