? Everybody searches for it… Less are willing to give it away and some will even TAKE it from another by force. Jesus spoke frequently about THE LOVE DEBT, we owe to one another.
Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake. For for this cause pay ye tribute also: for they are God’s ministers, attending continually upon this very thing. Render therefore to all their dues: tribute to whom tribute is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honour to whom honour. Owe no man anything, but to love one another: for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law. For this, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Thou shalt not covet; and if there be any other commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying, namely, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law.
Biblically speaking the only DEBT we as Christ followers have – is the DEBT OF LOVE?
- Many misquote this Scripture out of context leading people to believe this is regarding FINANCIAL DEBT, but clearly when we read the full chapter – it is speaking of LOVE, not money.
- We, as Kingdom children, are not to form our mindsets on the ways/thinking/means of the World in such a way. Actually, the World view is not the measurement we use to define Scriptures – it is the other way around.
- In the previous Chapter, Romans 12 – it solidifies what we just went over. Speaking even more about this form of brethren love one to another
- It speaks of how we are to be of ONE BODY.
Let love be without dissimulation [without hypocrisy – but sincere]. Abhor that which is evil; cleave to that which is good. Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honor preferring one another; Not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord; Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer; Distributing to the necessity of saints; given to hospitality. Bless them which persecute you: bless, and curse not. Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep. Be of the same mind one toward another. Mind not high things, but condescend to men of low estate. Be not wise in your own conceits. Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men.
- Being in debt to all men to love alone, means we do not repay evil for evil. So our debt is love alone, because we love Jesus we will do as He says.
John 15 speaks so much about abiding IN Jesus and how a branch cannot bear fruit unless it abides in Him as He is the vine. He goes on to say when we abide in Him we speak His words, our desires become ONE with His so that when we ask we shall receive and all this is so that the Father is glorified. Jesus also tells us by keeping His commandments and abiding in love our joy remains full.
Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.
- How many of you when I just read that thought it meant “To die for another person and that as long as you are not called to die for another – you were doing okay?” Sometimes we even say we would die for someone as we roll the dice banking on that will never come to pass in our lifetime.
- Well… Knowing now the only debt we have is to love and taking this Scripture deeper into context, the truth is – these words Jesus was speaking is not at all about dying for another as in a one time requirement, but rather – a daily laying down of our lives similar to how we are commanded to “Die to flesh daily.”
- Although it is true Jesus did end up purposely laying down His life eventually in one event, but the real demonstration of His laying down His life occurred time and time again as He healed, restored, embraced all those who were sinning – even those who persecuted, condemned Him and thought he was evil. He showed no partiality or vengeance against anyone anytime. He too had only a debt of love to others, never repaying evil for evil.
- Jesus had not an ounce of anger, bitterness or vengeance within Him.
- In Greek this word “Laying down” actually means to PUT ASIDE. Therefore, the Scripture reads: Greater love hath no man than this, that a man put aside his life for his friends.
The Scripture which confirms this, by the Holy Spirit, is found in John 10:18 – This is Jesus speaking about His life and He said “No man taketh it from me, but I lay down of myself. I have power to lay it down and I have power to take it again.” Revealing it is continual.
- It just happens to be this verse is found directly after the verses about Jesus laying His life down for the sheep in ALL FOLDS, not just one as He gathers them all, placing them into ONE FOLD, with ONE SHEPHERD [Himself] because they all hear His voice.
- Boy that sure knocks the wind out of our competition sails doesn’t it?
So what does it mean exactly to, “Lay your life down” for another?
The Word tells us in Ephesians 5 that we should:
- Walk in love as an offering and sacrifice
- Give thanks
- Be obedient
- Be good to one another
- Be truthful in our speech to one another
- Understand what the Father’s will is
- Speak in spiritual songs, making melody in our hearts
- Submit ourselves to one another
- To speak the Word over one another to cleanse the soul
- Nourish & cherish one another
Note: These are all ACTIONS… Just like LAYING DOWN ONE’S LIFE is a daily action.
Words can offer comfort, but without action there is no fruit or manifestation of what we have spoken – the task is incomplete.
Can you imagine if Jesus just stayed in His house talking? How much fruit would there be? He went out among the multitudes and He also sent the disciples out two by two.
It seems to me we talk a lot about what love isn’t, but if we just simply would BE LOVE the sins which so easily ensnares us would just all melt away.
Mother Theresa said: “If you judge someone, you cannot love them.”
The same holds true for these…
If you abuse someone, you cannot love them.
If you lie to someone, you cannot love them.
If you have anger, bitterness, wrath or strife against someone, you cannot love them.
If you cheat someone, you cannot love them.
If you steal or desire to have what someone else has, you cannot love them.
If you blame someone, you cannot love them
Since we all are familiar with Jesus, we are familiar with Love. We know what it feels like to be loved, authentically and purely. So LOVE, HIMSELF is recognizable to us and it also is recognizable in one another. Therefore, we also have the discernment when we are not being loved authentically.? Knowing Jesus is the only true Source of pure love.
How are we treating the TEMPLES OF GOD (one another) is actually our deeds to our Lord Jesus.
- It provides an excellent reminder to check our actions and thoughts towards another person
- “What we do to the least of these [humans – in Greek], we do to Him”
?LOVE ~ THE GREATEST OF ALL, as compared even to FAITH & HOPE in 1 Corinthians 13 teaches us the comparison of PURE LOVE vs a counterfeit love:
IN DEED WE CAN…. BUT WITHOUT LOVE IT IS….
Speak as Angels Sounding brass or a tinkling cymbal [irritating are our words}
Have the gift of prophecy Nothing
Understand all mysteries
Have all knowledge
Have all faith to remove mountains
Give away everything to help the poor It profits nothing to our Heavenly Reward
Give our body to be bruised by others
As the Lord was showing me, that I can do great feats for Him and even in His Name, but without drawing upon His LOVE as the source of all acts, it is not beneficial and at times even irritates others.
Create in me a pure heart.
Sadly, so many in the World today are love starved. Because of this we have a tendency to hoard love, rather than freely give away what we have freely received. The Father’s love is limitless and timeless. With Him as our Source, there is no need to be stingy or have fear the love well will run dry or perish. Thankfully the Love Debt we owe has already been paid, by Jesus and it is He Who dwells within us as an everlasting supply. The beauty in this trust is that our love is full and within that fullness we pour out to others, in order they may receive fullness too. Thank You Lord Jesus.
?Today…. Let your LOVE LIGHT shine!
Angela ~ Marked By Heaven