Category: Relationship with Others

What is The Christian View of Xenophobia?

One of the interesting facts of life is that before a person is born into the world, that person does not choose which country he/she wants to be born into.
Nobody chooses their nationality nor do they choose which family they would like to be born into. At birth, such choices belong to God alone.
However this simple truth is missed by many racial or xenophobic individuals.

Xenophobia is the fear of that which is perceived to be foreign or strange. It is also defined as a deep-rooted fear towards foreigners or strangers.

For years we have witnessed xenophobia expressed in its most horrific and extreme forms. For example, in various countries foreigners have been beaten to death, burned to death or even stoned to death.
Whilst perpetrators and supporters of xenophobia have given economic & social reasons as justification for their behavior, such violent xenophobic attacks clearly indicate that there is something terribly wrong with the fabric of society and in or world today. Society is increasingly becoming morally lawless and desensitized.
In Matthew 24:12, Jesus speaks about the condition of mankind in the last days by saying “And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold.”

Therefore while the definition of xenophobia relates to fear of that which is different or unfamiliar, it has been clear for centuries that xenophobia eventually leads to hatred and intolerance.
Hatred ultimately leads to anger, violence and even murder as witnessed in such countries like South Africa.
So xenophobia is not only an expression of fear, but it is also an expression of hatred and anger.

In Matthew 5:21-22 Jesus says that anyone who is capable of anger in his heart is just as guilty of the same judgment as one who commits murder.
Proverbs 10:12 says “Hatred stirs up strife, but love covers all offenses.”

Hatred towards people of different skin colours, nationalities and cultures stirs up division and strife. This kind of hatred is not only rooted in fear, but it is ultimately because mankind is sinful and he is losing his ability to express true love. As Jesus said – the love of man will grow cold in the last days.

One of the greatest commandments that Jesus gave us in addition to loving God is that we learn to love our neighbour as ourselves (Matthew 22:30; Luke 10:27).

In Luke 10:27-37 when Jesus was asked “And who is my neighbor”, Christ specifically chose a Samaritan who was a foreigner and despised by the Jews to emphasize in His parable that love must be extended to foreigners and people whom we may despise.

In Exodus 22:21 the people of Israel were instructed to treat foreigners with kindness and respect because the Israelites themselves were once foreigners in Egypt.
Exodus 22:21 says: You shall neither mistreat a stranger nor oppress him, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt.

Since the Israelites were once mistreated themselves whilst in Egypt and yet God helped them escape, God did not want the Israelites with the same hatred and bigotry that they experienced at the hands of the Egyptians.
Instead God expected love to be the motivation of how they must treat foreigners

Therefore xenophobia is wrong for a Christian. The mandate of all Christians is to love God and to love others (Matthew 22:37-40).
We are to see all of mankind as created equal and as being created in God’s image (Genesis 1:27).

Numbers 15:15-16 says: The community is to have the same rules for you and for the alien living among you; this is a lasting ordinance for the generations to come. You and the alien shall be the same before the Lord: 16 The same laws and regulations will apply both to you and to the alien living among you.

There is no nationality or race or individual who is better than another. We are not to judge others according to their nationality or outward appearance but we should see people through the eyes of God.

A nation whose society cannot express genuine tolerance and love for each other nor for foreigners and immigrants, is a nation whose basic sense of morality is on the decline.
Love is the therefore the ultimate Biblical solution to such issues as xenophobia.

1 Corinthians 13:4-7
Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant 5 or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; 6 it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. 7 Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

 

The Importance of Premarital Counseling

The rising increase in the divorce rate not only within the secular world but also within the church is a clear indication that many people are entering into marriage without understanding and also without the mental, social and spiritual preparation.

