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Greater Is The Love In Me Than The Selfishness In The World
| Harrison Woodard
Posted on 09/02/2022 11:26:06 AM PDT by Kandy Atz
As diverse as the English language is, it really falls short when it comes to expressing the Biblical concept of Love. The Greek language has several words to express different types of love, everything from romantic love to brotherly love. In the New Testament, the Holy Spirit introduces a new word for love – Agape. The word has been translated as love or charity, and those unfortunately miss the mark. Agape is divine, or sacrificial love. It is pure love, absent of any selfishness. Or as John explains, it IS God.
Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love. 1 John 4:7-8 KJV
God gave Adam and Eve His Word. They had a choice whether to believe it or not. The very first thing Satan questioned in the Garden was the integrity of God’s Word. Apparently, Eve did not trust His Word, as she reasoned it away and embellished it, leading to her disobedience. Satan had planted a dangerous seed – that God was holding something back. Satan told her that if she simply disobeyed His Word, they would be like gods. Adam and Eve could not have been any closer to God than they were before the fall. They were clothed in His Glory, with full access to Revelation knowledge, and they had a personal relationship with their Creator. They enjoyed the Liberty that comes from the God-kind of Love. There was no lack, and no desire unmet until Satan introduced selfishness. Sin cut them off from Love and gave them a new spiritual father. They were transformed from being God-conscious to self-conscious. Love was replaced by selfishness, and humanity has suffered ever since. (Genesis 3:1-24)
The Root Of All Sins
Sin entered the world when Eve disobeyed God’s Word. Individual sins come from the sin nature, which is inherited from Adam and Eve who died spiritually when they disobeyed God. All sins are rooted in selfishness, which flows from man’s rebellious nature now under the control of the father of lies. They are man’s vain attempts at replacing God. If God says, I will give you the desires of your heart, why would you covet? If God says you shall not lack, why would you steal? If He declares that you should not be afraid, why be afraid? If Jesus says, I came to give you life in abundance, what more could you obtain through your own efforts? Apart from God, there is no Life, Love, Faith, or Hope. (Psalm 23:1-6, 37:1-6, 91:1-16, John 10:10)
God So Loved The World
When Adam and Eve sinned, God could have laid waste to the world and given up on His plan for man. Lucifer’s rebellion led to a cataclysmic devastation of the Earth, leaving it covered in water and in darkness. God had a plan to make things right. It started long before the recreation of the Earth in Genesis 1. Long before man even existed, or Satan rebelled, God was giving Himself, Jesus, as a substitute for mankind. He would completely pay the price for all sin. This was unimaginable Love in action. (Genesis 1:1-31, John 3:1-21, Ephesians 1:1-23, 2:1-22, 3:1-21)
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ: According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved. Ephesians 1:3-6 KJV
The phrase before the foundation of the world in Ephesians 1:4, should be translated before the disruption, overthrow, or ruin of the social system. This refers back to Satan’s rebellion and the destruction of Lucifer’s flood. This can be seen in Genesis 1:2 where – the Earth became (correct translation) without form and an empty waste, and darkness was upon the face of the very great deep. The Spirit of God was moving over the face of the waters. (See also 2 Peter 3:5-7, Psalm 104:5-9, Jeremiah 4:23-26, Isaiah 14:12-14, Ezekiel 28:11-17, Luke 10:18)
Why is this important? God’s love for you is Eternal, and was an established Truth long before Adam and Eve sinned, and even before Lucifer rebelled. Somewhere in the dateless eternal past, because of His great Love for YOU, God chose YOU to be Holy in Christ. What does that mean? Long before you were born, before you could ever sin, before you could ever attempt to earn Salvation, or earn God’s Grace through religious activities, or by your own merit, God already chose you. Simply receive the free gift of Salvation, Love Himself, and say, “Thank you Father!”
God is Love. God loves you and chose you. Now, you choose Him. Then, as part of the Body of Christ, you can share the same praise Jesus’ received from the Father, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.” (Matthew 3:16-17, 17:1-6, Mark 1:9-11)
Love Is Patient, Love Is Kind
If God IS Love, it might be helpful to know what that really means. While the entire Bible is one long Love Letter to Believers, Paul provides a brief description in 1 Corinthians 13.
