“No one has seen God at any time; if we love one another, God abides in us, and His love is perfected in us.”
“Adam Clarke says, “We may feel Him, though we cannot see Him; and if we love one another, He dwelleth in us, and His love is perfected in us–it has then its full accomplishment, having moulded us according to His nature.” After all, His nature is love.
It is a little fascinating that the disciples wore out their sandals following Jesus around and for the most part did not realize He was God’s Son. They looked at Him, they listened to Him, they ate with Him, walked with Him, talked with Him, and dwelt with Him, often camping out sitting with Him around the campfire. Somewhere along the line, some of them began to have that little niggling inside that maybe He was who He proclaimed to be.
God has always presented Himself to us. We may pray to Him, even listen to His Word and attend church where He supposedly lives. Once a child was visiting our church sanctuary, looked around and asked me, the pastor’s wife, “Do you live here? Where do you take a bath?” We don’t have to move in and live in the church building, but the writer of this Gospel is talking about abiding, dwelling with God. We know He abides in us through His Spirit because He frees us to love. It is just a hint at what He has prepared for us when we dwell with Him forever.
Today a dear friend, Doug Boone (yes, related to the man from Kentucky) crossed over into a new land. As he lay dying he said, “It’s so beautiful here!” Thomas Edison said the same in his dying breath, “It’s so beautiful over there.” Sometimes we will leave the husks behind and find the land of the golden road and the mansion “just over the hilltop, that bright land to which I go.”
God is all about abiding. He’s all about sharing the love. In fact, His love is perfected in us. Really? How can the Supreme God say His love is perfected in us? What He does is perfect, but won’t we mess it up? It is because perfect love is not only given, but received, and that’s divine! In this sense, when we receive him in to abide with us in His Spirit, voila! It is like the classic picture of God reaching his hand out to Adam hand and making the connection. Creator to created. It is perfect.