Exploring What Love Means
Lately in my bible reading I have been lead to read 1,2, and 3rd John. While reading I realize his passages are about relationship. Even when you are reading his accounts of Jesus in the Gospel of John I get the sense that he is talking about the relational aspects of Jesus. I love that.
My heart has been humbled in several passages that I will share with you. This will be several blogs posts, because I have a lot to say for just one.
The first humbling experience came when I read 1 John 2:8-11
“Yet I am writing you a new commandment, which is true, is realized in Him and in you, because the darkness moral blindness is clearing away and the truth light the revelation of God in Christ is already shining. Whoever says he is in the light and yet hates his brother Christian born again child of God his Father is in darkness even until now. Whoever loves his brother believer abides lives in the light and in it or in him there is no occasion for stumbling or cause for error or sin. But he who hates detests despises his brother in Christ is in darkness and walking living in the dark; he is straying and does not perceive or know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded his eyes.”
I have to admit something to you my friends. I have detested and hated many of my fellow Christian brothers and the way they teach and proclaim God in a way that I don’t agree with. I am guilty of this sin. In essence, I am walking in darkness because I am allowing my ill feelings to cloud my vision of who they are in God’s love. Perhaps, they don’t have the same understanding as I do or even yet, maybe we are not connecting because I am not hearing their love and heart in what they are proclaiming. God uses us all in different ways and perhaps my vision of who I think they should be is not in alignment to what God has in mind for them just like their vision of me may not be in alignment in how God wants things to stream from me. We see this in Paul, Peter, and John. They did not always agree, but they accepted this aspect and forgave and kept preaching their understanding of who Jesus is and accepted each other as brothers in Christ. In fact, Peter and John extended their right hand to Paul to accept him into the church. Arguments, disagreements, and jealousies almost always cause such disharmony in God’s body. In truth no one 100 percent of the time agrees with another and for me when I hear certain preachers of who are proclaiming God’s love and to me also proclaiming things I don’t think are streaming from God at the time I close my heart and my mind to them. I allow my anger, bitterness, and most importantly I start hating them and becoming angry with them. Yes, Jesus showed anger, but was he cruel about it, was he unloving about it? No, I don’t think so. He just met their misunderstanding with the Light of God’s word; He did this when he the Pharisees brought a woman to be stoned by him because she was unfaithful. What did Jesus say to them, he asked them a very pointed question, he said to them the one who is without sin can cast the first stone? He reminded them that they too are sinners, he wasn’t cruel or mean about it. He simply said quietly while he drew on the ground a very direct and pointed question to them. Guess what happened no one cast a stone towards the woman. I am often times like the Pharisees I cast stones towards people whom I know to be sinners, but I forget to look at my own heart, my own sin.
Being forgiving, doesn’t mean I have to accept what the person in questions views on the bible or who Jesus is. I just have to accept that our view points are different and that they are too a child of God. I also have to accept that perhaps we are both in different positions in our walk with God too. I have found in my lifetime that a lot of people read the bible and they read it with different understandings and perspectives from each other. Doesn’t mean they are correct and we are to discern which is truly from the Holy Spirit, but it does mean that we should pray for them and allow God to do the work that needs to be done through them and if they are not coming from a place of the Holy Spirit then God will correct them and make their errors known to them I don’t have the right to stand and throw rocks at them because Lord knows I am not a person without my own misunderstandings and sins in my life.
As you can see this passage brought up a lot of things for me and there are more as I walk this new path of my understanding of God and relationships with others. Thanks for reading; I know this is a long post.