December 6, 2017
Love is the great motivator for obedience. Not duty, nor fear, but love. And not just any kind of love, but God’s kind of “agape” love, which is both unconditional and sacrificial. So love motivates obedience and then obedience becomes the evidence of that love.
What is love? That we obey Christ’s command (John 14:15). And what is Christ’s command? That we love one another just as He loved us (John 13:34-35).
December 6, 2015
When Christianity was barely 50 years old, already false doctrines were being taught concerning Jesus. The apostle John calls one who would give a different confession concerning Christ as “a deceiver and an antichrist.” It seems he was standing against an early deception called gnosticism, which believed that the flesh was evil and that only the spiritual was good. This belief therefore concluded that Christ could not have literally been in the flesh. This conclusion denied the incarnation. It denied the name given to Jesus at His birth, which was “Immanuel,” God with us. John guarded his eyewitness testimony that Jesus is God in the flesh. This was why he was so specific in his first letter to say he had seen, examined and touched Jesus (1 John 1:1). He was affirming the doctrine that the “Word became flesh and dwelt among us” (John 1:14). The incarnation is not only the central theme of Christmas, it is the true doctrine concerning Christ. Jesus is God in the flesh. He really came. He really died for our sins. He really rose from the dead and ascended to the Father. This is his-story.