December 2 “How Can You Tell?”

Image by Adam Howie

Image by Adam Howie

Daniel 11:36-12:13;  1 John 4:1-21;  Psalm 123:1-4;  Proverbs 29:2-4

“Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.  This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God:  Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, but every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus is not from God.  This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you have heard is coming and even now is already in the world.


“You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.  They are from the world and therefore speak from the viewpoint of the world, and the world listens to them.  We are from God, and whoever knows God listens to us; but whoever is not from God does not listen to us.  This is how we recognize the Spirit of truth and the spirit of falsehood.


“Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God.  Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God.  Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.  This is how God showed his love among us; He sent his one and only Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.


“Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.  No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his live is made complete in us.”

1 John 4:1-12

Heresies and philosophies

floated freely


and still do


“How can you tell?”

Well meaning


desire to make the world

a better place.

Books are written,

TED productions

are broadcast,


of words


recycled ideas leading


“How can you tell what is from God

and what’s not?


Is He more than just a prophet?

Is he more than just a good teacher,

a good man,

a revolutionary that seemed to catch

the ire

of the religious establishment?


as John writes, is Jesus

God in the flesh

come down from heaven,

the atonement,

the appeasement,

the go between us and

God the Father?

Faith knows,




the Son of God

whom we love

and worship

and adore.

You can tell,

because His followers

love one another,


those hard to love,

impossible to love

even enemies

with a love

born from above.

Lord God, thank you for loving us, for not hitting us over the head with words, words, words, but sent the Word to live among us, to love us, to sacrifice his very life for us so that we might live in love.  Grant that the world can know you by your love in and through us.  For Jesus’ sake, Amen.


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