Today’s post is part of a series to help us take what we learn on Sunday into the rest of the week. These posts summarize the main points from the week’s sermon and include questions for continued reflection and prayer. The posts in this series are written by members of our church’s Adult Christian Formation team.
This past Sunday our service theme was “God Changes Us.” Pastor Bobby’s sermon on assurance was based on the text 1 John 2:3-14. His basic message was that the light that Jesus shines on our lives gives us assurance of God’s love for us.
People in our society are often spiritual seekers, but they usually avoid organized religion and lack assurance that they’ve really found something secure. 1 John is written with this need for assurance in mind, with the author’s purpose being “that you may know” that we have life in Jesus (2:3, 5:13).
This message in 1 John has two parts:
- Jesus is the ground of assurance for us. In him, the true light has already begun shining in our lives (2:8). If we live in his light, everything in our lives will be transformed by that light. Rather than just giving us another ball to juggle, Jesus becomes the context for everything in our lives.
- This leads us to a pattern of assurance in our lives. We receive assurance as we obey the commands of Jesus (2:3) and love others like Jesus did and called us to do (2:7, 2:11). Seeing Jesus washing the feet of his friends shows us how to love one another. When a major crisis happens in our life, we can cling to God in a way that grows our assurance. We can also recognize the love that we have for others as assurance that God’s love to us in Christ is real.
Questions for prayer and reflection:
- What did the Holy Spirit say to you through this Scripture and sermon?
- How would you restate the sermon’s message of assurance through Christ in your own words?
- In what ways has the light of Jesus made sense of areas of your life that aren’t typically considered religious or spiritual?
- Have you experienced the love of Christ through other followers of Jesus in a way that assured you that God’s love for you was real? If so, how?
- How can you imitate God by bringing light into darkness in the life of people who don’t know Jesus? Do you know someone who has needs or brokenness that can be met with the light of God’s love in Christ?
- Do you know in your heart that God loves you? Has the work of Christ to find and save you brought you assurance about how God relates to you?