Love Seeks Forgiveness

God made man in His likeness and man chose to go his own way. When man went his own way then he became corrupt in his heart and soul. Rather than know love he began to know hate.

And it came about when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother and killed him. Genesis 4:8b

Killing comes from hate. When we hate someone then we want to do away with them. We no longer want them around. Love is from God but hate is from the devil.

not as Cain, who was of the evil one and slew his brother. And for what reason did he slay him? Because his deeds were evil, and his brother’s were righteous. I John 3:12

After Cain killed Abel then he went out from the presence of the Lord. He married and had children. His children had children and one of his descendants was named Lamech. Lamech loved himself and took two wives, which was never God’s design. Lamech also killed a man for wounding him and a boy for striking him. He wanted even greater vengeance if anyone were to hurt him.

Lamech said to his wives,“Adah and Zillah,
Listen to my voice,
You wives of Lamech,
Give heed to my speech,
For I have killed a man for wounding me;
And a boy for striking me;
If Cain is avenged sevenfold,
Then Lamech seventy-sevenfold.” Genesis 4:23,24

Lamech wanted even greater vengeance than what God had given to Cain as a protection. He wanted vengeance seventy times seven.

Then Peter came and said to Him, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me and I forgive him? Up to seven times?” Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven. Matthew 18:21,22

We are so unlike the Lord. We think that if we have forgiven someone seven times then we are doing well. The Lord says to forgive seventy times seven! How many times does He forgive us? Not only does He forgive us but He separates our wrongs that we have done as far as the east is from the west.

As far as the east is from the west, So far has He removed our transgressions from us. Psalm 103:12

Not only are we to forgive but the only time in the Bible where the Lord uses the word “never” in a command form is when He says to never take revenge, which means to pay back wrong for the wrong done to us. This is very difficult to do, especially in the hustle and bustle of life. Someone is a little rude to us in a check out line or in someplace like an airport, how easy it is to have an “edge” and be a little rude or cold to them. Life does not always go our way and the person who can overlook and forgive is truly the light and salt of the world. That person will be respected as a person of high character and that person will also find honor, favor and love.

Never take your own revenge, beloved, but leave room for the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. “But if your enemy is hungry, feed him, and if he is thirsty, give him a drink; for in so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. Romans 12:19-21

The Lord tells us never to take vengeance but He says that vengeance belongs to Him. There has been much killing and violence done in the world because of man taking vengeance. Often a person will take revenge, not for himself, but, for someone else. He will take up an offense and take it upon himself to hurt another. However, no one ever knows the true story of an “issue” between two people. We do not know. For one of us to take up an offense and become a “judge and jury” is very wrong and the Lord says that it is evil. The Lord gives grace to the one who is hurt by another. God’s grace brings comfort and healing and allows the offended one to bear up under the affliction.

but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more, Romans 5:20b

The bystander does not receive the same grace as the one suffering. The friend or relative receives grace to bring comfort, encouragement and consolation. In doing so, he will pour water on a fire that can easily burn many and destroy much good. The one who takes revenge is pouring gas on a fire already burning and brings much destruction. That person who takes revenge is doing the work of the devil.

The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet. The grace of our Lord Jesus be with you. Romans 16:20

The Lord is a God of peace. The Lord wants all of mankind to be at peace with Him and to be at peace with each other. He came to bring us peace. He gives grace and He offers us the gift of forgiveness. God is also a God of righteousness. His ways are right and just. When we walk in His ways then we will find and keep love in our relationships. How powerful it is when a married couple learns to forgive each other and to give much grace to one another. The outcome of doing what is right in relationships and life is peace, quietness and confidence.

And the work of righteousness will be peace, And the service of righteousness, quietness and confidence forever. Isaiah 32;17

The person who longs to do what is right will be satisfied and happy. The one who does right in life will have God’s favor and blessing.

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied. Matthew 5:6

When a person loves and forgives others and they do what is right in God’s eyes then they will have peace with God, they will have peace within themselves and they will have peace with others.

When a man’s ways are pleasing to the Lord, He makes even his enemies to be at peace with him. Proverbs 16:7

It is hard to continue to do evil to someone who loves you. It is hard to even speak evil of one who experiences good because of you. The Lord says that the way that we can overcome evil is if we will do good.

Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. Romans 12:21

However, only God is good and the only way that we can do good continually and genuinely is if we have God living within us. He will come into one who comes to Him in faith and asks Him to be their Lord and Savior.

The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, Because the Lord has anointed me To bring good news to the afflicted; He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, To proclaim liberty to captives And freedom to prisoners; Isaiah 61:1

He is truly good and one of the first things that He does is set you free from the bitterness and hate within that has come into your heart through the pain caused by another. He forgives you and He gives you the power to forgive another. He truly sets the captive free, for we are held captive by the thoughts and desires of our own heart with its pains and struggles.

The Lord is near to the brokenhearted And saves those who are crushed in spirit. Psalm 34:8

Has your heart been broken? There is hardly a soul in the world who has not had their heart broken at some time or other. The Lord is near to the brokenhearted. He binds up their wounds and He brings healing. If you have “tried” love and it has not worked then come to the Lord and try His ways. His ways are good and they are perfect and they bring comfort and healing to the heart and soul. Let Him have His way in your life. You will not be disappointed.

To You they cried out and were delivered; In You they trusted and were not disappointed. Psalm 22:5

Again, He says, that the one who will trust in Him will not be disappointed and His words are true.

