Google+ 07/15/13 We Belong to God!

1 John 4:6-8

 

But we belong to God, and those who know God listen to us.

If they do not belong to God, they do not listen to us.

That is how we know if someone has the Spirit of truth or the spirit of deception.

 

Dear friends, let us continue to love one another, for love comes from God.

Anyone who loves is a child of God and knows God.

But anyone who does not love does not know God, for God is love.

 

The top three, most mentioned subjects in the Bible are praise, money, and love.  For that reason, it is difficult for me to understand how so many of us, and most churches, get the message of God so wrong.  Praise and worship is the most often discussed topic in the Bible.  If you are a living, breathing Christian, you are saying or thinking, "Of Course!"  Why were we created?  The answer is to Praise God.  All of our earthly effort should be focused on our daily praise of God the Almighty.  Money is the second most mentioned topic in the Bible.  Two-thirds of Jesus's parables dealt, in some way, with money.  As I have mentioned before, money is not the root of all evil.  It is our misplaced love of money that causes us so many problems.  God knew this, which is why Jesus spoke about this subject so often.  Finally, there is the subject of love, which is so often misunderstood by Christians.  God's love is "agape" love.  This kind of love is unconditional and should be displayed to everyone.  Jesus told us to love our enemies.  Make sure that you understand this point.  In order to love our enemies, we must identify who they are!  Our enemies are described in today's Scripture.  Ultimately, all our enemies are those that do not love God.  Does that mean that anyone that does not know Christ as their personal Savior is our enemy?  Absolutely not!!!  This is where we fall very short of the Glory of God.  It is not those that are lost that are our enemies.  It is those that walk among us, and have repeatedly heard God's word, and reject it by their everyday actions and attitudes.  Saying that you love God and then talking behind someone's back, is simply rejecting God's love.  Saying that Jesus is your personal Savior and judging others because they are not like you, is nothing more than perpetual sin.  I have been told by many that I have a great sense of humor.  I appreciate the compliment, but it can also be a curse.  Everything in God's Kingdom is not a joke and if we attempt to make it that way for the purpose of "not being too serious," we will dilute the message of Jesus so that no one gets or understands it.  I feel very vindicated that John tells us that if people do not believe in God, they will not listen to Christians.  This is your answer to discerning whether someone is walking in the Spirit of Truth or deception.  Today, don't be deceived or misled.  Shamefully, this is why so many church councils, deacon boards, vestries and other church government committees often ignore what is right in front of their noses.  Most organizational decisions made in churches end up being made without the most important spiritual component of God's love at the forefront.  Churches need to stop hurting people with their self-made rules that are not Biblical.  If we are excluding people for any reason than their refusal to listen to God, we need to stop it today.  God calls us to love one another.   We must be accepting of all, telling God's truth at all times, in love.  By loving unconditionally, we then have the right to proclaim, "We Belong to God!"