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The True Test

simplyrhetorical

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The Apostle John is referred to as, “the disciple that Jesus loved.”  John would pen, under the dictates of the Holy Spirit, three letters in which the word love was used over thirty-eight times.  John realized that love was the knot that tied the earthly and heavenly Kingdoms together.  By loving Jesus, it would only follow that Believers would love one another.   Where there is love there is fellowship, and a bonding that promotes unity and spiritual growth.  We are called to be part of the Body of Christ.  We are not separate entities operating independent of each other, but vital parts that need to complement one another. (I Corinthians 12:12-26)  The Biblical “blueprint” is clear as to how the Church should look and function as a body of Believers.   But the reality is more like looking through a kaleidoscope and seeing an ever changing picture of the Church.

 

It is becoming more and more obvious that when the true Church is displayed, darkness will flee, and we will operate in the light knowing our surroundings.  There is then no darkness or uncertainty for “God is light.”  Not only are our steps enlightened, but the Blood of Jesus continually “cleanses us from all sin.”  John makes it very clear that if we claim to walk in fellowship but are walking in darkness, we are not truthful.  He goes so far as to say that if a Believer does not love his brother, he is actually abiding in darkness, and has become blinded to his surroundings.  If a Believer has the vocabulary, but his actions betray his confession, he is a liar.  It is more than lip service; it is practicing the Truth that the Holy Spirit has revealed to the Believer.  Love prefers others above himself.  It is a desire to do whatever is necessary to help a fellow Believer achieve the ultimate goal of being Christ-like.

 

The Holy Spirit prompted John to identify how the world would draw God’s creations into sin.    To entice the Christian to love the world, he identified the three categories of sin: the Lust of the Flesh, the Lust of the Eyes, and the Pride of Life.  Satan uses these temptations today to draw men into conflict with God.  Eve’s hunger brought her to the tree (lust of the flesh), while her eyes intensified her desire (lust of the eyes), which then led her to elevating her actions above God’s Word (pride of life). (Genesis 3:6)  In the Battle in the Wilderness, Jesus was tempted to turn a stone into bread (lust of the flesh), to rule over the Kingdoms of the world (lust of the eyes); and to override God’s intended Word (pride of life). (Luke 4:1-12)

 

The true test of our love of God is our love for one another.  The true test of our love for one another is our love of God.  The Bible teaches that God is love and when we love Him, we abide in Him and He in us!  To see the potential of what Biblical obedience can do should cause every Believer to love the Word with unparalleled zeal.  The Word works through the love of God and through the love of one another.   “And now abides faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.” (I Cor. 13:13)

 

 I purposely left out Scriptural references of I John so as to get the reader to search out that epistle and discover these truths for himself.  Too many times people simply take the author’s word for granted and fail to open the Book of Discovery for themselves.  Happy reading!



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A "counselor" of my ex-wife once told me, "God doesn't want you to put him first.  God's not selfish."  Too few people realize that it is only by putting God first that I will ever be able to put another first above myself.  I need God's in order to love someone else.  God, others, then myself.  Satan's formula is myself, others, and then God, if there is anything left over.  Formula for failure.
"

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