21 Feb R3 Online Prayer, A BAPTISM OF LOVE, Wednesday, February 14, 2018
Romans 5:5 Moffatt Translation
Hope never disappoints us,
SINCE GOD’S LOVE FLOODED OUR HEARTS
through the Holy Spirit which has been given to us.
Ask 100 people what love is. Most likely you’ll get 100 different answers. Love is universally experienced in various forms but rarely understood from the Source in which it originated. In the fall of man, love became corrupted, perverted, and distorted. Love now has 50 Shades of Gray to darkness. But love likewise has 50 Lumens of Light to brightness. To Thy light, we see light. (Ps. 36:9)
On of the saddest verses in the Bible is Hosea 9:10 wherein, after God’s evaluation of love, he concluded: My people have become as vile as the things they loved. God is love, but love is not God. Because of the sin nature and corruption of the world we are warned not to love this world nor the things in this world. In these last days Jesus said, Because of the increase of lawlessness, the love of many shall grow cold. (Mt. 24:12) Lacking of laws of love have a cause and effect of faded affections and jaded righteousness.
All loves must be traced to their root cause and put in their proper context. We are to beware if love is lifted to an elevated plane above God and thus becoming an enthroned idol. John the Beloved, the Apostle of Love, wrote: God’s love has been perfected in us…love has been perfected among us…that we may have boldness in the day of judgement, because as He is, so were we in this world. (1 Jn. 4:12, 17 NKJV)
Biblical love is measured in obedience. It is weighed in the price paid of the life laid down in sacrifice. It is gauged by how much we hate evil, as well as, how much we love our enemies. Love is a many splendored thing. Love is the essence of God’s being and actions. God does not possess love, He is love. God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son. Love is not a feeling or emotion, although it produces feelings and evokes emotions. Love is the greatest force in the universe and the most important thing in heaven and earth. Love is a law as is gravity. It has its own orbit and regulations. It possesses its own gravitational pull. It attracts objects of its affection then holds them in place. Love is a law of God and an extension of Himself.
The aforementioned verse above declares that God’s love has flooded our hearts. Not only can love buoy our hearts to heavenly places, it can be the high tide that raises all boats in the bay of love. It is a means of facilitating Thy kingdom come, not my kingdom done. Our deceitful hearts require frequent floods of love, as well, a daily flushing of the competing loves and idolatry with the corruption of slavery to sin.
Augustine wrote: If you love God, you may do as you incline. The Apostle Peter wrote, Above all, love one another, for love covers a multitude of sin. (1 Pet. 4:8) Day by day we need a love filter as we set love above all else in the distilleries of holiness to preserve its purity. It is God’s love flowing through the tributaries of our desires that perfects love in and among us lest we fall short in the commissions and omissions of love.
The English language only provides one word for love, whereas, the Greek language gives four kinds of love: agape (God’s unconditional love); phileō (brotherly love); storgē (family love); and erōs (fleshly/carnal love). For love to be perfected it must be baptized. There are Five Vital Relationships in the gravitational wash of our oikos (spheres of influence).
- Loving God
- Loving Self
- Loving Others
- Loving Family
- Loving Enemies
The original word for “flood” is to shed abroad; to pour out; to overflow. There are different baptisms in the Bible. In order for love to be perfected in and among us we must have our love baptized from the fountain of God. (Ps. 36:9; Jer. 2:13) After all, we are not called to give our best love, we are commanded to love the way we are loved by God in Christ. Love has levels of fluidity in its function. Jude 2, May…love be multiplied to you. Other translations render it May…you possess love more and more, or, the cascade of love, moreover, love in full measure.
Dr. Gary Smalley defines the DNA Code of Relationships in the three spheres of oikos (influence)
- You were created for a loving Relationship with God and relationship with fellow human beings.
- You were created to love yourself and the capacity to choose love.
- You were created for loving relationships and to take responsibility for love.
