Summary: Love, true love, Christ-centered love, punches holes in the darkness and never should be unfashionable. Retro love: Bring it back!
Retro Love: Bring It Back!
June 10, 2012
New American Standard Bible (NASB)
7 Beloved, I am not writing a new commandment to you, but an old commandment which you have had from the beginning; the old commandment is the word which you have heard. 8 [a]On the other hand, I am writing a new commandment to you, which is true in Him and in you, because the darkness is passing away and the true Light is already shining. 9 The one who says he is in the Light and yethates his brother is in the darkness until now. 10 The one who loves his brother abides in the Light and there is no cause for stumbling in him. 11 But the one who hates his brother is in the darkness and walks in the darkness, and does not know where he is going because the darkness has blinded his eyes.
If you love something, set it free.
If it comes back, it was, and always will be yours.
If it never returns, it was never yours to begin with.
If it just sits in your living room,
messes up your stuff,
eats your food,
uses your telephone,
takes your money,
and never behaves as if you actually set it free in the first place,
you either married it or gave birth to it!
The more I’m involved in church work, the more convinced I become that many people have forgotten the basics of our faith. I don’t feel so bad, however, when I read the book of 1 John, written sometime in the latter part of the 1st Century, because then I realize that the problem is not something new to us; but was epidemic in the early church as well.
Listen to people around you, listen to the television and the radio, and listen to preachers far and wide, and you will get a dizzying array of opinions, facts, and suppositions on the Christian faith. Some have even turned our faith into a get rich quick scheme, though I’ve never figured out quite how to achieve that myself!
The real test of Christianity isn’t how much you give. God’s not looking at how many days a week you in church. It doesn’t matter if you are a Baptist or a Presbyterian, or even if you are one of those dreaded “non-denominational” types. What matters is your faith, and the basis of our faith is love.
Now before you start bringing out the pitchforks and tar, hear me out. If our faith is based on Christ, then our faith is based on love because Christ is love. Christ is love in person! If we are to understand the very bedrock basis of our faith, then we need to understand love.
Bill and Steve are discussing the possibility of love. "I thought I was in love three times," Bill says.
"Thought?" Steve asks. "What do you mean?"
"Three years ago, I cared very deeply for a woman who wanted nothing to do with me," Bill says.
"Wasn't that love?" Steve asks.
"No, that was obsession," Bill explains. "Then two years ago, I cared very deeply for an attractive woman who didn't understand me."
"Wasn't that love?" asks Steve.
"No, that was lust," Bill replies. "And just last year, I met a woman while I was on a cruise. She was gorgeous, intelligent, a great conversationalist and had a super sense of humor. Everywhere I followed her on that ship, I would get a very strange sensation in the pit of my stomach."