NBC SUNDAY SCHOOL LESSON FOR AUGUST 22, 2021 : TOPIC – PERFECT LOVE
NBC SUNDAY SCHOOL LESSON
Sunday, August 22, 2021
TOPIC: PERFECT LOVE
Devotional Reading: John 14:15-24
Background Scripture reading l John 4-5
Lesson Scripture reading: 1 John 422-3, 13-17; 5:4-5
Golden Text: God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him. 1 John 4:16b
By the end of the lesson, class members should be able to:
• State some essential elements of false teaching.
• Explain how God has shown humankind love.
• Justify the superiority of
• God’s love over other kinds love.
Sometime ago, a story was published in one of the Nigerian dailies about a devout Muslim who out of his sincere love decided to save some Christians from being killed by Fulani Herdsmen. Despite the threat and insult he suffered from his fellow tribesmen, he was not ready to release the people. When journalist asked him what motivated him so save people who are not of the same faith from being murdered, he said, “Because we are created by the same God, we should love and be ready to protect one another from any form of danger.” Although this man a Muslim, yet he demonstrated perfect love towards a group of people who are not of the some faith. The society we live in is characterised by all kinds of evil. There is high level of crime like ritual killings. Insecurity, corruption, hatred, malice, and the urge to retaliate wrongdoing, even among Christians has become the order of the day. It has become difficult to identify those who truly love others with the love of God, which the author of 1 John describes as ‘Perfect Love Apostle John wrote this letter to the Christian community toward the end of his life. His main reason was to warn his recipients against the danger of heresy taught by false prophets. He also encouraged them to love one another because God is love. God demonstrated His love to humankind by sending His Son Jesus Christ to die for our sins. The focus of today’s lesson is encouragement for believers to love one another as God has shown us His perfect love.
THE LESSON EXPLAINED
A The Test of False Prophets 1 John 4:2-3
One of the major problems in the days of John, when he wrote this letter was the
teaching introduced by some false prophets. They claimed that the human Jesus was not the same as the divine (1 John 2:22). Many gnosticinfluenced teachers said that Jesus, being God, could not have actually become human being, because God has no relationship with “impure” material. In order to correct this wrong doctrine, John admonished the Christians to test every Spirit to ascertain whether they are from God (v. 1). He gave precautionary advice in verse 2 about the identification of
teachers, many of whom claimed to be sent by God. He said anyone who acknowledges that Jesus came as a human being has the Spirit, which comes from God. In contrast, those who deny this fact about Jesus do not have the Spirit from God. Ultimately, the spirit such people have is from the enemy of Christ (The Antichrist or the Wicked One). Everything they preach, teach and prophesy are false and an attempt to deceive their clients. Of course, they were already present in the world, as earlier prophesied (1 John 2:18). Little wonder John decided to write to encourage his readers to test every Spirit in order to know their source.
Even today, many people lack the understdnding of the true identity of Jesus. Some groups of people still do not believe that Jesus is really God (such 08 the Jehovah’s Witnesses, Mormons, and Muslims). Similarly, in John’s ddys some people did not believe Jesus is God. They knew He was truly God (which is correct), but did not come in the flesh. It is important for believers to understand that Jesus was fully God and fully humdn dt the time He came into the world. So, Divinity and Humanity of Jesus are essential for our salvation experience. It is only as we believe in this that we can be saved.
Discussion Time 1
1. How can you convince a Muslim that Jesus is truly God?
2. Mention some activities of false prophets.
B. Living in Union with God 1 John 4:13-17
The passage provides basic Christian teaching about God’s love and how He demonstrated His love to humankind by sending His Son; Jesus Christ as a propitiation for their sins. According to verse 13, John affirmed the unity that exists between God and humans because He has given us His Spirit. He confessed that because we have seen and told others, as witnesses, how God sent His Son to the world, as many who acknowledge that Jesus is the Son of God,automatically live in union with God and God with him. He confirmed in verse 16 that they know and believe the love God has for them. Again, speaking as one who has the Spirit of God, John declares three essential truths about God’s love. He said: God is love.
Those who live in love live in
union with Him and He lives in union with them.
Love is made perfect in us so that we will have courage to stand on the day of judgment because of the reality of our Christian love.
Our life in this world is the same as Christ’s. Knowing and understanding Jesus is the foundation for abiding in Him; hence, John said whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. Therefore, God’s love in
sending His Son, and Jesus’ love in sacrificing Himself, should inspire believers to live in union with God and love one another. All believers in Christ must know and believe this love of God. Living in union with Christ and loving one another are evidences that God has taken possession of our lives.
Discussion Time 2
1. Discuss ways our love for God can reflect in our Christian service.
2. How can we abide in Him in the midst of the trials of life?
C. Victory over the World 1 John 5:4-5
According to Apostle John, true faith centres on Jesus and enables us to be victorious over the world. From the passage, it is apparent that faith in Jesus is the basis upon which victory is guaranteed. The believer’s victory is based on the reality that Jesus Christ is the true Son of God and when we believe, this helps us to overcome the world. The basis of faith is not whether we can overcome or not but that Jesus has overcome the world. In verse ‘5, John explains that the basic characteristic of an overcomer is that he believes in Jesus Christ. No one can overcome the world except he who is born of God. A person who is born of God must accept that Jesus is the Christ and that He not only came in human flesh, and has won the victory for all. The victory He won is a reflection of His love for humanity. This love, which we have experienced, is the reason we should love others; for when we are born of God, the Holy Spirit pours the love of God into our hearts.
Ultimately, the sincerity of our belief about Jesus is evident in our love for Go
and fellow human beings. More importantly, genuine faith will always manifest itself in gratitude to God and love for the Father and Jesus Christ, His Son. Thus believers can overcome hatred and be encouraged to love as Christ has loved them.
Discussion Time 3
1. How can Christians overcome the world?
2. Discuss some of the problems in the world and what our disposition to them, as Christians, should be.
Fellowship and Ministry Building Activity
• -Encourage class members to exchange gifts among
• They should visit and bless the needy as a demonstration of their love for them.
▪︎ Beware of false teachers.
▪︎ God is one, He manifested as Father, Son and the Holy Spirit.
▪︎ God is love and love is of God.
▪︎ One way to respond to God’s love is by loving others.
▪︎ The greatest Christian virtue is love.
▪︎ Christians should unconditionally love others.