THE LOVE OF MANY WILL GROW COLD
THE LOVE OF MANY WILL GROW COLD
By John M. Taylor
In today’s fast moving world events, and as we grow closer and closer to the coming of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, we need to ask ourselves, “do we esteem others better than ourselves”? Is the love for your neighbor, your spiritual brother in Christ more important to you than fulfilling the desires of the flesh. We all like to be praised, to feel like we are accomplishing something worthwhile, to be top dog in our endeavors, but does that desire impede or diminish the life of our brothers and sisters walking with the Lord? Do we stand in the way of blocking or creating a stumbling block for our brethren, that they might even fall by the wayside?
We are called to be comformed to the image of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, but does that include needless competition between brother and sisters of the church of Jesus Christ? Obviously, it does not. It only brings heartache and damages relationships that should be stronger because of our common bond.
Then why is the Church of God so torn up? I read with interest of a discussion on an online forum of a discussion of ministers who like to lift themselves up over the brethren they have been charged to lead by God. They don’t lead by example, they lead by coercion or with the title of “pastor”, saying “Look at me. Aren’t I a lovely picture of a follower of Jesus Christ?”. Is that what ministers of God’s Word are suppose to be about? I don’t think so. My interpretation of Jesus’ teaching is of the humble servant, who does not exalt himself, but lifts up others and points them along the path to God’s Kingdom and provide the light to their path, by using God’s Word.
God warns each and everyone of us, that the power and the prince of air would try and split us asunder and destroy our joy, through loss of fellowship, or in extreme, turn totally away from seeking the Lord and His righteousness. I’ve seen so many church divisions in churches that I’m sure it makes God sick to His stomach, because I know it does me.
What does Jesus says when it comes the word “love” and being shown by His followers.
Turn to John 13:34-35:
v.34 A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.
v.35, By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.
Think of it. Jesus was God in the flesh. He left His throne of glory, to become a humble servant to minister to others. He never coerced anyone to follow His lead. He ministered selflessly to everyone and anyone who needed Him, and point them to God, our Father. Should we not do likewise, as Jesus is our example? I know we should, but do we?
Jesus commands us to love one another, as He loves us. We should be showing the love shown us, and spread that to others around us. All people we come in contact with should see a difference in each of us that is lacking in their life. It is especially true when it comes to brethren and disciples of Jesus Christ.
Jesus came to flesh out His perfect law of liberty, which was visible by showing our love for one another…He says, starting in Matthew 5:43 from His Olivet Sermon,
Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy.
5:44 But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;
5:45 That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.
5:46 For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same?
What is the secular definition of love? This is taken from Answers.com, when asked what the emotion of love is, but let’s confine it to persons who we meet in our churches, or in the outside world on a one to one basis. Love and it’s synonyms:
love, affection, devotion, fondness.. These nouns denote feelings of warm personal attachment or strong attraction to another person. LoveAffection is a less ardent and more unvarying feeling of tender regard. Devotion is earnest, affectionate dedication and implies selflessness: ie. teachers admired for their devotion to children. Fondness is strong liking or affection.
Now what is the Biblical definition of love?
The Bible indicates that love is from God. In fact, the Bible says "God is love." Love is one of the primary characteristics of God. Likewise, God has endowed us with the capacity for love. This capacity for love is one of the ways in which we are "created in the image of God.
When Jesus was asked what was the greatest commandment Matthew 22:36-40:
Master, which is the great commandment in the law?
22:37 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.
22:38 This is the first and great commandment.
22:39 And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
22:40 On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.
I feel sad for the churches at large that profess Jesus Christ, but fail to show brotherly love for each other in their own congregations and are not long suffering for anyone with a difference of an opinion. Some will say that we should follow the traditions of the Church of God, but I point out, “should we not follow the teachings of the Word of God, instead of what men say?” If they don’t show love for their fellow brethren, who are called to be separate from the rudiments of the world, how can they even mention that they show love to people outside of the church body? They can’t.
“Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.”
I’ve used that scripture to point out how the world will lead you astray from your basic calling through traditions of men, but the same holds true even in the local church groups. Are we not all sinners? Of course, we are. We are saved by grace, but still men that have our faults and trials every day and have to pray and seek the righteousness of God everyday, or fall into the trap of the enemy, Satan the devil.
Jesus said in Matthew 24:12-13
v.12, And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold.
v.13, But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.
Does God hold us accountable when we forget to show others the love of God in our lives? It goes double for people who have been given the privilege to lead others in their congregations as ministers, but each of us have a duty to love and esteem others better than ourselves. We can’t just mouth the words, but have to put that feelings of love of the brethren ahead of our own desires, ahead of our own ambitions to be the “head” of anything.
In God's sight, unity or togetherness among His people is proper, and it pleases Him to no end. It has the same effect on us. Brethren who are thus joined together receive the benefits of the goodness and pleasantness unity produces. That is why we should yearn for this unity, because it is right, good, and fitting and because it is lovely, attractive, and appealing. We fellowship with other disciples of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ for the following reasons:
Fellowship means "sharing," "communion with," "companionship with," or "association with." We have been called into an association—a companionship, a fellowship, a communion—with Christ. All these words are synonyms. The only difference might be the degree of the intimacy that is expressed. In addition, fellowship indicates people having things in common—they do things together because they share common interests. Foremost, what we have in common is our love for Christ.
Paul wrote by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit in 1 Corinthians 13th chapter, starting in verse 1:
13:1 Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not love, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.
13:2 And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not love, I am nothing.
13:3 And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not love, it profiteth me nothing.
13:4 Love suffereth long, and is kind; love envieth not; love vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,
13:5 Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;
13:6 Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;
13:7 Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.
13:8 Love 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 further down in verse 13:
“And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is LOVE.’
Are we showing love for one another in our daily lives, and especially to our brethren, or are we full of ourselves, puffed up in vain glory of our own accomplishments? Are we doing things for God for ourselves to say “look at me?” or are we doing it for the right reason, to glorify God. Are we “esteeming others better than ourselves, or just mouthing the words?”
In this time of when the love of many are growing cold and men proclaim a righteousness of and by themselves, should we not get back to the basics of “God is Love” and show that in our lives in church and out of church. You have to examine your own life and decide if you have been doing what Jesus proclaimed or following the lust of the flesh.
God bless you all,
John, “mike” Taylor
If there’s anything I can pray with you on, or help you with any questions, feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org