Today’s devotion is on this thought, “Christian Love” and my text is Philemon 1:3-5 where we read “Grace to you, and peace, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. I thank my God, making mention of thee always in my prayers, Hearing of thy love and faith, which thou hast toward the Lord Jesus, and toward all saints;” (KJV)
These verses that make up our text bring several important truths about Christian love that every believer should know. First, notice how the apostle Paul addresses his friend, Philemon. Paul emphasizes the grace of God and the peace of God to his friend. Without the Lord’s saving grace, we would be endlessly without answers to life’s problems and we would have no hope in this world, on our way to a Christ-less eternity in eternal judgement. Without God’s peace, our minds, hearts and souls could never find the genuine rest we so gravely need in these perilous days. Paul did not know what, his friend Philemon, was going through, but he wanted him to know that he cared for him.
Next, Paul lets Philemon know that he was praying for him. I’ve heard it said before, “Preacher, all I can do is pray!” Many times that statement is actually admitting that they feel that prayer is the last resort, when prayer should be the first thing we do and given top priority. The apostle Paul prayed faithfully for Philemon and we out to pray for one another on a daily basis. There is not one person who knows for sure what tomorrow hold and no one knows what this day will bring forth, so we need to obey the command in 1 Thessalonians 5:17, where we see this verse made up of three powerful worlds, “Pray without ceasing.” (KJV) The only person on this earth who can pray and be heard of God is the person who knows Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior, so may we who are believers intercede in Christian love for one another in prayer.
Finally, we can see from our text that faith and love correspond to each other and also that the measure of our love for our Savior will determine the extent of our love for our fellow believers. This is a spiritual “no brainer,” that the more we love our Savior, the more we will love our brothers and sisters in Christ. It is so sad when believers, whether preachers, church members or those in “Christian” families won’t speak to one another and will fail this day to show Christian love to a fellow believer. Just as true love for the Lord is impossible without obedience to the Word of God, genuine love for believers is impossible unless the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit of God. May our love for our Savior and our love for one another increase daily!
Pastor Joey Durham