Watering the Tulips
January 16, 2013
“By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another” – John 13:35
Certainly, every child of God should be fueled with a desire to properly represent God. We should do this in both word and deed. The verse before us today concerns our actions towards other children of God. This must not be interpreted as only referring to the members of your particular assembly. Though, a church body should have love for one another. Yet, there must ever be love for all of God’s children.
It is so easy to allow disagreements and divisions to fuel anger and hatred. However, these are not fruits of the Spirit, but fruits of the flesh. Paul was inspired to tell us that “the fruit of the Spirit is love…”(Galatians 5:22). And again, we are told, “But concerning brotherly love you have no need that I should write to you, for you yourselves are taught by God to love one another” (1 Thessalonians 4:9). So, the natural man is easily angered and often bitter. The natural man is selfish and prideful. But, the spiritual man is taught by the Holy Spirit to love his fellow brothers and sisters in Christ! That is certainly powerful.
But, what are we to do about doctrinal differences? What are we to do about personality clashes? What are we to do when we are offended? Obviously, fellowship with some children of God is more limited than with others. We may not always be able to invite certain preachers to speak due to doctrinal variances. However, we must always take the advice of Jesus in Matthew 7:12 which says, “Therefore, whatever you want men to do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets.”
We must never allow our differences to fuel anger and malice towards one of God’s children. We must keep the Golden Rule in mind. We must also remember that they are bought with the same blood that we are bought with. God effectively drew them the Christ in the same manner He worked in us. The Holy Spirit leads them just as He leads us. And, as unlikely as it seems in our mind, perhaps we are the one who is wrong!
It certainly never hurts to be reminded that you are the biggest sinner you know. You know things about yourself that others do not know. You know of the spiritual battles you have lost. You know of the times you have sinned. Perhaps your brother in Christ has done you wrong. But, he has certainly done you no more wrong than you know you have done to God. A continual reminder that “I am the biggest sinner I know” will go far in your ability to love your brother or sister in Christ.
Our duty as children of God is to be a light to the world (Matthew 5:16). We are to share the love of God which has been freely given to us. Though we deserved wrath, God loved us and sent His Son to pay the debt that we had so selfishly mounted against Him. This love is seen by the world and shared with them when they see the love we have for one another. Lord, help us to have love for one another!
Watering the Tulips is brought to you by Sovereign Grace Baptist Church in Northport, AL. For more information, please visit www.sovereigngrace.net. “Your App to the Gospel” is available the iTunes app store as well as Google Play. Please download it today!