Mat 22:37 And he said to him, Have love for the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.
Mat 22:38 This is the first and greatest rule.
Mat 22:39 And a second like it is this, Have love for your neighbour as for yourself.
Mat 22:40 On these two rules all the law and the prophets are based.
In recent times I have had a number of discussions with folk who have come to accept the worldly definition of Love as the standard that they judge Christians by.
Once again that crafty old Lucifer is perverting Gods concepts in order to deceive the very elect and it seems to be working.
I have no intention to go through the definitions of Love; Eros, Philio, Storge and Agape, hundreds of millions of words have been written on this subject. No, what I am interested in is overcoming the mushy Hollywood concept of Love that so many believe Christians should be.
The world, and even some deceived believers, would have you to believe that to Love in the way the Christ commanded us to Love would have us condoning anyone and everyone's deviant behavior. Hold on, I am not talking about just homosexual behavior I am talking about all behaviors the deviate from the perfect will of God, everything from smoking, to drugs to theft, to the guy who cut you off in traffic, to the cheating husband or wife, the sexually active un-married couple and yes of course the LGBTQ community as well.
I don't know but I take it on good authority that there are 613 laws in the Tanakh (Old Testament). these laws are the perfect will of God.
Now I don't know about you but remembering 613 laws is just a bit overwhelming for me, let alone obeying those laws, heck how many of us know the laws of our land, not even the experts (called lawyers) can know all the law and that is why there are specialists , corporate, defense, real estate, etc..
There is a huge body of literature written by the Rabbis about these 613 laws of the Tanakh, it's clear not even they understood all of the perfect will of God. I must say that much of the little bit of these rabbinical writings I have read seems to be attempts to nullify or get around these laws that God provided them that they might know His will. It reminds me of what Jesus said "Mat 23:15 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves. " and "Mat 15:3 But he answered and said unto them, Why do ye also transgress the commandment of God by your tradition?"
And that brings us back to the subject at hand.
Mushy Hollywood Love says anything and everything I want to do is okay and you can not judge me for it.
Sorry, no dice!
What I want to do doesn't affect anyone but me. So it's none of your business.
You have no right to judge me.
First off why are you being defensive and saying I don't love you if I tell you your behavior is harmful to you or others? If the bridge down the road is out wouldn't you want to know so you don't go crashing to the bottom of the gully to your death. And if I cared wouldn't I tell you? I sure would want you to tell me if the shoe was on the other foot.
Judging has nothing to do with pointing out harmful behaviors, that is experience and shared wisdom, not judgment.
Every single human being unless isolated on a deserted island has an effect on some one, when your behavior is not in Gods perfect will it will be a negative affect. It may be a sibling, a friend an acquaintance but your behavior will affect someone.
Why should you care that your behavior is not in Gods perfect will?
Good question! Answer is simple.
God created us, His will for us is a community of loving, respectful, caring individuals. What person would disagree with that? I'll tell you, it is the person who is acting in his own self will in contrast to Gods will who wishes to justify said behavior. Their hateful rhetoric towards you for "judging" them is them saying to you "I don't care what you or God thinks I will do as I want, when I want and how I want", in today's vernacular they are Narcissistic. In my day we just said they are selfish and self-centered or egocentric. these people do not understand that each individual affect's the whole of society, not in a great big, presidential way but in little and very significant ways.
Imagine for just one moment if you can or will, a society of folk who had the other persons best interest at heart and cared more about that other persons happiness than their own. Isn't that a description of Heaven. It is a description of Love.
Jesus wept over Jerusalem, He had given them the perfect way to live, they had rejected it.
He argued with the leadership of the day to the point of them deciding he was dangerous and had to be killed.
He told them they were wrong, they hated Him for it.
Jesus the Christ completed the law by bringing forgivness and mercy to it. After all who could live by 613 laws without breaking at least one or two during the day. The Mossaic Law new no mercy or forgivness which explains why the Rabbi's spent so much time and effort on finding ways around the laws.
Jesus explained that if you were to live in Love you would by fiat fulfill all of the law and prophets because it is impossible to desire harm to your parents if you love them. It is impossible to want to take your neighbors stuff if you love them. Nor would you desire to kill or lie about them. And if you Love God by that fact you would not put other things (idols) before Him and you would seek after Him with all your heart and mind. You would spend at least one full day resting in His Love, restoring your body and mind.
You see Loving our neighbors as our self is actually simple, Love God, and you will come to Love yourself, then you will come to Love others, that doesn't mean you will co sign their garbage, nor does it mean that you will stop warning them about their wrong behavior, but it does mean that like the Master, our Christ, Jesus we will come to the Father in prayer and ask for His forgivness for them for they do not know what they do.
The Law as expressed in the 613 laws of the Tanakh can be fulfilled in the simple but difficult plan laid out by the Christ, Jesus in the scripture quoted at the beginning of this blog. One way I have found effective to judge my own progress in my Christian walk is to use the Ten Commandments as a sort of daily inventory. An inventory at a store is done to gather facts about the products on the shelves, what has sold and are thereby products we want more of as well as what hasn't and we need to put on sale to get rid of. An inventory of ourselves is much like that, using the Ten Commandments we can see were we have failed and can apply the Law of Love by confessing our shortcomings, asking forgivness, and making amends where harm has been caused. This is the subject of my books "The Ten Commandments a Guide to Holiness" You can down load them for free here or you can buy softcover books from Amazon.com HERE (scroll to the bottom of the page on Amazon)
Thank-you. May the Creator of the Universe Bless and Enrich you with and through His Love and Grace.
Please comment below, Thank-you