Love Saves Our Souls (SOS)


The Subject of Love is you and me (1 John 4:9)
The Object of Love is life for you and me. (1 John 4:9)
The Source of Love is God for love is of God and God is love. (1 John 4:7-8)

Points to Ponder:
The Symbol of love is Jesus Christ for he is the manifestation of God’s love for us and only in him is Salvation of Our Souls (SOS). Love Saves Our Souls (SOS). Is your soul saved? What good is it for a man to gain the whole world and lose his soul? Embrace the love of God in Jesus Christ, so that you may live, live abundantly eternally.

1 John 4:7-9 (KJV)
Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God.
He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.
In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him.

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Jesus in the NT :: Galatians


The book of Galatians gives a glimpse of who Jesus is in the N.T.

The book of Galatians is well known for its reference to the Fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22), but close introspection of this text in connection with other verses in the Bible, reveals that it is not just character traits that one must aspire to produce, but a hidden treasure that Jesus Christ himself, is THE FRUIT OF The HOLY SPIRIT of God. Let us dive deep. Galatians 4:22 lists love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness and temperance as the fruit of the spirit.

Love:
John 3:16 is a expression of God’s love for mankind and 1 John 3:16 states that this is how we know what love is, because Jesus laid down his life for us and 1 John 4:8 states that God is love and since Jesus is God, Jesus is Love; love personified.

Joy:
Philippians 4:13 states that we can do all things through Christ who gives us strength and Nehemiah 8:10 tells us that the joy of the Lord is our strength. This means that Jesus Christ is the Joy of the Lord, who gives us strength, through whom, we can do all things. Jesus is Joy; joy personified.

Peace:
Isaiah 9:6 enlist as one of the titles for Jesus, the title, “Prince of Peace” and Hebrews 5:6, informs us that Jesus Christ is the priest forever in the order of Melchizedek (which means King of peace). Not only in Jesus Christ, the prince of peace, but he is also the priest of peace and king of peace. Jesus is Peace; peace personified.

Longsuffering:
Nehemiah 9:7 states that God is ready to pardon, gracious and merciful, slow to anger and of great kindness and forsakes not. Jesus is a patient God who is gracious, plenteous in mercy, and slow to anger. Jesus was patient for his time to come. When his time had not yet come, to be glorified as God’s son, he told his mother, “Woman, my hour (time) has not yet come” (John 2:4) and his brethren the same (John 7:6), but when his time of fulfilling God’s work of Salvation as God’s son had come, he told God the Father, “my hour (time) has come” (John 17:1). Jesus is Patient (for God’s time to come); patience personified.

Gentleness:
2 Corinthians 10:1 establishes the fact that Jesus Christ is gentle. Jesus is Gentle; gentleness personified.

Goodness:
Psalm 34:8 asks us to taste and see that the Lord (Jesus) is good and Jesus himself expressed in John 10:11 that he is the Good Shepherd. Jesus is Good; goodness personified.

Faith:
The definition of faith according to Hebrews 11:1 is that faith is the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things not seen. Colossians 1:27 establishes the fact that Jesus is the hope of glory and Colossians 1:15 establishes the fact that Jesus is the image of the invisible God. Jesus is not only faithful, but he is Faith; faith personified.

Meekness:
2 Corinthians 10:1 establishes the fact that Jesus is meek. Jesus himself said in Matthew 11:29, that he was meek, when he asked us to take his yoke upon ourselves and to learn from him. Jesus is meek and lowly of heart and all who take up his yoke and learn from him will find rest for their souls. Matthew 21:5 also portrays Jesus as the meek King who comes to us riding on a colt. Jesus is Meek; meekness personified.

Temperance:
Temperance means restraint or self-control. Come to think of it, the first encounter of the devil with the Lord Jesus as the devil tempts Jesus (Luke 4:4) could have been the devil’s last, but the devil and his angels are reserved for a day of judgment (Matthew 25:41). Jesus was in self-control in dealing with temptation as he used the Scripture, the Scripture he had come to fulfill. In fact, Jesus said that at his request, God would send him over twelve legions of angels to fight for him, but if he did so, the Scripture would not be fulfilled (Matthew 26:52-54) and he did not do so in self-control. Jesus is Temperance; temperance personified.

In Galatians, Jesus is the FRUIT OF THE SPIRIT.

Galatians 5:22 (KJV)
22But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,
23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.

Where is the Love?


Singing against a backdrop of glow-in-the-dark words that spelled the word “LOVE”, singer Will.i.am of the Black Eyed Peas adapted and sang the song “Where is the Love?” during the 2011 Super Bowl XLV halftime, as an appeal to Barack Obama, the present President of the United States of America. Interestingly, the question, “Where is the Love?” should really be “Who is THE LOVE?”. I wonder as to how many can answer this question – Who is the Love?

1 John 4:7-8 states, “Beloved, let us love on another, for love is of God and everyone that loveth is born of God and knoweth God, He that loveth not, knowteth not God, for God is Love”. The Love of Jesus Christ is also the greatest for greater love has no man, than one, who lays down his life for his friends (John 15:13) and while we were still sinners, Christ Jesus died for us (Romans 5:8). Jesus Christ is love personified.

Where is the Love? – In Christ Jesus
Who is the Love? Jesus Christ

Romans 5:8 (KJV)
8 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

John 15:12-14 (KJV)
12
This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you.
13
Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.
14
Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you.

Showing – Knowing God


It is nine years since Sangeetha and I have been married
and as I pondered on times past,
a roller coaster deluged my mind of emotions varied
and memories that eternally last.

I realized how she has always been a good friend,
a sacrificial, caring and loving wife
and an excellent mother with whom I intend
to spend my remaining life.

