| Natural love isn't cutting it with a God and a Savior who are love.|
So many in the church have a definitional problem of "God's love", the kind of love that has been shed abroad in our hearts when we are born again.
How much difference is there between supernatural power and natural power?
How much difference between supernatural wisdom and natural wisdom?
How much difference between supernatural strength and natural strength ?
How much difference between supernatural devotion and natural devotion?
The answers are obvious, but here's the question that causes many to stumble.
How much difference is there then between supernatural love and natural love?
Christians' great traps have always been living the Christian life in our own ( natural) power, wisdom and strength. This because we can't obey God truly that way and worse, we rob Him of His glory.
Likewise, then and perhaps most importantly since love is the greatest of these, the Christians' greatest trap is to love others in our own natural love. We struggle mightily in this area and fail often mightily in this area. I hear often things like this......"I'm struggling to love that person" or " I find it difficult to love this person", or, "I understand God's command to love the brothers sacrificially, but I'm not there yet." These are the most natural things in the world to say when we are attempting to love others in our own natural God given love. Just like it's perfectly natural to say I don't have the strength to share the Gospel with others. The key is that all these objections are perfectly correct ( and forgivable) in the natural. However, to suggest that we can't because of our natural limitations is the exact sin of unbelief that made God so unbelievably angry with the Israelites when they failed to enter the promised land and those people didn't even have the indwelling Spirit. Amp that up tremendously with us then who have God inside....specifically in our hearts.
We have had God's love ( the Spirit ) shed abroad ( everywhere, fully available) in our hearts to enable and cause us to love supernaturally in each and every need and circumstance and no objection or natural defense is even remotely justified or warranted. "I can't" or "God just doesn't have me there yet" is the ultimate unbelief. The ultimate unbelief. Thank God He forgives, but more importantly, Thank God HE will not under any circumstance feel comfortable for us to live in that unbelief even though we as a church give comfort to that place all the time to each other. Ever hear "don't beat yourself up, God understands we are only human". Near blasphemy if you ask me. Christ died and suffered so that we can. We have, because of Him, received everything we need for Godliness. A forgiving church is ALSO a church that accurately establishes that we can love supernaturally in the Spirit, He helps us do it, He accordingly holds us accountable to it, giving forgiveness but bristling at excuses of unbelief.
It's time to name it and claim it for real.
God is most certainly weary with sin. I suggest He is also very weary with His people who don't live out the Spirit of love, power and self control that is in them based on the excuse foundation of "I can't" or "I'm not there yet" or even worse........."nobody else is".
A rod of correction and a scourge of discipline in love is the move of God upon a people who don't love Him and others in supernatural ways where He gets the glory for His gift and His love. Pain from a loving Father is better than a lampstand removed or a spewing out from a loving Savior.
Too many churches and too many Christians major in natural love. Love of family, love of friends and love of those we share common values with. The measure of supernatural love in the church is a love that considers departing this life to be with Jesus "far better" and to love sacrificially and in a suffering manner even for our wicked enemies, much less our righteous brothers and sisters, not as a command, but rather as a privilege and completely reasonable because we are like our Father. This love is not a goal we strive for in maturity but rather is something we start with. If you doubt that, read the first few chapters of Acts over again.
A natural loving church is not light in a dark world. It is not salt in a corrupt world. Jesus had very harsh words of warning for a merely natural loving church. Such a church is unable to keep the love they have fiery hot in the days of evil and thus, the testimony of God and Jesus in such a Christian or church will suffer great dishonor in these days unless we name and claim God's supernatural love for ourselves and not just for Jesus. No supernatural love....no light.....no salt.....good for one thing only. Jesus said that to a people and His apostle friends. He told them He would give His Spirit to His people for Godly wisdom, power, and love to a people who lived in a dark evil time and He says that to us and He reasonably therefore demands we supernaturally love today.
Jesus isn't pleading with us today to supernaturally love. He may be pleading with the Father to forgive us for not doing it in the past but, toward us, He is most strenuously and seriously commanding us to love supernaturally and to stop loving in our own natural ways, strength, power and wisdom. The testimony of Jesus and the glory of God are the stakes and God does not mess around in those areas.
"It is finished" spoken from the cross signifies that the work of redemption and justification is completed. It also however, just as importantly and maybe more so, means everything God has commanded to be and do is accomplished so that we can love with God's love. Therefore, "I can't" are not the words of the humble but of those who live in the natural flesh and unbelief and such cannot please God.
