God is love, yes God is love (1 John 4)


Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.

Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us. This is how we know that we live in him and he in us: He has given us of his Spirit. And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world.

If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in them and they in God. And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them. This is how love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment: In this world we are like Jesus. There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.

We love because he first loved us. Whoever claims to love God yet hates a brother or sister is a liar. For whoever does not love their brother and sister, whom they have seen, cannot love God, whom they have not seen. And he has given us this command: Anyone who loves God must also love their brother and sister.

1 John 4: 7 – 21 NIV


God is love. 3 words.

If you observed the sad 2017 events in this nation at Charlottesville (white supremacist rally), Sulphur Springs TX (church shooting), and Las Vegas (mass shooting), you’d wonder if some people have lost sight of this fundamental guiding principle of believers. If you observed the nagging presence of ugly white supremacy and situational male supremacy (sexual harassment), God is love seems far afield. Sadly.

Love, don’t hate, others. 1 John 4 of the Bible conveys this concept very well. In a world where this concept was universally practiced there’d be no racists, mass shooters, bullies, or violence. God is love; abhor hate.

 


Photo credits:

Holding hands – Joe Brusky/flickr (CC BY-NC 2.0)

God is love –  The High Calling/flickr (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Love sculpture – Via Tsuji/flickr (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

 

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Faithful Christians: Endure, Your Troubles Won’t Last


But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.

2 Corinthians 4: 7-9 NIV


For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.  So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.

2 Corinthians 4: 17-18 NIV


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Rejoice, Pray, & Meditate on Godly Things


Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice! Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand. Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy–meditate on these things. The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and the God of peace will be with you.

Philippians 4:4-9 NKJV


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Photo credit: Jerry Worster/flickr (CC BY-NC 2.0)

Rules for ‘Holy Living’ (Scripture)

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Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.  

Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone.  

Forgive as the Lord forgave you.   

And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.

Colossians 3: 12-14 NIV

  • The rules for holy living (v. 1 – 17) can be found at the link below. After my last post on Godly living, these seventeen verses seemed to be the logical next step.
  • Keep on walking!

Rules for Holy Living

Colossians 3 1-17 – NIV


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Photo credit: Jerry Worster/flickr (CC BY-NC 2.0)

8 Pillars of Living a ‘Godly Life’ (Scripture)

  • Faith
  • Goodness
  • Knowledge
  • Self-control
  • Perseverance
  • Godliness
  • Mutual affection
  • Love

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3 His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. 5 For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; 6 and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; 7 and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love.

8 For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. 10 Therefore, my brothers and sisters, make every effort to confirm your calling and election. For if you do these things, you will never stumble, 11 and you will receive a rich welcome into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

(2 Peter 1 NIV)


Photo credit: Jerry Worster/flickr (CC BY-NC 2.0)

The Birth of Jesus Christ (Matthew 1)

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This is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about:

His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be with child through the Holy Spirit.  Because Joseph her husband was a righteous man and did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly.  But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.

She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus,because he will save his people from their sins.” All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet:

“The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel”–which means, “God with us.”

When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife.  But he had no union with her until she gave birth to a son.  And he gave him the name Jesus. 

Matthew 1: 18-25 (NIV)


Photo credit:  honorbound/flickr  (CC BY-ND 2.0)