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The Love Of Christ

How would you like to be Jesus Christ when he was sent to the earth and not recognized by the man you created? The Bible says, He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. John 1:10  God sent his Son into a world that was too busy to know him or give him the time of day. From the beginning the world, man has been busy struggling with the worries of this life, the deceitfulness of wealth and the desires for other things come in and choke the (Godís) word, making it unfruitful. Mark 4:19-20  Just as it was then, people eat, drink, buy, selling, plant build today, thinking that they live in relative safety not knowing when disaster will strike.

Put your self in Jesus shoes for a moment. Christ knew that the world would not know him when he still came to the earth. Christ testified of the relation he had to his father in heaven. Though, the religious leaders believed that anyone related to their Father in heaven was equal to God. With that opinion they responded by calling the Son of God a blasphemer and that Jesus cast demons out through the power of Beelzebub. Although God foresaw the rejection of Christ, God sent his son into a world that would condemn him to death. After his death, the Pharisees fabricated a story to cover up the resurrection of Jesus Christ. The condition of mankind had to be a test of the love Jesus had for his creation.

Despite the ridicule, the pain and the sin of mankind that was placed on him, Jesus said, "Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing." Luke 23:34. It takes a dimension of love unknown to man, to understand why Christ would ask God the Father to forgive those who put him on the cross. However on the cross Jesus became the Lamb that died as the just payment for the sin of mankind and reconciled God to man.

The love of God demanded that the Father forgive the very people who put his Son to death. How does one measure love? Certainly, those who killed the Son of God deserved to die a horrible death. Jesus said, Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one's life for one's friends. John 15:13  Even when his body was screaming from the pain of the thorns, the welts, the open wounds, and the nails that was suspending him to the cross. He asked God to forgive them.

When you consider that Christ laid his life down for his friends it makes you wonder. Did Christ die for those who schemed against him, those who scoffed at him, those who ridiculed him, those who lied to him, those who scourged him, those who led him to the cross, those who drove the nails in his hands, the one who betrayed him or his friends who ate with him, who sang songs with him, who followed him and went to the synagogue with him? Yes Christ died once for all. God demonstrates his own love for us in this:

While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8

Christ had a different kind of love than men have. He could still love those who had inflicted pain to his body and reduced him to the size of an ant with their words. He could still love the foolish and the arrogant. He didnít appreciate the deception they lived in or the ignorance of their evil deeds. God has chosen to love people for who they are and the individual by giving them respect and personal dignity. He died for man because each man was worth saving and giving eternal life.

In the creation account, The Lord God said, "It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him." Genesis 2:18 . God knows that Life would worthless and unbearable without someone to share it with. So God created human beings in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. Genesis 1:27 . Man was created in the image of God but man was not a mirror image of each other. Man by himself was not man, God said he made man male and female, meaning both genders were included by the term, man. The outcome of Godís creation was that man could procreate.

However, Satan deceived man to separate him from the love of God by enticing Adam and Eve to eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Sin dissolves the trust between persons whether between God and man or between men. God wanted man to love Him and his creation the way he loved them, unconditionally.

Perceived from an unconditional viewpoint, I see the basis as an act of the will to love from the very core of our being. Jesus Said that we were to love God with our entire being and to love your neighbor as yourself. When Jesus was asked who was my neighbor, he pointed to a Samaritan whom his disciples wanted nothing to do with. Loving those who take advantage and abuse you takes a different kind of love to love those who love you. It takes the love of God.

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16

How could Christ forgive man while suffering on the cross when bitterness and the desire to get even would rule the normal human mind? Christ knew that the outcome of his death was to save those who would believe on him from perishing. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many." Mark 10:45 . What is his reward? He was beaten, spat upon, and abused because he did not measure up to manís expectations.

God has greater expectations than manís self-centered ideas of what love is. Man loves because he is loved and receives benefits from his love. Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one's life for one's friends. John 15:13-14. Could you have given your life for someone you donít even know? Jesus Christ did. Jesus said this about those he died for.

Whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many." Mark 10:43-45  

Before Jesus Christ came to dwell among man, man had little hope of eternal life because he could not live up to the letter of the law. Christ came to serve and to give his life as a ransom for everyone who would believe in him. Christ came to serve the needs of God and of man. His sinless life served as the perfect sacrifice required by the law for the justice God demanded of man sin. The Sacrifice became the way through belief in his name that man would not perish but receive eternal life.

His death on the cross first served the needs of God and then anyone who chose to believe in Jesus Christ could have eternal life. The scriptures tell us how to love one another in the following places,

Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. Romans 12:10
We should all please our neighbors for their good, to build them up. For even Christ did not please himself but, as it is written: "The insults of those who insult you have fallen on me Romans 15:2-3
Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers. Galatians 6:10
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. 1 Corinthians 13:4-7
Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. Colossians 3:12-14

Serving one another becomes a natural desire when you do things for others with love. Not only do you build up esteem, you give those you serve a reason to love you. Christ applied the golden rule to those who crucified him. He gave his life so everyone could have eternal life. How could you not love someone who served eternal life to you on a platter? Christ set you free from sin so you could serve the God of your choice. When you learn what Jesus Christ has done to serve your needs you canít help but want to serve his needs.

 

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