Why should we love God and one another?
“We love because he first loved us.” 1 John 4:19, NIV. God made us His children because He loved us. God loved us even when we did not love Him. If we are in Christ, or if we share in Christ, it is clear then why we should love God and one another. “This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.” 1 John 4:10, NIV. “Atoning sacrifice” refers to what God accomplished for us in Jesus Christ, on the cross at Golgotha. God made His Son to be sin for us by placing in Jesus our sin and our sinful life. See 1 Peter 2:24. Therefore; Jesus by separation from God, the only source of life, took our sins into eternal abyss, so that our sins could never come back and count against us.
When we understand and appreciate such a selfless love then, we love God and His children because He first loved them all. We love God, not in the hope of becoming His children, but because we are His children in Jesus Christ. By practicing such love, we are in Christ, and He is in us. “We know that we live in him and he in us, because he has given us his Spirit. If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in him and he in God.” 1John 4:13, 15, NIV.
Is it possible to recognize that someone is in God and God in him? Yes. Those who, by faith in Jesus Christ live in God, they love the way God loves – selflessly! Also, Jesus commanded us to love one another because that is how others will know we belong to Christ and the Father. See John 13:34. “And he has given us this command: whoever loves God must also love his brother. 1 John 4:21, NIV. If we have the love that comes from God, we have God in us, through Jesus Christ.