Our goal in praying is to give love a reorientation for correct application. If God’s people can become as vile as the things they love, then they can become as beautiful as the One who first loved them! St. Bernard wrote: Whatsoever we love, we grow to resemble:
Today we pray into the gravity field of love. That love be perfected in us and among us. Love like the swirl of a perfected whirlpool—our love must become less discriminating and less calculating and more bold, daring, and freely given; that our love will grow as it is exercised; not more cynical, sarcastic, or jaded; may God’s love pour in where we pour it out allowing no stagnation, but living rivers of love issued from our inner being; may heaven’s love radiate more and more reaching higher, deeper, longer, and wider than we ever imagined. And as Corrie Ten Boom said, “There is no hell so low that God’s love does not reach deeper still.”
Jesus said, Be therefore perfect, even as Your Father in heaven is perfect. Perfect love comes to love us not because we are perfect, but He sees through our imperfections to the son/daughter that is being perfected in love. Let us wade out into the River, ankle, knee, waist deep, until we are caught in the current of baptizing love!
- A Baptism of LOVING GOD
Deuteronomy 10:12-13a NASB
“Now, Israel, what does the Lord your God require from you, but to fear the Lord your God,
to walk in all His ways and love Him, and to serve the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul,
and to keep the Lord’s commandments…
Mark 12:30 NIV
Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.
Revelation 2:4 NIV
Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken the love you had at first.
General Direction: To learn to love God the way God commands our love; to understand that love is weighed in obedience; that the only proof of love is obedience as sons and faithfulness as servants; to freely give as we have freely received God’s agape love.
- 4 Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. 7 Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. –Jm. 4: 4, 7 NKJV
- 15 Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16 For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world. 17 And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever. –1 Jn. 2:15-17 NKJV
- 2 By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and keep His commandments. 3 For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome. 4 For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our[a] faith. 5 Who is he who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God? –1 Jn. 5:2-5 NKJV
- Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! Therefore the world does not know us, because it did not know Him. 2 Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is. 3 And everyone who has this hope in Him purifies himself, just as He is pure. – 1 Jn. 3:1-3 NKJV
- 6 This is love, that we walk according to His commandments. This is the commandment, that as you have heard from the beginning, you should walk in it. –2 Jn. 6 NKJV
- 11 Beloved, do not imitate what is evil, but what is good. He who does good is of God, but he who does evil has not seen God. –2 Jn. 11 NKJV
- 3 The Lord has appeared of old to me, saying:“Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love;Therefore with lovingkindness I have drawn you. –Jer. 31:3 NKJV
- 23 Oh, love the Lord, all you His saints! For the Lord preserves the faithful, And fully repays the proud person. –Ps. 31:23 NKJV
- 5 Now may the Lord direct your hearts into the love of God and into the patience of Christ. –2 Thes. 3:5 NKJV
- 21 keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life. –Jude 21 NKJV
- 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love,18 may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. –Eph. 3:17-19 NIV
- 2 and walk in the way of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God. –Eph. 5:2 NIV
- 7 Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. 8 He who does not love does not know God, for God is love. 16 And we have known and believed the love that God has for us. God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him. 17 Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness in the Day of Judgment; because as He is, so are we in this world. 18 There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love. 19 We love Him because He first loved us.–1 Jn. 4:7-8, 16, 17-19 NKJV
- 15 “I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I could wish you were cold or hot.16 So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth. –Rev. 3:15-16 NKJV
- To comprehend that loving God is the greatest command and covers all other commands.
- To realize the aligning our love for God causes the proper alignment of our love for others and ourselves.
- To understand the obedience is the test of true love for God.
- To remember that Jesus gauges our love and whether or not He is our “first love” and whether we are cold, lukewarm, or hot in our love for Him.
- To know that we cannot be friends with God and friends with this world.
- To accept that we are commanded not to love the greed, lust, and pride of this world, but that our love must be of God and for God.
- To labor in grace to keep ourselves in the realm of God’s love (Jude 21).
- To master the ebb and flow of loving God by obeying His commands and loving others the way He loves us.
- A Baptism of LOVING YOURSELF
Mark 12:31 NKJV
And the second, like it, is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor AS YOURSELF.’
John 13:34 NKJV
A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another;
AS I HAVE LOVED YOU, THAT YOU ALSO LOVE ONE ANOTHER.
Matthew 10:8 NKJV
Freely you have received, freely give.
