Taught of God!

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

I Thessalonians 4:9:
But as touching brotherly love {philadelphia} ye need not that I write unto you: for ye yourselves are taught of God to love one another.

The one Greek word philadelphia can be translated into brotherly love or brotherly kindness or love of the brethren. The Apostle Paul is stating that he had no need to explain how to love our brothers and sisters or our dear friends, for we have known instinctively how to since childhood because the philadelphia kind of love is an innate quality of life.

The word love in the second phrase ye yourselves are taught of God to love one another is the Greek verb agapao meaning active spiritual love, and this kind of love from God reveals a new, intense quality of love that God Himself teaches to His beloved children. This word for God’s spiritual love is often translated in the King James Version as the word charity, as in I Corinthians chapter 13. When we utilize God’s love, we literally will become pupils of God, being taught by Him the true joys and virtues of how to love others His way.

God’s love is not given to keep to ourselves, or only to be shared with the people we like such as our families and friends (that is philadelphia love), but God’s love is for the benefit of all people. Hebrews 13:1 records, “Let brotherly love continue,” and II Peter 1:7 encourages us to add “charity” which is God’s love along with our “brotherly kindness {philadelphia}.”

God’s pure love teaches believers to reach out and love others, like the unlovable, which includes ― you, as God continues to replenish His love in us so we are never left empty. God’s love NEVER imagines, “we should only love those in our group,” or “only love people who are nice to us,” or “only love people who have taken the right Bible classes,” or “love only those who will love us in return,” no, because God’s love is for everyone and we are His students. “For if ye love them which love you {i.e., “scratch my back and I’ll scratch yours,” is this kind of love}, what thank{s} have ye? for sinners also love those that love them” (Luke 6:32); in other words, God’s love the He teaches will extend out much further than just philadelphia love. Jesus said, “And they shall be all taught of God. Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto me” (John 6:45). So indeed we learn that those who are taught of God to love others do indeed come to Jesus, and with him we come to know and experience him as our continued guide into true spirituality that God’s love reveals.

Believers who will reach out with God’s love will be taught of God to love one another. I cannot think of anything better in this whole world than to be a pupil of God who is receiving His instructions on one of the greatest attributes of God Himself ─ His Love.

I Thessalonians 5:17 encourages us to, “Pray without ceasing.” You see, prayer is a great connecting point that lovingly draws us into a very personal relationship with God our Teacher, which further helps us form a one-on-one connection that facilitates our love for Him to blossom into something very meaningful as we learn to reach out with His love. Christ is our golden thread that helps us make the connection with “the God of love” (II Corinthians 13:11), and it is Christ’s name that we use in prayer to open God’s treasure chest that was always reserved ― for us!

John 14:13-14:
-13: And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.
-14: If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it.

Prayer can be likened to raising our hand in class and asking God how we can love in specific situations, such as, “How can I love this person?” or “How can I possibly love in this particular situation?” and we may be assured of receiving an instructive answer. When we walk out on our believing-faith and we love someone with God’s love, we become “labourers together with God” (I Corinthians 3:9), and so we are never alone in the school of life. In other words, when we take His lessons with us, we will come to know in our hearts that we are with God as we continue reaching out with His inseparable and inspiring love.

We read, for ye yourselves are taught of God to love one another. What grade do you suppose that you would receive from your Teacher at this moment in time? Teachers often give homework to their students so the student will learn the prACTical applications of the assignment that would lead to knowledge and understanding and wisdom. How can we know if we are gaining a passing grade? Well I John 3:14 clearly gives us the answer, “We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the brethren.” Learning to walk in love day to day can be likened to doing a lifelong field study as we walk out on our believing in the assurances of I Corinthians 13:8, “Charity never faileth,” meaning that when we reach out with love we will always receive an A-plus, because love never fails!

I Thessalonians 4:10:
And indeed ye do it {love one another with God’s love} toward all the brethren which are in all Macedonia: but we beseech you, brethren, that ye increase more and more.

