2013-05-26 - Uncompromising, Unabusive, Godly Love
2 John ~ Part 6
God will bless those who give." His white suit reflected the spotlight, giving him the appearance of glory and purity. "We read in the Old Testament," he went on, "how God promised to meet the material needs of all who obey Him. You are told to give to the work of the ministry, and therefore God promises you that if you give to his work here at the "Light and Prosperity Ministries," that He will make you rich. After all, you're children of God,and He certainly doesn't want His obedient children to walk around in rags. No, He wants you to have furs, pools, Cadillacs, anything you want.
"I know that God has laid it on the heart of ten of you, to each send a thousand dollars. And when you send your money, also send your prayer requests, and we'll pray over each and every one. Remember that God will answer every prayer. He told me just this morning, that some of you aren't sending enough to aid the ministry, so, - no money, no answers. Remember, when you hear me, you hear God, so give and God will give."
The old woman was down to her last ten dollars, and should have gone to the store for food today. "But the Reverend Dinero said dat God was unhappy with me, cause I ain't sent enough money. I know dat the Reverend love me cause he say so, and he speaks for God. I guess I'll send this last ten and I know God'll bless me with much more. I guess the reason He ain't, for the money I already sent is cause I don't have enough faith."
The walk of the Christian is to reflect the sacrificial love of God. We are to be looking for opportunities to express God's love to those around us. In point of fact, it is the demonstration of that love that is the clearest witness of the presence of God in the midst of a fallen world. The church, and by extension individual believers, is the visible presence of Christ until His return.
But the call to love has been abused on numerous occasions, such as in the introduction of this lesson. When we are discriminating against sinful behavior, individuals will accuse us of being unloving. Christians are condemned for being unloving when, in expressing the truth of Scripture, they state it is only through Christ anyone can be saved. To reject Christ is to not escape an eternity in Hell. To express this is supposedly unloving. Finally, some will attack God outright, saying a loving God will not judge anyone.
Sometimes we allow this type of manipulation to cause us to compromise. We shave truth to avoid hurting someone. We allowed ourselves to be coerced into doing something we really shouldn't. After all, if we don't give in, we aren't loving. But the point of John's second epistle is to encourage us, through an understanding that to love isn't synonymous with always saying yes. "Love can mean saying `No!'"
John is concerned with the manipulative behavior of some false prophets. These individuals presented themselves as believers. But because of their teaching, it was clear they weren't. Using their claim of being part of the body, they were endeavoring to live off the love of believers.
To be continued.
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