How Do You Tell God You Love Him Through Your Worship? Revelation 5

What are you sure about in life?

Other than death and taxes, some people aren’t sure about anything.

Many people have a fear of commitment.

They drift through life uncertain about anyone or anything.

But that’s a miserable way to live.

After all, our identity is formed by the commitments we make.

That’s why the little word “Amen” is so important.

Many think “Amen” is just an ancient word that marks the end of a sermon or prayer.

Many children sitting through an especially long sermon will spend their time waiting to hear the Pastor shout his “Amen” so they can just head for the exit.

But “Amen” doesn’t mean “It’s over now.”

“Amen” means “in truth it is so.”

Adding “Amen” to a prayer or confession means declaring it to be “absolutely positively” true!

In biblical times, it was the custom of the whole congregation to respond to God’s Word and the prayers of their leaders with a united “Amen.”

That’s what we see in our reading today. The entire creation, represented in the four living creatures, offers “Amen!” to the good news of the victorious Christ!

What about you?

What about me?

What about the Church?

Revelation 5:11-14Amplified Bible

Angels Exalt the Lamb

11 Then I looked, and I heard the voice of many angels around the throne and [the voice] of the living creatures and the elders; and they numbered myriads of myriads, and thousands of thousands (innumerable), 12 saying in a loud voice,

“Worthy and deserving is the Lamb that was sacrificed to receive power and riches and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing.”

13 And I heard every created thing that is in heaven or on earth or under the earth [in Hades, the realm of the dead] or on the sea, and everything that is in them, saying [together],

“To Him who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb (Christ), be blessing and honor and glory and dominion forever and ever.”

14 And the four living creatures kept saying, “Amen.” And the elders fell down and worshiped [Him who lives forever and ever].

The Word of God for the Children of God. Gloria! In Excelsis Deo! Alleluia! Amen.

We look at God and ourselves through the basics of the Christian faith.

What is my response?

What’s your response?

What is the Churches response?

Your “Amen” declares this Christian faith is your steadfast, immovable faith.

We have been taught always to let your “Amen” sound in all you say and do.

If we were asked by someone, family, friend, neighbor, or a complete stranger, to describe the Christian life in a few words, what would we say to them?

If we were asked what does God want from us more than anything else what would be the very first words you would say?

“He wants me to love Him just as much as He first loved me.” (1 John 4:7-21)

The answer is that the living Lord wants to have a love affair with you.

The Bible says that we were created as an object of God’s love.

God made you to love you.

He made me to love me.

He made me to be an object of His love.

He made you to be an object of His love.

He made the church to be an object of His love.

That means that we were all created for the purpose of having a relationship and, as a result, the most important thing you can know in life is that God loves you. And the most important thing that you can do in life is to love Him back.

Rabbi Jesus was asked in Matthew which command in the Lord law is the most important?

Rabbi Jesus gave this answer. 

Matthew 22:37. Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment.

One version says to Love the lord your God with all your passion.

Nothing is more important.

If we all do this with the same measure God first loved us, we will fulfill our primary purpose in life.

If we each learn to love God and we let God love us, our lives have fulfilled its meaning, its purpose.

If we miss this part of our life, our life risks failure on a grand scale.

Because we have missed the very reason that God created us and put us on earth – to love and be loved with quite literally all that we are.

There’s a term in the Bible for expressing love to God.

That term is called “worship”.

People often think of worship as a ritual or routine or something that we are to do only in context with a church.

Worship simply means expressing love to God.

Any time we are expressing love to God, we are worshiping whether we are by yourself, in a small group or in a large crowd.

When you express love to God in any way you are worshiping.

Today we’re going to talk about how to express your love to the Lord.

Expressing our love to God is not only something we do individually, but also something we do together.

In fact, as I reflect back over my Christian life, some of the most powerful and meaningful moments took place in worship services.

Someone once described the goal of worship is to make it easy to find God and making it difficult to forget him.

The book of Revelation gives us a glimpse into what worship in heaven will be like.

John describes a day when around the throne of God are gathered around the throne are millions of angels and believer for worship. 