For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes in Him will not be disappointed.” Romans 10:11

Love is Pure

Love is an intangible that can not be touched and yet it can be felt. Love is the deepest longing of our heart. We long to be loved and we longed to be loved with a pure love that refreshes the heart and fills us up. When we are loved with a pure love then we are energized. We can endure much, overcome obstacles, climb mountains and we can conquer problems with much greater ease. Love is the oil that keeps life going smoothly. Without love, life can become a grind.

And everyone who has this hope fixed on Him purifies himself, just as He is pure. I John 3:3

God is the only One who is pure and His love is the only love that is pure. His love is not a “I will love you if you do this or that” or “If you loved me then you would do this or that”. His love is a “I love you in spite of this or that” and “I loved you even when you did not love me”. God loved us when we were His enemies. God loved us when we were guilty and had no love for Him. God loved us and made it possible for us to know His love. God so loved all of us that He gave what was most precious to Him in order that we might receive what is most precious to Him. He gave His only Son.

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. John 3:16

Our love for others is selfish because all of us are basically selfish. We love because of “what is in it for me”. Even though we love this way, we want others to love us with an unselfish love. Our love is a “because of what you have to offer me” and God’s love is a “because of what I have offered you”.

But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8

God’s love is pure because it is freely given as a gift. We can not work for it and there is not anything that we can do to get Him to love us more. His love is unconditional and never changes. His love is not selfish and His love only wants what is good for us. God’s love does not seek anything from us. The Lord offers His love to everyone regardless of any qualifications and there is not anything that negates His offer of love. He loves us whether we have done good or evil.

But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven; for He causes His sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? If you greet only your brothers, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? Therefore you are to be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect. Matthew 5:44-48

God’s love is perfect and it is pure. The Lord does good even to His enemies. For this reason He calls those who believe in Him to love their enemies. The Lord goes before believers in everything and He does not ask His children to do anything that He Himself is not doing. The Lord wants His children to love with a pure and perfect love, for that is how He loves us.

Beloved, now we are children of God, and it has not appeared as yet what we will be. We know that when He appears, we will be like Him, because we will see Him just as He is. And everyone who has this hope fixed on Him purifies himself, just as He is pure. I John 3:2,3

True believers, real Christians, fix their hope on Jesus Christ and the transforming work that He is doing to make them like Himself and to love with His kind of love. Our hope in Him purifies believers.

And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us. Romans 5:3-5

It is through our struggles that the Lord develops perseverance and perseverance brings about proven character and it is when we see the Lord change believers that we know that He will continue until His children share in His likeness. Those who hope in Jesus Christ will not be disappointed.

For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus. Philippians 1:6

What does pure love look like? It describes Jesus Christ, for He is pure love. Jesus Christ is patient and He is kind. Pure love does not seek its own but pure seeks the best interest of the one loved. Jesus Christ is not provoked and does not take into account a wrong suffered. He does not reward us according to the bad that we have done. Jesus Christ rejoices with the truth and also rejoices when we do what is right. He bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things and endures all things. He never stops loving for He is love.

Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. The one who does not love does not know God, for God is love. By this the love of God was manifested in us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world so that we might live through Him. I John 4:7-9

Love is from God and God is love. Those who know God will love others because when we know Him then we know His love. When someone comes into a personal relationship with Jesus Christ then that person experiences God’s love and God’s love fills their heart. A Christian learns to love others by being filled with God and living through Him. The Lord purifies the believer’s heart and gives the believer a sincere and pure love for others. What does this love look like? It looks like Christ, because it is God’s love for others through the believer.

Since you have in obedience to the truth purified your souls for a sincere love of the brethren, fervently love one another from the heart, I Peter 1:22

The man that learns to love his wife with the love of Christ will forever be blessed. The Lord made wives to be responders and that wife will respond to the love of Christ in her husband and love him back with the same kind of love. The mother who learns to love her children with the love of Christ will forever be blessed. Children learn what they see and experience. Those children of parents who love with the love of Christ will love others with the love of Christ. What does this kind of love look like in young people who have not yet married. When a young man loves a young woman then he will treat her in such a way that if she ends up marrying his bestfriend then there will be no awkwardness when he is around them. The same can be said for a young woman treating a young man with the love of Christ. Each will build up one another so as to prepare them for their future mates. If they are the ones for each other then each one will be blessed. Love is pure and does not seeks its own. It wants the best for the other and gives more than it receives. The young man or woman who has this as their rule for relationships will never lack companionship and will be blessed.

remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He Himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’ Acts 20:35b

Love is Perfect

True love is perfect. There is nothing to add to it and nothing to take from it.

I know that everything God does will remain forever; there is nothing to add to it and there is nothing to take from it, for God has so worked that men should fear Him. Ecclesiastes 3:14

Only God is perfect and only God’s love is perfect. His love is faithful and His love is just, righteous and upright. When we wonder how a God of love could do something then it is an indication that we do not know Him or His love as we need to know it. All of life is a response to our view of God and His love. Our greatest need in life is to have the correct view of God and His love.

The Rock! His work is perfect, For all His ways are just; A God of faithfulness and without injustice, Righteous and upright is He. Deuteronomy 32:4

Perfect love casts out fear.

There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves punishment, and the one who fears is not perfected in love. I John 4:18

If you have fears about God and doubts about His love then those thoughts are not from the Lord. His love is perfect and when one experiences and knows His love then they will have perfect peace.

Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful. John 14:27

God’s perfect love restores.

The law of the Lord is perfect, restoring the soul; Psalm 19:7a

God’s love is perfect love and when we experience His great love then He begins restoring our soul. His love washes us and cleanses our wounds so that they can heal. If you are hurting or have wounds that have not healed then come to the Lord and ask Him to allow you to know His love for you. He restores and He heals. He is gentle and understands your pain. He will carry your burdens.

Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. Matthew 11:28,29

When you experience the great love of God then you will not only experience oneness and healing within but you will begin to know the oneness and unity that He is perfecting in His people.

that they may be perfected in unity, so that the world may know that You sent Me, and loved them, even as You have loved Me. John 17:23b

God’s love is so great for His people, who are sinners, that He loves them as much as He loves Jesus Christ, His only begotten Son, who never sinned and obeyed Him perfectly.

“O righteous Father, although the world has not known You, yet I have known You; and these have known that You sent Me; and I have made Your name known to them, and will make it known, so that the love with which You loved Me may be in them, and I in them.” John 17:25,26

When a person comes to know God’s heart and His name then they know His love and His love is in them. Those who do not believe in Jesus Christ do not know God in an intimate manner and they can only know about God. They may pray to a God but it is a ritualistic prayer and not an intimate relationship of one who knows God’s name and has a relationship with Him. The world has no assurance that their prayers are being answered nor can they have any assurance of any eternal salvation. They can only hope but it is a hope that will not be fulfilled because our hope must be in Jesus Christ and in Him alone. He accomplished salvation for the world and it is God’s perfect love that restores man to a relationship with God but each person must receive that love to experience God’s salvation. It is a gift and there is not anything we can do to earn it.

but whoever keeps His word, in him the love of God has truly been perfected. I John 2:5

When His people keep His Word then the Lord is perfecting His love in and through them. His Word communicates His love to His people and when they keep His Word then His love is communicated to the world.

No one has seen God at any time; if we love one another, God abides in us, and His love is perfected in us. I John 4:12

When God’s people keep His words and love others then God’s love is perfected in them. Not only is God’s love perfected in the one who knows the Lord and walks with Him in obedience to His Word but it is the love of Christ that controls the believer. Therefore, as God’s love is perfected in the believer it also is what transforms the believer. Since Christ died for all, He has called all to live for Him..

For the love of Christ controls us, having concluded this, that one died for all, therefore all died; II Corinthians 5:14

An amazing thing happens when God’s plan of love is carried out in the marriage. As each spouse seeks to love the other fervently then they no longer see the faults and irritations of the other.

Above all, keep fervent in your love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins. I Peter 4:8

They only see the love of the other because their love covers a multitude of shortcomings. It truly is the love of Christ in each spouse that covers a multitude of sins and causes each one to see the other as perfect.

Since you have in obedience to the truth purified your souls for a sincere love of the brethren, fervently love one another from the heart, I Peter 1:22

It is the love that keeps the marriage fresh and sweet. However, our reservoir of love must not be each other because it will quickly run dry. God’s love never runs out and it will be like a river of love flowing out of the person who has put their trust in Jesus Christ. In fact, the marriage that is filled with God’s love will not be able to keep it to themselves. God’s love will not only overflow into each of the spouses but it will overflow into the lives of others. How blessed will be the children of a husband and wife who have realized that they can not do it on their own and that they need One who is stronger and wiser than they are to be their Lord and Savior. God’s love is like a sweet fragrance that refreshes the hearts of others. The world is looking to see a marriage done right. Everyone longs to see love in others and especially in marriages. When a husband and wife love each other with an unselfish, pure and god-like love, then it is one of the most powerful influences for good and that married couple truly will be the salt of the earth and the light of the world.

Love is An Absolute

There is only one absolute in life and in the world. The word absolute means: perfect, pure and outright or unmitigated. It is because of this one absolute that we have security, knowledge, love, hope, wisdom, understanding and every other good gift in life. This absolute is also the anchor to our soul. When we lose sight of this absolute then we struggle with anxiety, panic, doubt, control issues and every other thing that brings chaos to our lives and world.

This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, a hope both sure and steadfast Hebrews 6:19a

God is the only absolute in life and in all the world. Life will change and the world will change but God will never change.

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. Hebrews 13:8

Jesus Christ is God, the very Son of God, and it is through Him that we know God. No person has ever seen God, but Jesus Christ is the exact representation of God, the Father, and the one who knows Jesus Christ will know God.

God, after He spoke long ago to the fathers in the prophets in many portions and in many ways, in these last days has spoken to us in His Son, whom He appointed heir of all things, through whom also He made the world. And He is the radiance of His glory and the exact representation of His nature, and upholds all things by the word of His power. When He had made purification of sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, Hebrews 1:1-3

Jesus Christ is the greatest expression of love because He, being God, Himself, came down to earth in the form of a man, lived a pure and perfect life, died for mankind, was buried and rose again from the dead and ascended back into heaven.

Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others. Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Philippians 2:3-8

Love is an absolute because love is an attribute of God. God is love and He expressed His love fully through Jesus Christ. Since God never changes then He is, has been and always will be love. When we have God then we will forever have love and it is a love that will never change. He won’t love us one day and then not love us the next day. His love is not fickle nor is it dependent on me. God loves because He is love. We can only know personally and experientially the love of God through Jesus Christ. Otherwise, apart from Jesus Christ, we are limited in only knowing about the love of God. We will see God’s love in nature and in the universe but not know God’s love intimately until we know Jesus Christ.

Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me. If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also; from now on you know Him, and have seen Him.” Philip said to Him, “Lord, show us the Father, and it is enough for us.” Jesus said to him, “Have I been so long with you, and yet you have not come to know Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; how can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father is in Me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on My own initiative, but the Father abiding in Me does His works. Believe Me that I am in the Father and the Father is in Me; otherwise believe because of the works themselves. John 14:6-11

We come into the world believing in God. God made us to be in relationship with Him. God is good, He is kind and He is loving. We have to turn our back on God to not believe in Him. The most that man can say is, “I don’t know if there is a God.” When we turn our back on God then we no longer see Him and believe in Him. Doubts come about God. When doubts come about God then doubts come about everything else in life. God is the only absolute and He and His love is perfect, pure and never changing. The Lord made us to live in response to Him. We know Him through His Word, which is who He is. When we respond to Him through His Word then our love for others will be perfect, pure and never changing. This is the only way that we can love others the way that God loves us.

but whoever keeps His word, in him the love of God has truly been perfected. I John 2:5

The one who loves is the one who knows God through Jesus Christ. The one who does not love does not know God, for God is love.

The one who does not love does not know God, for God is love. I John 4:8

The only way we can truly know love and love others is when we experience God’s love for us. Just knowing about God’s love is not enough. We must know intimately God’s love and we can know His love through His Son, Jesus Christ.

By this the love of God was manifested in us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world so that we might live through Him. I John 4:9

When we come to know God’s love through Jesus Christ then God comes and lives within us. When He lives within us then He loves through us.

No one has seen God at any time; if we love one another, God abides in us, and His love is perfected in us. I John 4:12

When a person has come to know the love of God then that one wants to love others. It is the Lord who loves through them and it is when the world sees God’s love in His people that they will see Jesus Christ in them.

We have come to know and have believed the love which God has for us. God is love, and the one who abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him. I John 4:16

We love because God first loved us. If you want to find and keep love in your life and relationships then you must first find God.

We love, because He first loved us. I John 4:19

It is through love that the world will know who belongs to God.

By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another. John 13:35

The one who believes in Jesus Christ and receives Him as their Lord and Savior will be the one who belongs to God and is His child and His disciple. The one who becomes His disciple through believing and coming to Him will know intimately His love. This is the one who will have found love and will keep love, not only in their life but in their relationships. This offer is to everyone in the world for God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son.

But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God. John 1:12,13

Receiving Him simply means turning back to God rather than turning our back to God, which we all have done at one time or other. Believing in Him means turning your face to God through Jesus Christ and asking Him to come into your life and be your Lord and Savior. He will make you the person that He created you to be and that is a person who will reflect the love of God to others. It is when we are loved and when we love that we are the happiest and most fulfilled. How sweet it is to find and know God’s love, a love that is pure, perfect and will never change. God’s love is absolute and the one who truly finds the love of God will not be able to keep it to themselves.

Love Must Not Grow Cold

Keeping God’s commandments is expressing love to others. When we keep His commandments then we love God and we love others. The greatest commandment sums up all the other commandments.

“What commandment is the foremost of all?” Jesus answered, “The foremost is, ‘Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God is one Lord; and you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ The second is this, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” Mark 12:28b-31

When people do not keep God’s commandments and they live as if there are no laws of God then that is called lawlessness. When lawlessness is increased then people’s hearts become callous and love grows cold.

Because lawlessness is increased, most people’s love will grow cold. Matthew 24:12

Love and lawlessness can not abide in the same person. Those who love will keep God’s commandments. Those who do not keep His commandments do not love either God or others.

Everyone who practices sin also practices lawlessness; and sin is lawlessness. I John 3:4

Satan is “the man of lawlessness” and he is also the “son of destruction”. Satan came to destroy and he will use lawlessness to destroy a marriage. Lawlessness destroys the love in the marriage and then the marriage is destroyed.

The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; John 10:10a

Lawlessness is the opposite of righteousness, which is doing what is right in God’s eyes. God’s commandments are good and they are righteous. When we love God’s Word and do what He says by keeping His commandments then we will be happy.

“You have loved righteousness and hated lawlessness; Therefore God, Your God, has anointed You With the oil of gladness above Your companions.” Hebrews 1:9

When we keep His commandments then it will be well with us and with our marriage.

But this is what I commanded them, saying, ‘Obey My voice, and I will be your God, and you will be My people; and you will walk in all the way which I command you, that it may be well with you.’ Jeremiah 7:23

If you will learn to listen to the Lord and obey His Word then He will instruct you in the way that you should go. The Lord will teach you how to love and He will be with you in your marriage. The Lord will bless you and strengthen you. You will be happy and your family will be blessed.

How blessed is everyone who fears the Lord,
Who walks in His ways.
When you shall eat of the fruit of your hands,
You will be happy and it will be well with you.
Your wife shall be like a fruitful vine
Within your house,
Your children like olive plants
Around your table.
Behold, for thus shall the man be blessed
Who fears the Lord. Psalm 128:1-4

The Lord has some amazing promises for the person who will listen to Him delight in His commandments and obey Him with all of their heart. The Lord will give that person what the rest of the world seeks. His children will be mighty on the earth and will be blessed. Wealth and riches will be in his house. He will have the righteousness of Jesus Christ, which endures forever and the Lord will give him light and guidance during, not only the good days, but the dark days as well.

How blessed is the man who fears the Lord,
Who greatly delights in His commandments.
His descendants will be mighty on earth;
The generation of the upright will be blessed.
Wealth and riches are in his house,
And his righteousness endures forever.
Light arises in the darkness for the upright;
He is gracious and compassionate and righteous.

It is well with the man who is gracious and lends;
He will maintain his cause in judgment.
For he will never be shaken;
The righteous will be remembered forever.
Psalm 112:1b-6

The one who fears God and greatly delights in His commandments will not live in fear when bad news comes. His heart will remain calm because his trust is in the Lord. He will not be afraid when everyone else is fearful because he will know the One who holds the world in His hands.

