Something to Think About…

I think the natural question for most of us is what about those relationships with people in our lives that don’t know God? Aren’t we supposed to love them? The answer is yes. But according to Jesus one of the best ways we can love those outside the church is by loving those who are a part of the church. Here is Jesus praying to the father toward the end of his earthly ministry, “I ask also for those who will believe in me (Jesus) through their (disciples) word, that they may one, just as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me.” (John 17:20-22). So our love for each other in the church has everything to do with those who do not know God. When we love each other as a family Jesus says it will show those who don’t know God who God is. One of the primary ways we introduce people to God is through our love for our real family as Jesus defines it, “those who do the will of God.” (Matthew 12:50). It’s also very clear that God wants us in relationships with those outside the church because it’s in the context of relationships where they are able to see God through our lives (I Cor. 5:9-10). So as we seek to love our neighbors we build relationships and love those outside the church and balance that with a commitment of loving those inside the church as family. And as we sacrificially love those who Jesus says are our family those outside the church will come to know God.

by Pastor Matt Swaney

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