Jude 21 Wuest Expanded Translation
With watchful care, keep yourselves within the sphere of God’s love.
General Direction: To learn to love ourselves the way we are loved of God and put to death the self-centered love that leads to self-destruction and death; to know that we cannot give what we have not received; to learn to value ourselves based on the price paid for us and therefore we must maintain health, well-being, and wholeness with holiness in order to fulfill the law of Christ to love our neighbor as ourselves; to keep ourselves in the sphere of God’s love.
- 22 Since you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit in sincere love of the brethren, love one another fervently with a pure heart, –1 Pet. 1:22 NKJV
- 8 Finally, all of you be of one mind, having compassion for one another; love as brothers, be tenderhearted, be courteous; –1 Pet. 3:8 NKJV
- 8 And above all things have fervent love for one another, for “love will cover a multitude of sins.” –1 Pet. 4:8 NKJV
- 2 For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, –2 Tim. 3:2 NKJV
- 3 For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith. 9 Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good. 10 Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another; 17 Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men. 18 If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men.–Rom. 12:3; 9-10;17-18 NKJV
- 8 Owe no one anything except to love one another, for he who loves another has fulfilled the law. 9 For the commandments, “You shall not commit adultery,” “You shall not murder,” “You shall not steal,” “You shall not bear false witness,” “You shall not covet,” and if there is any other commandment, are all summed up in this saying, namely, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” 10 Love does no harm to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law. –Rom. 13: 8-10 NKJV
- 6 For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything, but faith working through love. 14 For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself. –Gal. 5:6, 14 NKJV
- 20 I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. –Gal. 2:20 NKJV
- 6 Then Peter said, “Silver and gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk.” –Acts 3:6 NKJV
- 6 Your throne, O God, is forever and ever;A scepter of righteousness is the scepter of Your kingdom. –Ps. 45:6 NKJV
- 8 God reigns over the nations;God sits on His holy throne. –Ps. 47:8 NKJV
- 14 Righteousness and justice are the foundation of Your throne;Mercy and truth go before Your face. –Ps. 89:14 NKJV
- 8 But to the Son He says: “Your throne, O God, is forever and ever; A scepter of righteousness is the scepter of Your kingdom. 9 You have loved righteousness and hated lawlessness; Therefore God, Your God, has anointed You With the oil of gladness more than Your companions.” –Heb. 1:8-9 NKJV
- 32 If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. –Lk. 6:32 NASB
- 3 Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments. 4 He who says, “I know Him,” and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. 5 But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him. 6 He who says he abides in Him ought himself also to walk just as He walked. –1 Jn. 2:3-6 NKJV
- 13 Do not marvel, my brethren, if the world hates you. 14 We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love the brethren. He who does not love his brother[a] abides in death.—1 Jn. 3:13-14 NKJV
- 7 Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. 8 He who does not love does not know God, for God is love. 10 In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. 11 Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. 16 And we have known and believed the love that God has for us. God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him.17 Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness in the Day of Judgment; because as He is, so are we in this world. 18 There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love. 19 We love Him because He first loved us. –1 Jn. 4:7-8; 10-11; 16-19 NKJV
- 16 By this we know love, because He laid down His life for us. And we also ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. –1 Jn. 3:16 NKJV
- 12 not as Cain who was of the wicked one and murdered his brother. And why did he murder him? Because his works were evil and his brother’s righteous. –1 Jn. 3:12 NKJV
- 15 Therefore let us, as many as are mature, have this mind; and if in anything you think otherwise, God will reveal even this to you. 16 Nevertheless, to the degree that we have already attained, let us walk by the same rule,[a] let us be of the same mind. 17 Brethren, join in following my example, and note those who so walk, as you have us for a pattern. 18 For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ: 19 whose end is destruction, whose god is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame—who set their mind on earthly things. –Phil. 3:15-19 NKJV
- 7 Thus He showed me: Behold, the Lord stood on a wall made with a plumb line, with a plumb line in His hand. 8 And the Lord said to me, “Amos, what do you see?” And I said, “A plumb line.” Then the Lord said: “Behold, I am setting a plumb line In the midst of My people Israel; I will not pass by them anymore. –Amos 7:7-8 NKJV
- 8 He has shown you, O man, what is good;And what does the Lord require of you But to do justly,To love mercy,And to walk humbly with your God? –Mic. 6:8 NKJV
- 22 that you put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts, 25 Therefore, putting away lying, “Let each one of you speak truth with his neighbor,” for we are members of one another. 29 Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers. 30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31 Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. 32 And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you. –Eph. 4:22, 25, 29-42 NKJV
- 23 Then He said to them all, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily,and follow Me. 24 For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will save it. –Lk. 9:23-24 NKJV
- To learn to love ourselves the way that we are loved.