Read and reflect, read and ponder, read and meditate upon John’s description:

Revelation 5:11-13Amplified Bible

Angels Exalt the Lamb

11 Then I looked, and I heard the voice of many angels around the throne and [the voice] of the living creatures and the elders; and they numbered myriads of myriads, and thousands of thousands (innumerable), 12 saying in a loud voice,

“Worthy and deserving is the Lamb that was sacrificed to receive power and riches and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing.”

13 And I heard every created thing that is in heaven or on earth or under the earth [in Hades, the realm of the dead] or on the sea, and everything that is in them, saying [together],

“To Him who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb (Christ), be blessing and honor and glory and dominion forever and ever.”

I don’t know about you, and I cannot speak for you, but I can’t wait for that day.

I just ponder and meditate and smile wide that there is a day coming when everything in heaven and everyone on the earth will worship the Lord Jesus.

I hope that we will all realize that what John saw is something that we will likely be a part of.

Can we imagine being a part of such a grand and majestic scene?

I don’t know about you, but I just can’t wait.

After listening to what John saw I would imagine that we would each equally think that our worship to the lord from such a few would sound just as great.

I think that true worship from a few believers is just as powerful when everyone is singing from their hearts in worship to God.

The great thing is that we get ample time to practice for that great day in Christ.

I saw on the Internet a book called “Ten Thousand Ways to Say “I Love You.

I thought that maybe today we would cover all 10,000.

Except that is far from conceivable for this devotional writing.

So, actually, I have narrowed it down to six and a half.

What I am going to share with you are ways to tell God you love Him.

I acknowledge, recognize, you very likely are already doing some of these but maybe you didn’t know that as you did then you were saying “I love you, Lord.”

1. By singing to the Lord Jesus Christ.

You have probably noticed that music and love usually go together because music comes from the heart.

It’s not something you and I do intellectually.

It’s something that comes out of our inner being, our emotions.

There are many love songs in the world.

There are radio stations that are dedicated entirely just play love song.

But did you know that there are more songs written about Jesus Christ than any other topic in the world?

Nothing even comes close in second place.

Christianity is a singing faith because Christianity is not about a religion but it’s about a love affair.

It’s about a relationship with God, that God loves you so much that He sent His Son to die for you and the wants His children to love Him back.

Psalm 147:1 Authorized (King James) Version

Psalm 147

Praise ye the Lord:
for it is good to sing praises unto our God;
for it is pleasant; and praise is comely.

Psalm 147:7-8Authorized (King James) Version

Sing unto the Lord with thanksgiving;
sing praise upon the harp unto our God:
who covereth the heaven with clouds,
who prepareth rain for the earth,
who maketh grass to grow upon the mountains.

Nothing will make us more aware of God’s love and God’s presence in our life than singing to the Lord.

I know some of you are saying, “But you don’t understand. I can’t sing.”

The Bible does not say that you have to be able to carry a tune.

2 Samuel 6:12-16Amplified Bible

The Ark Is Brought to Jerusalem

12 Now King David was told, “The Lord has blessed the house of Obed-edom and all that belongs to him, because of the ark of God.” So, David went and brought up the ark of God from the house of Obed-edom into the City of David with rejoicing and gladness. 13 And when those who were carrying the ark of the Lord [by its poles] had gone six paces, he sacrificed an ox and a fatling. 14 And David was dancing before the Lord with [a]great enthusiasm, and David was [b]wearing a linen ephod [a priest’s upper garment]. 15 So David and all the house of Israel were bringing the ark of the Lord up [to the City of David] with shouts [of joy] and with the sound of the trumpet.

16 Then, as the ark of the Lord came into the City of David, [c]Michal, Saul’s daughter [David’s wife], looked down from the window above and saw King David leaping and dancing before the Lord; and she felt contempt for him in her heart [because she thought him undignified].

The Bible just says, Make a joyful noise.

I don’t know about you but that is something that I know I can do, and I believe you can too.

What I find it rather interesting that when we go to a ball game or if we are at a wedding that most time, we do not seem to have a problem raising our voices.

When we are in our own “worship space” there are times that we would get so caught up in the worship service that we would be in a little world of my own.

I know there were times that the people would spend the worship time making fun of us as we worship the Lord Jesus Christ.

I know of quite a few Sundays where one of the church people came to me and asked me if the next service I would “worship” act like the rest of the people.

