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John 15:9 VBS Exegesis

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by Jason Smathers on June 7, 2009

One of my tasks today is to explain John 15:9 to first and second graders. Keep in mind that I have no experience is working with children other than my own soon to be two year old daughter. The following are my notes for discussing John 15:9 with the children. Heather has informed me this is too complicated for a first grader, but I will work from these notes and see if I can explain it to them. Tomorrow’s verse might have a scaled back lesson.

“As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love.” John 15:9 (ESV)

These are the words of Jesus Himself. Jesus is loved by His Father from eternity past (forever and ever or infinity ago) and Jesus has loved us the same way. Jesus is the Head of The Church and all believers are part of the Church. This puts Jesus into the place of mediator, so we have access to God the Father through Jesus.
Abide also means continue.
Verse 10 explains how to abide [or continue] in God’s love. If you keep Jesus’ commandments, you will abide [or continue] in his love. Jesus’ commandments can be summarized in the 10 commandments, but include all the instructions throughout the Bible.
“If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love.” John 15:10 (ESV)

It is impossible for us to keep the commandments in our own power. However, God can give us the power. We must pray to God to give us the strength to keep his commandments.
Abiding in His love is not to love God as much as he loves us, but it means to enjoy the love God has for us and to take care to remain in His love by keeping His commandments. God commands us to continue in the faith forever, and every person saved by God will continue forever. Not of our own strength, but by drawing from the strength of God.

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