A marriage can often begin well, but then end up in disaster.
Therefore one of the purposes of premarital counseling is to educate and address any misconceptions or preconceived ideas about the marriage covenant.
Another purpose of premarital counseling is to help the couple to understand and be prepared for the realities regarding the kind of challenges and issues that occur within a marriage relationship.
In any marriage relationship it is inevitable that there will be disagreements, annoyances and all sorts of challenges and problems.
Marriage can be hard work in which both spouses must participate and contribute to its success.

The marriage relationship is so unique and so intimate above any other human relationship in that both the husband and wife will become one flesh (Genesis 2:21-24). Marriage is a relationship between 2 people who will intimately know each other more than they will ever know any other person.

Premarital counseling also helps a couple to understand God’s role within a marriage.
True Biblical marriage will always consist of God, the husband and the wife.
Therefore because God is the Creator of marriage since the beginning of creation, it is therefore necessary for a husband and wife to have God to be the centre and ultimate leader of every marriage.
A strong marriage must be governed by Biblical principles and guidelines if it is to overcome various relationship challenges and trials.
Therefore premarital counseling will also reveal the value of a couple remaining unified through both the good and difficult times in life.

Premarital counseling also helps a couple to set realistic and practical goals and objectives for their marriage relationship. There are many factors and circumstances in life that can cause confusion and disunity within the relationship.
When a couple sets agreeable goals and objectives before marrying, it may help set the direction of the overall relationship and help a couple to overly remain unified during the marriage.

Therefore specific areas such as the roles of the husband and wife must be discussed and understood (Ephesians 5:22-33).
The caring of children and issues related to finances and career plans are essential issues to discuss and plan.

 

Sources for Premarital Counseling
The most important kind of premarital counselling must have Biblical principles and guidelines.
Biblical premarital counseling enables a couple to differentiate between God’s view of marriage and the secular world’s view of marriage.
God’s word is the best source for providing us with how we should conduct our relationships with one another including marriage.
Marriage is a covenant created by God and therefore the principles and foundations of how a marriage ought to function should come directly from the word of God.
God’s word clearly outlines such things as the role of the husband and wife (Colossians 3:18-20); God’s view of divorce (Matthew 19:1-9); God’s view of sexual immorality or adultery and the like (Hebrews 13:4).
God’s word also commands us to be motivated by love in how we conduct all our relationships.
Therefore in all situations and relationships the Bible is God inspired and necessary to teach, reproof and correct us in all areas of life including marriage (2 Timothy 3:16-17).

Proverbs 15:22 says “Without counsel plans fail, but with many advisers they succeed.”
Proverbs 11:14 says “Where there is no guidance, a people falls, but in an abundance of counselors there is safety.”

Within Christianity premarital counseling can be done by a multitude of counselors from a pastor, an elder, parents of the couple or any elderly and mature Christian person who can be trusted to give sound Biblical counsel (Titus 2:1-6).
However, one of the main criteria is that anyone who counsels, is that his/her own family and household must be in good order before he/she can counsel or advise anyone else according to 1 Timothy 3:4-5 and Titus 1:7.

In Titus 2:1-6 says that older women are to “train the younger women to love their husbands and children… and to be submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled”

Parents of the couple must also play a major role as they have a duty to counsel their children as they grow up.
Therefore from childhood to adulthood, Christian parents always have a constant opportunity to train up a child concerning all areas of life including marriage (Proverbs 22:6).

Therefore premarital counseling provides the basis for Biblical understanding; for preparation and for the creation of Biblically sound foundations in order to make the marriage relationship work and function for the glory of God.

 

 

Should a Christian Date or Marry a Non-Christian?

Should a Christian date or marry a non-Christian? 2 Corinthians 6:14 says: Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness?

2 Corinthians 6:14 gives an important principle about what all Christians should heed when it comes to having any type of binding partnership with a non-Christian.
Dating and marriage is a binding partnership that involves intimate feelings, emotions, thoughts and physical bonding. Marriage especially is not just a physical contract but it is a spiritual covenant which God ordained.
Therefore it’s important to make the correct Biblical choices when it comes to the issue of dating and marriage.

