God, one another and His commandments

by Rev Jason Phua

Bible Readings: 1 John 5:1-21; Psalms 124:1-8

READ (Verse chosen for reflection)
1 John 5:1-2 “Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ has been born of God, and everyone who loves the Father loves whomever has been born of him. 2 By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and obey his commandments.”

REFLECT
The Apostle John provided a systematic way of helping us appreciate that those who believes in Jesus Christ has been born of God; and those born of God should also love everyone within the family of faith. By what is such a love measured? Through our obedience of God’s commandments.

Therefore, when we say we love God and have no love for one another, then we are lying to God and to ourselves. When we profess that we love one another but have no love or desire to obey God’s commandments, we will also find in ourselves a liar. For loving God and one another are not first and second tier “to dos”; but they go hand in hand in our relationship with God and with His children. Everything comes in a package – God, people and His commandments as found in His Word. They are not separate entities.

RELATE
We have the tendency to separate the ideas of “God”, “one another” and “Word” in our daily living. For example, we could be worshipping God in music and songs with gusto and passion; but right in the midst of it, we can get easily frustrated when a baby cries at the back of the sanctuary. Or we could be so excited about going for a bible study or a teaching session; yet along the way we choose to ignore the cries of a person in need; all because we are rushing for time.

It is a challenging world to live in and it is really not easy trying to live up to Jesus’ call for us in the Great Commandment. Yet, Jesus said that if we can only follow His leading in faith, then the yoke will be easy and the burden light. Personally, I know that there are so much more to learn about John’s simple yet profound exhortation for me to live out the Great Commandment. May the Lord has mercy and help me to love, trust and obey.

REST
Lord our God, help us to love others as You have love us. Help us to truly understand what such love is. Amen.

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Day 112

by Rev Joel Yong

1 Chronicles 5:1-2
These are the sons of Reuben, Israel’s firstborn. (Although he was the firstborn, his rights as firstborn were given to his nephews, Joseph’s sons, because he dishonored his father’s bed. However, Joseph couldn’t be listed in the genealogy as the firstborn son. Even though Judah was more prominent than his brothers and the prince was to come from him, Joseph received the rights as firstborn.)

Reuben lost his privileges because he committed adultery with his father’s concubine.

Though as firstborn- he was entitled to the lion’s share of the inheritance- he lost it all as a result of his rebellious, sinful act.

His rights were given to Joseph’s sons.
Joseph was sold into slavery by jealous brothers, falsely accused by Potiphar’s wife, thrown into prison and eventually rose to be Pharaoh’s right hand man.

He may have wondered if he had been forgotten and if his obedience to God had come to no fruition. But God did not forget him – he elevated Joseph from the prison cell to the palace, from having a criminal record to the history books as the one who helped Egypt escape the famine.

While acts of disobedience rob us of our destiny, obedience calls forth our destiny.