He will not fear evil tidings;
His heart is steadfast, trusting in the Lord.
His heart is upheld, he will not fear, Psalm 112:7-8a

If you want to fan the flame of love in your love relationship then you must not compromise what you know is the right thing to do. You must learn what the Lord says to do and do it with all of your heart. His commandments are good for you and for the one you love. The build trust and love grows where the Lord is and He comes to the one who remembers Him and obeys His Word.

in every place where I cause My name to be remembered, I will come to you and bless you. Exodus 20:24b

Love Must Be Preserved

Love is destroyed through doing wrong. Doing wrong brings pain and doing right brings happiness. We reap what we sow. Sometimes we reap immediately but more often we reap later, however, we always reap what we sow.

Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap. Galatians 6:7

When we reap what we sow then that is called judgment. Our actions are judged by their consequences and the consequence of our actions is the judgment that we bring on ourselves.

For he who does wrong will receive the consequences of the wrong which he has done, and that without partiality. Colossians 3:25

The actions that we do, whether right or wrong, come from our heart. It is also out of the heart that our words come. It is our own deeds and our own words that will judge us and the judgment that we receive will be without partiality.

“Either make the tree good and its fruit good, or make the tree bad and its fruit bad; for the tree is known by its fruit. You brood of vipers, how can you, being evil, speak what is good? For the mouth speaks out of that which fills the heart. The good man brings out of his good treasure what is good; and the evil man brings out of his evil treasure what is evil. But I tell you that every careless word that people speak, they shall give an accounting for it in the day of judgment. For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.” Matthew 12:33-37

The Lord gave each one of us a conscience which tells us what we should do and lets us know when we do wrong. We have within us the “knowledge of good and evil”. If we do wrong then our conscience becomes hardened and if we do right then our conscience becomes more sensitive. The word “violate” means to change and when we violate our conscience and do wrong then we are changed. When our conscience becomes hardened then we are changed and can no longer give or receive love like we once did. Love is the food for the soul and nourishes the soul and keeps it healthy. We need love. The Lord made us to thrive when we are loved.

Therefore, to one who knows the right thing to do and does not do it, to him it is sin. James 4:17

When we go against our conscience and do wrong, and not do the right thing, then we have sinned. The sting of death is sin.

The sting of death is sin, I Corinthians 15:56

Where there is sin, there is not only death to the soul, but there is death to the love which feeds the soul. In place of love there is guilt.

But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother shall be guilty before the court; and whoever says to his brother, ‘You good-for-nothing,’ shall be guilty before the supreme court; and whoever says, ‘You fool,’ shall be guilty enough to go into the fiery hell. Matthew 5:22

Sin brings guilt and death. Death to our soul and death to our relationships. Instead of love, with sin, we have guilt and death. Instead of oneness we have separation, first of the souls and then physical separation.

For the wages of sin is death, Romans 6:23

Love must be preserved or it will not remain. Love is the sweet fragrance in the relationship. Love is the salt that preserves the relationship and keeps it from rotting and keeps it fresh. Love is what covers the multitude of sins that each of us commit, whether it is the words spoken, or the deeds done in frustration or the neglect that is easy to come into a love relationship.

Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. I John 4:7

The only way that we can love one another is if we have been born of God, or, in other words, if we have been born again into God’s family as His child.

But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God. John 1:12.13

All of have sinned and are guilty and separated not only from each other, but from God.

for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, Romans 3:23

When we give our hearts to Him then He gives us His heart, which is filled with His love and He loves through us. He takes our hardened evil heart which has brought, not only ourselves much grief, but pain to others through our words and our wrong actions. His heart is pure and good and He will love through us.

Moreover, I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; and I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. Ezekiel 36:26

It is His love that restores our relationship with Him and with everyone else. When we believe in Jesus Christ then we become born again, our sins are forgiven, our guilt is removed and we become God’s child and a part of His family. We will not be judged or punished for our wrongs, for Jesus Christ took our judgment and our punishment on the cross. We receive eternal life and eternal love through Jesus Christ.

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. John 3:16,17

God did not send Jesus Christ into the world to judge the world but that the world might be saved through Him. The Lord is coming again to judge all of those who did not believe in Jesus and receive Him but chose instead to go on in their own ways and continue in the anger and stubbornness of their hearts.

I, the Lord, have spoken; it is coming and I will act. I will not relent, and I will not pity and I will not be sorry; according to your ways and according to your deeds I will judge you,” declares the Lord God.’” Ezekiel 24:14

Come to Him, if you have not done so, while you can and before it is too late. He will restore you and He will allow you to find and keep love. He will preserve the love in your life and in your relationships. Your wrongs will be forgiven, your guilt will be removed and you will be clean on the inside. You will thrive and your heart will be happy.

Love Honors Another

Noah was a man of God but he was still a sinner and at one point in time Noah did not act wisely. He let his guard down.

Then Noah began farming and planted a vineyard. He drank of the wine and became drunk, and uncovered himself inside his tent. Ham, the father of Canaan, saw the nakedness of his father, and told his two brothers outside. But Shem and Japheth took a garment and laid it upon both their shoulders and walked backward and covered the nakedness of their father; and their faces were turned away, so that they did not see their father’s nakedness. When Noah awoke from his wine, he knew what his youngest son had done to him. Genesis 9:20-24

Noah drank wine and became drunk. Drinking wine is mentioned in the Bible as not being wise.

