“But I know that you do not have the love of God within you.” Jesus Christ; John 5:42
Holy mackerel – If I were sitting across a table at a coffee shop with Jesus,….would he say this very same thing to me?? His piercing statement haunts me.
Here’s the thing – the “love of God” in me loves not only people I like, but people I don’t like – people I DON’T like. That includes people who’ve hurt me or my family, betrayed me, and said ugly things about me. This is hard teaching. But, I can’t just pretend it’s not there.
Jesus, the Word made Flesh, inspired Paul to write, “Love must be sincere…Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves.” (Romans 12:9-10)
“For the whole law is fulfilled in one word: love your neighbor as yourself.” (Galatians 5:14)
Finally, John the disciple wrote, “We love because he first loved us. Whoever claims to love God yet hates a brother or sister is a liar. For whoever does not love their brother and sister, whom they have seen, cannot love God, whom they have not seen. And he has given us this command: Anyone who loves God must also love their brother and sister.” (1 John 4:19-21)
This is hard teaching. When Jesus looks at me, I do pray he sees the love of God within me.
Help me love like you, Jesus.
Soli Deo Gloria, Nick