Charity suffereth long, [and] is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.
Charity never faileth: but whether [there be] prophecies, they shall fail; whether [there be] tongues, they shall cease; whether [there be] knowledge, it shall vanish away…
And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these [is] charity.
(1 Corinthians 13:3-8, 13)
We have come to an end of our devotional series “To Love As Jesus Loved”. During this series, we have seen an incredible display of love in the life of Christ. Christ’s love for His Father, and for those who were given to Him by His Father, was put on display for all of us to recognize, learn of and imitate.
Keep in mind, the outstanding characteristic of Godly love is a willingness to sacrifice oneself for the beloved. The Apostle Paul reminds us of this basic principle in Galatians 2:19-20…
For I through the law am dead to the law, that I might live unto God.
Through the testimony of the law, the lost individual sees their need of a Savior. As the lost one comes to Christ, he is made dead to the law (no longer under the penalty of the law) and given a new life of service to God.
I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me:
The newly saved individual has been transformed. They have been made dead to the old way of living under the domination of their fleshly desires.
They now are alive to Christ, living a new lifestyle of obedience to Christ. The new believer has been given a new standing before God, a new set of desires, new responsibilities and a new eternal home in the presence of God. This is what is meant by the believer being made “a new creature” in Him (2 Corinthians 5:17)
Paul reminds us that another aspect of our new lifestyle is the empowerment we receive through the sanctifying power of the indwelling Holy Spirit. It is only by Christ’s grace shown to us through the indwelling Spirit that we can live transformed lifestyles of service to Him.
and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.”
Paul, now emphasizes that living obediently is trusting the Lord day by day. The faith that believers exercise on a daily basis is a gift that comes from Jesus Christ, the Son of God. The same Lord that gave us a new lifestyle and enabled us to serve is the same Lord that loved us and exhibited that love for us by giving His life for us.
Our Lesson To Be Learned:
May we all follow His great example of love by giving of ourselves for Him and those who are around us. be willing to give of ourselves for our Lord and those around us, motivated by the love of Christ in our hearts. In doing so, we will be living lives that are pleasing and acceptable to God…
“Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children; And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour.” (Ephesians 5:1-2)
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