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What Is Love?

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  • .
    Eph 5:33b . . and the wife must respect her husband.

    We're not talking about admiration here. The Greek verb for "respect" is phobeo (fob-eh'-o) which essentially refers to fright; and is used just that way in numerous places throughout the New Testament.

    Some translators render phobeo as "reverence" which Webster's defines as honor or respect; felt or shown; which means that wives don't especially have to like their husbands in order to respect them. An attitude of respect will do in lieu of felt respect. In other words: the Christian wife would do well to stifle the disgust she feels for her husband and be civil.

    I overheard a female caller on radio imperiously announcing to Dr. Laura that she couldn't respect her husband. So Dr. Laura asked her why. The caller responded: Because he hasn't earned my respect. So Laura asked the caller: Have you earned your husband's love? The caller retorted: I don't have to earn his love. It's a husband's duty to love his wife just as she is.

    So Laura pointed out that the caller was practicing a double standard. She demanded that her husband love her unconditionally, while refusing to respect him unconditionally. And on top of that; had the chutzpah to dictate the rules of engagement regardless of how her husband might feel about it; thus making herself not only impossible to like, but also quite difficult to live with.


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      Eph 6:4 . . Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of The Lord.

      We're not talking about religious training here-- the focus is upon a daddy's parenting style. Despotism, tyranny, and unfairness are not The Lord's way of raising kids; but rather; his way is the manner of a shepherd; and "good" shepherds aren't cruel to their flocks.

      Maybe you don't burn your kids with cigarettes, pour Tabasco sauce in their eyes, or lock them in a hall closet without food and water for two days; but do you ignore their opinions, demean them with denigrating labels, ridicule them, threaten their lives, work them as slaves without compensation, deny them things just so you won't appear to indulge them, and/or say "no" to their requests for no good reason than that you don't want to seem weak and under their control?

      Do you routinely abuse their human rights, and/or relegate them to the level of livestock rather than bona fide human beings with feelings and a mind of their own? Do you nurture within them a feeling of importance, of belonging in your home, or do you make them feel like an invasive species and/or an uninvited guest? Kids pick up on things like that.

      But aren't there moms out there exasperating their kids? Of course! Mothers can be just as tyrannical, just as despotic, and just as unfair as dads.

      I believe it is a Spirit-filled dad's sacred filial duty to defend his children from their own mother's abuses should the need arise. Not many dads are willing to do that because it means risking having the wife turn against him; so quite a few dads opt to sacrifice the children in order to keep momma happy.

      In my opinion, throwing one's own children to the wolves in order to avoid living in the same house with a moody woman has to be one of the worst possible sins a man can ever commit in his own home. It's just downright cowardly; and tells the kids they can't trust the one man in the whole world upon whom they should be able to rely in times of distress.

      FYI: The Bible predicts that towards the end, parents will become callous with their babies.

      2Tim 3:1-3 . . This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For people shall be . . .without natural affection

      The koiné Greek word for "without natural affection" is astorgos (as'-tor-gos) which means: hard-hearted towards kindred; viz: lacking in sympathetic understanding i.e. unfeeling, pitiless, thoughtless, insensitive, cruel, and inhumane.


      • .
        Eph 6:9a . . And masters, treat your slaves in the same way. Do not threaten them, since you know that he who is both their Master and yours is in heaven,

        The "masters" in that verse are Christian masters; Paul's letters were written and sent to churches rather than to the world at large.

        If there is one political maxim that seems to ring true in every generation, it's that power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. It's in the human heart to abuse authority and to oppress and exploit people rather than manage them to everyone's advantage.

        Christian masters, and Christian slaves, are siblings together in God's family (Gal 3:28). Therefore, Christ's law is to be exemplified by both the slave and by his master.

        John 15:12-13 . . My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.

        A slave master willing to sacrifice his life to protect his slaves would be a very unusual master; but that is the very attitude of a Spirit-filled master towards his Christian slaves; and should be the attitude of a Spirit-filled supervisor towards his Christian employees: which is the attitude of a good shepherd rather than that of a self-serving predator.

        The Christian master's rank doesn't mitigate his accountability; he has no advantage over the Christian slave. Both must give an accounting of themselves, and neither the master nor the slave will be given the slightest preferential treatment. No, they will be recompensed on the merits of their faithfulness; rather than their positions.

        Eph 6:9b . . There is no favoritism with Him.


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          Phil 2:2-3 . . Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves.