1 Corinthians 15:33 says “Do not be misled: ‘Bad company corrupts good character”.
According to 1 Corinthians 15:33 it is a deception to believe that a Christian can be in a binding relationship with an unbeliever and not be affected.
When a Christian dates or marries an unbeliever the results might likely become negative.

When a Christian has an intimate relationship with an unbeliever, this can lead to a hindrance in the Christian’s spiritual growth.
For example, if you’re dating a non-Christian, the temptation to have premarital sex may become stronger than if you were dating a Christian believer who has Biblical values about sex.
Therefore when a Christian dates or marries a non-Christian there can be cultural and spiritual friction and contrasts in the relationship which could eventually lead to detrimental problems.
When 2 people who have directly opposite value systems and beliefs get married or start dating, the relationship will have problems and issues that are based on those opposing value systems.

One of the main objectives of marriage is that both husband and wife cleave to each other.
Ephesians 5:31 says “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.”
The only way for a husband and wife to cleave or be united is if their core values and beliefs are similar.
Therefore if a Christian is dating an atheist or a Buddhist then they will both have opposing value systems that can affect various areas of the relationship.

What are the Benefits if a Christian Dates or Marries another Christian?
1. You share the same value systems and you believe in the same God.
2. A married couple where both spouses are Christians can easily cleave and bond
3. It is easier to sharpen each other’s spirits. Therefore you can encourage and pray for each other and grow spiritually together
4. You are likely to fight less than if you were dating an unbeliever. You can become united in mind and spirit when attempting to deal with life challenges together.
5. As Christians you are able to put God at the centre of your relationship and marriage. A marriage with God at the centre will always succeed even in the face of challenges.

It’s therefore wise and beneficial for a Christian to date or marry another Christian.

How Do We Deal With Racism?

What is racism and how do we deal with racism?
If you think about it – nobody who was born, asked to be born black, white or brown. None of us asked to be born African, Caucasian, Jewish or Arab. Neither did we ask to be born within a specific nation of our own choosing and to be born at a specific year of our own choice.
When we were born – we were born – and we had no choice or control pertaining to which family we were going to be born in and which ethnicity we would be a part of.

So, do black lives matter? Do white lives matter? Or – do all lives matter?
What is the best viewpoint on the matter of racism?

In order to understand the monster called racism we need to view this issue purely from a spiritual or Biblical viewpoint.

 

Biblical Viewpoint of Races
From a Biblical viewpoint, there is just ONE race among mankind – the HUMAN RACE. Therefore in God’s eyes there is no other race of people but the human race.
The entire human race came from ONE couple – Adam & Eve (Genesis 1, Genesis 2).
Both Adam & Eve could neither be classified as being African, Caucasian or even Asian. However every human being who lives and has lived on the earth has directly and biologically come from Adam & Eve.
Being African, Caucasian, Indian, Asian, Arab, or Jewish are not classifications of different races but they are different ethnicities of the human race.
All human beings have been created in the image of God regardless of ethnicity (Genesis 1:26-27).
All human beings are loved the same by God regardless of ethnicity such that His redemption plan includes the entire human race (John 3:16).
God is impartial. He does not show favoritism to anybody regardless of their ethnicity. God sees all people regardless of their ethnicity as being the same hence His impartiality (Romans 2:11).

 

Worldly / Secular Viewpoint of Races
Unfortunately the secular worldview is to subdivide people according to their ethnic background and this is where the demon of racism begins to appear.
These subdivisions have created false philosophies, false opinions, false assumptions & false conclusions that certain “races” or ethnic groups are better than others. This perception of one ethnic group being superior or better than another is the root, cause & definition of racism.
The worldly viewpoint sees certain ethnic groups of people as being more superior to others.
The worldly viewpoint sees certain ethnic groups of people as being more evolved than others.
The worldly viewpoint sees certain ethnic groups of people as being more pure blooded than others.
This is the ugly face of racism which has resulted in strife, wars, unfairness, disputes and destruction of lives, families and society.
The spirit of racism doesn’t embrace people’s differences – it loathes them.

