God’s Love Perfected in Me

By John Thiel, Audio: mp3

I would like to spend time contemplating the amazing love of God so that we would be motivated by a love that we do not understand unless the Lord reveals it to us.

1 John 2:3 And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments. 4 He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. 5 But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him.

I want to ask you a question, is the love of God perfected in you? For us to understand perfectly for ourselves what it means to have the love of God perfected in me., I want to spend this time to explore the practical, experimental religion that is portrayed to us in the Word by which we may in all reality have the love of God perfected in me.

What in reality is the love of God in me? How will it be demonstrated? Are you interested to understand this? Jesus speaks so much about this love.

John 17:1 These words spake Jesus, and lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify thy Son, that thy Son also may glorify thee:

John 17:4 I have glorified thee on the earth: I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do:5 And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was.

Do you notice what Jesus is continually repeating here? The glory of the Father, glorying the Father, giving Him the glory, appealing to the Father to glorify Jesus with the glory which He had with the Father before the world was.

John 17:24 Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me:

Next He qualifies what He means by glory:

John 17:24 for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world.

He just said that they may behold my glory which thou hast given me for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world.

John 17:26 And I have declared unto them thy name, and will declare [it]: that the love wherewith thou hast loved me may be in them, and I in them.

We are under no confusion now what Jesus means when He said the glory that we had before the world was. It is the love that is the love of God that exists between the Father and the Son. It is this love that we are contemplating. It is a blessed heart to heart union existing between the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit as well. It is an intimacy between three beings of the Godhead which is the love of God, which Jesus has come to this earth to impart to us. This we understand, because when Moses wanted God to show him His glory, what did He do? He showed him His love, He showed him His character towards sinners such as us; merciful, longsuffering, showing mercy unto thousands, this is God’s glory, this is God’s love, His character.

We know well from our past meditation that God is love; that is His character, that’s His glory. This love Jesus came to make known to us.

John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Those momentous words are well known throughout Christendom but are poorly appreciated. They may give people a joyful sense but what is entailed in those words, God is trying to show us His love, His character by giving us His Son. We can only appreciate that character by the condition of that statement, that whosoever believeth in Him may not perish. What is meant with that? This is the purpose of our meditation, that we would understand the love of God and how it is to be perfected in me.

1 John 3:16 Hereby perceive we the love [of God], because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down [our] lives for the brethren.

I like the use of that word perceive. It is a word that calls upon you to feel after it, to try to understand and appreciate it. How do we perceive the love of God? Because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down [our] lives for the brethren.

Here is already a little indication of the answer to the question of what is the love of God and how is it demonstrated in our life. The love that God manifested to us in the gift of His Son to give His life for us is the love that is to be manifested in us as well.

The apostle John expresses it so well here; he wants us to actually behold that love. That is what my purpose is here.

1 John 3:1 Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not.

Behold, we sinners, as we have already marvelled earlier that we are children of the King! Me, a child of the King, with my imperfections and sinfulness? As we behold a love that is described in the Scriptures that God gave His only begotten Son for sinners, He loved not a perfect man but a sinner, God so loved the world. This includes every human being from the vilest to the most noble. As we have seen, He is a friend of sinners. Jesus put a wonderful value upon the human race, He was called the friend of sinners, He was a friend of the publicans and the harlots, those unclean people. This is the love of God. This love is out of this world, it is not something that is natural in this world. It is something that is imparted to us from on high.

Romans 8:31 What shall we then say to these things? If God [be] for us, who [can be] against us? 32 He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things? 33 Who shall lay anything to the charge of God’s elect? [It is] God that justifieth. 34 Who [is] he that condemneth? [It is] Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us. 35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? [shall] tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?

Romans 8:37 Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.

These are such important words here. Conquerors through him that loved us.

That is how we can be conquerors.

Romans 8:38 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, 39     Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

This is the trigger point of our research. The love of God which is in Christ Jesus. We have already read that He gave us Jesus to die for us and so on. That is all lovely, but what is there in Christ Jesus through which we may be able to have an assurance that we are not separated from God and we cannot be separated from God while we cling to that which is in Christ Jesus? That is what is contained in the words, whosoever believeth in Him should not perish.