- To accept that we are God’s handiwork fearfully and wonderfully made and are priceless being bought with the price of his own life.
- To avoid the perverted love of self-centeredness, high mindedness and condescending to others.
- To understand that God freely gave His love to us and therefore we must freely give our love to others.
- To know that God’s love must be perfected in us and filtered through us.
- To understand that love covers a multitude of sin and we will be judged by how we loved.
- To realize we cannot give what we have not received.
- To learn that love has different languages and we ourselves favor being loved more than one way:
- Words of Affirmation
- Quality Time
- Giving of Gifts
- Acts of Service
- Physical Touch
- To comprehend that God so loved us—He loved us in every way one can be loved.
- To love ourselves by loving good and hating evil:
- Unforgiveness and anger
- Addictions and bondages
- Rejection and control issues
- Disorders and self-mutilizations
- Health and well-being for wholeness
- Selflessness and generosity
- To learn to stop seeking to save our own life, but to lose our live for Christ’s sake to find our new life created in Him for good works.
- A Baptism of LOVING OTHERS
Matthew 22:38-40 NKJV
38 This is the first and great commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.”
Galatians 3:13-14 NIV
You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh;
rather, serve one another humbly in love. For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command:
“Love your neighbor as yourself.”
Galatians 6:12 NIV
Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.
John 13:34-35 NKJV
A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”
General Direction: To learn to love others the way God loves us in Christ; to allow our love for one another be the hallmark of who we are; to look to Jesus as the model of love in His life, teachings, and ministry; to comprehend that love conquers all and remains after all is said and done and is the first fruit and greatest gift of the Spirit.
- 10 In this the children of God and the children of the devil are manifest: Whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor is he who does not love his brother. 11 For this is the message that you heard from the beginning, that we should love one another, 12 not as Cain who was of the wicked one and murdered his brother. And why did he murder him? Because his works were evil and his brother’s righteous.13 Do not marvel, my brethren, if the world hates you. 14 We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love the brethren. He who does not love his brother abides in death. 15 Whoever hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him. 16 By this we know love, because He laid down His life for us. And we also ought to lay down our lives for the brethren. 17 But whoever has this world’s goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him? 18 My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth. 19 And by this we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before Him. –1 Jn. 3:10-19 NKJV
- 7 Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. 8 He who does not love does not know God, for God is love. 10 In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. 11 Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. –1 Jn. 4:7-8, 10-11 NKJV
- 3 And how can we be sure that we belong to him? By looking within ourselves: are we really trying to do what he wants us to?4 Someone may say, “I am a Christian; I am on my way to heaven; I belong to Christ.” But if he doesn’t do what Christ tells him to, he is a liar. 5 But those who do what Christ tells them to will learn to love God more and more. That is the way to know whether or not you are a Christian. 6 Anyone who says he is a Christian should live as Christ did. –1 Jn. 2:3-6 LB
- 19 Therefore love the stranger, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt. – Deut. 10:19 NKJV
- 35 By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another. –Jn. 13:35 NKJV
- 12 And may the Lord make you increase and abound in love to one another and to all, just as we do to you, –1 Thes. 3:12 NKJV
- 22 Since you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit[a] in sincere love of the brethren, love one another fervently with a pure heart, –1 Pet. 1:22 NKJV
- 9 “As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you; abide in My love. –Jn. 15:9 NKJV
- 12 This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.13 Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends. 14 You are My friends if you do whatever I command you.15 No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you. 16 You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you. 17 These things I command you, that you love one another. –Jn. 15:12-17 NKJV
