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Monday, June 16, 2014

Love Believes All Things

By Clifton Angel

    “God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8). Will we ever dare to say that God’s accomplishments through Jesus Christ were in vain? Will we ever say that God wasted His time in sending His dear Son? May it never be! For, if we do, we are claiming to be more knowledgeable and more wise than our all-knowing and all-wise God. Such is simply not the case. However, when we lose faith in mankind, when we dismiss someone from hearing the gospel because we think they’re too much of a sinner, when we fail to give someone the benefit of the doubt, and when we negatively surmise about what we think someone has done, our actions proclaim that God’s work through Jesus was useless. 
    Why? Love “believeth all things” (1 Corinthians 13:7). It means that we have faith in mankind. It means we have faith in the soul-saving gospel. It means we give others the benefit of the doubt. If we are not careful, we can worry, surmise, doubt, and backbite until we believe someone has something they have not and of which we have no evidence. That’s not love. Love believes all things.
    On one occasion, a home improvement store employee spent a good amount of time arranging for them to install carpet in my home. For various reasons, like money and timing, I decided to hire a different company. When I revisited the same employee to inform him of my change of mind, I approached him with this statement, “You’re going to hate me for this.” He immediately replied, “No, I’m not.” While this is a very mild case of surmising, it is just that. I had made up my mind what he was going to think of me without evidence of such. If we are not careful, this same doubtful and negative mindset can enter into many other relationships we have with others, and we can lose faith in others and lose our own faith as a result.
    Love “believes all things.” It’s not easy, but it’s right. Let’s grow in love!

- Clifton Angel preaches for the Coldwater Church of Christ in Coldwater, MS. He may be contacted through that congregation's website: http://www.coldwatercofc.com/



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