A Big Ol’ Chunk of Love

February 17, 2010

Today at lunch Jonathan said to me, “Daddy, I love daddy more than I love mommy and I love mommy more than I love daddy.”  I said something like, “That’s interesting Jon, but I’m not quite sure what that means.”  He said, “It’s a chunk of love.  A big ol’ chunk of love.”

Gotta love it.  Where do kids get this stuff?

Bethel Grace, let there be a big ol’ chunk of love among us.  Let’s love one another.  By this all men will know that we are his disciples, if we love one another.  The Spirit desires to bear the fruit of love among us.  By this we know that Christ loved us, he laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for one another.

Sometimes it will mean laughing together, other times weeping together.  Sometimes we laugh and weep at the same time.  It will mean thanking God for one another.  Sometimes it will mean bearing with one another.  Sometimes it will mean spurring each other.  It will mean forgiving when we hurt each other.  Sometimes it will mean going to Starbucks together, or the park together, or hanging out at our houses together.  It does not require sharing ice cream or milk with each other, but it will definately mean sharing fellowship in the Word together.  It will mean praying for each other.   It will mean spending time together.  Let’s love one another. 

Let’s make it a big ol’ chunk of love.

~Jeff

Here are some heartfelt thoughts for you as we approach Valentine’s Day.

1. Love Jesus supremely.
This is for his glory. This is for your good. Be “wholehearted,” not lukewarm. Here is why half-hearted Christians may very well be the most miserable people on earth, concisely and with potency stated by Ray Ortlund.

2. “Let each one of you love his wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband.”  Ephesians 5:33.
Some great encouragement and ideas from Family Life Today:
30 Ways to Love and Honor Your Wife
DVD Ideas: 10 Romantic Films Your Husband Won’t Hate
Cupidity (Cupid+Stupid): Two Stupid Things Husbands & Wives Do

3.  Don’t forget your opportunity for a date night this Saturday evening!  Bethel Grace Family Ministries is providing a “Parent’s Night Out” this Saturday, 4-7pm.  You kids will enjoy fun and fellowship, you get a night together.

4.  “Hearty Party” this Sunday night at 6pm!   What hearty soup are you bringing?  Have you told Pat?  Call the church office to let her know!

Blessings to you,
~Jeff

I have been studying apologetics quite a bit lately—specifically Jehovah’s Witness doctrine. There has been a theme in all the cults that claim to worship the God of the bible: works based salvation. Rather than trusting in the person and work of Jesus Christ ALONE for salvation there is some additive. (Jesus + something=salvation).

While this seems to be the theme of such false religions there are a few other distinctive as well. They introduce another gospel that is contrary to the one true gospel of our Lord found in the pages of scripture. They claim the clear understanding of the bible cannot be grasped apart from an extra source (something the cult group produces to further “explain” the word of God). They teach the doctrines of men rather than the doctrines of the bible. They discourage personal bible reading apart from “study aids”. They steal glory from Jesus Christ and assign it to another person or name. For that reason I wanted to put together a short list of things that ought to be happening in, bible saturated, Christ exalting, churches and homes—that’s right Dads, I did say homes!

Proclaim the Gospel
1 Corinthians 15:1-4 (ESV) 1 Now I would remind you, brothers, of the gospel I preached to you, which you received, in which you stand, 2 and by which you are being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you— unless you believed in vain. 3 For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures,

It’s that simple. We need to proclaim it to our own hearts that are prone to wonder, to our children, our spouses, friends, neighbors, teachers and telemarketers—anyone that will listen!

Romans 1:16 (ESV) For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.

Point to God’s Word as The Authority
I have to say that I do agree with something that Jehovah’s Witnesses have published. Read this excerpt from a Jehovah’s Witness publication:
… from among the ranks of Jehovah’s people … haughty ones … say that it is sufficient to read the Bible exclusively, either alone or in small groups at home. But, strangely, through such “Bible reading,” they have reverted right back to the apostate doctrines that commentaries by Christendom’s clergy were teaching 100 years ago. (The Watchtower, August 15, 1981, pages 28–29)

Praise God!! Read those bibles so your family might love the doctrines of the bible and reject every form of man centered religion!!

2 Timothy 3:16-17 (ESV) 16 All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.

Present the Doctrines of the Bible.
Paul did this and those he taught were able to spot false teaching based on the sound doctrine they had received from Paul.

Romans 16:17 (ESV) I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them.

Those that produce counterfeit money try to pass their work off on young inexperienced store clerks. They never go to the bank where the experts of authentic money are. Can your family detect counterfeit doctrine? Have they spent enough time with the truth that false teaching stands out like a sore thumb?

Promote bible reading.
The words “I’ve been reading my bible” ought to make our hearts glad as followers of Christ. The same is not true for the false teacher who fears his lies will be exposed by the light of scripture.

John 3:20-21 (ESV) 20 For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed. 21 But whoever does what is true comes to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that his works have been carried out in God.”

We should encourage regular bible reading in our homes and Dads need to be leading that charge. Wonderful things happen when God draws people to His word, both individually and as a family.

Praise Jesus Christ
We need to make much of Jesus Christ, the King of king and Lord of lords! While all around the world false religions defame the name of Christ and rob Him of either his supremacy or deity, His adopted sons and daughters with great humility and love should be shouting from the roof tops, in word and deed; “Jesus is THE way, THE truth and THE life!”

Acts 4:12-13 (ESV) 12 And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.” 13 Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated, common men, they were astonished. And they recognized that they had been with Jesus.

Blessings,

Alvin