Love for God Shows in Love of Man

If someone says, “I Love God”, and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen, how can he love God whom he has not seen? And this commandment we have from Him: that he who loves God must love his brother also”   Text: 1 John 4:20-21

The theme for this week is for our spiritual assessment. This is because times without number we claim to love God by offering our services due to Him as creator but neglect His creatures by refusing to love our fellow men and render the  required service of love to them.

Infact, this claim to love God is fallacy and unacceptable in His sight. If we have been following the theme religiously, we would have observed that, for the past three weeks, the emphasis had been on the same thing i.e the love for God and our neighbours. The theme had been on “LOVE” which is the excellent gift of all spiritual gifts. It therefore implies that if we must love God sincerely, we must also love our neighbours dearly.

Apostle John who was nicknamed “apostle of love”, in this Epistle wrote it clearly for every Christian to read and understand that, if we say we love God and hate our fellow men we are liars. For none of us has ever seen God physically whom we claimed to love but hate our fellow men whom we physically see. This is hypocrisy. He therefore reminds us the Commandment given by God Himself that “he who loves God must love his brother also. Anything different from this is fallacy and hypocrisy. It has been noticed in some peoples’  habits that they claimed to be too religious but lack good human relationship and godliness.

In the gospel read for today, where a Lawyer asked Jesus a question, testing Him and saying, Teacher, which is the great Commandment in the law? Jesus replied him by saying “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and great Commandment. And the second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. “On these two Commandments hand all the law and the Prophets” (Matt. 22:35-40). We can infer from the above quotations that the love for God and our neighours are inter-connected and interrelated. It means they are inseparable. It implies that if we fail in one, automatically we have failed in all. In Exodus 20:1ff (i.e the Decaloque) where God stated in Commandments numbers 5-10, that we should love one another. This was to show how love for God is seen in our love for fellow men.

Dear people of God the theme is meant for self-examination as regards our love for God and our neighbours.

May God help us not to be hypocritical as Christians.

 

Very Revd Adewale Adebiyi Ph.D

The Provost

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