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Lesson # John 15:12
Study Material - John 15:12
You must be in fellowship prior to your Bible study, so that the spiritual information you receive can become a source, of blessing to your soul and produce spiritual growth.
12 This [houtos] is [esti] my [emos] commandment [entole] , That [hina] ye love [agapao] one another [allelon] , as [kathos] I have loved [agapao] you [humas] . KJV-Interlinear
12 'This is My commandment, that you love one another, just as I have loved you. NASB
We are commanded to love one another. The word for love is 'agape' which is a reference to the principle of love or tolerance or recognizing the principles of truth and abiding by them rather than compromising ones life for the sake of expediency.
We treat our children with 'agape' love when we discipline them. They are taught right from wrong. We do not love them any less when they are bad, nor when we discipline them. The discipline is for teaching and training in the principles of manners, and teaching right from wrong, and so forth.
We don't (or shouldn't) look the other way when they do something wrong, that would be teaching the wrong principles of life, and of course would not be an application of 'agape' love.
We should treat people with the same attitude. We tolerate people, even their beliefs, even when their beliefs are false. But, we do not promote their beliefs. If someone promotes his religion we stand our ground in Christianity - one faith, one savior, one God, etc.
We do not give lip service to other philosophies and call them honorable when they are pure evil, as are all religions or beliefs which reject Christ. But neither do we lead crusades against these evil philosophies. Instead we promote Christian beliefs without forcing anything on anyone. If the truth is known, then if people are open minded, they will see the truth. If they are not open minded, then nothing we do or say will change their minds. God will deal with them in due course. Which simply means that they might become positive on another occasion. God alone knows their future.
We do not make issue with the sins of others. Judging is not our prerogative. Instead we look to doctrine and teach systematically the principles in the Bible without pointing any finger at anyone. For example, some people in this world pursue homosexual tendencies. Some people (male and female) prefer to live together rather than getting married. Some people prefer to steal rather than buy the things they want. Some people prefer to gossip. Some people have their nose held high against others. This list can go on an on.
You see, you can't designate one sin or another sin as being exceptionally bad, when all are bad. Those who are promiscuous, are no better or lessor sinners then those who would 'never do such a thing' in their self righteousness. You see the self righteous person has already judged the promiscuous person, and judging and the inevitable gossip or innuendo that goes along with it are just as bad.
Pointing a finger at someone who you 'just know' has sinned, hasn't kept the 'ten commandments' or has made some transgression in your eyes (whether real or only in your imagination), is wrong.
In short, we do not judge. We do not point our fingers at others. We just don't jump into the affairs of others whether they are wrong in truth or just in our imaginations. If they are in the wrong then that is between them and God, not you.
We do not try to win arguments based on the errors of others. Politics is full of this. One would think that the problems of society would be debated, as to how to approach them, but more often than not, the personal lives of those running for office, becomes the issue. It is more sensational, though probably irrelevant. And if morals are not in question then issues are made that question 'possible' errors in ones character. The whole goal it to sow doubt in the minds of voters concerning an opponent, rather than winning the voters over with proposed solutions to problems. But then the average voter is pretty superficial in this world and that is why we have so many political polls that change dramatically from day to day, from week to week, even when nothing else in the world has really changed. People are fickle.
We are to think rationally and logically, not emotionally. We as advancing believers do not change our thinking with the weather or with our circumstances. Consistency is the order of the day. Constancy and stability of thinking.
We have a policy - grace. We have a guide to the principles to life - Bible doctrine. It was written centuries ago and does not change. Mans interpretations can change, but that is when man becomes subjective and attempts to make God his slave, rather than himself an obedient servant to God.
And that leads us into another relationship with God - friendship. That is where we will begin tomorrow.
Now is the time to post a prayer.
End Of Lesson
Study to show thyself approved (mature) unto God, a workman that needs not to be ashamed, rightly dividing (studying/discerning), the Word of truth.
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