What an amazing contrast the God of our Bible is to any other religious figure. I’ve been reading a phenomenal book by Mosab Hassan Yousef entitled “The Son of Hamas” (www.sonofhamas.wordpress.com) and although I’ve read the Qua’ran in the past it’s amazing to hear from the mouth of a former Muslim concerning it’s falsities. Their god, Allah – contrary to what the enemy wants you to believe – is not the same as our God Yehweh. Our God is a loving, caring God who teaches to love our enemies. Their god Allah teaches to destroy their enemies. Our Bible teaches us to speak the truth in love and to be a light to a dark world in order to show non-believers what they are missing. Their Qua’ran teaches them to make non-believers believe by any means necessary, including lying.
Paul teaches in Romans 13:8 that we should allow no debt in our lives (financial or otherwise) except the unending debt to love one another. I wish more Christians could get ahold of the love message. It is vital to living a Christian life. It is the single factor that differentiates us from any other cult or religion. The most famous scripture in the world is John 3:16. You know it, probably by heart. For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son…
What is the focus of this verse? God, Yehweh? Jesus, the Son? Not in my opinion – in my estimation the focus is love. The word is emphasized by the adverb so. He didn’t just love the world… He SO loved the world. In other words, His passion for us was so great that He gave the one thing that meant the most to Him, His Son. Essentially, God gave Himself, because as we know Jesus is part of the Triune God.
I want you to spend today thinking and praying on the things that are most important to your current circumstance. Maybe it’s finances. Maybe a relationship. A failing marriage. Whatever it is, pray on it. Be encouraged with this thought. God already gave you His most prized possession. If He was willing to give up His Son, what could you possibly need that He wouldn’t be willing to give you? Some of you may need a financial breakthrough but you’ve been taught that God doesn’t care about possessions or material things – this teaching couldn’t be more false. By claiming that God would be unwilling to give you financial blessings you place money in a position higher than Christ. If God were willing to give Christ, He’d certainly be willing to give you money. He owns all the money, He has plenty. He only had one Son that He had to watch get beaten and murdered. Surely, Christ is greater than money.
What about your marriage? God helps those who help themselves? I don’t see that anywhere in my Bible. God gives us the desires of our hearts. He cares about the things that matter to us. If He were willing to give you Jesus, how much more would He be willing to give you your marriage back? Even an evil father knows how to give his children good gifts.
Submission to Governing Authorities
1 Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. 2 Consequently, whoever rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. 3 For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and you will be commended. 4 For the one in authority is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for rulers do not bear the sword for no reason. They are God’s servants, agents of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer. 5 Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also as a matter of conscience.
6 This is also why you pay taxes, for the authorities are God’s servants, who give their full time to governing. 7 Give to everyone what you owe them: If you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue; if respect, then respect; if honor, then honor.
Love Fulfills the Law
8 Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for whoever loves others has fulfilled the law. 9 The commandments, “You shall not commit adultery,” “You shall not murder,” “You shall not steal,” “You shall not covet,” and whatever other command there may be, are summed up in this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” 10 Love does no harm to a neighbor. Therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.
The Day Is Near
11 And do this, understanding the present time: The hour has already come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed. 12 The night is nearly over; the day is almost here. So let us put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light. 13 Let us behave decently, as in the daytime, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual immorality and debauchery, not in dissension and jealousy. 14 Rather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the flesh.