Wine is a mocker, strong drink a brawler, And whoever is intoxicated by it is not wise. Proverbs 20:1

If you want to be mocked then drink wine and if you want fighting in your life and marriage then drink alcohol. Alcohol has destroyed more families and more lives than we will ever know. It is wisdom to stay away from it. The Bible also says that drinking wine is not loving.

It is good not to eat meat or to drink wine, or to do anything by which your brother stumbles. Romans 14:21

The word “good” means the highest form of love. Therefore, the highest form of love towards anyone is to not cause them to stumble. Wine is a stumbling block to many and you have no idea who it is a stumbling block until they have stumbled over it. The Lord has one of the biggest warnings towards those who are stumbling blocks.

but whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in Me to stumble, it would be better for him to have a heavy millstone hung around his neck, and to be drowned in the depth of the sea. “Woe to the world because of its stumbling blocks! For it is inevitable that stumbling blocks come; but woe to that man through whom the stumbling block comes! Matthew 18:6,7

Noah lived a life of wisdom and honor and only did a little foolishness. However, it is his foolishness that is much remembered.

Dead flies make a perfumer’s oil stink, so a little foolishness is weightier than wisdom and honor. Ecclesiastes 10:1

His foolishness brought much pain and sorrow to one of his sons and one of his grandsons. Ham saw his father naked and went and told his brothers.

Above all, keep fervent in your love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins. I Peter 4:8

Rather than covering his father’s shame, Ham made it known. Love covers a multitude of sins and love covers shame. Ham did not honor his father.

Honor your father and your mother, as the Lord your God has commanded you, that your days may be prolonged and that it may go well with you on the land which the Lord your God gives you. Deuteronomy 5:16

It did not go well with Ham because he did not honor his father. As a result, it did not go well with one of Ham’s sons. As a parent it is more painful to see your children suffer than it would be to bear the suffering yourself and especially if you are the cause of the grief. Love acts wisely and love honors. How important it is for parents to not allow their children to ever see them naked. When a parent allows this to happen then that parent is setting their child up for failure and making it more difficult for the child to fulfill God’s commandment to honor their mother and father.

All who honored her despise her
Because they have seen her nakedness; Lamentations 1:8b

Also, it is neither good or wise for a young lady to allow any man to see her nakedness before marriage. It will cause the man to not have as much respect for her after marriage and many a man will not marry a woman once he has seen her nakedness. A woman needs to keep her mystique and a man needs for a woman to keep her purity. If a man wants a female to unclothe herself then he does not love her. A man who will abuse his wife is also a man who can not wait until marriage for the physical. If a woman will have high standards for herself and not compromise physically then the man will rise to those standards and honor her and treat her with love and respect.

Woe to you who make your neighbors drink, Who mix in your venom even to make them drunk So as to look on their nakedness!“You will be filled with disgrace rather than honor. Now you yourself drink and expose your own nakedness. The cup in the Lord’s right hand will come around to you, And utter disgrace will come upon your glory. Habakkuk 2:15,16

The glory of a young man is his strength, whether it is his physical strength or the strength of his character. It is to his shame and disgrace to give his date or “friend” anything to intoxicate her in hopes of seeing her nakedness. A young lady’s glory is her purity and her beauty. It is a disgrace and shame for her to give to someone else what is reserved only for her husband and in marriage.

And Joseph her husband, being a righteous man and not wanting to disgrace her, Matthew 1:19

When Mary, the mother of Jesus, became pregnant with Jesus and was “with child” before marriage, Joseph, who was engaged to her and being “a righteous man”, did not want to disgrace her. Joseph did not understand that it was the Lord, through His Holy Spirit, who had appointed this to happen. It was not until the angel came to him in a dream and let him know that the Messiah was coming into the world through Mary, did Joseph understand that Mary was still a virgin and had remained faithful and pure. Joseph had to have felt hurt and betrayed, however, righteousness is doing what is right in God’s eyes, and Joseph knew that the “right thing to do” was to not make known any shame and disgrace. Joseph not only loved Mary but he loved the Lord and wanted to do what was right. If someone wants a good marriage then they must have a godly marriage and a godly marriage is doing what is right in God’s eyes. Doing what is right is God’s eye is doing life, love, and relationships according to God’s design.

Love Stands Alone

Noah was a man who had chosen the Lord and he was a preacher of righteousness.

and did not spare the ancient world, but preserved Noah, a preacher of righteousness, with seven others, when He brought a flood upon the world of the ungodly; II Peter 2:5

Life was very difficult during the days of Noah. The hearts of the people were wicked and there was no restraint to their wickedness.

Then the Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great on the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. The Lord was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart. The Lord said, “I will blot out man whom I have created from the face of the land, from man to animals to creeping things and to birds of the sky; for I am sorry that I have made them.” But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord. Genesis 6:5-8

Noah was able to stand alone and be faithful during his generation. The Lord was pleased with Noah. Noah listened to the Lord and obeyed by faith. By faith, Noah pleased God and Noah and his family were saved and Noah became a heir of the righteousness which is by faith.

By faith Noah, being warned by God about things not yet seen, in reverence prepared an ark for the salvation of his household, by which he condemned the world, and became an heir of the righteousness which is according to faith. Hebrews 11:7

The Lord is still warning of the judgment to come. Those who listen and obey will be saved. Those who ignore God’s warning will perish, just as in the days of Noah.

And just as it happened in the days of Noah, so it will be also in the days of the Son of Man: they were eating, they were drinking, they were marrying, they were being given in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and the flood came and destroyed them all. Luke 17:26,27

Jesus Christ is returning just as He said. It will be like the days of Noah when everyone carried on business as usual.

