Our Daily Bread Devotional For April 23, 2023 : Topic – Loving Like Jesus
Read previous Our Daily Bread Devotionaols here
Bible in a Year:
Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.
Today’s Scripture : 1 John 3:11–18
Jesus spoke a new commandment to “love one another” (John 13:34). This command is actually “an old one” (1 John 2:7), for God had commanded every Israelite to “love [their] neighbor as [themselves]” (Leviticus 19:18). The “new” commandment raised the bar to the highest standard of love: “As I have loved you, so you must love one another” (John 13:34). The apostle John here reminded believers to model this sacrificial love of Jesus—“Jesus Christ laid down his life for us” (1 John 3:16). True love is sacrificial giving and spontaneous generosity (v. 17). John exhorts us to be loving in our speech and in our actions (v. 18). Such love is the clearest evidence that one has new life (v. 14) and “is a child of God” (4:7 nlt); anyone who “does not love does not know God, for God is love” (v. 8 nlt).
Message : While waiting for a train at a station in Atlanta, Georgia, a young man wearing dress pants and a button-down shirt sat on a bench. As he struggled with his tie, an older woman encouraged her husband to help. When the elderly man hunched over and began teaching the young man how to knot the tie, a stranger took a photo of the trio. When this photo went viral online, many viewers left comments about the power of random acts of kindness.
For believers in Jesus, kindness to others reflects the self-sacrificing care that He showed for people like us. It’s an expression of God’s love and what He desired His disciples to live out: “We should love one another” (1 John 3:11 emphasis added). John equates hating a brother or sister to murder (v. 15). Then he turns to Christ as an example of love in action (v. 16).
It doesn’t have to be an extravagant display of sacrifice. Selfless love simply requires us to acknowledge the value of all God’s image-bearers by placing their needs above our own . . . every day. Those seemingly ordinary moments when we care enough to notice the needs of others and do what we can to help are selfless when we’re motivated by love. When we see beyond our personal space, step out of our comfort zones to serve others, and give—especially when we don’t have to give—we’re loving like Jesus.
Reflect & Pray
When have you experienced selfless love from someone? How can you love others selflessly this week?
Loving Father, please help me see people with a heart ready to extend compassion and selfless love wherever You send me.