It was kind of like the guy who was on a trip and on Sunday morning he went to church. As the congregation would sing a song that touched him, he would say Amen or praise the Lord. Well after the second song one of the ushers went and escorts him away and asks him to please refrain from making those comments.

Then when the pastor got to preach the man really began to say Amen brother or praise the Lord.

Finally, the usher went to the man and said please sir you have got to refrain from saying what he was saying, doing what you are doing. The man said I am so filled with love for the Lord that I just can’t help myself. The usher said Well, you did not get that here, so don’t bring it here and be sure not to leave it here as you leave.

Psalm 95:1-4Amplified Bible

Praise to the Lord, and Warning against Unbelief.

95 O come, let us sing joyfully to the Lord;
Let us shout joyfully to the rock of our salvation.

Let us come before His presence with a song of thanksgiving;
Let us shout joyfully to Him with songs.

For the Lord is a great God
And a great King above all gods,

In whose hand are the depths of the earth;
The peaks of the mountains are His also.

Notice that the Psalmist says let us sing and let us give a joyous shout.

Singing is an important part of you learning to express your love to God.

I have been in churches where people got upset because of the type of music that was sung or over the church worship team using a computer and screen.

Did you know that most of the music written about Jesus Christ contains scriptural principles that will help and strengthen your Christian life?

Did you know that music can inspires you, it can refresh your soul and it can rejuvenate you?

Did you know that if you are depressed that singing a worship song will help you because the singing gets your mind on the Lord Jesus Christ?

I have even noticed that there have been sometimes when I didn’t feel like participating in worship, when I didn’t feel like getting involved, when I just wanted to be an anonymous spectator in the last pew in the back of the balcony.

What I learned from that was that I needed to warm up my heart by singing to the Lord Jesus.

By getting involved in worship of the Lord Jesus will help change my mood.

Worship is setting aside all the busyness and distractions of my life of the past days and week and just giving my complete undivided attention unto the Lord.

It is an opportunity to focus our hearts and minds on exactly how much we love the Lord and how utterly grateful we are for exactly what He’s done for us all.

You know that we can worship God more than just at church?

As I have said worship is simply expressing our love to God.

So, if a person is a born-again Christian, then wherever we are the Lord God is there and we can worship because the presence of the Living Lord is within us.

That means we can worship in the shower.

We can worship in our backyards mowing the lawn, having a barbeque.

You can worship washing dishes.

You can worship driving to work and on the golf course.

You don’t need to be in a certain place to express your love to God, but we need to remember the writer to Hebrews informs us that we are to gather together and when we do, we encourage each other, we are a witness to our community.

We also gather to learn what the Lord has for us, and we gather to express our love to God.

Here is the thing when we gather for our services, and we enter into the worship service our Lord and Savior and King becomes the audience.

So, when we sing to the Lord Jesus, we are expressing our love for Him.

I want you to think about this for a moment.

If we say we are born again by His grace and that we love Him yet when we come to a worship service and we don’t want to express or worship or love the One, we say we love beyond all; just what are we genuinely communicating to God?

A lot of people have said Well, you just don’t know what I went through this week. My answer would be well the Lord got you through the week isn’t that a reason to express your maximum love and give your maximum thanks to Jesus.

2. By TALKING to the lord Jesus Christ.

When a relationship stands still then that relationship isn’t growing and if the relationship is not growing then the relationship is basically going nowhere.

A relationship that is going nowhere soon won’t be a relationship at all.

Well, the same is true with our relationship with the Lord.

On the days when we a have deep, significant talk with God our relationship grows and matures. On the days when you have little or no talks with the Lord our relationship is not growing and if something is not growing then, by logic, it must be in the steady and ongoing process of decaying.

When you really love somebody, you don’t just want to spend time with them.

You also definitely want to talk with them.

Psalm 116:1-4Amplified Bible

Thanksgiving for Rescue from Death.

116 I love the Lord, because He hears [and continues to hear]
My voice and my supplications (my pleas, my cries, my specific needs).

Because He has inclined His ear to me,
Therefore, I will call on Him as long as I live.

The cords and sorrows of death encompassed me,
And the terrors of Sheol came upon me;
I found distress and sorrow.

Then I called on the name of the Lord:
“O Lord, please save my life!”

