Pick Your Community: | Hopkins | Muhlenberg | Daviess | Christian | Fayette | Henderson | Lakes | McCracken | Warren | Webster
Davis Motor Sales banner ad

Keeping the Faith – ‘Love Saves the World from Death’

ronniemcbrayer300 orangeKENTUCKY (4/26/14) — I pulled from my bookshelf a few systematic theology books that I had not opened for a long time.

I blew off the dust, cracked the stiff binding, and dove into the hundreds of pages filled with declarations about the attributes and characteristics of God.

There they all were: God’s self-existence, knowability, immutability, infinity, immensity, unity, veracity, holiness, righteousness, omniscience, sovereignty, transcendence, and several other $10 words, with all my handwritten study notes in the margins. This corpus of work was intended to make the theology student feel confident, to demonstrate how right our doctrines are. But as I skimmed the pages I was made freshly aware of how distracted we have become.

For all of Christianity’s theoretical words and defenses, the Apostle John was simple and winsome with his definition of God: “God is love,” John said.

If Christians daily practiced this definition instead of declaring and defending how “right” we are, I imagine the world would be a much different place.

With the truth, “God is love,” rather than “God is on my side,” or “God hates you and your kind,” in the hearts of people and animating their actions, it would revolutionize the world. I know this talk about the power of love can trigger our gag reflex. We’ve heard enough of that, haven’t we?

Love talk is the cue to braid our hair in pigtails and flowers, break out the hookah pipe, drink a little free Bubble-Up, and lay back on a bed of rainbows. That’s about all it is, just talk. The late George Carlin said, “Love is incredibly powerful. It is a beautiful thing. But if love had any power to change the world, it would have prevailed by now. Love can’t change the world. It’s nice. It’s pleasant. It’s better than hate. But it has no special power.”

While tempted to agree with this assessment, I’m not ready to do so yet. I’m going to take John at his word: Love is God’s nature and love comes from God. Once this love gets planted in our hearts, it spills out to others, resulting in transformation; it changes the world, one person at a time.

Love isn’t ineffective. Rather, every generation must learn the same lesson: God’s love must become primary; more crucial than any other belief, creed, or doctrine to which we adhere. Such love will have infinitely more power than any theological explanation, and such power can be employed by everyone, from the brainiest theologian to the most common man on the street.

To that end, there was a rabbi who became friends with a Persian fortuneteller. Every morning the two sat together and watched people head out of the village to work. As a man walked by, the fortuneteller said, “I foresee that this man will not come back. He will be bitten by a snake and die.”

The rabbi answered, “Maybe so, but only God knows such things.” They agreed to come together at the end of the day to see if the worker returned. At evening they saw the condemned man enter the village! The Persian ran at once to him, grabbed his backpack, and emptied it on the ground. An enormous snake spilled out of the bag; a snake very much dead.

So the rabbi asked the man, “What did you do today to avoid misfortune?”

The man answered, “I cut trees in the forest. Every day at lunch the workers place our food in a common basket and eat together. Today, one of us had no bread and was ashamed. So I told my friends, ‘Let me collect the food.’ When I came to him I pretended to take bread from him, so that he would not be embarrassed.”

To this the rabbi burst out laughing. He said, “My son, today you obeyed God’s commandment to love! You saved your coworker and also saved yourself!”

And turning to his fortuneteller friend, the rabbi said, “When one loves from his heart, he changes the fates. Love saves the world from death.”

Indeed, it does.

Ronnie McBrayer is a syndicated columnist, pastor, and author. His newest book is “The Gospel According to Waffle House.” You can read more at www.ronniemcbrayer.me.

Disclaimer: The content supplied by columnists and letters to the Editor on this site does not in any way, shape or form, implied or otherwise, necessarily express or suggest endorsement or support of any of such content, statement, or opinions therein. SurfKY News does not necessarily adhere to or endorse content provided by outside non-staff sources.

© Copyright 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story by using one of the social media links below.

Posted on 2/2/14
Genovese - http://www.mchky.org/staff/bio.php?doc_id=35646&sub= Lewis - http://www.mchky.org/getpage.php?name=bracken_lewis Holt - http://www.mchky.org/getpage.php?name=drholt Napier - http://www.mchky.org/getpage.php?name=dr.napier_page Newman - http://www.mchky.org/staff/bio.php?doc_id=50353
Genovese - http://www.mchky.org/staff/bio.php?doc_id=35646&sub= Lewis - http://www.mchky.org/getpage.php?name=bracken_lewis Holt - http://www.mchky.org/getpage.php?name=drholt Napier - http://www.mchky.org/getpage.php?name=dr.napier_page Newman - http://www.mchky.org/staff/bio.php?doc_id=50353
Posted on 1/31/2014
2/6/2014 - posted

