God’s Spirit provides us with spiritual gifts, which build up the church (Ephesians 4:11-12). Apostles start new churches; prophets proclaim God’s Word; evangelists are anointed to reach the lost; pastors and teachers dissect the Word and feed it to us in tiny morsels, which are easy to digest; and they all equip the Body of Believers to go out to do the work of the ministry.
We are to respect and submit to our spiritual leaders, because they watch out for our soul, and they must give account to God for their watch care over us. Sometimes we cause them grief by our inconsiderate behavior and our refusal to heed their spiritual guidance (Hebrews 13:17; 1 Thessalonians 5:12-13, 1 Peter 5:5). Some leadership is carnal, however, and we should always compare their advice with God’s Word.
Since we are motivated by God’s Spirit we love one another (Ephesians 5:18-19). Our leaders should model God’s love and teach us to share the love we have from God with one another (1 John 2:10, 4:7,11; John 13:34-35; 1 Peter 1:22). We are to meet our own needs, as well as the needs of others, without allowing selfishness and arrogance to dictate our behavior (Philippians 2:3-4; Romans 12:10, James 2:1).
When we purify our self by obeying God’s truth, His sincere love helps us to love one another deeply, from the heart (1 Peter 1:22). We are compatible, compassionate, empathetic and meek when we love one another (1 Peter 3:8). The Lord teaches us to care for everyone, even unbelievers, with a growing love, which resembles our love for Him (1 Thessalonians 3:12).
Father God, Jesus commanded us to love one another as He loves us (John 13:34). You teach us to love one another by Your Spirit, especially those we consider to be unlovable (1 Thessalonians 4:9). When we see them with Your eyes, we are moved with Your compassion. Love comes from You, You live in us and Your love is made complete in us (1 John 4:7,12). As we love one another everyone will know that we are Your disciples (John 13:35).
Thought for the Day:
We are to owe no one anything except to love each other.
– Romans 13:8