Today’s passage is about love. If we love God, we are His children and we will obey His commands. If we obey His commands, we will love our fellow man. The passage even tells us that God’s commands are not burdensome.
They may not be burdensome but they are not always easy either. To love ALL of my fellow man is hard at times. Friends and family can put this to the test at times too. To really live into the command to love others as Jesus first loved us is difficult.
In today’s passage the Greek word used for overcome or conquer is a word usually used in reference to athletic contests. To succeed in an athletic contest usually suggests victory over someone or something. In terms of obeying God’s commands, this battle is most often between my flesh that pulls me one way and my relationship with jesus Christ that pulls me another way.In me, this battle often wages.
In looking at loving one another as a struggle that requires conquering, other examples of an athletic contest are involved. You do not just show up on the day of the contest on your first day. For many days before the contest you train and practice and test yourself. You want to be prepared. Living out our faith is analogous. One cannot fight Satan’s temptations without the power of the Word of God. One cannot join Jesus in overcoming the world without putting in the hard work all along the journey of faith. But through faithful dedication we can conquer. It is possible to love our fellow man as Jesus first loved us.
Scripture reference: 1 John 5: 1-6