I don’t know whether you have had the same and may be still in the same kind of danger as I have been in my early years of finding Jesus. I really relied upon my salvation in some sort of magical power coming and taking me over and just generating a purity of life that was separate from all my participation. I just expected the Lord to come and do something to me. The typical expression is, you must be born again, the Holy Spirit will come upon you and it will happen to you. This is always the question. We are always waiting for some magical influence that is suddenly going to change me. I was waiting and waiting for it and I had been waiting for it for many years until the reality of God’s thoughts fell into my understanding. I want to share that with you. What is in Christ that will make such an impact that nothing will separate me at all?

The humanity of the Son of God is everything to us. {1SM 244.1}

That was the love of God in Christ.

It is the golden chain that binds our souls to Christ, and through Christ to God. This is to be our study. Ibid

When you feel sinful, when you feel separated from God, as Jesus felt, you will have a discovery in Jesus by which you know that you are never going to be separated, nothing can separate you, but it is only as you believe in Jesus like this that it will happen. If you and I make the humanity of Christ our study, it will be the golden chain that binds us to Christ because I am human. Jesus’s humanity is everything to me because I am merely a human. God has come in the gift of Jesus Christ as a human; that is the golden chain that binds Him to me; He is a human like me. He is also divine, therefore, as it said here, it is the golden chain that binds our souls to Christ and because Christ is also divine, through Christ to God. I, in my separation from God am united with Christ in His humanity, but as I am united to Christ in His humanity, what do I in turn become united to?

The humanity of Christ was united to divinity in Him. Are you following? This is the love of God in Christ. This is the amazing story of the atonement that God became one with man in Christ. And I who am separated from God as a mere human being, if I will believe in Jesus Christ and embrace this humanity of Christ that He, God was truly human, as I embrace that in my intelligent following of the word of God, as I embrace that He is me and I am Him, as it is repeated all through Scripture, that He was acquainted with us in the fullest sense of humanity; in that meditation, as I believe it, I am told that I am linked up with the divine. It is so important to study this. Our salvation depends upon this knowledge. Why?

Our mind is the avenue, the only avenue by which God and His love can enter. How can God’s love enter into you and me unless I have a knowledge of the reality of that love?

I was with a dentist and he was explaining to me about my teeth. As he was explaining to me, he actually said it all comes from here (your mind) to you. People know that. Your mind is the avenue by which the quality of life can take place. If you and I do not know of the love of God in Christ of the golden chain of Him uniting Himself with my human nature, if I do not know this, if I don’t embrace and believe it, then I have no future. I will perish. This is what Jesus said to the Pharisees. If you do not believe that I Am, you will die in your sins. Who did they think he was? They only saw him as a human. If you don’t believe that I, a human, am the I Am then you will die in your sins.

Here is the key to understand a union of the divine with me. I am refering to the knowledge, the mind, that embraces the humanity of Christ.

2 Peter 1:2 Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord,

What do you need to have grace and peace? The knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord,

2 Peter 1:3 According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that [pertain] unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:

How important is knowledge? It is inseparable from the plan of salvation. I must not only know that Jesus Christ came to this planet and lived on this earth, I must just know of Him, I must know God and Him. I must know them. Through that knowledge , look at verse four.

2 Peter 1:4 Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises:

As you know Him and see His promises, as you study them in the bible, you meditate upon them, what is going to take place?

2 Peter 1:4 that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.

What do you need to live eternally? We need the divine nature to live eternally. This statement tells you that the only way you can be a receiver of the divine nature, the golden link, is the knowledge of Jesus as a human being with us. The knowledge of the humanity of Christ, the humanity of the Son of God, that knowledge is the link that links me to the divine in Christ. As I study that, as I make this my mental exercises and take in everything that is written into my intelligent mind, that knowledge and the opening of the heart to that knowledge, to those precious promises that it contains, is the source, the connecting link of the divine nature in me.

Our mind occupation is what God is seeking for. He says my son, give me your heart. As a man thinketh in his heart so is he. If you give God your heart in the beauty of God’s word and you receive it in your mind, in your heart, then so are you. If you receive the knowledge of Jesus as the divine and human and that He is one human with you and as you connect with Jesus like that, then as a man thinketh in his heart so is he. How clear is that.

By receiving the knowledge of the human nature, the humanity of the Son of God, we are linked to the divine. We are not linked to the divine by any other way but the divine loving us so much and uniting Himself to us.

