BibleGateway Verse of the Day (KJV)

Saturday, May 15, 2010

The Love of the Brethren

Why are Christians so lovely and loving? I know it's because of our Lord Jesus Christ. Even though I've been a Christian for seven years, the love the brethren show each other sometimes takes me by surprise and takes my breath away. Thank you, Lord!!

A very few ways we can love the brethren (and all people) to exude the fragrance of Christ in all the lives we touch in our churches, our families, our workplaces and in the marketplace, in public debate, the blogosphere, and internet interactions, etc...:

* Refuse to take offense easily. Be "dense" and a little blind to the sins, faults, foibles, shortsightedness, and offensiveness of others. Always be more aware of our own sin than others' sins. Remember how Christ has forgiven much in you. Forgive and forget quickly.

* Be cheerful. Be thankful to God. Be content. Smile. Give hugs.

* Notice others' needs and seek to fill them or ease others' burdens. Does someone seem overwhelmed? Maybe you can help them out with a task they have to do. Does a couple you know need to spend time together? Perhaps you could offer to babysit their children for a few hours. Is someone ill and/or bedridden? Maybe you can send them a card with a note to let them know you are thinking of them and praying for them. Has someone lost their job and having trouble paying their bills? Maybe you can make a casserole and deliver it with a card with a Scripture message and a cash gift tucked inside. This "how to serve" list is as endless as the list of problems and trials people have. Every problem is an opportunity for a Christian to give and serve and witness for Christ.

* Give encouragement and be kind. Memorize Scripture and sanctify the Lord in your heart, so that you can be "ready always" to give an answer for the hope within you (1 Pet. 3:15), have wisdom and wise counsel for the hurting, and on your tongue can be the "law of kindness." (Prov. 31:26)

* I like what Lady Lydia writes about "Making the Best of Things". (In fact, I highly recommend every article on her entire blog!) Even if you are poor materially, you can be kind and generous by giving away a smile, a parking space, or by releasing a grudge.

A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another. (Jn. 13:34-35)

For, brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another. (Gal. 5:13)

Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.(Phil 4:8)

But as touching brotherly love ye need not that I write unto you: for ye yourselves are taught of God to love one another. (1 Thess. 4:9)

Who by him do believe in God, that raised him up from the dead, and gave him glory; that your faith and hope might be in God. Seeing ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren, see that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently: Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever. (1 Pet. 1:21-23)

Finally, be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous: Not rendering evil for evil, or railing for railing: but contrariwise blessing; knowing that ye are thereunto called, that ye should inherit a blessing. (1 Pet. 3:8-9)

We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren. He that loveth not his brother abideth in death. Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer: and ye know that no murderer hath eternal life abiding in him. Hereby perceive we the love of God, because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. But whoso hath this world's good, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him?

My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth. And hereby we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before him. (1 Jn. 3:14-19)

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