- 15 So when they had eaten breakfast, Jesus said to Simon Peter, “Simon, son of Jonah, do you love Me more than these?”He said to Him, “Yes, Lord; You know that I love You.”He said to him, “Feed My lambs.”16 He said to him again a second time, “Simon, son of Jonah, do you love Me?”He said to Him, “Yes, Lord; You know that I love You.”He said to him, “Tend My sheep.”17 He said to him the third time, “Simon, son of Jonah, do you love Me?”Peter was grieved because He said to him the third time, “Do you love Me?”And he said to Him, “Lord, You know all things; You know that I love You.”Jesus said to him, “Feed My sheep. –Jn. 21:15-17 NKJV
- 8 Owe no one anything except to love one another, for he who loves another has fulfilled the law. 9 For the commandments, “You shall not commit adultery,” “You shall not murder,” “You shall not steal,” “You shall not bear false witness,”“You shall not covet,” and if there is any other commandment, are all summed up in this saying, namely, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” –Rom. 13:8-9 NKJV
- 2 with all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love, 15 but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head—Christ— –Eph. 4:2, 15 NKJV
- 15 And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful. –Col. 3:15 NKJV
- 7 For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. –2 Tim. 1:7 NKJV
- 10 For God is not unjust to forget your work and labor of[a] love which you have shown toward His name, in that you have ministered to the saints, and do minister. –Heb. 6:10 NKJV
- 24 And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, 25 not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching. –Heb. 10:24-25 NKJV
- 19 As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten. Therefore be zealous and repent. –Rev. 3:19 NKJV
- 8 Owe no one anything except to love one another, for he who loves another has fulfilled the law. –Rom. 13:8 NKJV
- To learn to love others the way Jesus loves us.
- To make love the hallmark of the church that the world may know we are His disciples.
- To practice to love those who are similar as well as those who are different from us.
- To baptize us with God’s love to conquer hate, overcome evil, and shallow up fear with perfect love.
- To understand that the greatest of gifts and ministry skills is faith expressing itself through love.
- To labor to love unconditionally, not discriminating, or in critical judgment against others.
- To allow our love to be more bold, daring, and freely given.
- To uproot and weed out cynical attitudes, sarcasm, and calloused attitudes of making fun or mocking others.
- To learn to see through Jesus’ eyes of compassion, mercy, and grace rooted in love, as well as, discern the wicked, evil, and demonic attitudes and lifestyles facing God’s justice and judgment.
- To flood our hearts to overflowing love higher, deeper, longer, and wider as the River of God.
- To not allow ourselves to become indebted to anyone but to repay the deficit of love to Jesus by loving others.
- A Baptism of LOVING FAMILY
Deuteronomy 6:5-9 NIV
Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the door frames of your houses and on your gates.
Psalm 127:3, 5 NKJV
Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord,
The fruit of the womb is a reward.
Happy is the man who has his quiver full of them;
They shall not be ashamed,
But shall speak with their enemies in the gate.
Proverbs 13:24 NIV
Whoever spares the rod hates their children,
but the one who loves their children is careful to discipline them.
Ephesians 6:1-2, 4 NIV
Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. “Honor your father and mother”—which is the first commandment with a promise—
Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.
1 Timothy 3:2-5, 7 NKJV
2 A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, temperate, sober-minded, of good behavior, hospitable, able to teach; 3 not given to wine, not violent, not greedy for money, but gentle, not quarrelsome, not covetous; 4 one who rules his own house well, having his children in submission with all reverence 5 (for if a man does not know how to rule his own house, how will he take care of the church of God?); 7 Moreover he must have a good testimony among those who are outside, lest he fall into reproach and the snare of the devil.
Hebrews 13:17 NKJV
Obey those who rule over you, and be submissive, for they watch out for your souls, as those who must give account. Let them do so with joy and not with grief, for that would be unprofitable for you.
General Direction: To raise the family from a biblical worldview of God’s creation, Christ’s identity, fearing the Lord to depart from evil and the blessing of God’s favor to those who walk with Him; to create an environment of love, acceptance, nurturing, and belonging, along with, tough love, discipline, and training in the grace and admonition of the Lord.
