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  • Writer's pictureFilip

Quiet Time in 1 John 4

Updated: Mar 16, 2022

1 John 4 (HCSB)

The Spirit of Truth and the Spirit of Error

1 Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to determine if they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.

2 This is how you know the Spirit of God: Every spirit who confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God. 3 But every spirit who does not confess Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist; you have heard that he is coming, and he is already in the world now.

4 You are from God, little children, and you have conquered them, because the One who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world. 5 They are from the world. Therefore what they say is from the world, and the world listens to them. 6 We are from God. Anyone who knows God listens to us; anyone who is not from God does not listen to us. From this we know the Spirit of truth and the spirit of deception.

Knowing God through Love

7 Dear friends, let us love one another, because love is from God, and everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. 8 The one who does not love does not know God, because God is love. 9 God’s love was revealed among us in this way: God sent His One and Only Son into the world so that we might live through Him. 10 Love consists in this: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. 11 Dear friends, if God loved us in this way, we also must love one another. 12 No one has ever seen God. If we love one another, God remains in us and His love is perfected in us.

13 This is how we know that we remain in Him and He in us: He has given assurance to us from His Spirit. 14 And we have seen and we testify that the Father has sent His Son as the world’s Savior. 15 Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God—God remains in him and he in God. 16 And we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and the one who remains in love remains in God, and God remains in him.

17 In this, love is perfected with us so that we may have confidence in the day of judgment, for we are as He is in this world. 18 There is no fear in love; instead, perfect love drives out fear, because fear involves punishment. So the one who fears has not reached perfection in love. 19 We love because He first loved us.

Keeping God’s Commands

20 If anyone says, “I love God,” yet hates his brother, he is a liar. For the person who does not love his brother he has seen cannot love the God he has not seen. 21 And we have this command from Him: The one who loves God must also love his brother.


SIN (verse 18): Father, please forgive me for not loving You properly and not loving my family properly. You tell us that love drives out fear, yet the way I've behaved for so long with my anger and irritability has done just the opposite. Please forgive me for this and help me to love You and my family the way You tell us to love, driving out fear.

PROMISE (verses 15-16): God, You promise us that You will never leave us if we confess that Jesus is the Son of God. You promise that if we remain in love, then we are aligned in You and You in us!

ATTITUDE (verse 20): Father, for so long I have said I love You with lip service instead of truly and deeply. This has been reflected in my lack of love for others. Help me to change this attitude so that I am no longer a liar. As You say here, if we can't even show love for a brother that we have seen, how can we possibly show love for our God that we have not seen?

COMMAND (verse 21): This command sounds so simple, yet the world and our flesh make it so difficult for us. You command us that the ones who love God must also love his brother. Help me to internalize Your love, Lord, so I may overflow that love to others.

EXAMPLE (verses 9-12): Father, You give us such an amazing example of Your love in this chapter. You showed that You love us so much that You'd give Your only Son up as a sacrifice to cleanse everyone of their sins and to give a blanket of love, mercy, forgiveness, and grace. Help me to follow Your example of Love, Lord, so that I can grow closer to You and glorify You in my relationships in this world.

*DAILY NOTE: I am horrible at loving others the way You love others, Father, but especially towards even my own family. I am working on this, but this is such a struggle of mine to those closest to me for some reason so please help me to continue to work through this. Help me to build up my relationship with You and love of You so that it overflows so much that it glorifies You to others.

*GENERAL NOTE: I always "sandwich" my quiet time with God in prayer and do it in a location that I will not have any distractions so that I can be focused on my quiet time with God. Do not worry about how short or long your journal entries are for that day's quiet time. Just focus on the actual quiet time and relational conversation with God through the Holy Spirit and His Word. The journaling is an enhancement to your quiet time conversation with God, but also to allow you to reflect on things later as you can look back on your journal entries later when you do the chapters again in the future to see how you have grown. See the FAQ for more detail on how I do my quiet time.

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