By clicking on the various links you will be taken to my Google Document's site where you can access different articles I've written on various subjects.

Confession Prayer
Separation of Church & State
Why I'm NOT a 'Conservative'

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Love for one another

Love for one another:

If Christ walked the earth today, what political party would He belong to? (I'll give you a hint, if you answered Republican, you're wrong! If you answered Democrat, you're also wrong!) What specific denomination would He belong to? (Hint, unless you answered NONE, you're wrong!) Would He use The Scriptures to condemn anyone? (No) Or would He use them to teach us how we should treat one another and how we should interact with Him?

If Christ walked in to a church today, how would you treat Him? Do you think He really cares 'how' you worship? (i.e. what type of music is used, what instruments are used?) Do you think He would care 'how' you baptized someone? (i.e. full immersion or sprinkling?) Maybe what translation of The Scriptures you use? (He spoke in the contemporary language of His day … just think on that.)

Would He want religion forced on others via a government or a church? Would He be angered that the government tries to help those in need? What if we stand for freedom for all? What if we allow freedom to believe or not to believe?

Sadly, I feel that, over time, we've distorted who Christ is and what He stands for! We cling to man made rules and norms and forget the heart of His message. We grow callous and close ourselves off from those who may differ in how they view this or that part of The Scriptures.

The foundation of EVERYTHING Christ stands for, of EVERYTHING He taught, of EVERYTHING we should do, is LOVE! John the Apostle said in his chronicle of The Gospel that 'God so loved the world that He sent His only Son so that none should perish but have everlasting life' (of course this requires belief) (John 3:16)

But what is love? Just a word? Just a tip of the hat towards some social service? NO. It's so much more.
There is a long list in the Apostle Paul's letter to the church (and believers) in Corinth. He recounts how love is an action! How it's patient and kind, how it's forgiving and understanding. How it's not puffed up (showy) and how it endures all things and hopes (that all will be well) all things and how it's unselfish! (1 Corinthians 13, paraphrased)

Yet often we've picked and chosen what parts of this list to follow. We're fine with it being kind but want to show everyone how much love we have. Or we are okay with enduring but not with hoping or forgiving … this isn't how we should be!

Christ isn't about condemnation. He's about LOVE, about Forgiveness and understanding. The Scripture isn't a book of what we can't do, it's a book about what we can do! It's about possibilities and hope, about doing what is needed to care for all (even if it may not be a means we like i.e. a government being involved or another church being involved, even a non religious group being involved)

I'll elaborate on this in a full on article, but I think this will suffice for a blog post. Love is an action, Christ is alive and is NOT about what you can't do, nor is He choosing sides in some political or church battle. He desires for us to care for one another, to look out for one another, to live peaceably (if at all possible) among one another! So If you claim Christ as yours, think of the cost!

This is how everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another. (John 13:35 ISV)
~Rev. J