The key to following Jesus is love. Christ loved us so much He died for us and paid the penalty for our sins. While on this earth, He set an example for us; showing compassion, loving all, particularly the “unlovable”…in the world’s eyes, not His. We are to follow His example. The greatest commandments are to love God and love others. Continue reading “Love One Another”
Sometimes love can be harsh. As parents we don’t want our kids to run out in the street. We don’t want them too close to the fire. We don’t want them to make poor choices. As we grow older, we still hope that our loved ones make right choices. If we sit by and watch, and say “that’s ok” while they make bad life choices that can affect the rest of their life or even eternity, is that love? We need to not only set the example, but tell them the truth, show them the right way. Share our faith and share who Jesus is and what He has done for us.
…”but speaking the truth in love may grow up in all things into Him who is the head – Christ”
(Feel free to read the complete paragraph or the chapter…it is always good to get the full context of any verse you may read)
…”but exhort one another daily, while it is still called ‘Today,’ lest any of you become hardened through deceitfulness of sin.”
Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself lest you also be tempted. Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.
Brethren, if anyone among you wanders from the truth, and someone turns him back, let him know that he who turns a sinner from the error of his way will save a soul from death and cover a multitude of sins.
I have often been accused of being judgmental. Sometimes it is that people don’t want to hear the truth, but many times they are right. I forget to speak the truth IN LOVE and it comes across as I want to show them they are wrong and I am right. My intent is to build them up and steer them in the right direction but I don’t always say it in the right way. Please pray for me that I always speak the truth IN LOVE and in a way that will be bold but gentle.
Other times, as I have said, it is that people don’t want their sin exposed or don’t want to hear the truth. Matthew 7:1 is often quoted, without the rest of the passage or ignoring those above and others. It says,
“Judge not, that you not be judged. For what judgement you judge, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you. And why do you look at the speck in your brother’s eye, but do not consider the plank in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, “let me remove the speck in your eye”; and look, a plank is in your own eye? Hypocrite! FIRST remove the plank from you own eye, and THEN you will see clearly to remove the speck in your brother’s eye.”
So, when leading others and telling them the truth, be sure the truth is in you and you are following Christ in a way that honors Him. Realize your own flaws and sin. Pray, and speak in the Spirit. Above all else, LOVE. Remember, though, not only is love gentle, but sometimes love needs to be stern and up front. If you love someone, you want what is best for them, and the best for them is Jesus Christ. More on this next time.
During the holidays, many have the spirit of giving. What if we did this all the time? We should have this spirit throughout the year. Today’s scripture is about love and giving. How do we know that we are God’s children? By loving others. Continue reading “Be a Servant”
How great our God is! Who is He? What is He like? What makes Him God? How can we know Him? In my last post I began to describe God through John in the Revelation of Jesus Christ. Also, in the previous posts before that I tried to describe the trinity of God, the one and only God, in three persons, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Of course, I couldn’t even come close to fully describe who He is. He is indescribable, beyond our imagination. No one can compare. I will try to give you a glimpse through His word, though this will be incomplete. Search the scriptures and read for yourself. It truly is amazing who God is.
Praise the Lord !
I will praise the Lord with my whole heart,
In the assembly of the upright and in the congregation.
The works of the Lord are great,
Studied by all who have pleasure in them.
His work is honorable and glorious,
And His righteousness endures forever.
He has made His wonderful works to be remembered;
The Lord is gracious and full of compassion.
He has given food to those who fear Him;
He will ever be mindful of His covenant.
He has declared to His people the power of His works,
In giving them the heritage of the nations.
The works of His hands are verity and justice;
All His precepts are sure.
They stand fast forever and ever,
And are done in truth and uprightness.
He has sent redemption to His people;
He has commanded His covenant forever:
Holy and awesome is His name.
The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom;
A good understanding have all those who do His commandments.
His praise endures forever.
Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and His ways past finding out!
“For who has known the mind of the Lord?
Or who has become His counselor?”
‘Or who has first given to Him
And it shall be repaid to him?”
For of Him and through Him and to Him are all things, to whom be glory forever. Amen.
All that He has done, all that He is, we ought to praise Him with our whole heart, to love Him with everything we have. We should trust in Him and His wisdom. Those who trust in the Lord will gain wisdom and strength. He will always be with you and guide you in all that you do.
Have you not known?
Have you not heard?
The everlasting God, the Lord,
The Creator of the ends of the earth,
Neither faints nor is weary.
His understanding is unsearchable.
He gives power to the weak,
And to those who have no might He increases strength.
Even the youths shall faint and be weary,
And the young men shall utterly fall,
But those who wait on the Lord
Shall renew their strength;
They shall mount up with wings like eagles,
They shall run and not be weary,
They shall walk and not faint.
Fear not, for I am with you;
Be not dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you,
Yes, I will help you,
I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.’
For thus says the High and Lofty One
Who inhabits eternity, whose name is Holy:
“I dwell in the high and holy place,
With him who has a contrite and humble spirit,
To revive the spirit of the humble,
And to revive the heart of the contrite ones.
1 John 4:7-19
Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. 8 He who does not love does not know God, for God is love. In this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him. In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.
No one has seen God at any time. If we love one another, God abides in us, and His love has been perfected in us. By this we know that we abide in Him, and He in us, because He has given us of His Spirit. And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent the Son as Savior of the world. Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. And we have known and believed the love that God has for us. God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him.
Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness in the day of judgment; because as He is, so are we in this world. There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love. We love Him because He first loved us.
We love God because He first loved us. He loved us so much He sent His one and only Son to die for us, to pay for our sins that we may live…eternally, with Him, in heaven!
In this world, there is so much that opposes us. As believers, we need to surround ourselves with other godly people and lift each other up. Of course, we need to spend time with those that do not believe and share our faith, but we must be united as a church and strengthen one another and love one another.