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Lake Toxaway, North Carolina

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Daily Devotional

December 15

16 Hereby perceive we the love of God, because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. 17 But whoso hath this world's good, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him? 18 My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth. (1 John 3:16-18 KJV)

          The sacrifice that Jesus made for us is the greatest expression of love that this world has ever seen, that He would come and die for us so we could be reconciled to the Father and Him (John 17:3).  Because He loved us so much, we should also love our brothers and sisters the same, and be willing to give our lives for them, and the Gospel.  If we see our brother in need, and have the capacity to help him, and donít do it, then how can we have the love of God in us?  If we are truly born again, and have Godís love in us, then we will always try and help any brother in need if we possibly can.  This is one way to know that you have been born again, if you will have compassion on your brother in need, as having Godís love in you will make you want to do so.  If you have truly been born again, and have God living in you, then you will be full of His love, as God is Love (1 John 4:8).  You must first receive Godís love yourself before you can give it away, as you canít give away something you donít have.

          It is not enough to just say you love people, especially your brothers and sisters in Christ, but you must have actions to prove that love (James 2:20).  Words are not enough, as anyone can say that they have Christ in them, but if they donít have any actions (fruit) to prove it, they are just all talk, and can not have the love of God in their hearts.  All Christians should show the love to others in all they say and do, and thereby demonstrate that they are truly as Christ is, as Jesus would never just use words by themselves, but always put actions of deed and in truth to all He did.  We need to do the same, and not only talk the Christian life, but live it so others will see Christ in us.  Jesus said that the world would know we belong to Him when they see that we have love one for the other (John 13:35).  If you donít, or canít, love others, then you should wonder if you were truly born again.  You must die to yourself, and let Christ live through you (Galatians 2:20), to be able to truly love others, as it is against our nature as humans.  Let your love flow toward others, and the world will know you belong to Christ Ė Praise God!

Devotional by Pastor Joe W. Green,

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