By Derek Elles
Today we will talk about the context of a concept that is misused not only in its meaning, but in the Bible verses used to promote that meaning. To name a few: God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son (John 3:16). This is my commandment, that you love one another (John 15:12).
Did Abraham love Isaac? Why would he sacrifice his only son who he waited his whole life for? Because he loved God, Yahweh, more. It was how he demonstrated his love for Yahweh and Yahweh required it of him to prove that love. He wasn’t asked to sacrifice something of little value, but something that was as dear as his own life.
This is exactly how Yahweh showed His love for us; He sacrificed His only son and His Son sacrificed His own life. Neither did so because they approved of what the world was doing, but because of what the world was doing, and so through their love they provided a way out of it. They sacrificed of themselves for our best interest.
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The problem: We ought not to define what love is to us and then in reading the Bible shape its love into our definition or understanding. Rather, we should read the Bible first and then shape our definition and understand of love into its. Remember our definition is of the world.
As a matter of fact, that’s how it was centuries ago. People put their love for Yahweh above all else. Then came the American and French Revolution, existentialism, and finding yourself. All of this shifted love from our Creator to ourselves becoming more important to be recognized and feel good about ourselves. Somewhere along the line all love was lumped into one word. The Bible has several types of love within it as did the Greeks and as do other cultures today. It was easy to identify which type love you were talking about.
So, when Christians attempt to show their love for others by revealing the truths of the Bible, that is the type of love shown by our Biblical examples. The Christian has no guarantee that their love will be accepted, but they almost are guaranteed rejection. Yet they continue.
John 15:12-14 sums it up for us. “This is My commandment, that you love one another, just as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends. You are My friends if you do what I command you.”
There is no guarantee that everyone will accept this offer, and as a matter of fact, when we implement such love, we are often accused of being judgmental. When we see someone walking toward a cliff and try to lead them away, it is through such love. But people don’t want to be told to what they like doing is wrong and hurtful to themselves and will retort “Don’t judge me” and “If you do love me, you should want me to be happy and this makes me happy.”
We put our relationships on the line with no guarantee that others will accept.
We give of ourselves, we give up ourselves, for the better of the other person – hopefully
Were either of them, Yahweh and Yahshua, guaranteed that the whole world would accept their love? Well, look around and you will have the undeniable answer.
Until next week. Blessings in Yahweh’s grace, mercy, and peace.
#TheologyThursday #Context #Christianity #Love