I don’t think any Christian would deny the correlation between loving God and loving our brethren. John states it this way, “If someone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen, how can he love God whom he has not seen? And this commandment we have from Him: that he who loves God must love his brother also.” (1 John 4:20-21) If we love our spiritual family it will be shown by what we do and how we act toward them. Consider a few passages describing the action of love and compare your life with them.
The patience we extend to others to maintain a good relationship.
– Ephesians 4:1-3 “I, therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you to walk worthy of the calling with which you were called, with all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love, endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.”
Sincere love is demonstrated by kind acts because we are in the spiritual battle together.
– Romans 12:9-10 “Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good. Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another;”
Never acts in a harmful way toward another.
– Romans 13:10 “Love does no harm to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.”
The manifestations of love are seen in the way we treat people under all conditions.
– 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 “Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.”
Generous benevolence even when we don’t have an abundance of resources.
– 2 Corinthians 8:8 “I speak not by commandment, but I am testing the sincerity of your love by the diligence of others.”
Love promotes service.
– Galatians 5:13 “For you, brethren, have been called to liberty; only do not use liberty as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.”
If the Spirit is producing fruit in our lives we will act with love.
– Galatians 5:22-23 “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.”
We will speak the truth in love and edify one another.
– Ephesians 4:15-16 “but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head–Christ– from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love.”
We will be known for our actions of love.
– Colossians 1:3-4 “We give thanks to the God
and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, praying always for you, since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of your love for all the saints;”
By consistent practice love will abound.
– 2 Thessalonians 1:3 “We are bound to thank God always for you, brethren, as it is fitting, because your faith grows exceedingly, and the love of every one of you all abounds toward each other,”
The man of God will pursue love.
– 1 Timothy 6:11 “But you, O man of God, flee these things and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, gentleness.”
Love will keep us from being ashamed of faithful Christians as they stand for truth. We will share in their difficulties.
– 2 Timothy 1:7-8 “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony of our Lord, nor of me His prisoner, but share with me in the sufferings for the gospel according to the power of God,”
If we love one another we will minister to one another’s needs.
– Hebrews 6:10 “For God is not unjust to forget your work and labor of love which you have shown toward His name, in that you have ministered to the saints, and do minister.”
We must have an intense and strong love for one another.
– 1 Peter 1:22 “Since you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit in sincere love of the brethren, love one another fervently with a pure heart,”
Do you have the kind of love described in these passages? If you do, the church will be stronger and you will enjoy the blessings associated with sincere love. Never give up on love.