Racism first begins in the mind and then reveals itself through a spirit of partiality as one negatively treats others who have a different ethnic background.

 

How Do We Deal With Racism?
The truth is this: It’s not only white people who are racist. Even black people can be racist. Anybody can be a racist. The issue of prejudice begins inside individual hearts and then like a cancer spreads into a grouping of people fighting against another group.
Racism therefore must be dealt with at mind level, starting with how we individually perceive people who are of a different ethnic background.

Racism can be dealt with through perceiving & applying the following life applications:

1. Every human being originated from ONE couple – Adam and Eve. Therefore there is only ONE race – that is the HUMAN race
2. All human beings are made in the image of God. Therefore there is no human being who is superior to another human being
3. God loves us all the same. He is does not show favoritism. Therefore when we have a racial attitude towards others then we are portraying an evil attitude towards someone who God loves and whom God created in His own image.
4. Nobody had a choice or any control into which ethnic background they would be born in or become a part of. Our birth wasn’t our choice – but it was God’s choice. Therefore no one has any right to prejudice somebody based on the colour of their skin.
5. As people we need to learn to love one another and to walk in love. Whatever we do should be under the motivation of love for God and love for our fellow man (1 Corinthians 13:1-13).

John 13:34
A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another.

Why Should I Forgive Others?

We have all been hurt or offended by somebody in our lives. You may have been in situations where people have deliberately done or spoken bad things against you. You were right and he/she was wrong. You didn’t deserve to be offended or hurt by that person; But the question is, when somebody offends us, what should we do? How should you feel towards the person who has offended you? What would Jesus do if He were in YOUR position? What does Jesus SAY you should do?

Mark 11:25-26 NKJV
“And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses. But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father in heaven forgive your trespasses.”

Unforgiveness is defined as: a grudge against someone who has offended you; not having the compassion to forgive; a resentful attitude that spews out all types of evil
Unforgiveness according to Jesus is a sin. No matter how we have been hurt or offended by somebody, it is a CHOICE whether to FORGIVE or to NOT FORGIVE.
Jesus prefers and teaches that you should CHOOSE to FORGIVE anyone who has offended or hurt you in any form.

Matthew 18:21-22 NKJV
Then Peter came to Him and said, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? Up to seven times?” Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven.

How often should you forgive an offence against you?
Jesus teaches that there should be no limit to your ability to forgive your offenders. It’s hard I know. It’s not easy. But Jesus being crucified on the cross for our sins was not easy too. Whilst hanging in terrible pain on the cross, Jesus prayed for us to the Father in Heaven: “Father, FORGIVE THEM, for they do not know what they do”Luke 23:34 NKJV

When you understand the sacrifice that Jesus made for YOU individually; and when you understand that even though YOU too are not perfect, Jesus was crucified for YOU and your sins, then why would you not want to forgive somebody else whom Jesus also died on the cross for?

1 Corinthians 13:5 NIV
… (LOVE) is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.

Indeed it is a hurtful thing when we are offended, however God does not expect us to remain hurt & unforgiving towards others. He expects us to move past the hurt by allowing the love and peace of God to rule our hearts & minds.

Luke 11:2-4 NLT
Jesus said, “This is how you should pray: … as we forgive those who sin against us.”

To Forgive means to: Stop feeling angry or resentful toward (someone) for an offense, flaw, or mistake.; To excuse for a fault or an offense; pardon

Nobody is perfect. We all make mistakes. Therefore, we all need forgiveness. Romans 3:23 says “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,”
Jesus therefore taught that as we pray to the Father, we must talk to God about those who have offended us.
Is it okay to tell God all the pain that you feel concerning those who have hurt you? Yes it’s okay!
Is it okay to pray to the Lord about our offenders? Yes it’s okay! However as we pray to God about our offenders, we must not be hateful towards them, but rather Jesus guides us as to how we should pray pertaining to those who sin against us. Jesus says that as we pray, we must ultimately forgive our offenders; we must tell God that we forgive those who have hurt us and we must make the decision to forgive.