- 5 For in this manner, in former times, the holy women who trusted in God also adorned themselves, being submissive to their own husbands, 6 as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord, whose daughters you are if you do good and are not afraid with any terror.7 Husbands, likewise, dwell with them with understanding, giving honor to the wife, as to the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life, that your prayers may not be hindered. –1 Pet. 3:5-7 NKJV
- 22 Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. 23 For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. 24 Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything.25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, 26 that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word, 27 that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish. 28 So husbands ought to love their own wives as their own bodies; he who loves his wife loves himself. 29 For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as the Lord does the church. 30 For we are members of His body, of His flesh and of His bones. 31 “For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.”32 This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the church. 33 Nevertheless let each one of you in particular so love his own wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband. –Eph. 5:22-33 NKJV
- 13 Who is wise and understanding among you? Let him show by good conduct that his works are done in the meekness of wisdom. 14 But if you have bitter envy and self-seeking in your hearts, do not boast and lie against the truth. 15 This wisdom does not descend from above, but is earthly, sensual, and demonic. 16 For where envy and self-seeking exist, confusion and every evil thing are there. 17 But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy. 18 Now the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace. –Jam. 3:13-18 NKJV
- 26 When Jesus therefore saw His mother, and the disciple whom He loved standing by, He said to His mother, “Woman, behold your son!”27 Then He said to the disciple, “Behold your mother!” And from that hour that disciple took her to his own home. –Jn. 19:26-27 NKJV
- 9 Or what man is there among you who, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone?10 Or if he asks for a fish, will he give him a serpent?11 If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him! –Mt. 7:9-11 NKJV
- 34 “Do not think that I came to bring peace on earth. I did not come to bring peace but a sword.35 For I have come to ‘set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law’; 36 and ‘a man’s enemies will be those of his own household.’ 37 He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. 38 And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me. 39 He who finds his life will lose it, and he who loses his life for My sake will find it. –Jn. 10:34-39 NKJV
- 48 But He answered and said to the one who told Him, “Who is My mother and who are My brothers?”49 And He stretched out His hand toward His disciples and said, “Here are My mother and My brothers!50 For whoever does the will of My Father in heaven is My brother and sister and mother.” –Mt. 12:48-50 NKJV
- 4 And He answered and said to them, “Have you not read that He who made them at the beginning ‘made them male and female,’ 5 and said, ‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’? 6 So then, they are no longer two but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let not man separate.”7 They said to Him, “Why then did Moses command to give a certificate of divorce, and to put her away?”8 He said to them, “Moses, because of the hardness of your hearts, permitted you to divorce your wives, but from the beginning it was not so. 9 And I say to you, whoever divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another, commits adultery; and whoever marries her who is divorced commits adultery.” –Mt. 19:4-9 NKJV
- 20 “And he arose and came to his father. But when he was still a great way off, his father saw him and had compassion, and ran and fell on his neck and kissed him.21 And the son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and in your sight, and am no longer worthy to be called your son.’