For the coming of the Son of Man will be just like the days of Noah. Matthew 24:37

Noah was faithful to the Lord and the Lord was faithful to His promises with Noah. The Lord is always faithful for He can not deny Himself.

If we are faithless, He remains faithful, for He cannot deny Himself. II Timothy 2:13

Noah stood alone during a time when it would have been easier to “go along with the crowd”. The Lord praised Noah as being righteous.

even though these three men, Noah, Daniel and Job were in its midst, by their own righteousness they could only deliver themselves,” declares the Lord God. Ezekiel 14:14

For love to be faithful there will be times that love must stand alone. However, we are never alone, just as Noah was not alone. The Lord had His eye on Noah and extended His favor to Noah. The Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth and the One who made the world that He was getting ready to destroy preserved Noah.

Behold, the eye of the Lord is on those who fear Him, On those who hope for His lovingkindness, Psalm 33:18

The Lord is still looking to help the one whose heart is completely His. If you have never given your heart to the Lord then know that you still can and you will never regret it.

For the eyes of the Lord move to and fro throughout the earth that He may strongly support those whose heart is completely His. You have acted foolishly in this. Indeed, from now on you will surely have wars. II Chronicles 16:9

The Lord is God and if He is with you then He is sufficient enough.

If God is for us, who is against us? Romans 8:31b

He who gave up His only begotten Son, will He not with Him give you all things?

He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things? Romans 8:32

The Lord will not withhold any good thing from those who seek Him.

The young lions do lack and suffer hunger; But they who seek the Lord shall not be in want of any good thing. Psalm 34:10

Love Lives By Faith

Enoch walked with God. He did not just walk before God but he walked with God. Enoch loved God and God loved Enoch.

Enoch lived sixty-five years, and became the father of Methuselah. Then Enoch walked with God three hundred years after he became the father of Methuselah, and he had other sons and daughters. So all the days of Enoch were three hundred and sixty-five years. Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him. Genesis 5:21-24

The Bible says that after Enoch had his first child then Enoch walked with God. There is something very humbling about having a child. We realize our desperate need for God. When a baby is born we see the marvelous and magnificent hand of God and we want to worship and praise Him. Our heart is filled with much gratitude. We don’t know much about Enoch before his first child was born but we do know that he had a uniquely close walk with God after his first child.

By faith Enoch was taken up so that he would not see death; and he was not found because God took him up; for he obtained the witness that before his being taken up he was pleasing to God. Hebrews 11:5

Enoch was a man of faith and he was pleasing to God. He was so pleasing to God that the Lord did not allow Enoch to see death. Enoch walked with God by faith. Faith is what pleases the Lord. Faith is believing and trusting in what God has said and acting on it. Faith is not one of many options but it is the only option for the one who wants to please God and walk with Him.

So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ. Romans 10:17

Faith comes from hearing the word of God.

Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will not pass away. Mark 13:30

Faith is not what saves a person. Jesus Christ is who saves a person and faith is believing in His Word and coming to Jesus Christ for salvation. You can have faith in other religions but they can not forgive you and save you. Saving faith is putting your hope and trust in Him and what He did for all of us on the cross and coming to Him through His promises. Faith is acknowledging that there is not anything that you can do to deserve or work for salvation. It is God’s grace that invites us and allows us to come to Jesus Christ by faith.

For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast. Ephesians 2:8,9

Faith is believing what we can not see. By faith Enoch saw the Lord.

It was also about these men that Enoch, in the seventh generation from Adam, prophesied, saying, “Behold, the Lord came with many thousands of His holy ones, to execute judgment upon all, and to convict all the ungodly of all their ungodly deeds which they have done in an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things which ungodly sinners have spoken against Him.” Jude 14,15

Enoch did not have any Scripture nor did he have the Law. However, Enoch had the knowledge of good and evil within him and Enoch chose to do good. All of us have the knowledge of good and evil. We do not need someone to tell us what is good and what is evil. Our conscience tells us what is right and wrong. When we listen to our conscience and do what is right then we become more sensitive to right and wrong. When we ignore our conscience and do what we know is wrong then our conscience becomes hardened and we no longer recognize good and evil. Good brings us happiness and evil brings us pain. We have to at first consciously block God out to do wrong but then the wrong starts to seem okay and then the wrong seems to be right. After awhile God does not even seem to exist or He may seem cruel and twisted. When we start to see wrong as right and right as wrong then we no longer can see God for who He really is, a loving and good God.

With the kind You show Yourself kind;
With the blameless You show Yourself blameless;
With the pure You show Yourself pure,
And with the crooked You show Yourself twisted. Psalm 18:25.26

Your view of God is not an indication of who God is but is more of an indication of the perversion of your heart.

Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God. Matthew 5:8

Enoch had a pure heart and he saw the Lord by faith. Enoch saw the kindness and love of God and so Enoch experienced God’s love.

The foolishness of man ruins his way, And his heart rages against the Lord. Proverbs 19:3

It is man who ruins his own life and his own marriage. Man chooses to go his own way and then in the wickedness of his own heart, man blames God. First, he ignored his conscience and then his heart became hardened and he could no longer see God. Then, to man, God becomes twisted in his mind and he does not want to believe that there is a God. However, God has made man to know in his heart that there is a God but man in his foolishness chooses to live as if there is no God and then he becomes even more foolish and blames God in his heart. He cries out, “why would you do this to me, God?”.

The fool has said in his heart, “There is no God.”
They are corrupt, they have committed abominable deeds; Psalm 14:1a

But God, reached down to man in His great love and loved man when man had turned his back on God. Two of the most powerful words in the Bible are the words “but God”. All of us have foolish hearts. Each of us has gone our own way. But God, did not leave us in our desperate need for Him. He came to us.

