Ephesians 4:15-16 – “but speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ, 16 from whom the whole body, being fitted and held together by what every joint supplies, according to the proper working of each individual part, causes the growth of the body for the building up of itself in love.” NASU
How many times have you heard the phrase, “Love is God?” I suggest that is wrong to say “love is God” but rather “God is Love.” He is not controlled by love but is love! He gives His love by choice! He does not set his love on demons but He chose to love us while we were still firmly entrenched in the camp of the enemy of God. His Love seeks our highest and best good. He works in us to bring us to completeness in Him and total fulfillment. He is working to bring us to our purpose and destiny and enable us to achieve our greatest potential in life. He was and is committed to that purpose even if it kills Him. (The Cross). God does not have casual affairs, he never just lives with someone, He marries for eternity! That is the picture of God’s Love!
What is man’s highest or best good? What is man’s highest potential? What are we when we are in that position and condition? We are manifesting His life and being what He created us to be. What is that? We are to be a receptacle for His incredible, Agape Love. Living in the complete consciousness of that Love and expressing that love to the world. That is what we are at our highest potential. One definition of sin could be “failing to fulfill that potential.” Before you protest that sin is ‘missing the mark’ is that not missing the mark of God’s purpose? The Bible tells us that “…all have sinned and come short of the glory (LOVE) of God…” A man has failed when he has cut himself off from that incredible Love!
Man, did that in the Garden in and through Adam and Eve and has been doing it for centuries. The Good News is that does not deter God. He keeps coming, loving, and calling us. Nothing separates us from or causes Him to stop loving us. When we truly SEE, the Love demonstrated at the Cross and comprehend that God LOVES us so much that He gave His Son for us, FAITH rises inside your being and you cry “Abba Father!” It is then that we turn from rebellion and repent of our rebellion and commit ourselves to obeying and following Him. We are then transferred from the Kingdom of Darkness into the Kingdom of God’s Light and become cells in the Body of Christ. We are then united and joined to every other cell in the Body in Love.
Paul, in Romans declared regarding salvation, “The Love of God is shed abroad in our hearts…” Then in Thessalonians, he spoke to new converts and said, “You have been taught of God to Love one another…” LOVE is the key characteristic of the Body of Christ! It is not your particular brand of Christianity that identifies you as a Christian it is God’s Love shed abroad in your heart and the manifestation of that Love! You will never be the same as any other believer or sect. Just like we all have different fingerprints in the natural we are all unique in the spiritual but the one thing we all have is LOVE! Remember what Jesus said, “By this shall all men know that you are My disciples, that you have Love, one for another…” Some would argue, “well there is more to Christianity than just love.” True, but without Love, there is nothing else! That is the bedrock foundational principle of being In Christ!
In 1 Corinthians 13, Paul strongly addresses the importance and power of love. He says that without it, we are nothing more than noisy gongs and clanging cymbals. He goes even further and declares that without love we are NOTHING! In the New Testament, we learn that the first act upon entering the Family of God and the Body of Christ is to be EMPOWERED by the Spirit. That indicates we are given ability, strength, and energy to BE. Have you ever considered that the number one concern of the Holy Spirit in producing the New Testament was the Empowering of the Body of Christ? If we are empowered, what are we empowered for? I believe this is an area where the modern church has gotten off track a bit. The number one purpose of this empowering, in my understanding, is that we might LOVE or manifest AGAPE! We have focused on ministry, building, numbers, gifts, etc. and failed to realize that those things are beginnings not ends. The gifts do not function to perfection without Love! They become nothing but dangerous noisy gongs clanging and drawing attention to themselves not producing life.
I want to move at least one step further into this so I will pause again and pick up next time as we consider the POWER and PURPOSE of Love in the Body of Christ. God, bless you richly is my prayer and desire!