In verse 10, we learn that God’s assignment is to keep your God-given love active, to increase more and more, and to further discover how far-reaching the charity you have received will be applicable in your own life. With your intent focused toward acting on what you are being taught, you will begin to master the love of God. God instructs in Colossians 3:14, “And above all these things put on charity, which is the bond of perfectness.” We have read that, “Charity never faileth,” which means that there is enormous profit and personal benefits to be gained in the use of God’s love and thus, Jude 1:21 encourages “Keep yourselves in the love of God,” and I John tenders some of the benefits for being respectful students with the outreach of God’s love.

I John 2:5, 4:7, 12, and 16:
-5: But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him.
-7: Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God.
-12: No man hath seen God at any time. If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and his love is perfected in us.
-16: And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him.

I Thessalonians 4:11 then goes on to instruct, “And that ye study to be quiet.” Often we as students of the Word are either too talkative or living in a daydream and unable to realize the instruction that comes from our heavenly teacher: “Be still, and know that I am God” (Psalms 46:10). When we learn to focus on His lessons throughout our days we will be good students who practically apply in our lives the instruction “let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth” (I John 3:18).  The context of this word study in I Thessalonians 4:11 is to follow through with all that you are learning about the love that God is teaching you, first by His example of loving you Himself (John 3:16), as you become a well-versed student in the prACTical applications of His love. The word quiet means to live and conduct your own life with tranquility on life’s path, being content, and the contentment comes to God’s children as they continue on their assignment of loving ― that ye increase more and more.

Colossians 2:7 shows that we may become, “Rooted and built up in him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving.” As ye have been taught relates to your lovely assignment that commenced with the foundational truths that God loves you, that Jesus loves you and that as you reach out and love one another while becoming good students, you will find yourself abounding therein with thankfulness!

The Psalmist prayed (as we can), “Teach me thy way, O LORD, and lead me in a plain path” (Psalms 27:11), and the plain path is to live a lifestyle that is being continually built up on love ― so we may be in love with God. Paul taught us thatif any man love God, the same is known of him” (I Corinthians 8:3), meaning the same love is known of him or her because he or she will become known to God and Christ as lovers in the spiritual sense of the word.

I Peter 3:10:
For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile:

The greater teaching that comes from God is that as we learn from Him to love others, we will be experiencing the compassionate love God has for us individually, in that He, in love, sent His only begotten Son for our salvation which is the greatest act of love ─ ever. A great reciprocal response for receiving this wonderful gift is for us to love in return as we are Taught of God!

In conclusion we allow His words to teach:

Psalms 119:96-100 (The Amplified Bible):*
-96: I have seen that everything [human] has its limits and end [no matter how extensive, noble, and excellent]; but Your commandment is exceedingly broad and extends without limits [into eternity].
-97: Oh, how love I Your law {The Word}! It is my meditation all the day.
-98: You, through Your commandments, make me wiser than my enemies, for [Your words] are ever before me.
-99: I have better understanding and deeper insight than all my teachers, because Your testimonies are my meditation.
-100: I understand more than the aged, because I keep Your precepts [hearing, receiving, loving, and obeying them {as an obedient student with the ultimate goal ― to enjoy love in the university of life’s outreach programs}].

John 3:16 (The Amplified Bible):**
For God so greatly loved and dearly prized the world that He [even] gave up His only begotten (unique) Son, so that whoever believes in (trusts in, clings to, relies on) Him shall not perish (come to destruction, be lost) but have eternal (everlasting) life.

I Corinthians 3:9 (The Amplified Bible):**
For we are fellow workmen (joint promoters, laborers together) with and for God; you are God’s garden and vineyard and field under cultivation, [you are] God’s building {i.e., His classroom}.

I John 3:18-19 and 4:7 (The Amplified Bible):**
-18: Little children, let us not love [merely] in theory or in speech but in deed and in truth (in practice and in sincerity).
-19: By this {spiritual love of God} we shall come to know (perceive, recognize, and understand) that we are of the Truth, and can reassure (quiet, conciliate, and pacify) our hearts in His presence.
-7: Beloved, let us love one another, for love is (springs) from God; and he who loves [his fellowmen] is begotten (born) of God and is coming [progressively] to know and understand God [to perceive and recognize and get a better and clearer knowledge of Him].