For those who might respond that they find these words condemning, please know that almost everything spoken here is a paraphrase of things Jesus spoke in the Gospels or that He spoke through the apostles and prophets. The only question is whether the assessment is accurate that there are many Christians, not all, but many, who need to hear this from Jesus in these dark times when the love of many could grow cold because it's already lukewarm because it isn't supernatural.
| 2020/9/23 18:38||Profile|
| Re: Natural love isn't cutting it with a God and a Savior who are love.|
Forgive me for replying to myself :)
If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. - James 1:5
This promised wisdom to those who lack and ask in faith is supernatural wisdom or God’s wisdom. Do you think it a reasonable thing to add:
If you lack supernatural love of anyone, ask and supernatural love will be given to you liberally and generously?
If you lack supernatural power to witness or obey, ask and supernatural power will be given to you liberally and generously.
Ask and you shall receive. Wisdom, power and love for the moment of need.
Generously poured out. Unless of course God is exaggerating.
| 2020/9/23 20:22||Profile|
| Re: love|
Real LOVE is superior to the human love because it is the product of God’s LOVE instead of ours.
God is love and is the only source of love that exists.
Sometimes when we hear a command from God we think it is an order or a demand for us do or try to be something that we do not think we are. We feel forced to do something that we think opposes our true self. How could we possibly love God with all of our heart, strength and might all of time when we think that we do not have that love within us?
What is a command? Some people see the commands of God are like a 5 star general barking an order to a private in the army.
God’s commands are really God’s own thoughts and desires that are IMPLANTED IN US by the Holy Spirit. It is the Birth of Christ within us. It is an entirely a new direction, a new goal, a new and living way that now resides and dwells within us and is the REAL US.
So then the purpose of the command is for us to see who we really are in Christ. The purpose of the command is to show us our true reality in HIM!! It is not an order to you to try to be or do anything. We are now a new creation and this was a change of our own essence and being that was only accomplished BY God in Christ. It is not a demand for you to do something or to avoid something but an instruction showing you Christ's life within - who you really are.
Next time you see or hear a command you can know that the person of CHRIST HIMSELF with all that He is and Has - dwells, lives and resides within you now. That is the real you and that completely satisfies the command.
Because God Father has birthed us we now have His divine nature - LOVE. This love is not just a thing but it is our very essence and true foundation of who we really are. We are that LOVE!
| 2020/9/25 9:55||Profile|
West Sussex, England
| Re: Natural love isn't cutting it with a God and a Savior who are love.|
As I read your words I was thinking of another type of Love ... Agape love. Which is the sacrificial love and feelings aren't the primary motivator of it. It's our will.
It is to lay down ones self using our will, whether we have a feeling to do something or not.
I remember a singer years ago Don Francisco. Well he came to our town in England and belted out some songs. He sang out a song called, 'Love is not a feeling it's an act of your will.'
I thought to myself in my youth, "this guy doesn't know God." .. Love is not a feeling it's an act of your will ?? "dear me that's crazy" ... he sure needs help singing that kind of stuff.
But I would imagine that many Christian marriages are broken up because the feeling of love has dried up... and they didn't realize that seeking to be a living sacrifice to the Lords will and to deny themselves is a part of loving too ... It's Agape love.
As the Lord said, "those who have my commands and keep them are the ones that Love me." John 14 v 21.
And part of the First commandment is to love God with our whole mind. To serve God using our will to do the things He asks. It takes a disciplined mindset to put this 'doing' type of love into action. Where we assault and arrest the laziness in our minds that can't be bothered to take sinful thoughts captive.. It isn't based upon waiting for feelings to inspire us to do it. It's the love of servant hood.
To 'gird up the loins of our mind' (1 Peter 1v13) is when we are appropriating that kind of love. It's the Love that we Christians who want to become mature must put into action.
| 2020/9/26 8:43||Profile|
| Re: |
I have likewise heard that love is an act of the will and not of the feelings.
When we are born again, there is a transformation that takes place that continues on to glory where our whole man is being conformed to the image of Jesus. That transformation as I read it is of our desires, our will, our thoughts and attitudes and our emotions....ultimately, even our bodies.
The will is servant of the desires of the heart. I know that is debatable by some but there is just so much Scripture that backs that up in descriptions of the wicked and the righteous.
With regard to our command to love, the Scripture uses words like devotion, fervent, zealous, passion and compassion, desire, affection, full of joy and tears.
There is a kind of loving pity that God and we have that may be less emotional or have less in feelings but even there, the Bible speaks of that love coming from the "bowels" of a man which I think signifies a "gut wrenching" kind of concern.
I don't say these things to object to what you have said Brother David. But I do think what you have touched on is an important topic. If love is only a decision though, the kind of relationship we are to have with the Father, with Jesus, with the brothers and sisters, neighbors and enemies changes rather dramatically and not for the better. Admittedly, the further you go down that chain or relationships, the Scripture provides differing levels of love required and the level of emotional temperature changes.
| 2020/9/26 17:43||Profile|
West Sussex, England
| Re: |
Thanks for your nice and interesting reply.
It's hard to know all of the different things that cause us to love God in an obedient way.
| 2020/9/26 20:41||Profile|