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Tag: love


Character

Something that has been a challenge for me in the past year is coming to the realization that though I’ve studied some theology (though by no means anywhere close to what I should or what others have studied) my character is lacking and not matching up with what I’m taking in. I briefly went through Scripture recently and thought of the places it talks about character or the characteristics of a believer and considered how lacking I am in these areas. I know there are others, but this is the list I came up with to pray over and meditate on.

Beatitudes Matt 5:2-12:
– Poor in Spirit
– Mourning
– Meek
– Hunger/Thirst for Righteousness
– Merciful
– Pure in Heart
– Peacemaker
– Persecuted for Righteousness’ sake
– Reviled/persecuted for the name of Christ

Fruit of the Spirit – Galatians 5:22-23:
– Love
– Joy
– Peace
– Patience
– Kindness
– Goodness
– Faithfulness
– Gentleness
– Self-control

Love is… – 1 Corinthians 13:4-8
– Patient
– Kind
– not boastful
– not envious
– not arrogant
– not rude
– not insisting on its own way
– not irritable
– not resentful
– not rejoicing in wrongdoing
– rejoicing with the truth
– bearing all things
– believing all things (obviously not to be understood in the relativistic sense)
– hoping all things
– enduring all things
– never ending

Interestingly enough, Tim Challies posted this blog today that coincides with all of this: http://www.challies.com/articles/im-better-than-you

Steadfast Love and Faithfulness

Reading Psalm 40 today, I came across a verse that really spoke to me. Psalm 40:11 says, “As for you, O LORD, you will not restrain your mercy from me; your steadfast love and your faithfulness will ever preserve me.”

This has been a joyful thought ringing in my heart today after I read it. Notice it isn’t our love, our faithfulness, our toiling, and our working that acquires the faithfulness of God for us, His people. Rather it is the Lord loving and being faithful to us, despite us. This is pure gospel. His love and faithfulness will ever preserve me, for eternity. He is committed to me, demonstrated and effected on the cross. He will preserve me and all of His people in the wake of His resurrection, never to perish, but always to live for His glory.

What a thought that He will ever preserve us and always remain faithful. This is solid ground and food for weary souls worn out from sin.

Growing in Love – Jerry Bridges

Excerpt from The Discipline of Grace by Jerry Bridges, pgs. 122-23

How then can we develop this love for God so that our obedience is prompted by love instead of some lesser motive? The Scripture gives us our first clue, or point of beginning. when it says, “We love God because He first loved us” (1 John 4:19). Our love to God can only be a response to His love for us. If I do not believe God loves me, I cannot love Him. To love God, I most believe that He is for me, not against me (Romans 8:31), and that He accepts me as a son or a daughter, not a slave (Galatians 4:7).

What would keep us from believing that God loves us? The answer is a sense of guilt and condemnation because of our sin. Charles Hodge said,

The great difficulty with many Christians is that they cannot persuade themselves that Christ (or God) loves them; and the reason why they cannot feel confident of the love of God, is, that they know they do not deserve His love, on the contrary, that they are in the highest degree unlovely. How can the infinitely pure God love those who are defiled with sin, who are proud, selfish, discontented, ungrateful, disobedient? This, indeed, is hard to believe.

A tender conscience that is alert to sin, especially those “refined” sins such as pride, criticality, resentment, discontent, irritableness, and the like, is a great advantage in the pursuit of holiness, as it enables us to become aware of sins that lie deep beneath the level of external actions. But this same tender conscience can load us down with guilt, and when we are under that burden and sense of condemnation, it is difficult to love God or believe that He loves us.

Ephesians 1:13-16

“Therefore, preparing your minds for action, and being sober-minded, set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. As obedient children, do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance, but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, since it is written, ‘You shall be holy, for I am holy.'”

1 Peter 1:13-16 (ESV)

Having been adopted into the Kingdom of God by faith in Jesus Christ, we have been destined to receive all of the righteousness of Christ, the righteousness He earned while He was here, submitting perfectly to the expressed will of the Father, where it climaxed at Calvary.

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