Would you indulge me for a moment?

Does your prayer and worship life still have spark or has your Christian life become tiresome, exhausting, routine, dull, joyless, listless and .01% lifeless?

If there’s no real joy or spark any more, well there’s a simple remedy for that.

Start talking and spending time with the Lord God again.

Maybe you are not talking to the Lord like a child talking to the Living Lord.

Maybe you are talking like you are the parent and the Lord is the child.

Maybe you are talking but what you are saying isn’t coming from the very essence of your life.

Talking or Prayer is not some duty that you have to do.

It’s a holy and sacred privilege that you get to do.

You get to talk to the Creator of the universe, and He wants to talk with you.

This expression of worship also has a community aspect to it.

All through the Bible and through the long concourse of history we find pockets of Christians gathering for the sole and soulful, soul-filled purpose of prayer.

Sometimes their prayers are prayers of praise. Sometimes they are prayers of intercession. Sometimes they are prayers looking for comfort or they are prayers that are looking for a deeper relationship with the Lord.

I pray prayer a priority of your life and I want you to know that you don’t have to use a special voice or certain words. Talk to Jesus like He is your best friend.

What do you talk to God about if you want to express love to God?

Anything and everything that you would, you should talk to your best friend about and all the stuff you would never talk to even your very best friend about.

You talk to the Lord about your hopes, your fears, your dreams, your anxieties, the things you are embarrassed about, the things you’re proud of, the things you’re ashamed of, goals, ambitions, your hurts, the things you care about.

You talk to the Lord about every part of your life because the Lord knows every part of your life a whole lot better than you do.

There isn’t a part of your life that you can’t come to God, and you talk about.

3. By LISTENING to the Lord Jesus Christ.

Listening is one of the greatest gifts you can give to somebody.

Listening is hearing what the other person is saying without thinking up an answer to what they are saying.

When you listen to someone, you’re saying, they matter to you that you value what they have to say.

That you value their opinion because they’re important to you.

When we don’t listen to somebody, we’re basically saying that person isn’t important that what they have to say isn’t of any value.

One of the ways you express love to anybody is by listening to them.

The same is true with God.

Every time you listen to God, you’re saying that the Lord is important to you, and you place a high priority upon, put great value what the Lord has to say.

Listening is the most misunderstood and left off part of prayer.

Most people think that prayer is just talking to God.

That’s only fifty percent of prayer.

Psalm 46:10Amplified Bible

10 
“Be still and know (recognize, understand) that I am God.
I will be exalted among the nations! I will be exalted in the earth.”

The other fifty percent of prayer is “shutting ourselves up” and being quiet and exalting the LORD first, then in the beauty of HIS quiet, letting God speak to us.

In our world today I could all too easily imagine that most people are in too much of a hurry to do this.

I remember reading about a person who said that his time with the Lord use to go like this.

“Hi, God, it’s me. I’ve got these ten things I need from You today. Thank You.”

It was not until he started writing down his prayer that he realized what his prayer times were actually like.

He said he never stopped and wait or even listen to see if the Lord had anything to say to him.

One of the most important steps you can take is set aside time to listen to God.

All of us have pressure packed filled schedules.

God said that we are to set aside one day per week for rest and worship.

This rhythm of life is so important that God put it in his top ten lists.

Leviticus 23:3. You have six days when you can do your work, but the seventh day of each week is holy because it belongs to me.

Perhaps the reason some of us can’t hear God is that our lives are so fast and so full and so noisy, that there is no room in our daily calendars for ‘hearing’ God.

God has been trying to speak to us, yet we say why don’t I ever hear the Lord?

The reason is because we either not listening or that our lives are so full that we have not intentionally ‘scheduled’ anytime to deliberately listening to the Lord.

The Christian world today isn’t like it used to be.

There was a time when we could pause in the middle of the day and say, “God, Do You have anything you want to say to me or have me listen to, right now?

Today as I watch Christians who seem to be so occupied with their phone, iPods and social media and texting that it is little, no wonder, that you can actually be talking to someone and while you are talking, they are texting to someone else.

God speak to us through the Bible, His word.

If you’re not spending any time in this book obviously, He’s not going to speak to you through this book because you’re not reading it and not listening to it.

