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Thoughts on the News

JeffLogan's picture
JeffLogan's picture

Freedom of Speech and Love for God

We here a lot about the Bill of Rights in the news and esp. freedom of speech since the incident in Paris. I want to try to draw a comparison, in a spiritual sense. Here goes...

America is all about personal freedom. It was established on the great truths that all men are created equal. Two of the greatest principles were Republicanism and Protestantism--that this land would be without a king and without a religious leader. That we were to be governed by ourselves and would be free to worship God according to the dictates of our own consciences. That the civil and religious powers would be kept separate in that the church would not rule over the civil powers and the civil powers would not conduct the church.

So in my way of thinking, to love America is to love all for which She stands. (Or, in our modernized slang, "all that She stands for.")

So then, if someone doesn't like the degree of freedom guaranteed by the Constitution and the Bill of Rights can they rightly say they love America? Sure, there may be some things they like about America such as the ability to make money. But that is only a partial love, and really a selfish love. They love what America can do for them but they don't necessarily embrace everything She stands for. Thus, I say, do they truly love America.

Similarly, some people love certain aspects of God's character, certain benefits of Christianity. They love to be able to ask God to protect them and to give them blessings. But if we seriously look at what God stands for, what is involved in being part of His kingdom (or nation), can we honestly say we love everything? If we don't love everything about God but truthfully love only some, or a little, then do we in fact love God at all? Don't we need to embrace the whole package? If there is something we don't love about God then I don't believe we can honestly say we love God. To be honest we ought to say, in that case, that, yes, there are some things I love about God. And I think it would be good for our souls to be honest with ourselves, because God already knows.

And we have these verses which I believe support my argument:

    John 14:15 "If ye love me, keep my commandments."
    1 John 5:3 "For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous."

Seems that love for God involves loving His commandments also. Which suggests to me that God's commandments, His laws, are a revelation of His will. And, since Jesus did no sin but fulfilled the law, and He was the Word made flesh, that the law is also a transcript of His character. It was written in His heart, and integral part of Him.

And so when we says that the new covenant involves writing His law in our hearts and minds this is just another way of saying that Christ dwells in our hearts by faith. And you know that faith is and that a living faith is always accompanied with works. These would be the fruit of the spirit: love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, and temperance.

Of course, no man can keep the law of himself for Christ says, without me you can do nothing. But, again, Paul also understood that, "[we] can do all things through Christ who strengthens [us]." So then, if we say, as Christians, we cannot keep the law, are we admitting that Christ is not our source of strength and therefore we can't do all things but can in fact do nothing?

Fools find no pleasure in understanding but delight in airing their own opinions. -Proverbs 18:2 NIV