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Eternity 31 - Rooted And Grounded In Love
(Ephesians 3:17 NKJV) that Christ may dwell in your hearts through
faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love.....
What is the foundation of the Christian life? The Trinity, the incarnation, the sovereignty of God? None of these - the foundation , the root, the ground of the Christian life is LOVE. Love of God, love of neighbor, love of self.
The Christian is grounded in relationship before he or she is grounded in doctrine, the Christian is grounded in treating others well, before he or she is grounded in Greek or Hebrew.
In Matthew 7 Jesus talks about the house built on the rock that does not fall. This rock is obeying His commandments - that is living a life of love. The sure rock of the Christian life is loving obedience to the commands of Jesus Christ - which are loving in all their ways.
An unloving Christian is not grounded properly in the faith - no matter how much they know or how high a position they hold. Christianity is much more than a "knowing" of certain things, it involves a "being" and a "doing" and our being and doing is to be from a heart of love.
Without love we are nothing ( 1 Cor 13:1-4) because love is the gospel foundation of Christian living. Faith and obedience to Jesus Christ should produce loving, patient, kind and gentle Christians, if that has not happened - then something is seriously wrong.
The hateful angry divisions of the Christian world occur because people
have laid a wrong foundation - instead of being grounded in the love of
Christ they are grounded in the love of tradition, doctrine, or denomination.
Some may say that this is a very subjective foundation, but that is a wrong view of love. Love is not just a feeling, it is a lifestyle, a way we treat others and relate to God.
Agape love, the love of the gospels is compassionate, patient, caring, lawful and deep and involves a real commitment to the good of the beloved.
To be grounded in love is to be grounded in the Kingdom lifestyle of Jesus
and to live the life taught in the gospels and the Sermon On The Mount.
Yes there are foundational truths such as the cross and the resurrection, but these are not the foundation of our faith but its proper content.
The foundation is Christ; and He teaches us to love, and draws us into love through the Spirit. The gospel is not a sales message or a doctrine or a set of propositions but access to the Kingdom. It is in this Kingdom that we grow into loving people fit for eternal living.
The Kingdom of God is accessible, and in the Kingdom we find ourselves drawn into a realm in which love is central and God is love. ( 1 John 4:7)
God is love, and Christ's central commands involve loving Him and loving others, and all the commands of Christianity involve treating others well.
Thus the Kingdom is a loving place with a loving God and loving laws for loving saints who are rooted and grounded in love. All power in the Kingdom is to be used in love. That is why it is a safe place.
On the other hand if we make the foundation of Christianity something other than love - such as power, authority, tradition, knowledge or a particular personal leader, emotion or experience we will use power wrongly, we will be proceeding from something other than love and end up doing unloving things. Much of the pain in Christian circles comes from having this wrong foundation.
Love must be the foundation and framework for all we do as Christians
in both personal and corporate life. We must be rooted and grounded in love.