“There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love.” 1 John 4:18 NIV
Perfect love! We spend millions each year on books, movies, and music based on love stories. We can’t get enough, even though most are variations of the same theme. The couple meets, and it is love at first sight. They face seemingly impossible odds, the odds defeated, and they live happily ever after. Sound familiar? However excellent those stories may seem, there is no true perfect love without God.
Today’s scripture talks not only about perfect love but also. There are different types of fear. First is our fear of God, meaning our awe, respect, and honor we hold for him -- this is right and healthy. The fear of God brings perfect love. Then there is the fear Satan wields punishment. The fear of Satan, well, it just issues more fear -- love is nowhere in sight. When bound by satanic fear, we cannot experience God’s, perfect love. Only in accepting Christ, as our Savior, are our bonds broken. With fear gone, we can love ourselves and others fully as God desires.
Holy Father, we give thanks for your perfect love. Please help us as we share the hope of your promise with others. May those now living in fear come to accept Christ as their Savior. In Jesus’ name, we pray. Amen.