Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Love and Truth

Christ and the Rich Young Ruler
“Jesus looked at him and loved him. ‘One thing you lack,’ he said. ‘Go, sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me’” (Mark 10:21).

What if we truly loved everyone we meet? How would that change how we interact with people?

Let’s review the story we call “The Rich Young Ruler”. A young man asks Jesus what he must do to inherit eternal life. Jesus reminds of the more man-focused commandments: “You shall not murder, you shall not commit adultery, you shall not steal, you shall not give false testimony, you shall not defraud, honor your father and mother” (Mark 10:19).

He replies, “All these I have kept since I was a boy” (v20).

Mark’s account includes this interesting comment: “Jesus looked at him and loved him” (v21).

Wednesday, May 18, 2022

The Law of Love: Love Your Enemy

Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you” (Luke 6:27-28).

This may be the Lord’s hardest command. “Do not commit adultery” comes naturally to a lot of people, but loving your enemy? That is completely unnatural.

Who’s my enemy? Whoever I don’t want to do good to. Whoever I don’t like. Whoever I feel is trying to harm me, ruin me, or mistreat me. Your enemy is the one trying to damage your reputation. Your enemy is the person who’s always asking for a very reasonable inch so they can take a mile.

What do I do with these people? “If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also. And if anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt, hand over your coat as well” (Matt 5:39).

That’s not how the world treats their enemies. Our world says, "If you disagree with me, you must be ruined." That is not the way of the cross. Christ’s followers do not slander their enemies, vandalize their homes or businesses, or try to destroy their livelihood. Rather than acting out of anger, we’re supposed to treat them as if they were friends:

Wednesday, May 11, 2022

The Law of Love: Love Your Brother

A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another” (John 13:34).

Christ’s people are to show each other a special kind of love. You’re supposed to do for other people whatever you’d want someone to do for you. You’re also expected to do for your brothers and sisters in Christ what you’d never dream of asking anyone to do for you.

Our model is the kind of sacrificial and humble love demonstrated by Christ Jesus

“Who, being in very nature God,
  did not consider equality with God something to be grasped,
but made himself nothing,
  taking the very nature of a servant,
  being made in human likeness.
And being found in appearance as a man,
  he humbled himself
  and became obedient to death—
    even death on a cross!” (Phil 2:6-8)

Wednesday, May 4, 2022

The Story of the Expressive Individual Self

Strange New World cover
How did we come to a place where the sentence “I am a woman trapped in a man’s body” is considered to be sensible by a large part of the population?

Carl Trueman answers that question in his latest book Strange New World: How Thinkers and Activists Redefined Identity and Sparked the Sexual Revolution (of which I received a free review copy). We all know about the sexual revolution, and we all know what’s going on now is related to it. What Trueman reveals, however, is that the pattern of thought that became the sexual revolution began 400 years ago. “I am a woman trapped in a man’s body” is a direct descendent of “I think; therefore, I am.”