Lately, I have been exclusively in the Apostle John’s writings, in my personal readings, my blog writing, and my time with my wife.
John reiterates one theme, over and over again in my opinion, and that is that we are to love one another, to love like Jesus, to love.
It is refreshing to be reminded of the core mission of believers.
Love like Jesus.
But Carl – that is so obvious! How could you miss something that is so clearly taught in Scripture?
I am a man that is easily distracted. Don’t get me wrong – these distractions were good and holy and christian. Distractions like Bible reading, study, teaching, evangelizing…
But Carl – these are not distractions. These disciplines are ministry that believers are called to! Granted, that is true, but the very thing that is good, can easily become an idol we worship, an end of it’s own, a goal instead of a channel.
My friends, Love is the goal of the Christian life. Let me try to explain.
When I first became a believer, I gulped down the Word of God, consuming it’s message like a starving man. It is such good news.
Eventually, I became a believer that others would ask questions of, a source of Bible knowledge for others. This fed my pride, and fueled my desire to know the Word even more.
This is where I tripped. I became a Bible worshiper. Jesus just became a topic.
I sought to study the Word more in order to define the message clearly. Looking back, I “defined the message” so tightly that I built walls around a message instead of bridges to Jesus.
One fine Sunday, as I was teaching a Bible class, I listed all the specific doctrines I trusted on the white board. I used theological terms like soteriology, and cessationism. Foolishness oozed from my marker, elevating my self image above my brothers and sisters in the class.
My foolish pride fueled this display of arrogance. Looking back on that day, I hang my head.
John tells us to love our brothers and sisters. I simply lifted my self above them. I became nothing, as a matter of fact, I became less than nothing, if I take the Apostle Paul’s statement in 1 Corinthians 13:2 seriously.
And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.
Although I may have self deluded myself into thinking I “understood all mysteries and all knowledge” (how foolish!), Paul put me in my place – I was less than nothing!
Paul described this believer as knowing all knowledge and yet was nothing. I definitely did not possess all knowledge – therefore I was less than nothing!
All this to say that love is the goal of all of Christian life. Love that is displayed in the life of Jesus. The life and death of Jesus.
For the next few posts, I would like to settle on a passage that describes Christian love.
1 Corinthians 13:4-7
Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant
or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful;
it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth.
Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
Love never ends.
I hope you find the time to join me in considering the action of love, and how it is to be worked out in our lives. As we tunnel into this passage, your comments and thought would be appreciated.
May the Lord give you an understanding heart and a willing spirit to consider the Bible and all it’s wealth.
Thanks again for coming to visit. I hope you found something of interest in this post and would appreciate a comment, to begin a discussion.