Letting Go Of Hatred

Steve Arterburn

 

 

It’s easy to say you love God but how do you show it?  God’s hoping you’ll show it by loving other people. In fact, God has so intertwined your love for Him with love for others that when you seek and surrender to Him, He requires that you give up your hatred and prejudice.

In first John chapter four, the apostle John wrote: ‘God is love, and all who live in love live in God, and God lives in them’If someone says, ‘I love God,’ but hates a Christian brother or sister, that person is a liar; for if we don’t love people we can see, how can we love God, whom we have not seen?  God himself has commanded that we must love not only him but our Christian brothers and sisters, too.’

Men, God simply doesn’t give us the option of hating our brothers and sisters while loving Him.  In fact, He doesn’t even give you the option of hating your enemies.  Jesus said, ‘But if you are willing to listen, I say, love your enemies. Do good to those who hate you. Pray for the happiness of those who curse you.  Pray for those who hurt you’ (Luke 6:27-28). Boy, that’s a revolutionary kind of love.

The bottom line is this: surrendering to God means surrendering your hatred as well.  And that, my friend, is something you can’t do on your own ‘ you need to depend upon God’s love, residing in you, to do that.

Submitting To Scripture

Steve Arterburn

Men, no one in your home should be better and quicker at submitting to what Scripture teaches than you. In a recent marriage class several women were asked, ‘What’s the one thing that impresses you most about your husband?’ One woman responded, ‘[My husband] is much quicker to submit to the teaching of Scripture than I am. He’s quick to fix anything in his life that he feels doesn’t line up with Scripture. He has always been submissive to God’s ways, and this makes me trust him and feel one with him.’

This woman’s husband leads by example. What could possibly be more fitting or effective? And did you pick up on the security this woman feels because her husband is receptive and responsive to God’s word? Guys, this woman’s not the exception; she’s the norm. When you submit to Scripture, it fortifies your wife’s trust and respect for you. And note the irony here: even though Scripture exposes your flaws, your wife’s trust and respect grows’as does her willingness to give you the benefit of the doubt when needed. So long, that is, as you’re submitting to God.

On the other hand, your failure to submit to Scripture invites disorder, confusion, and fear into your home. It puts a formidable stumbling block in your pathway to oneness’not only with your wife, but with all members of your family. To put is plainly, men, God is not pleased with spiritual leaders who harbor sin.

Narrow Path To Living Water

Men, God doesn’t have a giant roulette wheel in the sky that determines our destiny. Nether are we subject to fate. Our lives are governed and guided by the merciful will of God, and His plan for us is one of blessing.

 

Blessing, of course, doesn’t mean the absence of suffering or conflict. For God brings these events and circumstances into our lives in order to facilitate growth and maturity. God will certainly give us what we need amidst them, and what He wants to give us most is the blessing of Himself. He longs for each of us to know intimately that a loving relationship with Him is sweeter, and more valuable, than anything else possible.

 

As God restores our souls, He also purifies our desires. He wants us to stop taking detours into the world’s glittering paths of possessions, power, and superficial pleasure. He wants us to stay on course and continue to move toward Him.

 

The narrow path leads us to Living Water’pure and deeply satisfying to our thirsty souls. I know this from experience. Even though the refining process is marked by periods of pain, I have found that knowing God is the only thing in the world that I truly desire. When my heart is right with Him, all of my other joys will follow. This, then, is my prayer for you. That you will walk the narrow path that leads to the Living Water.