My own personal stance against religious hypocrisy - both my own, and any others who seek to hurt people in the name of God.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

The Power of Love and Faith

I read something interesting in the book of John this morning.

John Chapter Twenty (Revised Standard Version)

On the evening of that day, the first day of the week, the doors being shut where the disciples were, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said to them, "Peace be with you." When he had said this, he showed them his hands and his side. Then the disciples were glad when they saw the Lord. Jesus said to them again, "Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, even so I send you." And when he had said this, he breathed on them, and said to them, "Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained."

verses 19-25

I bolded the portion which struck me. It is similar to something else I've read in the Gospels.

And when he returned to Capernaum after some days, it was reported that he was at home. And many were gathered together, so that there was no longer room for them, not even about the door; and he was preaching the word to them. And they came, bringing to him a paralytic carried by four men. And when they could not get near him because of the crowd, they removed the roof above him; and when they had made an opening, they let down the pallet on which the paralytic lay. And when Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, "My son, your sins are forgiven." Mark 2:1-5 Revised Standard Version

Again, I bolded the portion of concern.

There is great power in love. The greatest power is the power of forgiveness. For with the power of forgiveness people can live with God.

Who are the greatest missionaries? The greatest are those who love the most. Their love is seen in their actions, and so people believe God.

You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hid. Nor do men light a lamp and put it under a bushel, but on a stand, and it gives light to all in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven. Matthew 5:14-16 Revised Standard Version

Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do, because I go to the Father. Whatever you ask in my nam,e I will do it, that the Father may be glorified in the Son; if you aks anything in my name, I will do it. If you love me, you will keep my commandments. John 14:12-15 Revised Standard Version

What does it profit, my brethren, if a man says he has faith but has not works? Can his faith save him? If a brother or sister is ill-clad and in lack of daily food, and one of you says to them, "Go in peace, be warmed and filled," without giving them the things needed for the body, what does it profit? So faith by itself, if it has no works, is dead. James 2:14-17 Revised Standard Version

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such there is no law. And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. Galatians 5:23-24 Revised Standard Version

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