God speaks to us through the experiences we go through in life.

God speaks to us through trials.

But you’re not listening.

You’re not reading these principles in this book and you’re not being aware that God may be trying to tell you something through that irritation.

God speaks to us through other people, through the advice of Christians and godly people who will say, What about this?

God will often speak to you through another person.

In my life, God has often provided direction, insight and confirmation through other people.

Here is another reason why you need to be in community with other believers.

Proverbs 11:14. Without good direction, people lose their way; the more wise counsel you follow, the better your chances.

God will speak to you the loudest and the clearest through the wise counsel of spiritual mature friends.

Do you have a trusted circle of Christian’s friends to whom you can go to seek God’s counsel?

God will speak to you through impressions.

He puts ideas in your mind.

Now, not every idea you get is from God.

When you get an idea from God, we call it an inspiration.

When we get an idea from the devil, we call it a temptation.

When we get an idea from ourselves, we just call it dumb!

But how do you know if an impression is from God or not?

Test it. The Bible says you’re to test it.

Did you know the Bible says that hearing God’s voice, being able to listen to God and hear God speak is the test of whether you’re really a true believer or not, whether you’re in the family or not, whether you’re headed for heaven or not?

In John’s Gospel narrative Jesus talked about Him being the Good Shepherd.

John 10: 4; 16. The sheep follow him because they know his voice. I have other sheep, which are not of this fold; I must bring them also, and they will hear My voice; and they will become one flock with one shepherd.

If you’ve never ever got an idea or an impression or heard from God, you have every reason to wonder, if you really know God?

Do you really have a relationship with Jesus Christ?

Are you truly a believer or have you stepped across another “worldly” line?

4. By PUBLICLY IDENTIFYING with Jesus Christ.

Mark 8:38. If any of you are embarrassed over me and the way I’m leading you when you get around your fickle and unfocused friends, know that you’ll be an even greater embarrassment to the Son of Man when He arrives in all the splendor of God with His army of the Holy Angels.

If a Christian, by their lifestyle, says I’m not going to let anybody know I’m a Christian, I’m not telling my neighbors or I’m not telling my friends or the people at work that I am keeping it a secret then you don’t really love God.

If you love somebody, you’re not ashamed of them.

You publicly identify with them.

Again, here is a place where the church community helps us to worship the Lord.

When we see others who take their stand for Christ, it should give us courage to do the same and we should also let our brothers and sisters know that we are willing to stand with them in a testimony about our Lord, Savior, Jesus Christ.

Christianity is not about a secret club with secret words and codes.

Christianity is about making one faith in Jesus Christ a public faith.

Jesus said in Matthew 5:14-15. You are the light of the world, like a city on a mountain, glowing in the night for all to see. Don’t hide your light under a basket! Instead, put it on a stand and let it shine for all.

I wonder if maybe sometime in our past we were encouraged to have a kind of a flashlight witness and we were to only let it shine in church.

We all know that it is easy to talk about the Lord when we are surrounded by our brothers and sisters.

I don’t even remember being told too many times that when I left the church that I was to publicly allow my faith to shine so everyone could see it.

I do not know about you, but too many times I have found it very difficult to be that light that was set on the hill for the world to see.

Can you imagine what your wife would have said if you said let’s get married, but we won’t tell anyone. When no one is around we will be husband and wife but when we’re in public let’s quietly pretend like we don’t know each other.

Well, a Christian shouldn’t be saying that they love their Savior Jesus Christ when they are outwardly communicating being ashamed of Him. We need to publicly identify ourselves with Christ. That’s how we show our love for Him.

Think for a moment what Jesus did for you.

1. He saved us from the penalty of sin. He paid for your forgiveness. Think of the thing that you feel the most guilty about. The thing that has caused you the most shame in your life, the thing that you wish had never happened and you regret deeply. Now thank God because of Jesus Christ’s sacrifice on the cross.

2. He saves us from the devastating, catastrophic power of sin. He breaks its grip in our lives. He gives us a new resurrection power to be able to make visible changes so we’re not the same anymore. He can do new things in our lives that we always wanted to do but never thought or hoped we could do on our own.

3. Eventually, He saves us from the presence of sin as we graduate to heaven where there will be no sin, no sorrow, no suffering, no pain, and no grief.

