Us Verses Them

December 23rd, 2022

1 John 3:11-24

Much of middle school gym class is unremarkable. Until the boys were playing dodgeball. You couldn’t miss the distinct “smack” of the rubber playground ball against the gym walls. When dodgeball was played, an unmistakable “us verses them” mentality was observable. Each player was out to get the others before he was gotten.

1 John 3 is a letter to the church addressed a group of Christians who had come to identify themselves as a people against the world. Those inside the church were “us” and those outside were “them,” and never the twain shall meet. While this group of believers did not begin with such hostility at its core, it slipped into a sort of game of spiritual dodgeball: taking aim at “them” as a definition of character and responsibility.

Christ reveals God and commands us to love others. This love for others is grounded in the redemptive love that Christ demonstrated for all people. We can not separate the revelation of God through Christ from the command to love others.

Author: Stefanie Hendrickson


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