*Scripture taken from THE AMPLIFIED BIBLE, Old Testament copyright (c) 1965, 1989 by the Zondervan Corporation.
Used by permission.

** Scripture taken from THE AMPLIFIED BIBLE.
The Amplified New Testament copyright (c) 1958, 1987 by The Lockman Foundation.
Used by permission.

Perfecting God’s Love – Within

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

 I John 4:11: Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another.

What an awesome verse of Scripture, commencing with the word Beloved, for this is God’s point of view of you and me, He recognizes us as His Beloved. The word if is not written to imply a question or a doubt, because the word if in the Greek Text is the word since. Thus, the Scripture reads “Beloved, since God so loved us,” for God has loved us since the world began (Ephesians 1:4).

The words we ought implies another extension of the true depths of love of God, because He is not demanding a reciprocal love back to Him or challenging us to love others, He is simply stating that we ought to love one another. The human love that sometimes manifests itself and that many people have known demands equal love in return to sustain its presence; however, God’s love (spiritual love) is always with us, because God loves us unconditionally and therefore we have continuous access to His love. God simply states that we should learn to share His love towards one another as proof (to us individually) that He indeed loves us.

I John 4:12: No man hath seen God at any time {with his eyes}. If {or Since} we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and his love is perfected in us.

God does dwell within the heart and fiber of the human soul who is a Christian, and when we do love others, we will begin to realize we do have God’s love dwelling within. Not only will we realize that God lives in our hearts, but His love becomes perfected in us, love comes into full bloom and perfection in our hearts as we reach out and love others.

I John 4:16–17:
-16: And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him.
-17: Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world.

God is love, for this is ― as he is, and when our God-given love is made perfect via loving one another (see verse 12 above), we will become, as God is love.

Have we judged ourselves worthy enough to love others with God’s love, or do we simply judge others? With God’s love in our hearts, we have boldness – today – to love even the unlovable! The day of judgment is today, not at the end of the world, but right now. Many believers suspect that the Day of Judgment includes us having to pay retribution for sins committed, but just look at the setting in which this statement sits: our love made perfect is on one end and on the other we find as he is, so are we in this world. The context that the day of judgment is set in – is now – and is to be lived with His love. Do we love today? Has our love been made perfect in this present day of grace? Do we know and believe that we are as he is (and He is love, see verse 16 above), or are we estranged from the Father and His love? Christ has “delivered us from the wrath to come” (I Thessalonians 1:10). No Christian ever has to feel separated from God or His never-ending love (Romans 8:37–39), because God always loves us; recall that we are His beloved, and He desires us to experience the wonderfulness of enjoying the perfection of His love in us by our loving today (period).

In Colossians 3:4 we read that, “When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory.” Note that we will not appear in shame, or to be judged, but we will appear with him in glory. We Christians have a Savior and he assures us of our salvation and relieves us of the unfounded misconceptions of judgments, condemnations, and tribulations ― for he overcame the world for us.

John 3:15–17, and 16:33:
-15: That whosoever believeth in him {Jesus} should not perish, but have eternal life.
-16: For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
-17: For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
-33: These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.

Walking with the love of God in our hearts today will relieve of us any and all fears about our glorious future to be with God and our Savior. God has made us accepted as His beloved in Christ (Ephesians 1:6), and as members of His family (Ephesians 2:19), and when we reach out with His love, then we will know this with an absolute certainty, and we will enjoy His spiritual love enthusiastically.

Growing up I was afraid of God and the fires of hell like so many others. God in His magnificent foresight must have known that I would not be alone carrying around this unfounded burden of fear, so to bless His children, God simply had the next two verses written to dispel these fears from our lives and He gave us His love to back up His promise.

I John 4:18–19:
-18: There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.
-19: We love him, because he first loved us.

