Monday, November 14, 2011

{Mark 12:28}  {1Corinthians 13:1-13}

"Now one of the scribes that had come up and heard them disputing, knowing that he had answered them in a fine way, asked him:
'Which commandment is first of all?'"
Jesus answered:
"The first is, 'Hear, O Israel, the LORD our God is the one and only LORD, and you must… love the LORD your God with your whole heart and with your whole soul'...
The second is this; 'You must… loveyour neighbor as yourself.' There is no other commandment greater than these."...
"The scribe said to him...'this loving him with one's whole heart and one's whole understanding...and this loving one's neighbor as oneself …is worth far more than all the burnt offerings and sacrifices.' ...
Jesus, discerning that he had answered intelligently, said to him:
'You are not far from the Kingdom of God.' “(Mark12:28-34)

If you had to pick just one thing to be known for, what would it be?

Would you want to be known as the most knowledgeable person when it came to bible understanding?
            Would you want to be known for being able to accurately explain all bible prophecies?   Even though this is not possible for any of us in our imperfect state?  None of us knows the whole truth...we only know partially at present. {1Cor.13:9, 10}
            Or rather would you want to be known as an average student of the scriptures, 
and the most genuinely loving person anyone has ever met  ?
        We are definitely living in critical times and they are likely to get worse in the near future. Jesus said that because of the increasing of lawlessness...the love of the greater number would cool off.

What does it mean for a Christian to be lawless?

        Well, what identifies us as a Christian? Jesus said, "By this all will know you are my disciples, if you have
love among yourselves."

     Love is the Law of the Christ.
Without this love in our hearts, we would be Lawless!
        At (Matt.7:521-23) Jesus could not see this love in the hearts of those ones, so he called them "workers of lawlessness".

        Jesus did not say that we would be known as his disciples because we know the bible, preach God's word, or by any other things that we say we do in his name. He said that this one quality LOVE would distinguish us most of all. He and others would recognize us as his disciples if they see this quality in our hearts.

This is not to diminish any of the other things as irrelevant.

        Jesus said at (Luke11:42) "But woe to you Pharisees, because you give the tenth of the mint and the rue and of every {other} vegetable, but you pass by the justice and the LOVE of God!

These things you were under obligation to do, but those
{other things} not to omit."
        At (Matt 23:23, 24) he said "Woe to you scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! have disregarded the weightier matters of the Law...These things it was binding to do, yet not to disregard the {other things}… blind guides, who strain out the gnat but gulp down the camel! "
What could be weightier than the Law of the Christ? (LOVE)

The motive behind anything that we do should be LOVE.
        If though, it becomes more important to be like the Pharisees in those {other things}, to the exclusion of yielding to love...we would be lawless.

        James calls loving one's neighbor the "Kingly Law". (James2:8)
Jesus even says that we should love our enemies and pray for those persecuting us. (Matt.5:43-45)

        Also the Father in Heaven does not take delight in the death of the wicked one, but that they should turn back from their ways and actually keep living. (Eze.33:11)

Paul says that we should "Go on carrying the burdens of one another,
and thus fulfill the Law of the Christ." (Gal.6:2)

        He says "For the entire law stands fulfilled in one saying, namely:
'You must love your neighbor as yourself' "
 (Gal.5:14) (See also Rom.13:8, 9)

        At (1Cor.13:2,3) he says, "And if I have the gift of prophesying and am acquainted with all the sacred secrets and all knowledge, and if I have all the faith so as to transplant mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing... And if I give all my belongings to feed others, and if I hand over my body, that I may boast, but do not have love, I am not profited at all."

         At (Matt.22:40) Jesus said "On these two commandments the whole law hangs, and the Prophets." Yes every law, every warning that the prophets gave, and in fact everything that God does is motivated by his main quality of LOVE.

(1John4:8) says that

        Even discipline is motivated by love.     (Heb.12:5,6) says My son, do not belittle the discipline from God, neither give out when you are corrected by him; for whom the Father loves he disciplines; in fact, he scourges everyone whom he receives as a son.

Yes if we have love in our hearts and we have love among ourselves we will be doing quite well.
         We are told to love one another intensely from the heart, not to owe anybody a single thing except to love one another, and above all things, have intense love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins.
(Rom.13:8), (1Pet.1:22; 4:8)

        At (Ro 12:10) Paul says "In brotherly love have tender affection for one another." We should be tenderly compassionate to one another.      Jesus displayed compassion by taking the deaf man aside...away from the crowd. (Mark7:32, 33, 34, 35)   He touched lepers who were considered "unclean".    (Mark1:40, 41, 42).
         If we don't love our brother who we can see then we cannot love God whom we cannot see. (1John4:20, 21)

Some in the first century had left the love they had at first (Rev.2:4)

At (Col.3:14) we are told "But, besides all these things...
{clothe yourselves with love} , for it is a perfect bond of union."

Now of course being imperfect, we all stumble many times (James3:2), however, if there were one thing that we all need, that one thing would be love.

Imagine a world soon to come when everything we do is motivated by love. At that time, we will surely reflect to the best of our ability, the love that God and his son have shown for us all.

(John 3: 16) shows how strong God's love for us is. Jesus willingness to die for us shows his love for his Father and us.

“…But the greatest of these is love”  (1Cor.13:13)
Love...the Law of the really is that simple.

"The undeserved kindness of the Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the sharing in the Holy Spirit be with all of you."

Agape,  Obadiah