Pride Versus Love


Knowledge puffs up, but love edifies.
1 Corinthians 8:1b

The story is told of the time when a venerable Bible scholar met a young seminary student. When the old scholar asked the young student how his study of Scripture was progressing, the student replied, “Oh, I don’t spend any time studying. I trust that when I get in the pulpit God will fill my mouth with the words I should say.” The old scholar replied, “He will fill your mouth alright. He’ll fill it with the east wind!” Because of his lack of study, the young man didn’t catch the scholar’s point. In Scripture, the “east wind” referred to the furnace-like winds that blew in from the desert and withered all it touched (Genesis 41:6).

Perhaps the young student was trying to avoid the pride to which knowledge can lead. All knowledge? Of course not—Scripture presents gaining knowledge as a desirable goal (Proverbs 1:4; John 8:32). But knowledge, if displayed and used arrogantly, can certainly lead to pride. But on the heels of that warning, Paul provides an alternative: “love edifies”—edify meaning to build up, to strengthen. Pride destroys, love edifies.

Use your knowledge—whatever the subject or situation—as a means to love, encourage, and build up others.

Conceit is what makes a little squirt think he is a fountain of knowledge.
Unknown

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The Concrete of the Soul


…and his spirit was hardened in pride.
Daniel 5:20

The use of concrete goes back thousands of years. The Romans specialized in cement, which created an architectural revolution. The Colosseum was made of concrete, along with the dome of the Pantheon and the aqueducts that channeled water to the cities of the empire. After the fall of Rome, concrete was forgotten until modern times, but now it’s indispensible in architecture. Visitors still gaze in amazement at Hoover Dam, built from 1931 to 1936, one of the largest concrete structures in the world.

Pride is the concrete of the soul. It hardens us, turning a soft heart to stone. In the book of Daniel, King Nebuchadnezzar became self-absorbed in accomplishment and power. His heart was lifted up, and his spirit “was hardened in pride.” The same thing can happen to Christians. The book of Hebrews warns us against the hardening of the heart (Hebrews 4:7).

Love is the salve of the soul. It softens us and makes us tender, and that’s the medicine of Him who knows how to take out our stony hearts and give us a new heart and a new spirit—the spirit of love.

If I had only one sermon to preach, it would be a sermon against Pride.
G. K. Chesterton

God of Love


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.
1 John 4:16

Ancient pagans spent much time trying to meet their gods’ demands and beg them for blessings. Sacrifices—even human sacrifices—were a central part of their efforts. Pagan peoples approached their gods the same way they approached other people because they created the gods (idols) in their own image. Because human beings can be unpredictable and vengeful, so the gods they created were the same. The character of the gods reflected the character of those who made them.

But the God of the Bible is different. He created mankind in His image, not vice versa. God’s character has been eternally the same, a character summed up in one word: Love. The Bible says “God is love,” and there is nothing that can separate us from His love as revealed through Christ. Everything God does is based on His character of perfect love. There is nothing we can do to earn God’s love or favor. We are loved because He created us in His image to be loved by Him.

Don’t doubt God’s love for you today. Wherever you are in life, know that you are loved by the God who is love.

God’s love is not drawn out by our lovableness, but wells up, like an artesian spring, from the depths of His nature.
Alexander MacLaren

Will There Be Sex in Heaven?


I think our present outlook might be like that of a small boy who, on being told that the sexual act was the highest bodily pleasure should immediately ask whether you ate chocolates at the same time. On receiving the answer “No,” he might regard absence of chocolates as the chief characteristic of sexuality. In vain would you tell him that the reason why lovers in their carnal raptures don’t bother about chocolates is that they have something better to think of. The boy knows chocolate: he does not know the positive thing that excludes it. We are in the same position. We know the sexual life; we do not know, except in glimpses, the other thing which, in Heaven, will leave no room for it.
C.S. LEWIS

Will there be sex in heaven? The short answer is no. But I’ve got some explaining to do, right? Here are a few reasons why there won’t be sex in heaven.

First of all, sex has a setting, a turf or a milieu. Call it a terrain. And the stomping ground where sex takes place is in the context of marriage here on earth until death do us part. Unlike Muslims and Mormons who believe that there will be sex in the afterlife, the Christian challenges that conclusion on biblical grounds. On one occasion, while addressing the Sadducees, Jesus said, “In the resurrection they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels in heaven” (Matthew 22:30).

Secondly, there won’t be a need for sex in heaven. Imagine that. Sex on earth is for the two-fold purpose of procreation (Genesis 1:28) and mutual pleasure (Proverbs 5:15-19), and this double feature is reserved only for you and your spouse (Proverbs 5:20). In fact, adultery is seriously forbidden (Exodus 20:14; 1 Corinthians 6:9). Now fast-forward to heaven. Why won’t there be sex?