But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8

If you have gone your own way and turned your back on God and His great love. It is not too late to come back to Him. He came for you and me. He has demonstrated His love for us when we did not love Him. Jesus Christ came and died and rose again in order that we might be reconciled to God and see Him and His great love for us.

For Christ also died for sins once for all, the just for the unjust, so that He might bring us to God, I Peter 3:18a

Just as the Lord took Enoch so that He might not see death so the Lord took the death that we deserved so that we might have life. Enoch lived by faith and trusted in a loving God and he experienced God’s love. We too, when we put our faith in Jesus Christ, will see God in His great love and come to know Him. Then, one day, He will also take us home to live with Him for all eternity.

Love Means Becoming One

When two people agree then they can walk together through life without constant contentions and conflicts. When two agree then they have sweet fellowship together. It does not mean that they both don’t have different opinions on nonessentials or different tastes, but they do agree on the major tenants of life.

Can two walk together, unless they are agreed? Amos 3:3

God’s design for a love relationship is diversity but unity.

implore you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, showing tolerance for one another in love, being diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. Ephesians 4:1b-3

Marriage is meant to be a long lasting love relationship of a man and a woman that is characterized also by peace and joy. It is crucial that a couple who plans to spend their lives together in a loving marriage be united in Spirit.

Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete, I Thessalonians 5:23a

There are three aspects of humans and they are the spirit, soul and body. Union of the spirit brings lasting satisfaction, union of the soul brings continual satisfaction and union in the body brings momentary satisfaction in marriage. To have unity in the marriage it must be a union of the spirit, soul and body.

Beyond all these things put on love, which is the perfect bond of unity. Colossians 3:14

There must be love in the spirit. If someone has different spiritual values than you, then you will not have unity in the spirit. They will not love what you love nor will they value what you value. There will be a continual conflict of the spirit.

Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness? II Corinthians 6:14

The most important aspect of a relationship is to have the same spiritual values. Our spiritual values is at the core of our being. Your spiritual values define who you are. What you do in life comes out of who you are. Look at the product of a person’s life to see what their spiritual values are. Look at where they spend their time and their money to know what they value. Also, do not allow the other aspects of a relationship to get in the way or go before the spiritual. The physical attraction can blind a person to the spiritual values. Do not allow yourself to become physically involved with someone until marriage. Who you marry is one of the most important decisions in life. You need to see clearly and hear clearly.

being of the same mind, maintaining the same love, united in spirit, intent on one purpose. Philippians 2:2b

Not only is it important to be united in spirit but it is also important to be of the same mind in order to maintain the same unity of love. Being of one mind is the oneness of soul and will allow you and your spouse to become true soulmates. Oneness of soul will bring oneness of purpose in life. When you both have the same purpose in life then you will work together rather than work against each other. Your burdens will be lighter because you have someone who shares them with you. Your troubles will seem smaller and your joys will be much greater when you both are of the same mind and intent on the same purpose.

Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others. Philippians 2:3,4

Life becomes much sweeter when you and your marriage partner do nothing from selfishness or conceit but each of you consider the other more important than yourself. In a loving marriage someone always has your back. You don’t have to live in a continual me first, survival mode. Each one of you will complement the other in strengths and gifts. A great marriage is like a lifelong dance with each partner learning to live in harmony with the other rather than stepping on each other and hurting one another. A great marriage is when each partner feels like they are the blessed one and that their spouse is the better half. When both people feel this way in a marriage then there is not only a great marriage but there will be great love. Just as two people must learn to dance together in harmony so two people in a marriage must learn to live together in love and unity. It begins, continues and ends with each one honoring the other as more important than themselves.

Marriage is to be held in honor among all, and the marriage bed is to be undefiled; for fornicators and adulterers God will judge. Hebrews 13:4

The last aspect of a loving marriage with unity is where there is the union of the two bodies. When a person is sexually intimate with another they become one with that person. It is most important that you are only one in body with your spouse. There will be difficulty in becoming one in body if there is not oneness in spirit and soul. There will be difficulty in marriage if one or both have been immoral before marriage and there will also be struggles if one of the partners has looked at pornography. Anything that is evil in God’s sight will be a thief and rob you of the good gift that He wants to give to you. The Lord says no to what will bring harm to you now and later on in life.

Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness? Or what harmony has Christ with Belial, or what has a believer in common with an unbeliever? Or what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For we are the temple of the living God; just as God said, “I will dwell in them and walk among them;
And I will be their God, and they shall be My people. II Corinthians 6:14-16

If you want to have a great marriage and walk through life with the sweet companionship and loyalty of another who will love you for better or for worse, for richer or for poorer and in sickness and in health then you must become one in spirit, soul and body. It begins with becoming a Christian and then learning what it means to walk with the Lord in the light of His Word. He will teach you how to love and what it means to become one with another.

I in them and You in Me, that they may be perfected in unity, so that the world may know that You sent Me, and loved them, even as You have loved Me. John 17:23

When a person becomes a Christian then Jesus Christ comes and lives within them and lives through them. He teaches us to first walk with Him so that we can walk in unity with others. He perfects us in unity as we get to know Him and His great love for us. He came to love us and to teach us how to love others with His perfect love. We can not love with the kind of love that our spouse needs apart from Him. We can’t love, He never said we could, but He can love through us and He always said He would. Marriage makes us aware of our selfishness and our conceit but Jesus makes us aware of His love and His power to live and love through us.

Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin. Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need. Hebrews 4:14-16