Sunday, July 5, 2009

We must love

Among Christians in most camps this is a reoccurring theme; we must love those who are not Christians and we must love those who are not familiar with God’s grace. In Mark Jesus says: ”You shall love your neighbor as yourself!” So, those who say this are on Biblical ground. However, if we employ a little logic to what Jesus said it is quite clear that we cannot love our neighbor more than we love ourselves. This is one of the many limitations of the law, because it deals with a limited vessel with limited abilities for love. Moreover, every time the word “must” is used I sense the damp hand of the law on my shoulder.

A much more fruitful approach is: “We love, because He first loved us.” (1 John 4:19). This encourages the believer to receive before he or she can give. The flesh, however, despises this idea because it deprives it of all honor. In addition all the “musts” and “shoulds” which constantly surround us do not make a position of restful receiving any easier. In most Christian circles this is the truth; in order to receive we MUST first give. As I have grown in my own grace walk I am convinced that God’s kingdom and the New Covenant represent everything which is contrary to man’s perceptions. When man says give, grace says receive. When man says you must seek God, grace says God is seeking you. When man says God is angry, grace says God is pleased.

My point is: before we can give anything of eternal value we must (sorry, I just couldn't find a way around that word) first have received something of eternal value which we can pass on. The only source of gifts of eternal value is God.

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