Thursday, February 12, 2015

Love Rejoices in Truth

Love…does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth.  1 Corinthians 13:6
Love always wants to believe the best about others.  Jesus could always see the good qualities in others. He could see a queen in a harlot, a preacher in a fisherman with no manners, and what about you and me?  Jesus is not the one who condemns but commends us to a higher walk.  Jesus did not condemn the sinners, only the self-righteous.  When was the last time that you honestly said in love, "I am so glad that they are happy”?
Love always looks for the good instead of the bad, and when one does wrong, love is always genuinely regretful. True love rejoices in good and if it covers up sin or seeks to justify wrongdoing, it is not Godly love. Love does not sweep sin under the rug. Love does not try to find ways to get away with bad behavior, and it does not put up with injustice. Instead, it embraces truth, celebrates good behavior, and promotes virtue. True love has nothing to hide.
Psalm 5:4 says, “You are not a God who delights in wickedness.” The God who is love (1 John 4:8) delights in what is true and just. God loves us, and He “desire[s] truth in the inner parts” (Psalm 51:6). God does not ignore our sin in love.  Because He loved us, He sent His son to die for our sins so we could be forgiven and have eternal life. This is real love--not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins.  1 John 4:10 says This is real love--not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins. He expects us not to ignore sin either, but in love pray for struggling loved ones and friends and seek His wisdom and direction in how He can use you to help them.
When love enters the picture everything changes. When it is our friend who falls from grace, we are sad. When our loved ones meet hard times, when bad things happen to them, when the evil day attacks, when the medical diagnosis is grim, we are saddened and shocked. It is hard to delight in the misfortunes of those you love, no matter what they have done. It is hard to rejoice in the downfall of leaders, if you wish them well
Also, to “not delight in evil” carries the idea of not gloating over someone else’s guilt. It is not uncommon for people to be glad when someone is found guilty of a crime or caught in a sin. This is not love. Love rejoices in the virtue of others, not in their vices. Sin is an occasion for sorrow, not for joy, even if you believe they should get what they have coming.  We are all sinners but some sin is more public than other sin.  No one person is spotless and has the right to judge another.  We can find ourselves face down in our own pile of mud when we have that attitude.  God has a way of showing us that we are deceiving ourselves if we believe we are better because another person sins differently than we do.  We don't delight in the downfall of others when we know our own hearts.
Basically, to extend God’s kind of love to others, we must be able to view sin and righteousness the way God does. The more we love others, the more genuine sadness we will feel over those who commit sin. The more we love truth, the better we can love those around us. Love rejoices with the truth, and the reality of redemption - that Christ has come to forgive us and give us a new start when we repent and turn to him in faith. Love rejoices with the truth that failure is not the end of the story.
Love acts on the power of the truth that is in Jesus to change lives. Love does not delight in other people's downfalls, but is overjoyed with the truth that saves us. We are all capable of falling to sin. Love is the grace of God that reaches out to us in Jesus. When we receive him, and live with him, and are empowered by his Spirit, we have his truth within us. That gift of love is cause for joy!
Scripture to Claim:
No one has seen God at any time; if we love one another, God abides in us, and His love is perfected in us.  1John 4:12

Devotional Archive