Borrowed Truths

A Study on Love (Part 5)

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A Study on Love (Part 5)

“Knowledge puffs up, but love edifies” (1st Cor. 8:1) A haughty spirit goes before a fall, this I am sure you have probably read, but were you aware that the word haughty means proud, arrogant, self-important, and one of the ways that we can become this type of individual is through knowledge. You have probably heard the statement that ‘knowledge is power’, and rightly so, if we are speaking of the comprehension of the Word of God, the awareness that His Word is the pathway to all knowledge. But, in the world, many times knowledge comes before pride.

An “I know more than you do” attitude is a form of pride that comes not just from a proficiency of some particular subject matter, but from a false realization that the person speaking these words believes that he knows more than anyone on the topic. I do not know if it is a good habit I have fallen into or not, but when I meet these  folks, I remind them that there are around seven billion people on the planet right now, and, though it is possible, it is highly unlikely that they are the master of the particular subject at hand. This statement is not meant to belittle them or to diminish the fact that they have some knowledge of the subject, but to create in them a heart of humility, whether they are Christians or not, though it rarely seems to work.

I have found in the course of my brief pilgrimage here on this planet that most generally this is a cry to be noticed by the person speaking, a desire to be recognized as a person of value and worth, and I am sorry to say we all do it. From the little child who cries and screams because he has not learned a vocabulary yet, to the old woman in the neighborhood who goes to the store to get a can of beans, even though she has three cans at home, we all want to be noticed. Because of the incredible growth for the need of “self-recognition”, much of the world today has become a world of enablers, and even though everyone has great value, they want you and everyone else to know it. They seek the recognition and love of the world, yet for the wrong reasons.

The love spoken of in the Scriptures edifies, it builds up, but not for selfish reasons, this type of love wants nothing more than the growth and development in maturity of the individual it is directed towards. The giver of this type of love seeks nothing for themselves, but desires only that the one they are speaking to hears love in firm truth, is eager for nothing more than that this person knows that they are loved, and the end result should always be the same, that Jesus loves them too. For people to be accepted just as they are, right where they are, is not just something that our Lord did, but something we are to emulate in ourselves, in fact, it is something we are commanded to do.

The “faith which works by love” (Gal. 5:6) is the truest type of faith there is, for it is God given, Christ centered and handed to the receiver by the Holy Spirit. I put no extra words to the Scriptures, nor do I presume to know the mind of God, but I have noticed a pattern in my life and other believers in this area. It is very, very difficult to ‘love the unlovely’, the downcast, the drug addicts, the person who is on the street corner that was there yesterday and the day before and will probably be there tomorrow, those, for the most part, society has given up on and thrown away. But those we know and have known for quite some time that are going through some form of trouble, we gladly reach out to, putting much effort to assist them in whatever way we can.

This is how our Gracious Lord starts us on the path of love, His love. He begins with the known, the comfortable, that with which we are familiar with, then, for those that truly desire to serve, to be obedient to His Word, he moves us forward, yet in the worlds eyes we are going backwards. Now we are not just waiting for Him to send us, we are going out, out into the darkness of the lives of those that are lost, not just handing them a dollar as we pass by, but stopping to see what they need, with no regard whatsoever for anything in return. “For God so loved the world that He gave…”

The end result of this type of love is a complete self-sacrifice, and it is my hope and prayer that these words of encouragement will convict you more that this poor writer has done in this area. This example of self-sacrifice will affect every area of our lives, if we will but allow the Holy Spirit access to our hearts, not so that we will be noticed, but so that God will be glorified. It is a love that cannot be expressed by us, it requires a humility that does not reside within us, no matter how much we may like to think so, it is God given. It is the mountain top that only our Lord can lead us to, it is the personification of the truth that say’s “we are by love to serve one another.” (Gal. 5:13)

“Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.” (John 15:13) Friend is a big word, it usually means someone with whom we have had a long and deep relationship with, but, if you are walking down the street and engage someone in a conversation, if only for a few minutes, and you find that this person is a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ and has trusted Him for their salvation, have you not just met a friend. In that moment, if it was necessary, would you die for him, would you sacrifice all for that person in that moment. My friends, this is the love we are to have for all we meet, this type of love should be the basis from which all of our lives should flow, we are to “be rooted and grounded in love.” (Col. 3:14)

No human, no matter how long they have walked with our Lord in this life, can love like this, it is impossible. Only the Holy Spirit of God indwelling in the believer in Christ, the willing servant of the Most High God, can love like this. The words written here can encourage only, they cannot convict, only God can do that. Those that can go past the feelings of love can be used in this area, those that know for a fact the truth of His love, these are those that He can use. He asks only for obedience and submission to His perfect will.

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