As I will believe that, does that become a reality? It starts to mould my thoughts, it moulds my responses because as a man thinketh in his heart so is he. As I meditate about it, as I think about it, I am a child of the King? Up comes a temptation; no, I am a child of the King. I have to believe it. As I fall into sin I have to believe that the humanity of Christ received all my sin, so that I do not become totally disheartened, that I am separated from God by sin. Can’t we see that Jesus was not in reality separated from God by sin. That was the amazing story, that He was in Christ reconciling the world unto Himself.

There at the cross, was the Father there? Was He separated from the Son? No. Sin had separated the consciousness of Christ from the Father but the Father was there. As you and I study that, I study the reality that while I have sinned God has not cast me off. It is sin that has cast me off from Him. This is such a powerful meditation that must govern us. It’s the golden link. God so loved the sinful world, the sinners. Jesus refers to this important mind exercise in John chapter 6. Unless I let my mind digest and employ this truth that I can have eternal life only if I do it. This was difficult for the disciples and it is still for people today, that I must ingest in my mind and think with my mind and make it the study in my mind:

John 6:53 Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you. 54 Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day. 55 For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. 56 He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him.

What is Jesus saying? This is the puzzle that people have. How can I eat His flesh? How can I drink His blood? Is that what He means?

John 6:63 It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, [they] are spirit, and [they] are life.

How does the Spirit profit you? The words that I speak unto you, [they] are spirit, and [they] are life.
How can the Holy Spirit come and take over in your life? How can the Spirit of God work to create in you? How was it at the beginning? God spoke and what did the Holy Spirit do? He moved and it was the Spirit of God that made me as the Scripture says.

Here is the simple answer. If my mind will take hold of the knowledge of the Word that says that Jesus was truly a human being, He partook with us of our blood, He actually suffered in the flesh exactly like you and I, He poured out His blood because of the sin. As I take this in and make it my study, the Holy Spirit now can come and do the necessary work. If I don’t eat of the flesh and drink of the blood of the humanity of Christ then I have no life. But if I do, eternal life the divine nature, is mine. Here we see the real purpose of bible study. This is the real purpose of bible study, not just to come to get some knowledge of the facts. Sr White says there is much study of the bible that is dangerous because there is just the study to get to know something in your own human intellect and you don’t actually know God. All you are doing is getting information. The information that we get must be an information of surrendering. That means digesting, chewing, eating, meditating upon it, giving Him my heart.

We must be born again and we must be born of the Spirit. How does the Spirit give birth to us? It is through the knowledge of the Word. It is through the knowledge of the teaching of His word.

1 Peter 1:23 Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.

I am to be born again by taking the Word and eating it. As I eat the Word as it comes to my mind and it tells me of the humanity of the Son of God, it tells me what He suffered in the flesh, it tells me of His shed blood, I am to take that Word and I am to make it my own. By that knowledge I am to receive the human-divine nature of God because as I read it, as I take it in, as I behold it through the Word, what does the Holy Spirit do? He creates a new heart. He creates a new mindset. He puts into our physiology, He puts into our chemistry, an ingredient because I actually occupy my mind with it. This is God’s creative power, His Word received and embraced. The degree to which I receive what I am hearing from God, from the preacher, from the Word, whatever I do with that Word, that is the channel by which the Holy Spirit can work or can’t work. He who believeth in the Son can have eternal life.

2 Corinthians 3:18 But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, [even] as by the Spirit of the Lord.

Isn’t that a beautiful summary of everything we have just touched on? I behold Christ through His Word. My mind exercises itself about it, and as it drinks it in, as it digests it, as it receives it with gratitude, my mind is constantly occupied with it, what happens in my mind as I keep on looking at it? What happens to the physiology? It actually changes. God is breathing creative power into the electro-chemical soup. God can do that as He did it there at creation. He has given us a task in this recreation, that we occupy our mind with the Word.

Beholding Christ means studying His life as given in His Word. {6BC 1098.1}

That is what I read in the beginning. This is to be the study of our life; the humanity of Christ.

We are to dig for truth as for hidden treasure. We are to fix our eyes upon Christ. When we take Him as our personal Saviour, Ibid

In other words what you are reading there is for me personally, nobody else, it’s mine. That is for the other person to do whether they want it for themselves too.

this gives us boldness to approach the throne of grace. Ibid

What gives us the boldness? Fixing our eyes on Christ, taking Him as our personal Saviour, this gives us boldness.

By beholding we become changed, morally assimilated to the One who is perfect in character. Ibid

That is what Jesus said, you must eat my flesh and drink my blood, you must assimilate.

