July 16, 2015

Loving the Lost  

Written by Tripp Prince

Guest Writer: Meet my son-in-law Tripp Prince. We are blessed to have him as our guest writer.

Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – July 16, 2015 

For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. John 3:17 

We live in interesting times. A quick survey of the news headlines from recent weeks reveals the speed and intensity with which the world is changing or has already changed. At times, these changes may bring with them great social advances or developments. Yet they can also bring confusion, frustration, or anxiety.

As Christians, how are we meant to respond and engage the world around us?

When we look at the life of Jesus we see our Lord enter into a world that was hostile towards him. We see a world that had turned away from God’s original design and rejected his plan for them and the whole of creation. Jesus didn’t come to the world because it was flourishing and simply needed his divine affirmation. No, he came into a world that was sick and in need of his healing touch. And when he came, he didn’t come with hatred or disdain, but with deep compassion and love.

“but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Rom. 5:8

If we are to live our Lord’s command to be salt and light, it is vital that we have his same heart of love for the world around us. We must remember that it was in our brokenness, when we were the most unlovable, that God showed his great love for us. We must remember that our Lord Jesus was accused of being “a friend of tax collectors and sinners” (Matthew 11:19). Do our lives reflect the Lord’s heart for the lost that someone might make the same accusation of us?

When we see our culture departing from Christian moral and ethical truths, there is a temptation to fight and dig in our heels. Yet we can get so caught up in fighting and defending the faith that we lose sight of our primary call as Christians: to love as Christ loved us (Ephesians 5:2). Jesus never shied away from calling people to repent and embrace the transformative grace of God, yet his invitation was always preceded by radical hospitality and love.

Jesus came not to condemn but to love the world, and for those of us who follow him, we must pray for the strength, grace, and courage to go and do likewise.

Prayer: Father, thank you that you loved us even when we were unlovable. Give us grace, we pray, to show your great love for the world through our words and deeds.

Related Readings: Matthew 5:13-14; Mark 12:30-31; Romans 8:39; Galatians 2:20

Post/Tweet this today: Jesus came not to condemn but to love the world, and for those of us who follow Him, we must go and do likewise. #lovingthelost #wisdomhunters

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Additional Resource: 4 minute music video- Michael Card: How Firm a Foundation

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