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3:16.8 The Power of Love (1 John 3:16), part 5
Again, by contrast, JESUS taught us that our HIGHEST priority should be to show love to others. Look with me, here, at the Gospel of Luke in Luke 6:6-11 “On another Sabbath, Jesus entered the synagogue and was teaching, and a man was there whose right hand was withered. 7 And the scribes and the Pharisees watched Him, to see whether He would heal on the Sabbath, so that they might find a reason to accuse Him. 8 But He knew their thoughts, and He said to the man with the withered hand, “Come and stand here.” And he rose and stood there. 9 And Jesus said to them, “I ask you, is it lawful on the Sabbath to do good or to do harm, to save life or to destroy it?” 10 And after looking around at them all He said to him, “Stretch out your hand.” And he did so, and his hand was restored. 11 But they were filled with fury and discussed with one another what they might do to Jesus”ESV.
Now, I don’t mean that we shouldn’t keep our doctrine pure. In fact, Scripture is quite clear that we MUST do that. Nor do I mean that we shouldn’t strive to give God our very best in worship. What I AM saying is this: we can be DEEPLY religious, we can be ABSOLUTELY pure in our doctrine, and we can be RIGHT ON TARGET with our Sunday morning worship. But friends, if we fail to love others, if we fail to love others whose lives are less than perfect, who are spiritually lost, who have been hurt, who have failed, and who’ve fallen, then, the truth is, we have failed and we have fallen.
Because you see, ultimately, the reason we are to love others as Jesus loved us– is because they need Jesus too. They are just like we were when we first came to Jesus. They are crying out, “For pity’s sake, somebody love me!” Our objective, as children of God, is to give them our love as an extension of His love, because Jesus gave His love to us.
Commenting on the Apostle John’s writing about love, Thomas a’ Kempis, summed it all up in these words: “Whoever loves much, does much.”
An evangelist once told how much he had always admired his mother because of how she loved. He told of a time when he was a boy, when he found her sitting at the table with an old tramp. Apparently, she had gone shopping, met the tramp along the way, and invited him home for a warm meal. During the conversation the tramp said, “I wish there were more people like you in the world.”
Whereupon his mother replied, “Oh, there are. But you must look for them.”
The old man simply shook his head, saying. “But, lady, I didn’t need to look for you. You looked for me.”
Commenting on his mother’s kindness toward the tramp, the evangelist understood that his mom did something more than simply offer that tramp welfare. He said “It was a compassion that went out of its way to love the unlovely.
And that friends, quite honestly, is the story of our Savior’s life, death, and resurrection. Jesus came looking for us, the sick, the maimed, the lame, the bruised, the brokenhearted, the wretched wanderer, the poor and forgotten, the spiritually blind, the prisoner, and the lonely - every one of us.
The evangelist closed, as I will, with these two questions: “Has HE found you?” Have you accepted His invitation? END
Medication: A Merry Heart
Mom walks into the kitchen and sees her daughter with the whole box of animal crackers spread on the counter top.
Mom: “Why did you pour out the whole box?”
Child: “The box says, ‘Do not eat if the seal is broken. I’m looking for the seal.”
God Bless, Have a Great weekend,
St Mark’s Community Church, Janesville
Verse of the Week: Exodus 20:7
Today’s readings: Proverbs 16 – 18
Saturday: Proverbs 19 – 21
Sunday: Prov. 22 – 24