Tag Archives: love one another

Anointed Ones Abide! (1John 2)

ImageThey say opposites attract but is that really true? We usually use the standards of how we are attracted by one’s physical appearance, by their status, by their education. We oppose those who are different than us.  But, Jesus said we will attract others not by how they look, by how much money they have in the bank etc. but by a character quality and that quality is love for one another. In fact it was so important that on his last night after the Judas left, Jesus gave this commandment:  “I give you a new commandment – to love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. Everyone will know by this that you are my disciples – if you have love for one another.”

Yesterday, John told us that God is Light. Today he bridges that concept to say that if we know and have experienced God’s Light illuminating our being we will be marked by three qualities: love, abiding, anointing. Each of those qualities marks the believers/followers of Jesus.  How then do we know if we are loving, abiding, and are anointed and what are the warning signals that we are not? That is the question he poses. First John addresses the children, having just become a new born believer; the fathers; that is we are seasoned, mature; or we are young men; we are in between, not yet fully mature but no longer children. Where are you? Where am I?

First we know Jesus, who is our Advocate. Because we have a propensity to sin, we run to him when we sin and know that if we confess our sin he is faithful and just to forgive us. We have chosen to keep his commandments, we walk in the same manner as he did and we love one another; that is our brothers and sisters in Christ.

Secondly, we are more aware of the enemy’s strategies and now because we are anointed by the indwelling Holy Spirit we should be able to detect his entrance. To help us, John offers three avenues the enemy uses which are no different than he used in the Garden and with Jesus in his temptation. First is the problem of the world: our flesh; that is our perceived wants. Secondly our eyes are our perceived views. Lastly is our pride of life or how we perceive our status.  John says DO NOT love these three for if we do then we should doubt our walk  with God for these are not from the Father. Here’s how you can tell. When one of those perceived enemy attacks comes do you flee (1Tim 6:11, 2Tim 2:22) or stay? Do you deny (Rom  6:12-13, 8:13) or accept? Do you resist (1Pt 5:9) or conform?

Thirdly, as a believer you have the indwelling Holy Spirit to assist you in abiding. Abiding is our intimate relationship with Jesus, our Advocate and Blessed Redeemer/Savior. It has the essence of how we respond to Jesus and His commandments. We allow Him to fill our minds, direct our wills, and transform our affections. Jesus takes up residence within us through the Holy Spirit as He promised. As our intimate teacher the Holy Spirit (John 14:26, 16:13) will bring thoughts to our mind, direct our steps if we are yielding, and will give us understanding.

Blessed Beloved Ones, remain steadfast, immovable, always abounding lest you be led astray. Test the spirits to know if they are of God or not. Check and see if you are abiding, loving, anointed. Abide anointed ones for you are blessed beyond measure.


J-Joy O-Others Y-You…that Spells Jesus Joy!

ImageYes it does spell that word joy but how does one live joyfully, how does one live righteously in a world that is turning upside down day by day?

Throughout history the Bible along with secular history records men/women who willingly chose to live righteously, (ex. Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach, Abednego, Peter and John, Jesus, Paul)  amidst unrighteous leaders and unrighteous governments. How were they able to stand tall, strong and brave? I often wonder if I could do the same? After reading Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s biography along with the examples from scripture I have come to some conclusions.   Image

First some principles: In Romans 12 Paul gives some basic life principles or life guides as to how to conduct ourselves as we live side by side with our family, our neighbors, our co-workers. Paul furthers this thought in 13: 9 ‘Love your neighbor as yourself’ which is the commandment Jesus gave the rich young ruler as well. When we have love for others all of our own personal ideas are tossed aside for we put others ahead of ourselves. It might be helpful to remember this simple equation to keep our priorities straight. 

“J –Jesus, O-Others, Y-Yourself = JOY.”

I noted that Paul, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit placed our obligations to government between the obligations to others, [Rom 12:9-21 and Rom 13:8-14], which he followed by admonitions to godly conduct. I don’t think I ever saw that before!  Therefore, it behooves that we can surmise that our societal obligations to one another are the guide to how we live in an unrighteous world. When Jesus is first, others are second; we find that ourself falls nicely into the last spot with all humility. Jesus reminded us that when we render unto Caesar the things that are Caesars we can then render unto God the things that are God’s. (Matt 22:21). Thus know God’s Law and then know man’s law. When we follow God’s Law as the primary we can thus obey those that God has allowed and those that are not opposed to the supreme Law.

Our first mandate is to be the best citizen possible by obeying the governmental authorities over us for they are ordained and are in place by the will of God.  The second one is found in Rom 12:19 “as much as possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all people.” The third one is found in 1Tim 2, again written by Paul, “I urge that requests, prayers, intercessions, and thanks be offered on behalf of all people, even for kings and all who are in authority…(why) that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life in all godliness and dignity.” Lastly, when the government is opposed to the ways of God one must take a stand as Peter and John did in Acts 4 “Peter and John replied, “Whether it is right before God to obey you rather than God, you decide,” Down through history we have seen men who, like Peter and John as well as many others like Daniel, took a stand and God honored their stand.  They chose God’s way over man’s way. The guiding principle is to obey the installed government until such time comes that it dishonors the Law of God given through Moses.

Now the reason why. The world is watching how we act, react, and respond. Our prayer must be that offered by the believers when Peter and John returned: “Lord, pay attention to their threats, and grant to your servants to speak your message with great courage.” Jesus is our prime example who when reviled did not revile in return. Paul and Jesus lived under monstrous rulers and yet they obeyed and encouraged us to do the same. We are then brought back to this Tit 2:12  “live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age,” and how Romans began “The righteous will live by faith.”

My conclusion is this: May God grant us wisdom to live righteously this day and the days ahead.