every tuesday morning we have an all staff meet up and devotional.
we share wins together, pray and rotate on sharing a word-
so this week i was up- here is what i shared with the team:
1 John 3:11-19
This is the message you have heard from the beginning: We should love one another. We must not be like Cain, who belonged to the evil one and killed his brother. And why did he kill him? Because Cain had been doing what was evil, and his brother had been doing what was righteous. So don’t be surprised, dear brothers and sisters, if the world hates you.
If we love our Christian brothers and sisters, it proves that we have passed from death to life. But a person who has no love is still dead. Anyone who hates another brother or sister is really a murderer at heart. And you know that murderers don’t have eternal life within them.
We know what real love is because Jesus gave up his life for us. So we also ought to give up our lives for our brothers and sisters. If someone has enough money to live well and sees a brother or sister in need but shows no compassion-how can God’s love be in that person?
Dear children, let’s not merely say that we love each other; let us show the truth by our actions. Our actions will show that we belong to the truth, so we will be confident when we stand before God.
I love the way John writes. I wish I could read and understand the old Greek, because if it is this beautiful in English, it must be even more so in the original form.
It is interesting in the passage that there is talk of the story of Cain and Abel. At first it’s like… what?? Then he brings us back in verse 15 and allows it to all make sense. He weaves in this ancient story from early in the creation to articulate something today; that a lack of love can be made equivalent to murder.
He then goes on to articulate this beautiful deduction about how we are to live our lives as brothers and sisters:
Let the world hate us because we are righteous- And this righteousness flows from love- and love is laying down our lives for one another- and this is what it truly means to be compassionate toward each other.
Also embedded in the verses I shared are what I consider two mandates we are given in Christian life:
-If we love each other it proves we have passed from death to life.
-Our actions show that we belong to the truth.
We must embody these two things as leaders of NCC.
It has to start with us, so that we might model it.
It has to be part of our reality, so that all we dream of, create and execute is driven out of these mandates-
Then, when criticism and hatred come- we will be able to clearly delineate between the truth and the lies- the light and the darkness…
The world hating us has nothing to do with being relevant or irrelevant- it has to do with the fact that the enemy hates God and all the righteousness that comes from Him-
Let’s continue to live out love and allow our actions to align us with the truth. If not, then we are merely false teachers- talking about Christ, but not truly embodying the Truth, which is Christ crucified and resurrected, displaying perfect and ultimate love.