Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Love is patient, love is kind.

There was an interesting post on It Might be Hope yesterday. For those of you who haven't seen it, this is a blog run by a young woman spending time in Nigeria on mission. As an African, I have respect for anyone who is prepared to experience Africa for real, and not just talk about it. So I always have time to hear what she has to say.

In this post, she is talking about Love, and how it is actually secondary to Truth. Something I had never really thought about before. I recommend you read the entire post, but the key section is:

God is love, but love is not necessarily God. Love must be founded on truth first. Believe, live out, and base your life on the truth…but the most important thing is to do that in love. That’s what it is.

Very powerful stuff. I think sometimes we make Love our 'excuse' for doing what we want to do. "It might have hurt him, but it was done in love" , "I can't tell her that, it would be un-loving." Jesus was loving, but he spoke his mind. When faced with hypocrites, he could be quite rude and sarcastic. He didn't pull any punches 'in the name of love'. Yet he was also loving at all times, even in the midst of telling the truth. When confronted with a fallen women, he knew that she felt shame for what she had done, so he does not point it out to her. When confronted with a penitent Zaccheus, he knew his heart, and responded in love. But he never tried to deny the truth of what they had done, or who they had been.

In fact, if you want examples of just how rude and offensive Jesus can be, look at this blog post over at Best of Both Worlds. The writer, James Carey, points out that Jesus uses sarcasm, mockery, name calling, and worse, when dealing with certain people; and don't tell me that "take that plank out of your eye" was not one of the all-time great sarcastic comments. I'm sure He was laughing over that one for days. Jesus knew when to call a spade a spade, and when to treat it like a shiny new shovel. His love for all was obvious, but that didn't cause him to shade the truth.


  1. nice thoughts... her quote reminds me of C.S. Lewis.

  2. Sometimes I think that the stories of Jesus told in Childrens bibles do a disservice to the Word. I spent my early years thinking that the bible was full of stories about whales, arks, little guys killing giants with slingshots, and this really, really nice man named Jesus who also happened to be God's son.

    I have recently been re-reading the gospels. I still can't get over how righteously cool Jesus was (and is)!

  3. I bought a children's illustrated bible for a baptism gift a few years ago, and nearly kept it for myself. It covered all the books from Genesis to Revelation, and the pictures/stories were pretty good.

    But what I liked the most was the pictures of Jesus. He was wicked-awesome (sorry, good-awesome just doesn't do it justice.) He had the most beautiful smile, but I was watching him argue with the Pharisees, and wondering if these guys knew how much trouble they were in. It was the first time I was reading a bible and thinking "don't piss him off guys, this dude could totally take you all with his left hand tied behind his back."


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