When Jesus says “I Love You”

by Greg Morse

Often, those who have injured us the most have been love’s greatest spokesmen.

The unfaithful husband sang, “My bride, my jewel, I love you!” — only to kiss her cheek and depart to his mistress’s bed. A seemingly faithful friend swore, “Brother, I love you!” — only to leave the dagger in your back after his embrace. The co-dependent mother muttered, “It’s only because I love you my child!” as she devoured him like a black widow.

So we may conclude that talk is cheap. The inflation of pretty words and Hallmark sentiments bankrupt the three little words that should be most precious: I love you. In the midst of profuse pleasantries and sweet nothings, how can we — as a friend asked me the other day — trust these words when they come from our Savior’s lips?

A Love from Greater Heights

There is more: https://steverebus.com/2017/11/01/when-jesus-says-i-love-you/

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5 Reasons Jesus Doesn’t Want us to be Like the Good Samaritan

The good Samaritan is perhaps the most misunderstood parable in the Bible. Dozens of ministries have been started with a desire to emulate the good Samaritan.

Hundreds of theologians have tried to pull out hidden truths from this parable and have come up with completely different ideas.

Some teach that Jesus desires to expose the Jericho road and that we would live in a day and age where good Samaritans are no longer needed.  Others expose the need to tear down walls between enemies, and others–probably the typical evangelical Christian–see in the good Samaritan a call to love other people and to be involved in social justice.

But is that what Jesus is saying in this parable?

In short, the point of the good Samaritan is not to go out and try to love someone like the good Samaritan did.  The point of this story is to point out the fact that you cannot save yourself. You simply can’t love perfectly like Jesus can.

Jesus is doing personal evangelism here, but, in typical Jesus fashion, He knows the man’s heart and knows exactly how to expose the sin that the person He is talking to is unwilling to give up.

Here are five reasons why this parable is not a call to follow the Good Samaritan, but rather a reminder that we simply can’t save ourselves.

Continue: http://thecripplegate.com/5-reasons-jesus-doesnt-want-us-to-be-like-the-good-samaritan/

The Risk of Love

Actuarial science is the discipline that applies statistical methods to assess risk of disability, morbidity, mortality, fertility, and other life-contingencies. Generally, actuaries are employed by insurance companies or risk management firms to calculate the ‘risks’ associated with insuring individuals against life’s catastrophes. Actuarial science offers accurate and razor-sharp predictive power in order to prevent capital loss for those very companies.

There are always exceptions, of course, that confound even actuaries. These ‘outlier’ events come unannounced. So rare are these exceptions that a theory was developed to explain their occurrence. The Black Swan Theory developed by Nassim Nicolas Taleb suggests that surprise events have major and long-lasting impact.(1) The recent mass-shooting in Las Vegas, Nevada; 2001 terrorist attacks; the Pacific tsunami in 2004; the stock-market crash of 1987; not even a seasoned actuary could have predicted these events with any level of confidence.

The result of the unexpected can be a deep and pervading fear. In the case of the Las Vegas shooting, the assailant does not fit any of the typical ‘mass-shooter’ profiles. The fear that results creates a deep suspicion of others since it appears anyone can become a mass-murderer. Yet, as dramatic and horrific as these events are, they are still rare ‘outlier’ events. But their impact is long-lasting on the individual and public psyche.

Continue reading: http://us5.campaign-archive.com/?e=c07069ddf1&u=45b75085e6ab57e339ea89d67&id=d5b6b3efe7

5 Ways to Love God with Your Mind

1. Care about the truth.

Some people think that the test of any religion is whether it is practical. For a Christian, it is important that Christianity is true. Christianity depends upon whether Jesus rose from the dead. If Jesus did not rise from the dead, then a Christian’s life is wasted, and that person is still dead in sin (1 Cor. 15:17).

2. Admit the possibility of error.

If we can never be wrong, then we put ourselves in a position to never learn. Such people love their own mind rather than loving God with their mind. If we can never be wrong, we have become our own god, which is idolatry. A good thing to do is to remind ourselves of times in which we were wrong in the past and things that we have learned after admitting our error.

The rest are at: https://cccdiscover.com/5-ways-to-love-god-with-your-mind/

Love Sought, Love Given

How do you know that God exists? How do you know that God loves you? How do you know God is present versus absent? These questions, upon the hearts of so many, have answers as real as the formative moments in your life.

As I have aged I seem to grow more and more prone to nostalgia. Many of us do this instinctively, clinging to memories past, perhaps looking backwards with the hope of seeing a purpose for our lives. When I travel to India, I make it a point to revisit time and again those significant marking points of my own life. As I recall these moments past but not forgotten, I hear the gentle voice of the God very much in the present. And God says: I was there. When on you were on your bike contemplating suicide, I was there. When you were but nine years old and your grandmother died, I arranged for her gravestone to hold in time the very verse that would lead you to conversion. I was there.

Continue: http://us5.campaign-archive1.com/?e=c07069ddf1&u=45b75085e6ab57e339ea89d67&id=055b065036

6 Habits That Will Draw You Nearer to God

https://faithinthenews.com/6-habits-will-draw-nearer-god/

A higher standard of loving

Corrie ten Boom was a Dutch Christian lady who helped save the lives of dozens of persecuted Jews during WW2. In 1944 the Nazis arrested her whole family. Her elderly father died ten days later and two of her siblings were released, but at the age of fifty-two Corrie, along with her sister Betsie, ended up at the German concentration camp in Ravensbruck.

Brutal prison guards and cruel nurses experimented on and tortured the women until Betsie died. Two weeks later Corrie was released due to a clerical error by the administrators.

Part of Betsie’s legacy she left her sister were these profound words:

There is no pit so deep that God’s love is not deeper still.”

After her release Corrie struggled to know if she would ever be able to forgive her captors for their unspeakable malevolence. But a mere three years later one of the former guards from Ravensbruck met her and asked her outright to forgive him for his part in her suffering.

Corrie was understandably extremely reluctant, but in that very moment, she prayed for God to help her to love her enemy as Christ had loved his torturers. She wrote:

Read at: http://thecripplegate.com/a-higher-standard-of-loving/