1 Peter 1:22 Having purified your souls by your obedience to the truth for a sincere brotherly love, love one another earnestly from a pure heart,
I want us to think about brotherly love today. I want us to consider what it means to truly love our brother and sister in Christ. First and foremost I want you to understand that you cannot truly love someone until you experience the greatest love ever imagined, the love of Jesus Christ. Notice how Peter begins this scripture, having purified your souls by your obedience to the truth... You see we cannot experience a true love for those around us with out first loving Him. Not just knowing Him but purifying your souls to obedience to the truth. Surrender everything to Him, love Him, be obedient to Him and then you will know how to love others. A sincere brotherly love will be produced by a sincere love for Jesus and a willingness to walk hand and hand with Him. Many of you struggle in your relationships because you struggle in your relationship with Jesus. You are trying to partially surrender to Jesus and then completely love those around you. It doesn't happen, your relationships will be sick when your relationship with Jesus is sick. Peter says love one another earnestly from a pure heart. When your heart is not pure you cannot love earnestly. It is why when you have a bad day and you come home mad at the world you take things out on your family. When you are at peace all day and things are wonderful you come home and treat those around you with love and respect, why? Because you have been right with Jesus all day. You coming home and taking things out on your family is a sign of weakness, that is what I said, you are a weakling that cannot maintain self-control and extend love to those you love because yo have had a bad day or the person down the hall made you angry or the game didn't turn out right. Hey Jack, it is just the truth so deal with it. At work you are mean and nasty to your coworker because you are not right with Jesus. Ever notice how nice you are at Church? You can get angry, but you don't have to sin. There is a statement made on a regular basis I just don't like to hear. It is the statement, 'that us just who I am.' Well Jesus saved you to change who you are, so lets not trash the good work He has begun in you by saying that is just who you are, work at being the person He expects you to be. He does not expect you to proclaim HIS name and trash people with your attitude, words and actions. If you do these things you are not showing brotherly love and you are not showing Jesus the love He expects from you. So you read this and you don't like these words, well I understand self-control is not the easiest thing in the world. Oh yeah while it is hammer time I might as well throw this one out there you don't get to claim victory because you are so much better than you used to be. You are not the measuring stick, you never have been. Jesus is the measuring stick. He was the measuring stick when you had no self-control and guess what, you were found lacking. He is still the measuring stick when you maintain control 50% of the time, and guess what, you are still found lacking. It is like losing a game 45-0 and then next week you lose 28-0 and you feel good about it because you didn't get beat 45-0. That is stone cold crazy and so is you and I feeling good about ourselves because we maintain self-control more than we used to. That attitude deserves a C'MON MAN. Lets face it we have work to do. We have to fully surrender to Jesus so we can fully surrender to love those around us. Jesus is able to accomplish much through our surrender, so let us surrender.