Sunday, April 30, 2017

Worthy? That's Not The Question

"Love is not a matter of duty and bondage; rather, life in the Spirit is a life of care and concern for others, enabled by the Spirit."

         As you read the caption above, it is implied that we might think we ourselves are worthy of love but others might not be.  That's stinkin' thinkin'.  No one is good, no not one.. but God alone.  God is worthy of our praise and obedience.  Mark 10:18 "“Why do you call me good?” Jesus answered. “No one is good—except God alone." So when God's second commandment commands us to  'love one another', there is no prerequisite required of the other upon which we show love to. Matthew 22:36-40 “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’This is the first and greatest commandment.  And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.'"

"God, being good infinitely, originally, and eternally, is to be loved in the first place, and nothing loved beside him, but what is loved for him. Love is the first and great thing that God demands from us, and therefore the first and great thing that we should devote to him."

How can we love one another?

1] Have honor and respect for all.
2] Do not wrong or injure others by our words or actions.
3] Good will and thoughts for all.
4] Deny ourselves for the good of another.
5] Make ourselves a servant for the true benefit of others.

Love Fulfills the Law--Romans 13:8-10
" Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for whoever loves others has fulfilled the law.  The commandments, “You shall not commit adultery,” “You shall not murder,” “You shall not steal,” “You shall not covet,” and whatever other command there may be, are summed up in this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” Love does no harm to a neighbor. Therefore love is the fulfillment of the law."

       We teach children 'The Golden Rule'.. Matthew 7:12  “So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets."  "Jesus knew that people are naturally lovers of self, and the command uses that human flaw as a place to start in how to treat othersJesus’ Golden Rule is a positive command to show love proactively." We must not be hypocrites, but understand that 'but for the grace of God go I.'  So when you see hardship, despair or simple need... consider in what way you yourself might want a helping hand or kind gesture or loving word , if you were on the receiving end.