Stock Report

1 DOW 17,113.54
+61.81 (0.36%)    
2 S&P 1,983.53
+9.90 (0.50%)    
3 NASDAQ 4,456.02
+31.31 (0.71%)    
Genovese - http://www.mchky.org/staff/bio.php?doc_id=35646&sub= Lewis - http://www.mchky.org/getpage.php?name=bracken_lewis Holt - http://www.mchky.org/getpage.php?name=drholt Napier - http://www.mchky.org/getpage.php?name=dr.napier_page Newman - http://www.mchky.org/staff/bio.php?doc_id=50353
Genovese - http://www.mchky.org/staff/bio.php?doc_id=35646&sub= Lewis - http://www.mchky.org/getpage.php?name=bracken_lewis Holt - http://www.mchky.org/getpage.php?name=drholt Napier - http://www.mchky.org/getpage.php?name=dr.napier_page Newman - http://www.mchky.org/staff/bio.php?doc_id=50353
Posted on 1/31/2014
2/6/2014 - posted
Genovese - http://www.mchky.org/staff/bio.php?doc_id=35646&sub= Lewis - http://www.mchky.org/getpage.php?name=bracken_lewis Holt - http://www.mchky.org/getpage.php?name=drholt Napier - http://www.mchky.org/getpage.php?name=dr.napier_page Newman - http://www.mchky.org/staff/bio.php?doc_id=50353
Genovese - http://www.mchky.org/staff/bio.php?doc_id=35646&sub= Lewis - http://www.mchky.org/getpage.php?name=bracken_lewis Holt - http://www.mchky.org/getpage.php?name=drholt Napier - http://www.mchky.org/getpage.php?name=dr.napier_page Newman - http://www.mchky.org/staff/bio.php?doc_id=50353
Posted on 1/31/2014
2/6/2014 - posted

In Other News...

Dawson Springs Police Reports - July 21, 2014

DAWSON SPRINGS, Ky. (7/21/14) — Dawson Springs Police Department released the following reports Monday, July 21. Thomas… Read More

Strahan Selected as Cravens Elementary Principal

OWENSBORO, Ky. (7/21/14) — Cortney Strahan has been chosen as the next principal of Cravens Elementary School to fill… Read More
Genovese - http://www.mchky.org/staff/bio.php?doc_id=35646&sub= Lewis - http://www.mchky.org/getpage.php?name=bracken_lewis Holt - http://www.mchky.org/getpage.php?name=drholt Napier - http://www.mchky.org/getpage.php?name=dr.napier_page Newman - http://www.mchky.org/staff/bio.php?doc_id=50353
Genovese - http://www.mchky.org/staff/bio.php?doc_id=35646&sub= Lewis - http://www.mchky.org/getpage.php?name=bracken_lewis Holt - http://www.mchky.org/getpage.php?name=drholt Napier - http://www.mchky.org/getpage.php?name=dr.napier_page Newman - http://www.mchky.org/staff/bio.php?doc_id=50353
Posted on 1/31/2014
2/6/2014 - posted

Most Read This Week (Site-Wide)

July 18, 2014 2946

Madisonville Man Arrested for Meth in…

in Top Stories by Sheriff Curtis McGehee
July 22, 2014 2270

Madisonville Woman Charged With…

in Top Stories by Madisonville Police Department
July 18, 2014 2252

Hopkins County Health Department Food…

in News by Lisa Miller
July 21, 2014 2014

Five Sent to Hospital After Two-Vehicle…

in Top Stories by Rita Dukes Smith, SurfKY News Director
July 18, 2014 1939

K9 Unit Helps Find Meth in Muhlenberg…

in Top Stories by Sheriff Curtis McGehee

Most Read Stories from Hopkins County

July 18, 2014 2946

Madisonville Man Arrested for Meth in…

in Top Stories by Sheriff Curtis McGehee
July 22, 2014 2270

Madisonville Woman Charged With…

in Top Stories by Madisonville Police Department
July 19, 2014 1022

Local Hip-Hop Artist, Marack, Talks About…

in Top Stories by Amber Averitt, SurfKY News
July 21, 2014 999

Madisonville Fire Chief Announces…

in Top Stories by Rita Dukes Smith, SurfKY News Director
July 21, 2014 986

Three Injured in Three-Vehicle Collision…

in Top Stories by Rita Dukes Smith, SurfKY News Director

Most Read Stories from Owensboro

July 18, 2014 1610

Owensboro Police Department Reports…

in News by Dennis Beard, SurfKY News
July 21, 2014 960

Portion of Southeastern Parkway Closed…

in News by Beth Cecil
July 22, 2014 600

Alliance for a Drug Free Owensboro and…

in News by Carla Shelton
July 21, 2014 421

Strahan Selected as Cravens Elementary…

in Top Stories by Julie Ellis
July 18, 2014 416

Owensboro Begins Year-Long, Long Range…

in Top Stories by Dennis Beard, SurfKY News

Most Read Stories from Muhlenberg County

July 21, 2014 2014

Five Sent to Hospital After Two-Vehicle…

in Top Stories by Rita Dukes Smith, SurfKY News Director
July 18, 2014 1939

K9 Unit Helps Find Meth in Muhlenberg…

in Top Stories by Sheriff Curtis McGehee
July 18, 2014 1797

Man Injured in Depoy Accident

in Top Stories by Trooper Stu Recke
July 18, 2014 1501

From New York to Greenville, Iron Beam…

in Top Stories by Charles W. Riley II, SurfKY News
July 19, 2014 1424

Cash Mob Descends on Muhlenberg…

in Top Stories by Rita Dukes Smith, SurfKY News Director

SurfKY News Group, Inc. Central Office & Printing Division
1125 Nebo Rd.  •  Madisonville, KY 42431  •  270.452.2249 (fax)
Main Number: 270.452.2727 (phone)  •  Printing Division Direct Line: 270.821.8600 (phone)

SurfKY Owensboro News Bureau
920 Frederica St. / Suite 210  •  Owensboro, KY 42301  •  270.683-8060 (phone)


Contact a member of our staff: www.surfky.com/contact
Copyright © 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc.  •  Terms of Use  •  Site Map

social 06social 21social 22social 04social 03