- 22 “But the father said to his servants, ‘Bring[a]out the best robe and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand and sandals on his feet. 23 And bring the fatted calf here and kill it, and let us eat and be merry; 24 for this my son was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ And they began to be merry. –Lk. 15:20-24 NKJV
- 16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. 18 Wives, submit to your own husbands, as is fitting in the Lord.19 Husbands, love your wives and do not be bitter toward them.20 Children, obey your parents in all things, for this is well pleasing to the Lord.21 Fathers, do not provoke your children, lest they become discouraged. –Col. 3:16, 18-21 NKJV
- 22 He who finds a wife finds a good thing,And obtains favor from the Lord. –Pro. 18:22 NKJV
- 12 Let deacons be the husbands of one wife, ruling their children and their own houses well. 4 one who rules his own house well, having his children in submission with all reverence…–1 Tim. 3:12, 4 NKJV
- 4 Marriage is honorable among all, and the bed undefiled; but fornicators and adulterers God will judge. –Heb. 13:4 NKJV
- 24 “Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock:25 and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock.26 “But everyone who hears these sayings of Mine, and does not do them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand: 27 and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it fell. And great was its fall.” –Mt. 7:24-27 NKJV
- 6 Train up a child in the way he should go,And when he is old he will not depart from it. –Pro. 22:6 NKJV
- 22 Listen to your father who begot you,And do not despise your mother when she is old. –Pro. 23:22 NKJV
- 24 He who spares his rod hates his son,But he who loves him disciplines him promptly. –Pro. 13:24 NKJV
- 18 Chasten your son while there is hope,And do not set your heart on his destruction. –Pro. 19:18 NKJV
- 15 Foolishness is bound up in the heart of a child;The rod of correction will drive it far from him. –Pro. 22:15 NKJV
- 13 Do not withhold correction from a child,For if you beat him with a rod, he will not die. –Pro. 23:13 NKJV
- 9 Only take heed to yourself, and diligently keep yourself, lest you forget the things your eyes have seen, and lest they depart from your heart all the days of your life. And teach them to your children and your grandchildren, –Deut. 4:9 NKJV
- 13 and that their children, who have not known it, may hear and learn to fear the Lord your God as long as you live in the land which you cross the Jordan to possess.” –Deut. 31:13 NKJV
- 3 Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord,The fruit of the womb is a reward.4 Like arrows in the hand of a warrior,So are the children of one’s youth. –Ps. 127:3-4 NKJV
- 6 Children’s children are the crown of old men,And the glory of children is their father. –Pro. 17:6 NKJV
- 14 But Jesus said, “Let the little children come to Me, and do not forbid them; for of such is the kingdom of heaven.” –Mt. 19:14 NKJV
- Remember now your Creator in the days of your youth,Before the difficult days come,And the years draw near when you say,
“I have no pleasure in them”: –Eccl. 12:1 NKJV
- 22 But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. 23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man observing his natural face in a mirror; 24 for he observes himself, goes away, and immediately forgets what kind of man he was. 25 But he who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it, and is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does. –Jam. 1:22-25 NKJV
- To love God by loving our children the way God loves us…unconditionally.
- To make love the hallmark of the home and that acceptance and belonging are signature’s for each individual child in their own uniqueness—special love for each child.
- To implement both unconditional love with tough love in discipline and instruction.
- To build the marriage and home on hearing and doing God’s Word.
- To believe and behave with love and respect; husbands love their wives as Christ loved the church and wives respect their husbands.
- To practice teaching children God’s word, will, and ways, and the way they should go.
- To avoid the polarizations in parenting; passive with no training or discipline vs. legalism, severe, embittering the children.
- To raise the family on a Biblical Worldview: Creation, Identity, Obedience, and Salvation.
- A Baptism of LOVING ENEMIES
Matthew 5:43-48 NIV
You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.
Romans 12:20-21 NIV
On the contrary:
“If your enemy is hungry, feed him;
if he is thirsty, give him something to drink.
In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.”
Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
General Direction: To learn to love our enemies and those we least like; to discern when we should turn the wicked over to God’s justice; to understand that loving our enemies does not mean we permit injustice or abuse but we overcome it; to possess a love that conquers hate.