By receiving His imputed righteousness, through the transforming power of the Holy Spirit, we become like Him. The image of Christ is cherished, and it captivates the whole being Ibid

That is why I was very happy to hear this morning by one person, “this is so exciting, I have found something”. Yes. Don’t just pass off what we read as information, make it my personal thrill. Fall in love with it, and by doing that the Holy Spirit will create in us the new creature, that’s how it happens. It captivates the whole being. This is the law of the physiology of our brain.

It is a law of the mind that it gradually adapts itself to the subjects upon which it is trained to dwell. {PP 596.2}

Repeat your meditation, train your mind to dwell. Don’t let all the things of this world distract your mind. The one you want to think about, what your mind needs to be occupied with is Christ in you the hope of glory. This is the active agency by which the Holy Spirit will do His work of a new creature. As the world around you looks for your mind, looks for your attention, draws your mind to meditate upon its ways, what should you do?

Romans 12:2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what [is] that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

Have I gone too fast? Is it clear? What is it that is going to give me the linkage with the divine nature? It is what you do with the Word. It is so simple, its baby talk, its simply saying read, meditate, think. If you want to have God’s Spirit working within you, just keep on studying and keep on meditating and be thrilled with it. In the beginning you might have a bit of a hard time but keep on looking because then you are going to go through experiences that are going to throw you into chaos and you will say, help!! I’m getting interested because what I am going through now is what Jesus went through. It starts to turn inside of me, God came and touched me where I am! It starts to develop a deep personal engagement. May God help us to do this. As we do it we start to realise that in all this activity God is looking for me. He is personally interested in me, in showing me all this material. What is He trying to do?

Proverbs 17:9 He that covereth a transgression seeketh love;

Does not God cover your transgression? Doesn’t He say, look at my Jesus whom I have sent how He felt separated from God. He battled through the darkness and He threw Himself upon the mercy of God with all your sins in Him and He resurrected again. As you look at that you can see that He is trying to cover my transgressions and what is He seeking? Your love, He is seeking our love.

Adam and Eve loved God until they sinned, then they ran away from Him. When God comes too close to you, you will run too, until you have meditated long enough so that you will not run away from Him anymore. God is there pursuing this exercise with us. The meditation of all this is there for us and all the study of God’s love to us is there to generate within us a response of love. Meditating, yielding, my body and my soul to those meditations, so I can become one with God and one in that precious prayer that Christ said, that they may be one even as you are in me and I in you. How did Jesus demonstrate this love as a human being amongst us? The Son can do nothing of Himself.

Sometimes my sermons are a little long-winded, not because I can’t tell it all in a short time. It’s not good enough for you to hear my words, it is imperative that we take time to absorb God’s Word.

John 5:17 But Jesus answered them, My Father worketh hitherto, and I work. 18 Therefore the Jews sought the more to kill him, because he not only had broken the sabbath, but said also that God was his Father, making himself equal with God. 19 Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise.

John 5:30 I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me.

He said that in lieu of the fact that He had to deal with these people who didn’t believe that He was God because He was just a man among them. He said, look I am a man like you, I have placed myself in humanity with you and now I am showing you and demonstrating to you the love that a human being may have toward God. What is that love? That I will cease trying to do it myself. I will rely upon my Father to tell me everything He wants me to do. I will submit myself to Him and what He tells me. That is what Jesus did; He demonstrated a human being in love with the God of the universe.

Philippians 2:5 Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:

Remember what He said, He sacrificed Himself according to Philippians, He came right down and down. As a human being He committed Himself to God. He was obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Can you think of anything worse than what He went through? What did He cry there, in regards to obedience when He came to Gethsemane? Father, if it be possible take this cup from me, but not my will, but Thy will be done. Obedience to the Father for the human being is just like that.

Philippians 2:6 Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: 7 But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men 8 And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.

In receiving Christ as our Captain there must be a complete surrender of the human will to the divine will. {TMK 219.4}

Isn’t that what Jesus did? I can of mine own self do nothing. I surrender my every thought. I love my Father. I love what He has done for the human race, I love what He has done for me and therefore I am going to do what Jesus did in His love to the Father. I will surrender everything to the will of the Father.