As it relates to procreation there won’t be any need to further populate heaven with more children. Regarding sexual pleasure, all of our deepest desires, needs, longings, and pleasures will be fully met by God. Trust me. You won’t feel like you’re missing out. In heaven, while our unique gender distinctions of male and female will be preserved, there will only be one bride—the Church. And there will only be one Groom in heaven—Christ. It’ll be a perfect match. Call it a match made in heaven. Quite literally!

Thought to Ponder
Heaven will be a lust-free paradise marked by a perfect love—a godly love.

Memory Verse
For in the resurrection they neither marry nor are given in marriage, but are like angels in heaven (Matthew 22:30).

One-Minute Apologist Video
Bobby Conway, “Will There Be Sex in Heaven?”

The Incomplete Love. 


​“I have been in love, yes, I have tasted of its magical savor. I have eaten of its enchanting fruits, and have been held sway by its mesmerizing bliss. I have danced under the open sky, and have experienced my heart been melted with every touch of a raindrop. I have kissed a thousand times, but did all that on  just one lips, and I have loved in thousand ways, but did all that with just one soul. In all these things, I found, love becomes a blessing when the heart trusts who it loves.” 

These were the words of a much other person I have come  to respect and value in the is short life I have lived. Interestingly  as the words flowed from her lips, like streams of water from a rock, I couldn’t help but notice, in between her words, Love is indeed beautiful, but trust is a different universe of its own. 

Have you ever loved so deeply and so true, that you swore you could step into a building engulfed with flames if ever asked to prove the measure of your love for someone, but somewhere within, you have this reservation that the one you so much love may not do the same? Or have you ever loved so genuinely, but for fear of being stranded in the middle of nowhere or not being understood, you restrict your openness and honesty about a certain past or a situation? Sincerely, it is no child’s play to completely trust someone. 

Now the question, Can love exist without trust? 

The answer, most certainly, yes, it can, and quite frankly, it does exist among us these days. 

Don’t be too perplexed at what you get when ask if there is a difference between love and trust, because the answer is a simple yes; for while trust is very much possible without love, love is incomplete without it, though it may exist. 

Now let’s think for a moment. 

Love is a bliss, love is magical. Love is mystical, love is divine. Love is enduring, love is kind. Love is not arrogant, love is not selfish. Love is selfless, love is endless. Love is pure, love is true. Love is enchanting, love is mesmerizing. Love is beautiful, and love is an epitome of perfection, but with all these savory fruits of love, you often wonder why we find it quite difficult to enjoy the total package love has to offer. The truth is, love will always be incomplete without trust. 

See, it is very possible for us to profess our undying love or affection to another, but when push comes to shove, and we are asked to make a sacrifice to prove the statement of our love, we often find it very easy to retreat back into our shells, wishing we hadn’t made an open statement of our affection. Most times, though our hearts and minds be willing to stand by our words, our heads keeps telling us to do otherwise because we become so unsure if our love is worth the sacrifices we are about to make. It is not because we don’t love that person, it is simply because, love, as we see it, is easy, but trust on the other hand has a heavy price, one we are so reluctant to pay. 

This is the simple truth why many, if not most, unions don’t and won’t stand the test of time. It is not because there is no more love, or lack of the sparks of wild passion coursing through our bodies, it is not because there was an error committed, or the lack of communication somewhere in the middle, no, quite frankly, it is because we haven’t being able to trust ourselves not to hurt each other. 

I may claim to love you so deeply and so true, but for the fear of you hurting me, I may decide to place a restriction on the measure of love I display, not because I don’t love you, but because I am trying to protect myself from being hurt. This is the state of our minds today, probably because of a past experience or a lesson taught by other people, but what we fail to understand is that, until we fully trust who we love, we will always struggle to find the meaning of complete happiness. 

Now, the same goes for our relationship with God, our father; for if we say we love him, then we must back it with our trust in him, only then can we truly experience all that he has for us, because God won’t freely give his precious gems to those who don’t fully trust him as Hebrews 11 tells us. 

For where incomplete love stops, trust will go far, and where incomplete love makes a promise, trust will make sacrifice. Where incomplete love sings its song, trust will be its melody, and when incomplete love make plans for the future, trust will bring it to reality. 

Love, like my friend will say, is giving someone the opportunity to hurt you, but trust is believing they won’t. 

And in all honesty, when it comes between love and trust, love is the easier pick among the two, but more accurately, love is never complete without trust. 

Today’s Tomorrow