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Monthly commentaries and pastoral letters regarding issues of the day.

bible.gif (3865 bytes)Welcome to The Pastor's Study. Here you will find our monthly pastoral letters containing observations and teachings regarding not only doctrinal issues but also  social and philosophical issues of importance to Biblical Christians in today's rapidly changing world. We will be posting a new letter each month and will be offering the past messages in the archives linked below. Be sure to let us know your thoughts on these issues also. Your input is important.

Volume 2, Issue 1

Dear Brothers and Sisters

 

THE WORD -

1CO 13:4 Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,
1CO 13:5 Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;
1CO 13:6 Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;
1CO 13:7 Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.
1CO 13:8 Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away.

1CO 13:9 For we know in part, and we prophesy in part.

EPH 4:15 But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:

The message -

Since my November Pastoral letter calling believers to "hate the sin and love the sinner," I have found to my dismay that some do not understand the concept of Biblical Christian Love (charity - KJV). Many seem to believe with the world that love is a "feeling", or that to love another we must "affirm" or "accept" them unconditionally including any sinful, harmful or inappropriate behavior. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Biblical love is NOT a feeling; Biblical love is NOT an opinion. Biblical Christian love is a chosen behavior and a chosen attitude. God's word has a magnificent definition of Love. It is found in 1 Corinthians 13 and stands firmly in the context of the entirety of the Word. Let's take a close look at that definition. The attributes of Biblical Christian Love as set forth in chapter 13:

Love -

suffers long (is patient)
is kind
does not envy
does not parade itself
is not puffed up
does not behave rudely
does not seek its own
is not provoked
thinks no evil (keeps no record of wrong)(does not gossip)
does not rejoice in inequity
rejoices in the truth
bears all things
believes all things
[hopes] all things
endures all things

Love never fails.

Read chapter 13 again and note that every attribute given is an action. As an action, it is also a choice. We are called to "choose" to "do" love to others regardless of our feelings or personal opinions.

No matter how much we dislike or distrust an individual, we can (by the power of the Holy Spirit), and must as followers of Jesus, always "choose' to "do" love towards them.

Biblical Christian love is willing to risk relationships, popularity, financial security, even martyrdom for the cause of Christ, placing the eternal welfare of others above all else. Therefore, Biblical Love does not remain silent when we see lives being destroyed by sin such as homosexuality or adultery, or when we see those we love in danger of eternal damnation. That is what "Loving the sinner and Hating the sin" is all about.

When I am witnessing to cults or "pseudo-christians" that are in "professing" Christian churches that no longer believe the Bible, they are often offended (as the lost will be) that I would not just accept their beliefs on equal footing with Biblical Christianity. They tell me that we are after all, just to "love one another" (without a clue as to what true love is) and that we are not to "judge" (again without a clue regarding the Bible's teachings on judgement.) My answer is always the same simple question. "If I saw someone standing in the middle of the road totally unaware that there was a truck bearing down on them at 50 mph, what would be the truly "Loving" response?

a. Go about my business assuming that someone else will warn them? (besides they may be offended and not like me anymore.)
b. Not interfere because I have no right to warn them that they are in danger? (after all they have the right to "choose" to stand in the road.)
c. Believe that the truck isn't real but just an analogy based on outdated white European male culture?
d. Warn the person and take action even to the point of endangering my own life. Doing whatever is needed to rescue them by getting them out of the path of the truck?

The answer is a no brainer. Why then do Christians struggle with the appropriate response when seeing others (even spouses, children and other loved ones) standing it the path of Hell and Damnation? Should we not "Warn the person and take action even to the point of endangering our own life (relationships). Doing whatever is needed to rescue them"? This is true also when we see others involved it mortal sin. The practicing homosexual may be offended when we point them at Romans 1, and the adulterer and sexually immoral may be offended when you point them at Hebrews 13 or 1 Corinthians 6. That does not however change the fact that these are the truly loving responses just as presenting the Gospel to the lost is the truly loving response.

Pastor Jim, in his December "2nd Pastoral Letter" wrote that "It is entirely possible for us, as Christians: as ministers, to "love" some lost, sinning soul straight into the gates of hell." Under the worlds definition of love he is absolutely correct. In my last Pastoral letter, I state "believers must NEVER condone, or worse, endorse or affirm sin." And "...we must unashamedly oppose all sin, including the current militant homosexual and pro-abortion social/political agendas, with our total beings." After all is said and done, I still believe that Jesus teaches us by word and deed to "love them (the sinners) in Christ" with a true Biblical Christian Love.

May our Lord Jesus Christ bless each of you and yours in the this new year "...exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen." (EPH 3:20-21)

Until next month, keep on lifting up the Name of Jesus!

God Bless you and yours

In Christ
ChristRing Ministries

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"Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ." (Colossians 2:8 )