God’s Loving Letter
When he saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. ~Matthew 9:36
Jesus spoke to large crowds filled with disciples, curiosity seekers, and opponents.
He didn’t change His message based on whom was in the crowd. His expectations were (and still are) the same for those who followed Him and those who would not.
I remember being taught that the Bible is God’s “love letter,” written to His people. The point being made was that it is for Christians. No one else would understand it, or be able to follow it. To expect it of them was foolishness on the part of Christians. At the time, I believed that teaching.
I still understand that the Lord left His people the scriptures so we would be well-informed about who He is and what he expects of us. This is a loving gesture. No Christian can claim ignorance of His Law, at least in America where you have easy access to a Bible.
Today, many Christians want to limit the kingdom of God to His people. He has planted Himself in our hearts and, though we may touch the lives of a few others, we seem to think that His kingdom is limited by the work we do in evangelism.
God’s “Love letter” says something different.
He says His kingdom is in our midst. (Luke 17:21). In Matthew 12:28, Jesus said, “But if it is by the Spirit of God that I cast out demons, then the kingdom of God has come upon you.” Obviously, this verse is talking about His kingdom on earth, where He was casting out demons.
Jesus talked of His Kingdom and the Apostles “proclaimed the Kingdom” (Luke 9:2). Peter and all of the disciples understood the need to continue teaching so people would see Christ as King (Acts 17:7; 1 Timothy 6:15). Kings make the Laws of kingdoms.
God made everything. He set the rules for everything; biology, chemistry, astronomy, mathematics, government, family, marriage, the church, and even friendship. There is nothing for which we cannot find His instructions.
God’s Word is truly a love letter for all.
Everyone, believer and unbeliever, who lives by His Law will live in peace insofar as we live by His Word. When we claim that God does not rule all of life, that he is the King of only Christians, we deny the scope of His power and authority in the world, and others are deceived.
Paul said, “And you show that you are a letter from Christ delivered by us, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts.” (2 Corinthians 3:3)
There are many who are still harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. Do we act as a letter from Christ, delivering His loving Word to them? Even the curiosity seekers and opponents?
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Wow, Beth, what a compassionate challenge and thought-provoking post! Thank you 🙂
Thanks, Cole. What a great gift God has given us. Truly worth sharing!
This message resonates with me as a writer, and especially, as a writer of letters. What an encouragement we can be. I often pray for the person who will receive my letter. And we pray before we read scripture, another parallel.
In the age of texting, letter-writing is no longer the norm. But we can keep it from becoming obselete.
Thanks for your clear messages about the Bible.
Letter writing is a dying ministry and yet who does not love to receive them? I pray your letters will be the encouragement those who receive them need to hear the Truths you share and then to spread the Word themselves.
And how selfish would I be if I didn’t share this “love letter” to the world?
Exactly! And, His Word never returns void. I love that God blesses us when we are willing to be His Ambassadors! Win-win!
Have you read ” The Gospel of the Kingdom” by George Eldon Ladd? Fascinating look at the K of G. I think you might like it.
Thanks Becky, I will look for it. Understanding His Kingdom is crucial for serving in it.
When we began attending our church, the pastor spoke about God’s Kingdom and the earthly kingdom and how as Christians, we live in the intersection of the two. In the world, not of the world. And how heartbreaking it is (or should be) to see so many people firmly in the earthly kingdom, not even realizing that there’s something so much better “just over here.”
Really great post, Beth.
Thanks Jen, As I was reading your comment I thought of this verse: 2 Co_1:12 “For our boast is this, the testimony of our conscience, that we behaved in the world with simplicity and godly sincerity, not by earthly wisdom but by the grace of God, and supremely so toward you.” Grace and simplicity, one heart at a time, will grow the Kingdom of God.
I have nothing intelligent to say here–the gals above have stated things so well. You’ve given me much on which to chew, dear Beth. Thank you.
Hope that’s meat you’ll be chewing on! Thanks for commenting Gretchen, and Merry Christmas!
When we claim that God does not rule all of life, that he is the King of only Christians, we deny the scope of His power and authority in the world, and others are deceived.
And I just did a day of meditation on 2 Cor 3.2-3 – thinking of how I ‘show’ that I am a letter from Christ to those who are still living as if the Bible didn’t apply to their lives.
Thanks, as always, Beth for your wisdom and clarity. Gave me much to think on.
Thanks for the encouragement, Diane! I love the way the Lord uses us to sharpen one another. Keep being the letter!