Matthew 6:14-15 NKJV
“For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.”

If we expect God to forgive us, then we too must also forgive those who hurt or offend us. When we forgive others we are actually freeing ourselves from the bondage of hate, resentment and anger. Whenever we operate in hate, resentment and anger we give the devil a foothold and we are not able to behave and respond according to God’s will and character.
The devil’s deception is that if we do not forgive those who offend us, we are perhaps hurting the offender by choosing not to forgive them. The truth is, in God’s eyes, we are hurting ourselves more than we hurt the offender if we do not forgive.
When we do not forgive others, neither will God forgive us.

Matthew 7:12 NKJV
Therefore, whatever you want men to do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets.

Because we all make mistakes, and we all at some point in life will offend or hurt somebody else’s feelings, we then must be able to forgive others if we also expect to be forgiven by other people when we make a mistake.
Why should i forgive others? God forgave you. Forgiveness heals you. Forgiveness is an expression of the love of God in your life.
TODAY, if you have anyone whom you have not forgiven – make a CHOICE to forgive them NOW.

 

 

Bible Verses about One Another

In life is it important for us to treat one another with love and respect. God want us to reflect His nature through the way in which we treat other people. Our relationship with one another must ultimately give glory, honour and praise to God. Below are various Bible verses (from ESV) about how we should relate with one another in our lives.

LOVE ONE ANOTHER
John 13:34-35
A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”

1 John 4:11
Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.

 

INSTRUCT ONE ANOTHER
Romans 15:14
I myself am satisfied about you, my brothers, that you yourselves are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge and able to instruct one another.

 

PRAY FOR ONE ANOTHER
James 5:16
Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.

 

HONOR ONE ANOTHER
Romans 12:10
Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honour.

 

BE KIND TO ONE ANOTHER
Ephesians 4:32
Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.

 

BE HOSPITABLE & SERVE ONE ANOTHER
John 13:14
If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet.

1 Peter 4:9
Show hospitality to one another without grumbling.

Galatians 5:13
For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.

 

ENCOURAGE ONE ANOTHER
Hebrews 10:25
not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.

1 Thessalonians 5:11
Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.

 

TEACH ONE ANOTHER
Colossians 3:16
Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.

 

BEAR ONE ANOTHER’S BURDENS
Galatians 6:2
Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.

Ephesians 4:1-2
I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love,

 

STIR ONE ANOTHER TO LOVE
Hebrews 10:24
And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works,

 

Bible Verses about Sexual Sin

God is the Creator of sex. Man did not create sex. God created sex for pleasure and also for procreation. But God also in His word set rules and limits regarding sexual relationships and sexual activities. When we disobey God’s rules and limits, we enter into sexual sin or sexual immorality, for example adultery, fornication, etc.
However for all sin, God offers forgiveness and a way of escape through His Son Jesus. If you are currently struggling with overcoming temptation in general, you can read here … How To Resist Temptation and also God’s View of Sexuality.

Below are some Bible verses from God’s view about sex, sexual relationships and sexual sin.

Hebrews 13:4
Marriage is honorable among you all, and the bed undefiled; but fornicators and adulterers God will judge.

1 Corinthians 7:2
But because of the temptation to sexual immorality, each man should have his own wife and each woman her own husband.

1 Corinthians 6:18
Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body

1 Corinthians 10:8
Nor let us commit sexual immorality, as some of them did, and in one day twenty-three thousand fell;

1 Corinthians 6:15–16
Don’t you realize that your bodies are actually parts of Christ? Should a man take his body, which is part of Christ, and join it to a prostitute? Never! And don’t you realize that if a man joins himself to a prostitute, he becomes one body with her? For the Scriptures say, “The two are united into one.”

