Love is a word that we often use, with varying meanings and degrees. In 1 John 4, John describes a type of love that is perfect – the love of God. “In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.”
John teaches that we can only know love because God first loved us. The message of Christmas is God’s sacrificial love for us.
“In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him.”
As he describes what God’s love accomplishes in believers, John talks about abiding in Christ and living with confidence. He writes, “There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear” (18). We can live without fear of condemnation because, in His perfect love, God gave us Jesus as the ultimate sacrifice for our sin, freeing us forever from the penalty of sin in Christ. God’s love continues to free us from fear as we find peace and joy in Him through His Spirit. But we also experience freedom from fear as we grow in our knowledge of God’s faithfulness to us in every aspect of our lives.
On Christmas Day, I want to make sure to focus on that unconditional, perfect love that I neither earned nor deserved, yet was freely given.