First timer here, seems like a great community and glad to be here. I was hoping to get different ways to explain this scripture in 1John 4:18. Thank you!
Biblical Hermeneutics Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for professors, theologians, and those interested in exegetical analysis of biblical texts. It only takes a minute to sign up.Sign up to join this community
First timer here, seems like a great community and glad to be here. I was hoping to get different ways to explain this scripture in 1John 4:18. Thank you!
NWT 1 John 4:18 "there is no fear in love, but perfect love casts fear out, because fear restrains us. Indeed, the one who is fearful has not been made perfect in love."
When one has true love for Jehovah God we have no fear of persecution or to preach, refuse to go to war, refuse to deny our faith etc. etc., even if we my die for doing so, it would be the greatest honor to die for doing what God wants to be done, just like Jesus did:-
NWT 1 Peter 2:19, 20 "For it is agreeable when someone endures hardship and suffers unjustly because of conscience toward God. 20 For what merit is there if you are beaten for sinning and you endure it? But if you endure suffering because of doing good, this is an agreeable thing to God."
Love is made “perfect”….that is, made complete….when we have love for one another.
We show forth that we know and love God when we keep His commandments. We are to have love for one another no matter what…even love for our enemies. This shows that we love God by the keeping of His commandment to have love for one another.
Our love is especially made complete when the Son of God comes to give us an understanding so that we may show forth that we know Him who is true by having love for another.
He sends out His servants….fellow brothers…to speak His words of knowledge. They are words of spirit and life as the Lord opens up the Scriptures to our hearing ears (hear what the Spirit says to the churches) and were to be found of Him doing His commandment to have love for another....even when we do not particularly agree with what a brother has to say.
1 John 5:20 KJV (20) And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding, that we may know him that is true, and we are in him that is true, even in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God, and eternal life.
The “Day of Judgment” comes when a “stranger” (a brother) comes along speaking the Lord’s words to our hearing ears. His words will not conform to the various private interpretations of men who currently wrest the Scriptures to their own destruction.
We don’t know the day nor hour when someone comes along to speak His words to our ears….so we must be “awake”…be ready….at all times to do good toward all people…even “strangers” who come speaking things that we have never heard before and may sound "strange" as compared to what they have always heard being preached.
The Son of man comes along on a day nor hour we are expecting as we shall hear His voice from Heaven speaking through those whom He will send out….and so we are to always stay “awake” to His righteousness by letting brotherly love continue and not be forgetful to “entertain strangers” and their words.
Hebrews 13:1-2 KJV (1) Let brotherly love continue. (2) Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.
Do it faithfully to the brothers….and to “strangers”...by having love for them. Diotrephes was not found letting brotherly love continue as he rejected the brothers and prevented others from receiving them.
3 John 1:5 KJV (5) Beloved, thou doest faithfully whatsoever thou doest to the brethren, and to strangers;
Strive not with a man without cause….if he has done you no harm. Those who are found “asleep” will not remember to have brotherly love and will contend in wrath towards those whom the Lord will send out and are in danger of the Judgment. They will strive with them about with the meaning of words and will call them “fools” for what they preach. We must remember to have brotherly love…always....even when we may not agree with them. Let your "yes" be "yes" and your "no" be "no" towards what one may hear. Everything else (such as calling them a "fool"..."raca"....unintelligent) is evil.
Proverbs 3:30 KJV (30) Strive not with a man without cause, if he have done thee no harm.
We are to remember to always have brotherly love….even towards a “stranger” who comes along to speak His words. That is how we show forth that we know and love God. Our love is made complete by doing so. By doing it, we will have boldness in the Day of Judgment at the hearing of His voice that opens up the Scriptures (the "books" are opened up). Perfect love casts out fear.
1 John 4:17-18 KJV (17) Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world.
Fear has “torment”…punishment…in the Day of Judgment.
(18) There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.
Those who are found “asleep” …..being forgetful to letting brotherly love continue…. are to be warned to “awake” to His righteousness and cast off the works of darkness (the wrath, the envy, the strife, the slandering, the contentions, etc) and put on Christ….especially in the Day we hear His voice from Heaven speaking to us via the Spirit through those sent out by Him to speak His words. Those who will hate that brother sent out by Him are still in “darkness” and still abides in death. They will have fear in their awaiting for His judgment upon them.
