Let’s settle on defining terms that can anchor our faith.
Genesis 171-2 – And when Abram was ninety years old and nine, the LORD appeared to Abram, and said unto him, I am the Almighty God; walk before me, and be thou perfect. And I will make my covenant between me and thee, and will multiply thee exceedingly.Yesterday I began writing to you about defining Biblical covenant. It’s really not that difficult to do, but we must remove ourselves from the constricting influence of religious speech and sanctimonious thinking. I believe you know what I’m saying. You can be having a conversation with a complete stranger about the weather of going fishing, and everything is going along well. But let the conversation turn towards church, the Bible, or some doctrinal issue, that often the entire tone of voice and even the elocution of many people drastically change. If you’ve been saved very long, you’ve probably encountered it, especially if you are in the five-fold ministry. It would almost be humorous if it weren’t so serious. That is generally a result of moving away from Biblical definition to religious mind-set and what might be called church talk.
I’m talking about Biblical definitions. Consider the word “love.” I’m talking about the God kind of love; what the Greek language calls “agape.” In almost every conversation I have ever had with someone about the God kind of love, agape, at some point, usually very early in the conversation, feelings become one of the great focal points. By feelings, I’m talking about emotions. People describe it like a tub of honey (feelings of sweetness), an all-encompassing embrace of warmth (feelings of security), and there are many other expressions. I’m sure you have heard many of them, perhaps even used some of them.
But in truth, agape love has nothing to do with feelings. Agape love, the God kind of love, is love that is based on the character of the lover, a love that never changes. It doesn’t get deeper or richer as time passes. We may perceive it as such, but that is only our revelation of that love growing within us. The truth is, agape love never changes, just as God never changes. And what is wonderful is that God’s Word gives us a very precise and understandable definition of the God kind of love. Take a moment to read 1 John 5:3. There we read, “For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments.” It’s that simple. It’s not about feelings, emotions, or anything close to that. It is simple obedience to the Word of God. In John 14:15; Jesus said, “If you love Me, keep My commandments.” Don’t try to make God’s words mean something other that what He says they mean. Yes, feelings may come. Yes, emotions may be stirred. But feelings and emotions are never a measuring stick for God’s love, and sensory perception is never a measuring stick for God’s faith. Selah!
Manna for Today – Genesis 17; Psalm 119:89; Matthew 5:18; Matthew 24:35; Mark 13:31; Luke 16:17; Luke 21:33; Romans 3:4; Hebrews 1:3