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Do They See God?

Daily Reading: 1 John 4

Scripture Focus: No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God abides in us and his love is perfected in us. (1 John 4.12)

Devotional Thought: 1 Corinthians 13 is called “The Love Chapter.” I agree with that, but I think that 1 John 4 deserves that title as well. The Apostle John deals with God’s love and how it is to be expressed in our lives. In the midst of his discourse, John makes an interesting statement: “No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God abides in us and his love is perfected in us” (v. 12).

What did John mean when he wrote, “No one has ever seen God”? Had he forgotten about Moses who, from the cleft of the rock, saw the backside of God as he passed by? Or, did he not know that Isaiah claimed, “In the year Uzziah died I saw the Lord…”? Surely, John remembered that he himself had seen Jesus! In reference to that, he had written at the beginning of this book, “That which we have seen…” He testified that Jesus is God. So, how could he say that no one has ever seen God?

I think John meant that God is not understood by the physical only. We cannot measure him. We cannot weigh him. We cannot hold him in our hand and figure him out. To us, God is a mystery who, as Paul wrote, “dwells in unapproachable light” (1 Timothy 6.16). But, does that mean he is invisible and unknowable? Of course not. We know him when we understand his love in Christ. And, we see him when we see that love at work in the lives of his children. For, “If we love one another, God abides in us.”

People desperately want to see God. Do they see him in you?

Prayer: Lord, may you abide in me and may your love be perfected in me - so that others may see you in me. Amen.

Psalm of the Day: 1 When the LORD restored the fortunes of Zion, we were like those who dream. 2 Then our mouth was filled with laughter, and our tongue with shouts of joy; then they said among the nations, "The LORD has done great things for them." 3 The LORD has done great things for us; we are glad. 4 Restore our fortunes, O LORD, like streams in the Negeb! 5 Those who sow in tears shall reap with shouts of joy! 6 He who goes out weeping, bearing the seed for sowing, shall come home with shouts of joy, bringing his sheaves with him. (Psalms 126:1-6)

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