Monday, April 15, 2013

Love = Obedience

Our text this week was John 21:1-19 and there are some great lessons in it.  When Jesus restores Peter, he asks him three times if he loves him.  After each of Peter's responses, Jesus gives him a task to perform - feed my lambs, tend my sheep, feed my sheep - that is clearly linked to Peter's love for Jesus.  It is strikingly similar to the three denials of Christ that Peter uttered during Christ's Passion.

It follows on a theme from John 14 where Jesus told Judas:
23 Jesus replied, “Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them. 24 Anyone who does not love me will not obey my teaching. These words you hear are not my own; they belong to the Father who sent me.

Too often in this life we equate words with faith.  We confess that we believe certain things, but our lives do not show evidence of that faith.  We are caught in a trap where we have orthodoxy - right beliefs but we do not have orthopraxis - right actions- in our life.  We talk a good game, but like Peter, when the rubber hits the road, we fail.  We fail to do that which we claim to believe.  We fail to be the hands and feet of Christ.  We fail to avoid the sins that ensnare us.  We fail to do that which Christ has commanded us:

Great Commission

Great Commandment

Good Samaritan

This is a year to put actions to our words.  A year to be the people we are called to be.  We no longer have a privileged position in society.  We have to go out and earn that position by our actions that show the love of Christ to a hurting world.  

Let's be that people.

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