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Jesus commanded us to follow His example by loving and another.
About-Him.Com Devotional 03-06-2016
Do My Deeds Match my Words?
John 15:12 This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you.
It's a bit easier to love those of like faith, especially if they look and act like us and share our political views, etc. So that's not really love, is it? It's more like going along to get along. Or should I say, downright hypocrisy? Of which,I must confess that I find myself guilty at times.
Jesus expanded the list of those that we must love: Our enemies, those who curse and hate us and who use us badly and sometimes even persecute us.
Matthew 5:44 But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;
45 That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust. By following our Lord's commandment we show that we are children of our heavenly Father. He sends the sunshine and rain on saint and sinner alike, because He loves us all.
If we "talk the talk," we had better "walk the walk."
1 John 3:18 My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth.
19 And hereby we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before him.
I believe that the Lord occasionally gives us little spot tests to see if our words are backed up by our deeds. Recently I had such a test, at the most importune time. While I was in a frustrating situation, the scriptures that I've posted above came rolling through my mind. If I had not done the right thing, I certainly would have felt the Lord's disapproval.
Jesus had this to say about these situations.
Luke 6:32 For if ye love them which love you, what thank have ye? for sinners also love those that love them.
33 And if ye do good to them which do good to you, what thank have ye? for sinners also do even the same.
34 And if ye lend to them of whom ye hope to receive, what thank have ye? for sinners also lend to sinners, to receive as much again.
James said this, as only James can say it.
James 2:15 If a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food,
16 And one of you say unto them, Depart in peace, be [ye] warmed and filled; notwithstanding ye give them not those things which are needful to the body; what doth it] profit?
John uses "love" as a proof of our conversion. In other words, it doesn't matter how loud you shout, if you can't love your brother.
1 John 3:14. We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. He that loveth not [his] brother abideth in death.
15 Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer: and ye know that no murderer hath eternal life abiding in him.
16 Hereby perceive we the love [of God], because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down [our] lives for the brethren.
A good test of our "love" is: How quickly we are willing to part with our earthly goods.
1 John 3:17 But whoso hath this world's good, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels [of compassion] from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him?
The apostle Paul's description of love.
In 1 Corinthians 13:1-3, the apostle Paul shows us that even our most noble works must come from a heart that reflects the love of Christ. Otherwise, they mean nothing.
1 Corinthians 13:1 Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.
2 And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing.
3 And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing.
In verses 4-8, he gives us the definition of what love is all about.
1 Corinthians 13:4 Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,
5 Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;
6 Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;
7 Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.
8 Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away.
I can only think of one person who fits this description perfectly and you know who that is. His name is Jesus. You and I do our best to live up to His example, knowing that when the books are opened, all of our deeds and motives will be examined.
Matthew 25:34 Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:
35 For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in:
36 Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me.
Song: My God, My King and My Redeemer
“It's not about finding ways to avoid God's judgment and feeling like a failure if you don't do everything perfectly. It's about fully experiencing God's love and letting it perfect you. It's not about being somebody you are not. It's about becoming who you really are.” - Stormie Omartian, The Power of a Praying Woman
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