1 Corinthians 6:9-10
Or do you not know that wrongdoers will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor men who have sex with men nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God

Ephesians 5:3-5
“But sexual immorality and all uncleanness or covetousness, let it not even be named among you, as is fitting for saints; neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor coarse jesting, which are not fitting, but rather giving of thanks. For this you know, that no sexually immoral or unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God.”

Matthew 15:19
For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false testimony, slander.

Matthew 5:27-28
You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.

Galatians 5:19-21
Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, sexual immorality, uncleanness, lewdness, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God

1 Thessalonians 4:3-5
It is God’s will that you should be sanctified: that you should avoid sexual immorality; that each of you should learn to control his own body in a way that is holy and honorable, not in passionate lust like the heathen, who do not know God;

Matthew 5:28
But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart

Colossians 3:5
Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: sexual immorality, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. Because of these things the wrath of God is coming upon the sons of disobedience

1 Thessalonians 4:3-5
For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you abstain from sexual immorality; that each one of you know how to control his own body in holiness and honor, not in the passion of lust like the Gentiles who do not know God;

Ephesians 5:5
For you may be sure of this, that everyone who is sexually immoral or impure, or who is covetous has no inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God

Galatians 5:19
Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality,

 

GOD FORGIVES AND HE WILL HELP US WHEN WE ARE TEMPTED

Here’s some scriptures that help you overcome temptation:

1 Corinthians 10:13
No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it

1 John 1:9
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

How To Overcome Evil with GOOD

How do you overcome evil with good. How can you show the love of Christ in a bad relationship? Have you ever been offended by somebody so much that you felt that the best option was to revenge? So therefore if somebody harms you, should you harm them back? If somebody insults you, should you retaliate by finding a way to insult them too?

Matthew 5:38-39 NKJV
“You have heard that it was said, ‘An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.’ But I tell you not to resist an evil person. But whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also

Matthew 5:43-44 NKJV
“You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you,

According to Jesus, if we are to overcome evil with good, there are 4 things we must do.
These 4 things that Jesus mentions in Matthew 5:43,44 are the following:

  1. We Must LOVE
  2. We Must BLESS
  3. We Must DO GOOD
  4. We Must PRAY

Jesus Himself extended this same love and grace to us through His death on the cross. Despite the fact that we were sinners, God demonstrated His love for us through the death of Christ for our sins (Romans 5:8).
Also as Christ was crucified on the cross He prayed for those who hated Him saying “Father forgive them for they do not know what they are doing” (Luke 23:24).

Therefore God is not only good to those who love Him but He is also good to those who despise Him. Matthew 5:45 says “… for He (God) makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust”.

Therefore the goodness and love of God is extended to everyone.

Jesus basically taught us that no matter how badly other people may treat us, we MUST ALWAYS respond to them in LOVE and we must NEVER respond to anyone with bitterness, unforgiveness, revenge and hatred.
Jesus taught that if your neighbor hates you and if you want to defeat your neighbor – then you must LOVE him. If you hate your neighbor just because he hates you too – it would cause more hatred to fester – and NOTHING good comes out of hatred.
Hatred is an emotional characteristic of the devil, but LOVE is the character of God. So when you LOVE, you are imitating the very nature of God, but when you hate you are imitating the devil.

Matthew 5:46-48 NKJV
For if you love those who love you, what reward have you? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? And if you greet your brethren only, what do you do more than others? Do not even the tax collectors do so? Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect.

When you become a child of God you are called to a Godly standard of living. You are called to imitate God’s nature through Christ and His teachings. You are called to live according to the principles of the Kingdom of God and NOT according to the standards of the world.
Jesus taught that there is a very CLEAR DIFFERENCE between the children of God and the world. Therefore as children of God in our relationships, we should aim in Christ to not react or respond by the values and principles of the world.

