These are exciting times! The Lord is teaching us and showing us how to be the spiritual Body He has redeemed us to be. Consequently we are being challenged to maintain the spiritual unity Jesus accomplished through the cross (Eph. 2:11-18) by making every effort to always be at peace with one another (Eph. 4:3) and to truly love one another with God's love (Agape - Phil. 2:1-5). This applies to our individual lives but is highlighted when we meet together and have the opportunity to manifest spiritual union in the way we relate to one another and worship together.
The Lord is showing us very practically how to exercise spiritual unity and last Tuesday at our weekly prayer meeting, the Lord showed us how to pray together with one accord (Acts 1:14). We learned that to pray in spiritual unity and in one accord we must:
- Engage - "to pray" is a verb and means that everyone participates
- Listen - everyone must listen to the Holy Spirit, the leader of the meeting and to one another (James 1:19)
- Submit - we must submit to the Holy Spirit, the leader of the meeting and to one another (Rom. 13:1; heb. 13:17; Eph. 5:211-6:9; Phil. 2:2-4)
- Be one in purpose - we must agree and target our prayers (Phil. 2:2; Mat. 18:19,20)
- Join in the rhythm of the Spirit in the meeting and deny self
- Be self-controlled - contributing sensitively and waiting on the Lord (1 Cor. 14:26-32)
- Make room for others - giving people room to participate and not hog the prayer time (Phil.2:3,4; Rom. 12:10,13)
As we applied these principles to our meeting, we entered into an amazingly powerful time of prayer as we worshipped, proclaimed, declared, destroyed, established, decreed and joined together as one, revealing the manifold wisdom of God (Eph. 3:10-12)! Hallelujah!
Yesterday the Lord spoke to us about the relationship between spiritual love and sincere faith, showing us the following:
- Sincere faith is always accompanied by action. James 2:26
- Actions that are motivated by eros love mean nothing! 1 Cor. 13:1-3
- The fruit of sincere faith is action motivated by agape love! 1 Cor. 13:4-8; Gal. 5:6; 2 Cor. 5:14
- Agape love is a selfless love that initiates and responds according to the Holy Spirit, to reveal God's love for the benefit of others and for the glory of God.
- Eros love is a selfish love that initiates and reacts according to selfish desires, that reveal the sinful nature/ flesh for one's own benefit and glory!
- Spiritual love is unconditional.
- Eros love or soulishness is always conditional.
- Choosing to reveal God's love within us by denying the flesh (self-life) manifests the Lord's glory. Ex. 34:6; Heb. 1:3
Agape love is a selfless love that initiates and responds according to the Holy Spirit, to reveal God's love for the benefit of others and for the glory of God
In the evening we had the wonderful opportunity to feed the poor and needy and to put the Word into action and demonstrate agape love. Hallelujah!
Quote of the week:
"If you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and purpose." Phil. 2:1,2 (emphasis mine)