1 Corinthians 2:7-9Amplified Bible

but we speak God’s wisdom in a mystery, the wisdom once hidden [from man, but now revealed to us by God, that wisdom] which God predestined before the ages to our glory [to lift us into the glory of His presence]. None of the rulers of this age recognized and understood this wisdom; for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory; but just as it is written [in Scripture],

“Things which the eye has not seen, and the ear has not heard,
And which have not entered the heart of man,
All that God has prepared for those who love Him [who hold Him in affectionate reverence, who obey Him, and who gratefully recognize the benefits that He has bestowed].”

There’s another way we can declare, and we can communicate we are a Christian and that is through baptism.

Baptism says I believe in the death and resurrection of Jesus. Jesus Himself as a thirty-year-old adult went down to the Jordan River was baptized by John to say, this is how I want it done. It’s a picture of Jesus’ death and resurrection.

Second, it’s a picture of what happens to you. You’re dying to an old way of life.

Colossians 2:12. Going under the water was a burial of your old life. Coming up out of it was a resurrection, God raising you from the dead as He did in Christ.

When we are baptized, we are saying I’m dying to all my old sins.

They’re forgiven, they’re forgotten, and they’re out of my life. I’m beginning a brand-new life in my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Third, it symbolizes your new life in Jesus Christ.

Galatians 3:27. Your baptism in Christ was not just washing you up for a fresh start.

It also involved dressing you in an adult faith wardrobe, Christ’s life, the fulfillment of God’s original promise.

5. By BEING COMMITTED to the Lord Jesus Christ.

So often we think about commitment from a purely individual perspective. In Scripture you find the people of God making commitments.

For example, at the end of Joshua’s life, Joshua challenges the people of God to stay committed to God.

Joshua 24:20-22. If you forsake the Lord and serve other gods, he will turn against you and destroy you, even though he has been so good to you. But the people answered Joshua, saying, no, we are determined to serve the Lord! You are accountable for this decision,” Joshua said. You have chosen to serve the Lord. Yes, they replied, we are accountable.

Joshua 24:25. So Joshua made a covenant with the people that day at Shechem, committing them to a permanent and binding contract between themselves and the Lord.

Acts 2:43-47Amplified Bible

43 A sense of awe was felt by [a]everyone, and many wonders and signs (attesting miracles) were taking place through the apostles. 44 And all those who had believed [in Jesus as Savior] [b]were together and had all things in common [considering their possessions to belong to the group as a whole]. 45 And they began selling their property and possessions and were sharing the proceeds with all [the other believers], as anyone had need. 46 Day after day they met in the temple [area] continuing with one mind, and breaking bread in various private homes. They were eating their meals together with joy and generous hearts, 47 praising God continually, and having favor with all the people. And the Lord kept adding to their number daily those who were being saved.

Love is all about commitment.

You don’t really love somebody unless you’re committed to their best.

Nothing ever significant happens in life without commitment.

Your commitments determine your future.

You are becoming whatever you are committed to.

So, you better choose your commitments carefully.

If you’re committed to the wrong thing, you’re going to risk becoming the wrong thing.

You can’t lose by being committed to God.

Some people are defined by their circumstances, but strong people are defined by their commitments.

The Bible tells us in 2 Chronicles 16:9a.

For the eyes of the LORD move to and fro throughout the earth that He may strongly support those whose heart is completely His.

6. By GIVING to the Lord Jesus Christ.

I have found that whenever I have even mentioned this subject that most Christians get a bit upset.

The thing is I don’t understand why.

The subject of tithing is a Biblical one.

Jesus and the apostle Paul talked about it.

I have been in churches where I have actually had people get up and walk out of the service.

Well, the only reason I can figure out is that the Lord probably been dealing with them and they though that the Lord was using me to pick on them.

I remember reading about a man who was being baptized and when he was just about to get into the water, he said to the Pastor I need just a few minutes more.

Now the pastor figured that the man had to go to the bathroom so he said can’t you wait until after I baptize you?

The man looked at the pastor and said I don’t need a minute for that reason.

“I want to get my wallet and my checkbook so they can be baptized with me.”

The first generations of Christians were givers.

And they did it together.