Now as we go from this year to next,
I pray that we both together
can vow as per the Holy text
To always love one another

And that we may both grow
loving one another; for in doing so
we demonstrate (show) that we know
Jesus Christ, from whom rivers of living water flow.

For Jesus is Love personified
and the only God bonafide
And everyone that loves is born of God from above
and knows God for God is love.

1 John 4:7-8 (KJV)
7
Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God.
8
He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.

A Christian’s Valentine


Named after one of the early Christian martyrs named Valentinus who was killed on February 14th, Valentine day is an annual holiday celebrating love between intimate companions. The name Valentinus is a derivative of the Latin word ‘valens’ which means ‘strong’ or ‘powerful’. Interestingly, there is a strong and powerful connection between the celebration of love and the two greatest commandments of all, which is to love the Lord and to love man (your neighbor).

Who do we love? i.e., Who is our Valentine?

  • God;
    thou shalt love the Lord thy God with ALL thy heart, and with ALL thy soul, and with ALL thy mind, and with ALL thy strength
    (Mark 12:30)
  • Man;
    Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
    (Mark 12:31)
    In other words, God is to be our valentine and so is man!

How do we love?

  • By keeping his commandments;
    If ye love me, keep my commandments
    (John 14:15)

How much do we love –

  • God?
    Totally;
    thou shalt love the Lord thy God with ALL thy heart, and with ALL thy soul, and with ALL thy mind, and with ALL thy strength
    (Mark 12:30)
  • Man?
    Sacrificially;
    Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.
    (John 15:13)

Why do we need to love?

  • To know God;
    Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God.He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.
    (1 John 4:7-8).
  • To show that we are His disciples;
    By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.
    (John 13:35)
    We are to love to know and show God!

Danish theologian and philosopher, who is accredited to be one of the most eminent Lutheran theologian, Soren Kierkegaard, rightfully quoted “Love is all, it gives all, and it takes all.

The greatest of ALL is Love (God) and God gave ALL (including His only begotten Son) so that He could take ALL of us (irrespective of who we are or how we have lived). Additionally, it takes all to give all (Total surrender). Our love must be strong and powerful. Think about it!

Mark 12:29-31 (KJV)
29
And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord:
30
And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.
31
And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.

P.S: Are there other aspects of Love from the Scripture (Holy Bible) that answers the questions posed, If so, kindly share.

God’s property


Pastor Robin Paul at the Austin Christian Fellowship of India (ACFI) spoke on the blessings of a believer and expressed that one of the blessings, a believer has is that Believers are inherited by God and they inherit what is God’s, expanding on the passage from Ephesians 1:11-18. In other words, Whatever God owns, belongs to us as well as an inheritance.

From this text, there are two hidden treasures that come to surface.
First, God is love (1 John 4:8) and love gives (John 3:16)  and secondly, Whatever God owns, we own and whatever we own, God owns.

But what is really important is not what we are heirs to, but our state of inheritance by God.
If all that we own, God owns as well since we inherit each other, The real matter of fact is not what belongs to us, but what belongs to God.
Does ALL that we own, belong to God or are there aspects and elements of what we possess (including our life) that do not belong to God. If we love God, shouldn’t it be expressed by giving our ALL to God, just as He expressed it for us? When we sing the song, All to Jesus, I surrender, do we truly and truthfully mean it or are we merely lying?
In simple terms, Are we God’s property? (one that he is proud of owning!)

Ephesians 1:11-18 (KJV)
11
In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will:
12
That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ.
13
In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,
14
Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.
15
Wherefore I also, after I heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus, and love unto all the saints,
16
Cease not to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers;
17
That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him:
18
The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints,

God’s alias


It is Good Friday and as I wondered what to write about, I realized that Good Friday is indeed a Love story

We call on God by many names

  • El (God) and its variations – Elohim (the Almighty Creator), El  Elyon  (“Most High God”), El Shaddai (“God Almighty”), El `Olam (“Everlasting God”), El Hai (“Living God”), El Ro’i (“God of Seeing”), El Elohe Israel (“God, the God of Israel”), El Gibbor (“God of Strength”) …;
  • Jehovah (THE Being, The I AM) and its variations – Jehovah-jireh (God, my provider), Jehovah-rophe (God, my healer), Jehovah-nissi (God, my banner), Jehovah-M’Kaddesh (God, my sanctifier), Jehovah-shalom (God, my peace), Jehovah-tsidkenu (God, my righteousness), Jehovah-rohi (God, my shepherd), Jehovah-shammah (God, my presence)
  • Adonai (the Lord); Alpha and Omega (the beginning and the end) and so on

Ever wondered as to what God’s alias is, that would not dilute His character or demote His being?

The entire Bible is a love story. God’s love for his creation, for us. The Bible also records in 1 John 4:7-8 that we ought to love one another, for Love is of God and everyone that loves is born of God and knows God, He that loves not, knows not God for God is Love, Beloved, let us love one another.

God’s alias is given in the portion of his infallible word. God IS Love.

Replacing the word ‘love’ with the word ‘God’ as recorded in 1 Corinthians 13 which gives us the excellent attributes of “Love”, makes us in fact see who God is.

Love (God) is patient, love (God) is kind. Love (God) does not envy, love (God) does not boast, love (God) is not proud.
Love (God) is not rude, love (God) is not self-seeking, love (God) is not easily angered, love (God) keeps no record of wrongs.
Love (God) does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.
Love (God) always protects, love (God) always trusts, love (God) always hopes, love (God) always perseveres.
Love (God) never fails.
And now these three remain: faith, hope and love (God) . But the greatest of these is love (God).

Point(s) of ponder:

Call on God as He is Love and you will find the warmth of his unconditional, sacrificial and sanctifying love embrace you, no matter what state you are in or who you are.