- 14 Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord: 15 looking carefully lest anyone fall short of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up cause trouble, and by this many become defiled; –Heb. 12:14-15 NKJV
- Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal. 2 And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. 3 And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing.4 Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; 5 does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; 6 does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; 7 bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.8 Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away. –1 Cor. 13:1-8 NKJV
- 5 Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. 6 Because of these things the wrath of God is coming upon the sons of disobedience, 7 in which you yourselves once walked when you lived in them.8 But now you yourselves are to put off all these: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy language out of your mouth. 9 Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man with his deeds, 10 and have put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him, 11 where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcised nor uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave nor free, but Christ is all and in all.12 Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; 13 bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do. 14 But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection. 15 And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful. –Col. 3:5-15 NKJV
- 5 Walk in wisdom toward those who are outside, redeeming the time. 6 Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how you ought to answer each one. –Col. 4:5-6 NKJV
- 26 “Be angry, and do not sin”: do not let the sun go down on your wrath, 27 nor give place to the devil. 29 Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers. 30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31 Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. 32 And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you. –Eph. 4:26-27; 29-32 NKJV
- Therefore be imitators of God as dear children. 2 And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma.3 But fornication and all uncleanness or covetousness, let it not even be named among you, as is fitting for saints; 9 (for the fruit of the Spirit[a] is in all goodness, righteousness, and truth), 10 finding out what is acceptable to the Lord. 11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them. 15 See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, 16 redeeming the time, because the days are evil. 17 Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is. 18 And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit, –Eph. 5:1-3; 9-11; 15-18 NKJV
- 17 A quick-tempered man acts foolishly,And a man of wicked intentions is hated. –Pro. 14:17 NKJV
- 38 “You have heard that it was said, ‘An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.’39 But I tell you not to resist an evil person. But whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also.40 If anyone wants to sue you and take away your tunic, let him have your cloak also. 41 And whoever compels you to go one mile, go with him two. –Mt. 5:38-41 NKJV
- 21 “You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not murder, and whoever murders will be in danger of the judgment.’22 But I say to you that whoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment. And whoever says to his brother, ‘Raca!’ shall be in danger of the council. But whoever says, ‘You fool!’ shall be in danger of hell fire. 23 Therefore if you bring your gift to the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you, 24 leave your gift there before the altar, and go your way. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift. –Mt. 5:21-24 NKJV
- 14 “For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.15 But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses. –Mt. 6:14-15 NKJV
- 22 Do not say, “I will recompense evil”;Wait for the Lord, and He will save you. 29 The glory of young men is their strength,And the splendor of old men is their gray head. –Pro. 20:22, 29 NKJV
- 9 not returning evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary blessing, knowing that you were called to this, that you may inherit a blessing. –1 Pet. 3:9 NKJV
- 12 having your conduct honorable among the Gentiles, that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may, by your good works which they observe, glorify God in the day of visitation. 15 For this is the will of God, that by doing good you may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men— 16 as free, yet not using liberty as a cloak for vice, but as bondservants of God. 17 Honor all people. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the king. 20 For what credit is it if, when you are beaten for your faults, you take it patiently? But when you do good and suffer, if you take it patiently, this is commendable before God. 21 For to this you were called, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps: 22 “Who committed no sin, Nor was deceit found in His mouth”; 23 who, when He was reviled, did not revile in return; when He suffered, He did not threaten, but committed Himself to Him who judges righteously; –1 Pet. 2:12; 15-17; 20-23 NKJV
- 8 And above all things have fervent love for one another, for “love will cover a multitude of sins.” –1 Pet. 4:8 NKJV
- 19 for I know that through your prayers and God’s provision of the Spirit of Jesus Christ what has happened to me will turn out for my deliverance. 21 For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. 29 For it has been granted to you on behalf of Christ not only to believe in him, but also to suffer for him, –Phil 1:19, 21, 29 NIV
- 22 strengthening the souls of the disciples, exhorting them to continue in the faith, and saying, “We must through many tribulations enter the kingdom of God.” –Acts 14:22 NKJV
- 33 These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will[a]have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” –Jn. 16:33 NKJV
- 2 Then He said to them, “The harvest truly is great, but the laborers are few; therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.3 Go your way; behold, I send you out as lambs among wolves. 16 He who hears you hears Me, he who rejects you rejects Me, and he who rejects Me rejects Him who sent Me.” –Lk. 10:2-3, 16 NKJV
- To know that our love for God is measured, not as much by how much we love those who love us, but how much we love those we like the least.
- To accept that we need God’s love to enlarge our capacity to love our enemies and those who do us wrong.
- To operate in the power of forgiveness towards those who wrong us and forgive the way we have been forgiven.
- To understand that some enemies and evil people must be given to God and justice when they remain defiant and unrepentant.
- To discern that in some cases we allow mistreatment to show mercy in turning the other cheek or going that extra mile; in other cases love will not be a door mat nor allow bullies to harm unabated.
- To learn to not to be overcome with evil but overcome evil with good and leave retaliation to God’s justice.
- To practice to pray for our enemies believing prayer can change them and change us to become better not bitter.
- To foster the God-kind of love in order for love to shallow fear and conquer hate.