          If there is at least one place on earth where believers should be on the same plane with each other it's church; but that's not always the case as human beings are just naturally prone to status; especially among pastors, choir members, Sunday school teachers, Deacons, Deaconesses, etc.

          Some people aren't content with mediocrity; no, they have to be head and shoulders above the crowd, they have to be admired: they have to be feted, they have to be heard, they have to be noticed, they have to be somebody, they have to be a mover and a shaker, they have to be up in an ivory tower; they have to have their finger on the pulse; they have to be in the limelight. And above all; they have to be right because it is totally contrary to conceit's nature to be wrong about anything; even superfluous minutiae.

          If you should find yourself in a position around your church, whether as an usher or a cook for men's Saturday morning prayer breakfast, make sure you're your heart's in the right place because there is coming a performance evaluation for the Lord's sheep where some of the elite are going to be very embarrassed when they're exposed for the ambitious achievers they really are.

          1Cor 4:5 . . He will bring to light what is hidden in darkness, and will expose the motives of men's hearts.

          An especially bad case of "vain conceit" is on display at 3John 1:9-10
          Last edited by WeberHome; February 24th, 2020, 08:49 AM.


          • .
            Phil 2:4 . . Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.

            The "others" in that verse are exclusive. Paul's directive pertains only to the classification of people to whom he penned his letter; viz: "saints in Christ Jesus . . together with the overseers and deacons" (Phil 1:1)

            Seeing as how The Lord expressly forbids selfish ambition amongst his own; therefore, before proceeding with your ideas, be very sure to ponder all the possible ramifications of your actions first.

            Stepping on people's toes, and/or thwarting their ideas so that yours prevail, fails to satisfy the law of Christ; which requires believers to love their fellow believers as Christ loves them (John 15:12). It also fails to satisfy the Golden Rule which says: So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you. (Matt 7:12). Always looking out for No.1 just simply isn't very nice.


            • .
              Phil 4:5 . . Let your gentleness be evident to all.

              The koiné Greek word for "gentleness" is epieikes (ep-ee-i-kace') which essentially means: mild.

              Webster's defines "mild" as gentle in nature or behavior, moderate in action or effect; not sharp or bitter, i.e. just the opposite of fierce, harsh, rough, scathing, mean, abrasive, stormy, intemperate, strict, and/or severe.

              Though a mild person is affable, they aren't necessarily a wimp; no, they're just not easy to provoke. The quite opposite would be a thin skinned, reactive, defensive personality that goes to war at the drop of a hat.

              Mild people don't threaten, nor come at you with bared teeth and narrowed eyes. They're reasonable and rational, rather than emotional and reactive. Assertive, confrontational people have no clue what it is to be mild; and those are the very ones losing sleep with evil thoughts as they obsessively re-wind and re-play a conflict with somebody in their heads over, and over, and over again rehearsing things they should've said, and would've said, had they thought of them.

              Matt 5:5 . . Blessed are the meek.

              Moses was meek (Num 12:3) and Christ was meek (Matt 11:29, Matt 21:5). Personally I wouldn't categorize either of those two men as meek. So then, what really is meekness?

              Primarily, to be meek, in the Biblical sense of the word, is to be temperate. A temperate person isn't eo ipso a cowering milk toast. Anybody who's studied the life of Moses and Jesus can easily testify that neither of those men were timid; no, they walked softly but carried a big stick, so to speak. Never mistake true meekness for a yellow streak.

              Jacob and his dad Isaac were temperate men; but could be very strong when the situation called for it. Temperate people pick their battles carefully, and never waste anger and energy on trifles.

              There are Christians in this world who're simply implacable. They just cannot live and let live. Turning the other cheek is to them a worn-out cliché that no one takes seriously anymore. For them rivalry, conflict, revenge, competition, retaliation, recriminations, and grudging are a way of life: every disagreement is an act of war— they're peevish, emotional, bitter, harsh, unloving, cruel, thoughtless, and reactive; and they thrive on complaining, criticizing, chafing, carping, finding fault, tattling, bickering, retort upon retort, rejoinder upon rejoinder, sarcasm, endless debate, dredging up old unresolved conflicts, gainsaying, and getting in people's faces and giving them a piece of their mind.

              It seems like those people are always getting indignant about some petty outrage or another. Well; those kinds of Christians are definitely not in the "gentle" category. They're hellish, toxic demons who relish letting their wrath be evident to all instead of gentleness because when they're upset; they want everybody to know it.