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Be Kindly Affectionate To One Another

Be Kindly Affectionate to One Another
25-Ways to Honor God-Number 4

But concerning brotherly love you have no need that I should write to you, for you yourselves are taught by God to love one another;   1 Thessalonians 4:9 (NKJV)

We are looking at a series of devotionals which are revealing 25-ways to bring glory and honor to God - these are actually duties or responsibilities for every Christian. We find these 25-ways in Romans 12:9-21.   

Today we will be looking at the first of our "Family duties" as Christian men and women. These are our duties to every Christian believer that we come in contact with.  And that first duty is also our 4th way to honor God. 

1.    Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love...(Rom 12 v. 10)

So our first duty as Christian believers to other Christian believers is to be "Kindly affectionate" to one another with, "Brotherly love."  Paul spoke to those in Thessalonica about this as well, but he added to them a second ingredient in that he told them that they were, "Taught by God to love one another."   

And it is true, because as Christians, we have all been given the gift of the Holy Sprit, and with that, the "Love" of God has been poured out into our hearts.  It is this part of God that teaches us to "Love" one another, or to be "Kindly affectionate" with "Brotherly love."

This term, "Kindly affectionate." is from the Greek word, "Philostorgos fil-os-tor-gos."   This is a compound of  the words,"Philos" and "Storge."  The "Philos" refers to a friendly love, and the "Storge" refers to a natural family type love.  This love is not based on any physical type of attraction.

So when we are being "Kindly affectionate" to our fellow Christian brothers and sisters, we simply love them in a brotherly way as a member of God's family.

We must understand that this is not an option - this is a command.  We all know that there are many unique and very different types of personalities within the Christian community.  And some of them may bring about a challenge to our attitude and behavior.  But I am convinced that God has done this for a very good reason as well, as we all play uniquely different but equally viable roles within the makeup of His family.  Simply put, the hand cannot say to the head, "I don't need you" - when clearly the hand is the one who feeds the head.  And it is the same for us within the Family of God.  

We are not to pick and choose those who are more like us and then hang out and love them more as our brothers or sisters, all the while acting as if we have nothing in common with other believers.  God wants us to love each Christian Brother and Sister equally.  To fail to love our Christian Brothers and Sisters reveals a truth that must be confronted and dealt with.  

He who says he is in the light, and hates his brother, is in darkness until now. He who loves his brother abides in the light, and there is no cause for stumbling in him. But he who hates his brother is in darkness and walks in darkness, and does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded his eyes. 1 John 2:9-11 (NKJV)

Q:    So how should this truth affect my life and my actions?

A:    Let's take a look at these verses in 1 John to fully understand what this means to us in real life application.

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. 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? My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth. And by this we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our heart's before Him. 1John 3:10, 17-19 (NKJV)

Hey Christian, we all have been taught by God that we are to love our fellow Brothers and Sisters on the Lord.  It is up to us to allow God's love to flow into their lives, or to keep it from going where God intended - but know this, if that is truly our desire to keep that love from going to another - even the most obnoxious - we must question as to whether the love of God is really in us or not.  And you cannot separate the love of God from God.  

STUDY QUESTION: What does the verses in 1 John 3:10, 17-19 tell us about our being Christian in word only, verses being a real Christian in deed?

PERSONAL INVENTORY: Can you look at these verses and say unequivocally that they are reflecting your Christian walk?

APPLICATION: If you cannot say that these verses clearly reflect your Christian walk, then repent now and ask God to show you every area of your life that you need to lay down at His feet.  Rededicate your life to Him today and ask Him into your heart.

Father, Thank You for Your love for me.  Thank You for Your Word to light my path.  Thank You for Your mercy and grace that You have bestowed upon my life.  Show me how to do the same toward all of my Christian Brothers and Sisters.  Help me to identify those people whom I have allowed the enemy to put a wedge between them and me.  In Jesus precious name, amen...

Be Blessed, Pastor Scott

Copyright ©2017 by Pastor Scott Wright.
Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. Bible text from the New King James Version is not to be reproduced in copies or otherwise by any means except as permitted in writing by Thomas Nelson, Inc., Attn: Bible Rights and Permissions, P.O. Box 141000, Nashville, TN 37214-1000