Bible Pathways - Dec. 21, 2008
Highlights In Today's Reading:
Beware of false teachers (4:1-6). Memorize 4:4, you can do it! Notice how God's love beams from Christians? Here's why (4:7-21)! Victory over the world (5:1-5).
It can honestly be said concerning most of us that, before and after our worship hour, we talk a lot about the weather, health, economy, and politics, and say very little concerning spiritual values. In contrast to this, God has provided just one Book, but each sentence is exceedingly important.
A general rule to be remembered concerning the importance of what God has said is this: When He has spoken once concerning any given fact it is important to our eternal welfare, but when any one fact is repeated more than once we must give it exceptional consideration.
In view of this, consider His subject in the twenty-one verses of this 4th chapter where our responsibility as stewards of God's love is mentioned more than twenty-five times. In all of life could there be a more vital subject for our consideration?
The disciple who really takes Christ as his Guide will do as Jesus said: Love one another; as I have loved you . . . By this shall all men know that ye are My disciples, if ye have love one to another (John 13:34-35).
Furthermore, we are to: Love your enemies, bless them that that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven (Matt. 5:44-45).
We ought (are obligated) also to love one another, regardless of what they "may" have done to us.
It is of utmost importance that we realize the consequences of an unforgiving attitude toward anyone.
Jesus taught that our eternal destiny depends upon it, saying in the parable of the unforgiving servant: O thou wicked servant, I forgave thee all that debt, because thou desiredst me: Shouldest not thou also have had compassion on thy fellowservant, even as I had pity on thee? And his lord was wroth, and delivered him to the tormentors, till he should pay all that was due unto him. So likewise shall My Heavenly Father do also unto you, if ye from your hearts forgive not every one his brother their trespasses (18:21-35).
If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen? (I John 4:20).
Thought for Today:
There is no sense begging for God to forgive us as long as we continue to refuse to forgive others. God will not answer our prayer until we do (Matt. 6:15,18).
5:18 he that is begotten of God keepeth himself =b> he that is saved will not become involved in sinful activities.
Pray for Country: South Africa (42.6 million) on the southern tip of the African continent • Major languages: Afrikaans and English • Religious freedom • 76% Christian; 1% Muslim; 1% Hindu; 15% Traditional; .5% Jewish; 6.5% None/Other (Baha'i, Jain, Sikh, Zoroastrian, Buddhist, Confucian) • Prayer Suggestion: Praise the Lord for His wonderful blessings (Ps. 150:2).
Memory Verse for the Week: John 14:6