It is amazing what can be done, accomplished when we each give our little bit.

As you and I listen carefully to the history record of the early church, we need to understand that I don’t see this as the Lord instructing that we sell everything that we have and put it in a community pool.

I do see this as the Lord teaching that when there was a need within the church that the Christians did what they had to do to meet that need. 

Acts 4:32-35Amplified Bible

Sharing among Believers

32 Now the company of believers was of one heart and soul, and not one [of them] claimed that anything belonging to him was [exclusively] his own, but everything was common property and for the use of all. 33 And with great ability and power the apostles were continuously testifying to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and great grace [God’s remarkable lovingkindness and favor and goodwill] rested richly upon them all. 34 There was not a needy person among them, because those who were owners of land or houses were selling them and bringing the proceeds of the sales 35 and placing the money down at the apostles’ feet. Then it was distributed to each as anyone had need.

Did you catch the words of v. 34?

There was no poverty among them.

Now I want you to understand the scripture isn’t saying that everyone was rich.

What the Scripture is actually saying is that the needs of the people were all being met.

They had all that was required to meet the needs of every person in the church.

Can you imagine what would happen in our churches if we got serious about sharing with those in need?

Can you imagine what would happen if we were so serious about our Jerusalem that we would make available whatever we had to those in need?

Giving is at the very core of love.

When you love someone, you want to give to them.

You can give without loving but you cannot love without giving.

It is impossible to say you love God and not give.

I can claim to be a Christian, a follower of Christ.

I can claim to love God.

But the Bible says there is one way to really test the sincerity of your love.

2 Corinthians 8: 7-8. Just as you excel in faith, in speech, in knowledge, and in complete earnestness, see that you also excel in the grace of giving. I am not commanding you, but I want to test the sincerity of your love.

God tests the sincerity of your love by looking at your giving.

Why does He do that?

Because you’re giving show your heart and how much you love the Lord your God.

He wants you to become like Him.

God so loved the world that He gave.

You can become like God and become a generous giver, or you can become like everyone else in the world and become a hoarder.

I want you to know that the major person who doesn’t want you to become a give is Satan.

I have discovered that there are really basically two kinds of people in life.

There are cheerful givers and fearful givers.

Cheerful givers say, I’m going to give.

It all belongs to God anyway.

He gave it all to me.

I wouldn’t have anything without God so I’m going to give it all to Him and He can take care of all my needs.

Then there are the fearful givers.

These are the ones who say we can’t afford to do this.

They are the ones who feel that it is their job to be their own god and look after and protect their interests.

If we feel that we have to protect our interest that is a sign that we don’t trust the Lord as fully as we ought to.

It is also a sign that we don’t look at everything we have as coming from the Lord. It is also a sign that we don’t love the Lord as much as we say we do.

It is also a sign that Jesus Christ isn’t the only Lord and only love of our lives.

Matthew 22:37-39Amplified Bible

37 And Jesus replied to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 The second is like it, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself [that is, unselfishly seek the best or higher good for others].’

What is the central change God wants in our lives?

So many of the changes we desire are important but not central to life: weight loss, better study habits, development of leadership skills, more peace of mind, even ethical and moral improvement.

These are all good things, but they’re not the main thing.

The legal expert who questioned Jesus understood the main thing, and he wanted to know if Jesus knew.

“Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” Jesus answered, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind,” and “love your neighbor as yourself.”

That’s the central change God wants in our lives, and it will make us like Jesus.

To keep these priorities straight in a world filled with choices, we must, with the Spirit’s help, keep our eyes on the cross, because at the center of the cross is the love of God. “God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16).

In the name of God, the Father and God the Son and God the Holy Spirit,

Let us Pray,

Heavenly Father, thank you that you are the light of the world, guiding our steps on your path. Your word says that you are a Good Father who gives us good gifts. Thank you for the gift of the church, a community of your children that you have gathered together to worship, serve, pray and love. Give us thy strength to live as ambassadors for you in the world. Lord, bless your church and keep us pure, make your face shine upon us. Turn your face towards us and give us peace. Through Jesus Christ our Lord, Alleluia! Alleluia! Alleluia! Amen.

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Author: Thomas E Meyer Jr

Formerly Homeless Sinner Now, Child of God, Saved by Grace.

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