Scripture

I John 4:4

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.

Reflection

Do me a favor real quick. Think back to the last time something was shared with you that left you stunned or amazed. I’m thinking about a moment when you could not believe what you just heard. You might have responded by saying, “I’m sorry, but could you repeat that?” Or maybe, “I need that one more time to make sure I heard correctly what you just shared.”

Sometimes, what can be most stunning to us about the Bible are those passages we may have read many times before but have never really grasped their full significance. This singular verse from the fourth chapter of I John would be one of those for me, and so today, I want to ask you…

Did you catch that?

Did you hear what he just said?
Can you appreciate the immensity of what John is communicating here?

John is warning against false teachers. Throughout the letter, He is encouraging his audience to understand who they really are and the fullness of the Gospel message.

In I John 3:1, he writes,

See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!

John writes to build the confidence of those he is addressing, but it isn’t a false or naive hope he is seeking to foster. It is a hope grounded in Christ.

And it would be easy for us to miss the audacious claim found here. (I know because I myself read this passage many times before and missed it!) John says,

…the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.

Today, you may feel tired and worn down at the end of a long week. You might be struggling with discouragement or even feeling a bit defeated. We are all familiar with those emotions, but John reminds us of something we easily forget. We are not without hope.

There is a power living in you that is greater than you or I could ever imagine.

Did you catch that?

If not, read I John 4:4 again.

Prayer

Holy Spirit, I marvel at the reality of your power living in me. Help me to live this day grounded in this conviction and when discouragement or fear comes my way, enable me to hold tightly to this truth. Today I remember the words of Jesus, “In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”