Yesterday I read an email from a young adult who had been deeply hurt by fellow Church believers much older in the faith than they were. These mature Christians had failed badly in their love towards her and she was on the edge of leaving church. She had not sinned against God but she had offended them by her youthful passion and enthusiasm to serve Him. It exposed their selfishness. Who needs a devil when we beat our own? The only blood on the Church floor should be that of Jesus. The witch-hunts seem to continue. I replied calling for this young person to hold on to love and to keep their heart right and not to become like those older in the faith.
Whatever justification Church people have to be unkind it only reveals that they haven’t been in the presence of Jesus that day. We have seen the Apostle John have much to say on love in the Church.
John has repeatedly majored on the mandatory reason why we should love others within the Church and now he brings it to a close by being as succinct as he can.
“Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God, and everyone who loves the father loves his child as well. 2 This is how we know that we love the children of God: by loving God and carrying out his commands. 3 In fact, this is love for God: to keep his commands. And his commands are not burdensome, 4 for everyone born of God overcomes the world.” (1 John 5 v 1-4)
Here it is:
- Believing Jesus is the Christ and loving the children (believers) of the father (God) are interlinked.
- We cannot love God and be obedient in love (His commands) without loving His children (believers) and we cannot love His children (believers) without loving God and being obedient in love (His commands).
- Love for God is to be obedient in love. His commands are always to love.
- Love does not burden us because being born of God means we have overcome our own selfish desires (the world).
Any Church that truly gets the above will grow in the presence and power of God.
To do less is not the Church that Jesus came to build.