Romans 13:10-14 KJV (10) Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law. (11) And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed. (12) The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light. (13) Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying. (14) But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof.
If we continue to sin willfully after we have received the full knowledge (epignosis) of the Truth, there remains no more sacrifice for sins and those who do such things will have a certain “fearful” looking for of Judgment and fiery indignation which shall devour the adversaries.
There will be no way out of the Judgment as there will be no more sacrifice of the Lord available for their willful sins after having been warned (warned 3 times….for 3 sins and for 4). They will have fear as they await His impending Judgment upon them.
Hebrews 10: (26) For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins, (27) But a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries. (28) He that despised Moses' law died without mercy under two or three witnesses:
They will have rejected what they hear (the Word of Truth) as spoken by those brothers sent out by Him in the Spirit of grace. Because of God's love for us and His grace, the Son of God comes to give us an understanding (by the opening up of the Scriptures to our minds) and they (those who contend with it) were thought worthy to hear it.
They are found being contentious in their evil words and will trodden the Son of God under their “foot” (with their evil speaking tongues of what they hear) and count the blood of the covenant…..the brotherly love covenant….as “unholy” thing (a common thing easy to break in their own thoughts and ways).
(29) Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who hath trodden under foot the Son of God, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and hath done despite unto the Spirit of grace? (30) For we know him that hath said, Vengeance belongeth unto me, I will recompense, saith the Lord. And again, The Lord shall judge his people.
It is a fearful thing to fall in the hands of the living God. Fear will grip those who will not show love for their brothers....after having been warned to do the holy covenant to have brotherly love.
(31) It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.
But those who will be found practicing the holy covenant of brotherly love are made complete in His love.
1 John 4:12 KJV (12) No man hath seen God at any time. If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and his love is perfected in us.
There will be no more sacrifice for those who continue to sin willfully (for 3 transgressions and for 4, His punishment will not be turned away) as they forget to do the brotherly covenant (letting brotherly love continue).
These are those who will harden their hearts (“Tyrus” = “rock” = a hardened heart) in the hearing of His voice and will not practice the holy covenant of having brotherly love (as Jesus loved us and died for us, we are to have love for each other) after having been reminded 3 times to do so.
Amos 1:9-10 KJV (9) Thus saith the LORD; For three transgressions of Tyrus, and for four, I will not turn away the punishment thereof; because they delivered up the whole captivity to Edom, and remembered not the brotherly covenant:
They will have a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries.
(10) But I will send a fire on the wall of Tyrus, which shall devour the palaces thereof.
“Tyrus” (meaning “rock) signifies those who will hear His voice and be found hardening (Tyrus) their hearts through the deceitfulness of sin (their evil speaking).
Hebrews 3:12-15 KJV (12) Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God. (13) But exhort one another daily, while it is called To day; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. (14) For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence stedfast unto the end; (15) While it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts, as in the provocation.
For 3 transgressions of Edom (those who are “red” in their wrath towards what they hear) and for 4, His Judgment will not be turned away (as there will be no more sacrifice for their continued willful sins).
These are people who will not remember to let brotherly love continue and will instead continue to pursue their “brother” in their wrath (Edom = red =wrath) with the “sword”….that is, the tongue that will speak angry, slanderous evil words against a brother sent out by the Lord to speak His words of life and spirit to their hearing ears.
Amos 1:11-12 KJV (11) Thus saith the LORD; For three transgressions of Edom, and for four, I will not turn away the punishment thereof; because he did pursue his brother with the sword, and did cast off all pity, and his anger did tear perpetually, and he kept his wrath for ever: (12) But I will send a fire upon Teman, which shall devour the palaces of Bozrah.
We must be found abiding in Him so that we may have confidence before Him when He comes to speak His words in the Spirit of Truth. Everyone found doing righteousness before Him is born of Him. The children of the devil manifest themselves by not remembering to do His righteousness.
1 John 2:28-29 KJV (28) And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming. (29) If ye know that he is righteous, ye know that every one that doeth righteousness is born of him.
For those who will be found still “sleeping” even after having been warned (for 3 transgressions and for 4), sudden fear shall grip them as it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God in the Judgment.
