Robert McLaughlin Bible Ministries
What it means to be initiated into the secret of the mystery, Part 90. This treasure in "earthen vessels" reveals the surpassing greatness of the power of God. Part 2.
Wednesday, September 21, 2005
The importance of our relationship with one another, verses 12-17.
MAT 11:28-30 “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you, and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart; and you shall find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy, and My load is light.”
“There are two things to aim at in life, first to get what you want, second, to enjoy it. Only the wisest of mankind achieve the second.”
Contentment does not mean you are really enjoying the life that God has given you; it means that you are willing to accept it no matter what.
Ecc 12 - one of the four worst things that can happen to a person is to look back on their life and have regrets.
JAM 1:3-4 Knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance.
Let endurance have its perfect result, that you may be perfect and complete lacking in nothing.
If you are not finding happiness in the struggles of life, you will not find it at all.
ECC 11:7 - happiness is for TODAY - not tomorrow.
Human limitation is a fact of life, a hard truth that makes life easier when we accept it.
“We’re all ordinary people,” said G. K. Chesterton, “and it’s the extraordinary people who know it.”
Paul agreed. He said, “We have this treasure [our ministry] in jars of clay [our humanity] to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us.”
2CO 4:7 But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the surpassing greatness of the power may be of God and not from ourselves;
JOH 6:63 It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing; the words that I have spoken to you are spirit and are life.
This does not refer to marriage.
The Living Bible - “for the results can be much better.”
We gain what is called today in our technical world - input.
A winter’s day,
In a deep and dark December,
I’m all alone,
Gazing from my window,
At the streets below,
On a freshly fallen silent shroud of snow.
I am a rock, I am an island.
I have my walls,
A fortress deep and mighty,
That none may penetrate,
I have no need of friendship,
Friendship causes pain,
It’s laughter and it’s loving I disdain,
I am a rock, I am an island.
Don’t talk of love,
I’ve heard that word before,
It’s hiding in my memory,
And I won’t disturb its slumber,
Of feelings that I’ve died,
If I never lived,
I never would have cried,
I am a rock, I am an island,
And a rock feels no pain,
And an island never cries.
“To man, friendship is indispensable and to that one who has no need and feels no need for it, he must be either much above the human nature or much below it.”
“Take a ladder,” was Constantine’s advice to such a one, “and climb up to heaven by thyself.”
1CO 1:12 Now I mean this, that each one of you is saying, “I am of Paul,” and “I of Apollos,” and “I of Cephas,” and “I of Christ.”
But our self-confidence is our stumbling block.
He wears down our noble determination through the frustrations of life and He squeezes out of us every piece of our self-confidence by disappointment and defeat.
When “can-do” can’t, He shows us that He can, and therefore we can.
(“I can’t” then becomes blasphemy.)
The demands that have been placed on us are now demands on Him.
PHI 4:13 I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.
To persuade ourselves that we are something when we are nothing is terrible loss; to confess that we are nothing is to lay the foundation of being something.
He reminds us of TLJC, Emmanuel (“God with us”), who spent a seemingly inordinate amount of time eating, fishing, strolling by the sea, chatting, going to parties, being neighborly.
PRO 18:24 “A man that desires friends must show himself friendly.”
The other element in Paul’s work was impartation: “I have not hesitated to preach anything that would be helpful to you but have taught you publicly and from house to house,” verse 20.
Like Jonathan, who went to David at Horesh and “helped him find strength in God,” 1SA 23:16, a real friend is one who leaves another with a word that strengthens his grip on God.
“My word... will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it,” ISA 55:11.
The simplest things are often the most spiritual things of all, 2CO 11:3-4.
JOH 15:12 this is my commandment, that you love one another, just as I have loved you.
JOH 15:17 this I command you, that you love one another.
1PE 2:17 honor all men; love the brotherhood, fear God, honor the king.
[Impersonal unconditional love.]
1JO 3:23 and this is His commandment, that we believe in the name of His Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, just as He commanded us.
Impersonal love excludes emotion, while personal love has great emotional function.
Impersonal love emphasizes the integrity of the subject, while personal love emphasizes the attractiveness of the object.
Impersonal love excludes carrying a grudge.
Impersonal love among believers includes respect for the imputed perfect righteousness residing in others.
Impersonal love is the relaxed mental attitude from the filling of the Holy Spirit rather than overt friendliness or gushy hypocrisy.
Under impersonal love the believer functions under his own standards rather than being influenced by flattery, attraction, attention, or reciprocation.
Not only does the impersonal love of the Royal Family honor code exclude mental attitude sins and verbal sins, but it demands toleration, respect for privacy, and avoidance of distracting anyone from doctrine.