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John Calvin puts forward a very simple reason why love is the greatest gift: “Because faith and hope are our own: love is diffused among others.” In other words, faith and hope benefit the possessor, but love always benefits another. In John 13:34–35 Jesus says, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” Love always requires an “other” as an object; love cannot remain within itself, and that is part of what makes love the greatest gift.
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William

Share Your Christmas Epiphany!

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How was your Christmas sermon on this wonderful Lord's Day? I heard the best Christmas sermon in my life today and thought to share an epiphany. I have heard many accounts given for the star that the Magi followed by natural phenomenon. From the Dog Star to Halley's Comet the narrations vary. But what does Scripture say? How about Numbers 24:17 - "I see Him, but not now; I behold Him, but not near; A Star shall come out of Jacob; A Scepter shall rise out of Israel, And batter the brow of Moab, And destroy all the sons of tumult." And what about the Wise men or Magi? If they were Babylonian or Persian why were they the only people recorded to follow the star in search for the new born King? Perhaps the answer to this is because of Daniel? Though the Jews saw their captivity for evil, perhaps there was a greater purpose like bringing the Gospel to the Gentiles? Why is it that when the Magi asked about the birth of the New Born King that the Jews were not stirred into a frenzy or excited? Why didn't they seek out the long awaited Messiah? How is it that the Magi knew the Scriptures better than the Jews? Could it again be because of Daniel? Chalk one up for the Gentiles!

 

Your thoughts?

God bless,

William

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The Jews were very corrupt. The reason God didn't destroy Judea for unfaithfulness (Ezekiel 23), when he destroyed Israel for unfaithfulness is for the sake of Christ. After Jesus came, Judea was destroyed. The Jewish king "and all Jerusalem" was very troubled upon learning about the birth of Jesus. The king, with overwhelming Jewish support, ordered all the baby boys killed (as if they could thwart God, even with such a monstrous effort). The Jews didn't want the messiah. But, shepherds, certainly jewish, nearby did come to celebrate the birth of Christ. And, then when Jesus started his ministry, the Jews plotted to kill Jesus the whole time and succeeded once Jesus was finished with his ministry and gave himself up.

 

God's plan of salvation always included the whole world, since before the creation of the world. It's no coincidence that gentiles were the most welcoming of visitors to the birth of Jesus.

 

Edited by Cornelius

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