The Lord can work out His will through those who have made this surrender, for they give prompt and cheerful obedience to His commands. God expects us to obey without questioning. Ibid

Can you do that? What is the natural human nature that hasn’t fallen in love with God? Wait a minute, I have to check you out before I do that. Wait a minute, I know you love me, but this is going a bit too far. I have heard people say this time and time again. I have quoted direct communications from heaven and they have said, now come on John, you are going too far. Who said it was me that said it? I simply conveyed what was written. But it doesn’t mean that you say; I’m sorry let’s read the bible as it reads, let’s read the Spirit of Prophecy as it reads and then we will realise it is Jesus speaking to me.

In all of our experiences we will be brought face to face with yielding to the will of the Father and I can only do that if I really love Him. God expects us to obey without questioning.

We are to ask, “Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?” Ibid

In every situation, what is it now Lord?

Then, though the command may be as stern and startling as that given to Abraham, we are to obey. Abraham’s soul was rent asunder by the command, “Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and offer him for a sacrifice on one of the mountains which I will tell thee of” (Genesis 22:2). But he did not hesitate to obey. Ibid

When God comes to us and says, leave the world behind; when God says to us, don’t fraternise with the world; when God says, you have relatives who are truly not in tune with your love for God and they will call upon you not to do that but to be with them, as these challenges come, God’s word says, follow me. Look at Lot’s experience of leaving the city, not looking back; his wife’s problem was that she did not obey the instruction of the Lord, she didn’t love Him enough. Lot did what he was told. That is all that is required of us. We might be terrible sinners, we might have fallen astray badly and the Lord is simply saying to us, do as I say without question. In these last days, to come out from the tangles of the world, is a terrible experience because we have become so entrenched in all of its ways. We can’t quite see straight and God simply says, here is what I want you to do; obey without questioning, like Abraham did. He did it all the way along. He was told to leave his country and kindred. He did it. When it came to this last final test; that was too much.

All our activities, all our business arrangements, should be in perfect accord with the Lord’s commands. The laws of God’s kingdom must be obeyed by the subjects of that kingdom. Our zeal for the advancement of God’s kingdom is to mark us as faithful subjects of the cross of Christ. God can trust as His representatives those who implicitly obey Him. {TMK 219.5}

There is no room for; – this hurts too much I can’t do it, no Lord please. Didn’t Jesus say it? If it be possible take this cup from me. There you have the humanity of Christ expressing the very same things that we express, and then He battled through that and said, but no, Your will be done not mine. Isn’t this wonderful? Doesn’t it touch our hearts? Doesn’t it cause us to want to submit to Him? Now in these last days to be the people of God who have no more sin upon their life, this is the answer. There is no better way to become free of sin, but to simply eat the flesh and drink the blood of Christ, meditating upon it, letting it change my heart and fill me with a desire to follow in the footsteps of my Lord and Saviour, willing to obey and to follow whatever Jesus did in regards to obedience to the Father. This is the simplicity of the plan of justification and sanctification. We can talk and theorise theologically around those subjects and toss them to and fro. What I have shared with you here is the simplicity, the plain reality of an experience that is found alone in the eating and drinking and partaking of the Word that shows me exactly what it is and fills me with love, and lets the Holy Spirit do His work of changing the chemistry of my being.

Pray that the mighty energies of the Holy Spirit, with all their quickening, recuperative, and transforming power, may fall like an electric shock on the palsy-stricken soul, causing every nerve to thrill with new life, restoring the whole man from his dead, earthly, sensual state to spiritual soundness. You will thus become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust; and in your souls will be reflected the image of Him by whose stripes you are healed. {AG 312.5}

He will come as an electric shock upon our human frame through the Word. If I am not reading the Word and meditating upon it, it won’t happen.

I want to challenge you for a moment. Have you ever made such an experience? Have you ever read something and it zaps. That is the Holy Spirit through the Word. If you stop reading the Word and that doesn’t happen to you any more, what happens to you? You start drifting backwards, but I want to go forward. It is very simple. Let us read and meditate and become absolutely thrilled with the Word of God and the Holy Spirit will finish His work. I thank God for this precious opportunity that the Lord showed me this morning to clarify it so completely. I pray none of us will come away from here in any shade of doubt as to what it means to be saved and to be born again through Him. This is my prayer and I praise the Lord for it.

Amen.

Posted on February 22, 2013, in Divine Service Sermons, God's Love Series, Sermons by John Thiel. Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. Reblogged this on mycountrylivingadventures and commented:
    He wants You to love Him….

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