Instead of giving His Spirit rest within them when they hear His voice in the Spirit of Truth (the revealed Word of Truth), they are found contending with evil, wrathful words instead of having a “poor and contrite” spirit….breath.
Isaiah 66:1-6 KJV (1) Thus saith the LORD, The heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool: where is the house that ye build unto me? and where is the place of my rest? (2) For all those things hath mine hand made, and all those things have been, saith the LORD: but to this man will I look, even to him that is poor and of a contrite spirit, and trembleth at my word.
They “kill an ox”…a brother sent out to speak His words to their ears. Those who kill an ox is as those who slew a man….as the haters are murderers. There will be no more sacrifice (of the Lamb) for those who continue to do such things…in their continued willful sinning as they delight in the "killing "of the messenger of His Word of Truth.
(3) He that killeth an ox is as if he slew a man; he that sacrificeth a lamb, as if he cut off a dog's neck; he that offereth an oblation, as if he offered swine's blood; he that burneth incense, as if he blessed an idol. Yea, they have chosen their own ways, and their soul delighteth in their abominations.
He will bring fears upon them as they did not answer when He did call them and did not hear when He spoke His revealed Word to their hearing ears. Instead, they will choose to do evil before His eyes and choose that in which He does not delight.
(4) I also will choose their delusions, and will bring their fears upon them; because when I called, none did answer; when I spake, they did not hear: but they did evil before mine eyes, and chose that in which I delighted not. (5) Hear the word of the LORD, ye that tremble at his word; Your brethren that hated you, that cast you out for my name's sake, said, Let the LORD be glorified: but he shall appear to your joy, and they shall be ashamed. (6) A voice of noise from the city, a voice from the temple, a voice of the LORD that rendereth recompence to his enemies.
In the same way, voice of the LORD God walks in the garden in the "cool" (that is, Spirit) of the Day of Judgment. Out of fear, Adam and his wife did hide themselves. Their love was not found complete. They had sown fig leaves....words...together to cover themselves. As we know, saying "Lord, Lord" will not cover us when we do not bring forth fruits of righteousness. Leaves are not enough as we must bring forth fruits of His righteousness at the hearing of His voice.
Genesis 3:8-11 KJV (8) And they heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God amongst the trees of the garden.
Faith alone is not enough as we must show forth that we know and love God by bringing forth good fruit towards the hearing of His voice. Where is the faith? Where are the good works (the fruit) that are evidence of our faith? Saying "Lord, Lord" (the fig leaves of words only) will not save us but the doing of His will (bearing fruit).
(9) And the LORD God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou? (10) And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself. (11) And he said, Who told thee that thou wast naked? Hast thou eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldest not eat?
It is impossible for those who were once enlightened and have tasted of the heavenly gift and were made partakers of the Holy Spirit and have tasted the good word of God (as we hear His voice speaking His Word of Truth to our ears) and the powers of the age to come, if they should fall away in their unbelief of what they hear, to renew them again unto repentance seeing they crucify themselves the Son of God (who comes to give them an understanding as He opens up the Scriptures to their hearing ears) afresh.
Hebrews 6:4-12 KJV (4) For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Ghost, (5) And have tasted the good word of God, and the powers of the world to come, (6) If they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they crucify to themselves the Son of God afresh, and put him to an open shame.
Instead of drinking in His revealed Word into their hearts (the earth) and bringing forth fruits of righteousness towards those sent out by Him to speak His revealed Word, they are found rejecting it with their evil words as they "kill the messenger" of His words of life and spirit. They put the messengers to an open shame by publicly berating them.
*> (7) For the earth which drinketh in the rain that cometh oft upon it,
and bringeth forth herbs meet for them by whom it is dressed, receiveth blessing from God: (8) But that which beareth thorns and briers is rejected, and is nigh unto cursing; whose end is to be burned. (9) But, beloved, we are persuaded better things of you, and things that accompany salvation, though we thus speak. (10) For God is not unrighteous to forget your work and labour of love, which ye have shewed toward his name, in that ye have ministered to the saints, and do minister. (11) And we desire that every one of you do shew the same diligence to the full assurance of hope unto the end: (12) That ye be not slothful, but followers of them who through faith and patience inherit the promises*
Thanks for reading this long post.