Love endures long and is patient and kind; love never is envious nor boils over with jealousy, is not boastful or vainglorious, does not display itself haughtily. It is not conceited (arrogant and inflated with pride); it is not rude (unmannerly) and does not act unbecomingly. Love (God’s love in us) does not insist on its own rights or its own way, for it is not self-seeking; it is not touchy or fretful or resentful; it takes no account of the evil done to it [it pays no attention to a suffered wrong]. It does not rejoice at injustice and unrighteousness, but rejoices when right and truth prevail. Love bears up under anything and everything that comes, is ever ready to believe the best of every person, its hopes are fadeless under all circumstances, and it endures everything [without weakening]. Love never fails [never fades out or becomes obsolete or comes to an end]. As for prophecy (the gift of interpreting the divine will and purpose), it will be fulfilled and pass away; as for tongues, they will be destroyed and cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away [it will lose its value and be superseded by truth]. 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 AMP
If Love never fails, God, who is Love, will never fail. If Love is patient and kind, God is patient and kind – desiring all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the Truth. Since Love is ever ready to believe the best of every person, God is eager to wipe out your transgressions for His own sake, and He will not remember your sins. (Isaiah 43:25, 1 Timothy 2:4)
There is a vital Truth in Isaiah 43:25, God blots out your sin for HIS OWN SAKE. He desires to fellowship with you as if sin never existed. That is true Love. It is forgiving AND forgetting your past, and instead, joyfully looking forward to a glorious future in Jesus. You might see yourself at the bottom of the pit of life, covered in the mud of sin, but God sees you as His child. He sees you as a new creation in Christ, and desires the very best for your life, if you will believe His Word. Everything starts with trusting in Jesus. Allow the Lord to make you alive in Christ, and lead you in the way you should go. By continually feeding on God’s Word, the incorruptible seed, you will know His Truth and be lifted out of the pit and seated in Heavenly places. You can’t earn any of this. It is all about Grace, and Love Himself. (Psalm 113:1-9, Proverbs 3:1-6, Isaiah 1:16-20, 2 Corinthians 5:12-21, Ephesians 2:1-10, 1 Peter 5:5-7)
There is no fear in love [dread does not exist], but full-grown (complete, perfect) love turns fear out of doors and expels every trace of terror! For fear brings with it the thought of punishment, and [so] he who is afraid has not reached the full maturity of love [is not yet grown into love’s complete perfection]. We love Him, because He first loved us. 1 John 4:18-19 AMP
What is fear? It is the opposite of faith. Faith is trusting God to do what His Word says He will do. Fear is trusting the words of the enemy. Its as simple as that – trusting in Love Himself, or the father of lies. There is no fear in love because if you are spiritually mature, knowing God who is Love, there is absolutely no reason to be afraid. Selfishness manifests because of fear. People are afraid of being hurt, being left behind, having less than their neighbors, being alone, or not being loved. There are literally thousands of ways fear manifests in the lives of people. However, in the mature Believer who knows Love, there is no fear. They are free to love others, and themselves, as God loves them. What is the difference between Love and selfishness? Love exalts others. (John 15:9-15, Romans 12:1-21, 13:7-10, Galatians 5:13-16, Ephesians 5:1-2, 2 Timothy 1:5-7, 1 Peter 4:8-10)
And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself. Luke 10:27 KJV
God is Love. He loves YOU! And Love never fails. Believe and practice Love, imitate Jesus every day, and in every way. Life can be very good, if you follow God’s Love plan for success.
Confess this often – There is no fear in Love!
TOPICS: General Discusssion; Prayer; Theology; Worship
KEYWORDS: grace; love; mercy; sin
This is the final article in this series. We are living in challenging times. But its times like these where God's Love shines brightest.
I truly hope this article inspires you.
God Bless You!
posted on 09/02/2022 11:26:06 AM PDT
by Kandy Atz
To: Kandy Atz
Or as John explains, it IS God.
God is love, but love is not God; no associative property here. Focus on God, and His love will become fully evident.
posted on 09/02/2022 11:35:30 AM PDT
("There is no other name under heaven given among people by which we must be saved." Acts 4:12)
You are precisely correct.
God IS Love is TRUTH.
Love IS God is a lie!
Otherwise the command to love God would be a command to love love!
posted on 09/02/2022 1:43:54 PM PDT
(Put not your trust in princes, in sons of men in whom there is no salvation.)
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