We have total access to a spiritual love that has been bestowed on us by the Creator of the Universe Who also happens to be our heavenly Father, and now that we have become aware of this love, we may love without fear or hesitation. We may enjoy God’s love, thanking Him for the strength His love gives, for the load His love carries, and for the burdens His love lifts ― His love is simply uplifting. When we actually reach out with love to others, we will experience a totally perfect, fearless lifestyle of love that will assure our hearts in the present tense that our future is going to be simply marvelous!

Have you ever wondered, how can I know for certain if I completely love God, and how will God know that I do love Him? Well, the Bible has a test that will prove your love for God to your heart’s content, and the answer to this assessment is the next two verses:

I John 4:20–21:
-20: 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?
-21: And this commandment have we from him, That he who loveth God love his brother also.

Whenever we actually reach out with God’s love to others, especially believers, our brothers and sisters in Christ (Galatians 6:10), we may prove to ourselves that we indeed love our God, and as well, this is how we know and believe the compassionate love God has for us individually!

 Colossians 3:14: And above all these things put on charity, which is the bond of perfectness.

God’s Word instructs above all things that we put on charity, which is the love of God, and the Bible says that love is the bond of perfectness. The word bond means that which ties, holds, or binds together, and in this verse we find that love is what holds us together. The word perfectness means total completeness, for there is absolutely nothing greater than having the love of God manifested in our own lives. When believers begin realizing that they have God’s divine love in their hearts (Romans 5:5), and they begin using this love in daily situations, then they will come to experience a genuine reassurance that they are building their spiritual lives on the true bond of perfectness.

In a world where almost everything is imperfect, we can tap into something that is a perfect constant reality, and is our bond of perfectness, for God’s love allows us to enjoy precious moments of total completeness immersed in God’s most perfect love. As we reach out to one another with God’s love, we can come to experience that God’s love is perfected within us.

 John 16:33 (The Amplified Bible):**
I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have [perfect] peace and confidence. In the world you have tribulation and trials and distress and frustration; but be of good cheer [take courage; be confident, certain, undaunted]! For I have overcome the world. [I have deprived it of power to harm you and have conquered it for you.]

I John 4:20–21 (The Amplified Bible):**
-20: If anyone says, I love God, and hates (detests, abominates) his brother [in Christ], he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot love God, Whom he has not seen.
-21: And this command (charge, order, injunction) we have from Him: that he who loves God shall love his brother [believer] also.

**Scripture taken from THE AMPLIFIED BIBLE.
The Amplified New Testament copyright (c) 1958, 1987 by The Lockman Foundation.
Used by permission.

The Bond of Perfectness

Written by Larry M. Jaynes:

 Colossians 3:14:
And above all these things put on charity, which is the bond of perfectness.

“Charity” is the Greek word agapao. This is a verb form of the Greek noun agapee, and means love, the love of God applied. God’s Word instructs “above all things” that we put on love, and the Bible says that love “is the bond of perfectness.” The word “bond” means that which ties, holds, or binds together, and in this verse, love is what holds us together. The word “perfectness” means total completeness, for there is absolutely nothing beyond or above having the love of God manifested in our own lives. When believers begin realizing that they have God’s divine love in their hearts (Romans 5:5), and they begin using this love in daily situations, they will come to experience a genuine reassurance that they are building their spiritual lives on the true bond of perfectness.

Mark 12:29–30:
-29: And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord:
-30: And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.

I Timothy 1:5a:
Now the end of the commandment is charity {love} . . .

When we look at Mark 12:29-30 and I Timothy 1:5 we find the first commandment is love and then the end of the commandment is also love. What we have here is a wondrous and godly concept that begins and ends in love. Love is one of the greatest things that God has ever given to us, and this love is “above all things.” In a world where almost everything is imperfect we can tap into something that is a perfect constant reality, and is our bond of perfectness, for God’s love allows us to experience precious moments of total completeness immersed in God’s perfect love.

In I Corinthians 13:8 God says, “Charity never faileth.” God’s love will never let you down, for it is “the bond of perfectness.”