Natural acts of kindness are commonplace in every religion. Truly, we can show consideration and do things that are loving. We can feel sorry for less fortunate; we can give and serve in soup lines, write checks to charity, mow our neighbors’ lawns, watch a sick mother’s children, pray for friends.
All of these are wonderful acts of goodness, picking up the slack, advancing the movement of daily life and needs.
So, what did Paul mean when he said I could even give my very body to be burned as an act of sacrifice, but if I have not love, I am nothing? All giving and doing is for nothing without love.
Surely, a person sacrificing himself has love, so what was Paul talking about?
This bears deep thought now.
As we walk in these bodies, our inner spirit man is active, every second. Paul talked about a love that is not passive, a love that had to be attainable, or he wouldn’t have said it. How do we get it into our spirit?
Paul’s life was a reflection of a love he found in God that took him from the comfort zone of living as a holy man Pharisee, teaching in the Synagogue, faring well, to standing chained up, calf deep in excrement in a prison cell writing about God’s love.
What did Paul find that so many are missing? He found that God IS love.
Jesus said, “God is a Spirit, and we must worship Him in Spirit and in Truth.” What does that mean? God is love, and God is Spirit.
We are spirit, soul and body. The commandment is to love God with that three-fold person. These three are described interchangeably in Scripture, as heart, mind, flesh. From the abundance of the heart or spirit, a man speaks, and so on. We must seek God from a spirit or heart cry. It is not a natural activity. Naturally, it seems ridiculous to talk and cry out to something we can’t see.
But, as we seek to know His holiness, and love by FAITH, we begin to outwardly show God’s love by action. As Jesus; doing things contrary to our nature.
Which one of us would strip down and wash the feet of a man or woman that you knew was going to sell out your location to a lynch mob for a few coins?
Which of us would endure the slightest mockery and jeering without wanting to see revenge on those people? Rather, Jesus continued to the cross to sacrifice Himself for those who beat, spat, whipped, mocked, reviled and hated Him and His love. Remember, the people did this to a man who had raised their neighbors from the dead, and healed their relatives from every disease and disorder known to man.
As if bleeding and dying for them was not enough. Jesus actually looked at them through the eyes of the Spirit and loved them saying, “Father, forgive them. They don’t know what they are doing.” He said this because He knew God was justified to make their lives a miserable mess while on earth and then judge them to eternal damnation at the resurrection of the dead. Jesus interceded on their behalf while still suffering excruciating pain those people inflicted on His body.
What kind of love is this?
If we are born of the Spirit of God, then this is the kind of love we must let invade our being.
This love will bring the miracles we long for in life. This love reflects the Father we serve. This is how God’s kingdom will come, and His will be done, in earth, as it is in heaven. By seeking the infilling of God’s love.
Ask for it, cry out for it and watch your life begin to manifest the amazing, gracious love of God.
Lori Van Dien specializes in Christian manuscript writing and editing, ensuring Scripture and theological accuracy. Personal involvement and collaboration with your goals in mind. Your book, written your way.