Romans 12:17-21 NKJV
Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men. If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. Therefore “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; If he is thirsty, give him a drink; For in so doing you will heap coals of fire on his head.”
Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

So the next time somebody offends you, don’t revenge; don’t hate, but respond the way Jesus has taught you – by showing LOVE.

 

God’s View of Same-Sex Marriage

Throughout the world various countries are beginning to gradually accept not only homosexuality – but also the idea that it is okay for homosexuals to marry one another.
Both homosexuality and the idea of same-sex marriage are a sin against God and they do not promote Biblical values. Gay people and gay supporters have even become as bold as to suggest that if anybody does not accept homosexual behaviour or homosexual marriage that such anti-gay people are infringing on their human right and are promoting hate speech. God speaks against the homosexual lifestyle.
Therefore, the issue of homosexuality is neither a human right nor can speaking against it be considered as hate speech because homosexuality and gay marriage is an unnatural behaviour which is against God’s creation laws and against God’s word.

The Bible, history, our physiology and creation itself argue against same-sex marriage. Marriage is designed to be between a male and a female. Same-sex marriage goes against God’s natural order and purpose.
Here’s why:

Genesis 2:24 NKJV
Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.

  • Marriage is a union that God Himself created. Marriage was not created by man, but God created marriage for His glory and for man’s benefit.
  • However when God created marriage, he created this union to be governed and defined by Godly parameters, boundaries, guidelines and rules. Therefore, man does not make up His own rules pertaining to the institution of marriage, but it is God who makes the rules as to how marriage should be defined because it is God who created the institution of marriage. (see Marriage & Divorce Bible Verses)

Biblical marriage can be defined as the lifetime union of a man and a woman, primarily for the purpose of building a family and providing a stable environment for that family.

According to Genesis 2:24 a man (male) shall be joined with his wife (female) and they shall become “one flesh”.
A man shall leave his mother (female) and father (male) to be with his wife (female) so that the two of them (as male & female) can start their own family.

  • According to God’s word, only a man and a woman can become “one flesh”
  • God did not intend for a man and another man to become “one flesh”, nor did God intend for a woman and another woman to become “one flesh”.

Genesis 2:18-23 NKJV
And the Lord God said, “It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him.” … And the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall on Adam, and he slept; and He took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh in its place. Then the rib which the Lord God had taken from man He made into a woman, and He brought her to the man.
And Adam said: “This is now bone of my bones, And flesh of my flesh; She shall be called Woman, Because she was taken out of Man.”

  • When Adam was the only human that existed, God did not decide to make another human who biologically and physically was identical to Adam – instead God made Woman – who was physically and biologically different from Adam.
  • When Adam was created, he was created from the dust. But when the Woman Eve was created, God took a portion out of Adam in order to create Adam’s wife.
  • God created Woman for Adam so that Adam would be complete and one flesh with her. God created for the man “a helper comparable to him”. This is what marriage means to God.
  • In the beginning, God did not create another male “helper” for Adam, but God created a female helper for Adam
  • The first thing that Adam acknowledges and declares when he first sets his eyes on Eve is “This is now bone of my bones, And flesh of my flesh; She shall be called Woman, Because she was taken out of Man”. This is a clear sign in Adam’s eyes when God had presented Eve to him that Adam himself knew that he was meant to be with her as husband (male) and wife (female). A gay couple may profess love for one another, but a gay couple can never profess to be one flesh in the same way as Adam declares about his wife.

Romans 1:26-27 NKJV
For this reason God gave them up to vile passions. For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature. Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men with men committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due.

Homosexuality and same-sex marriage go against God’s plan for marriage in many ways:

  • Purpose of Sex – Sexual intercourse was created by God – not by man. God created sex for both our pleasure and for procreation. This is why God created the sexual organs of a man to be different from a woman. He however created it with certain parameters or rules which are governed by His word. (see Bible Verses on Sexual Sin)
  • Physically and biologically – When two men have sexual intercourse they cannot “be fruitful and multiply” the way that God intended. Two men or two women cannot sexually reproduce together to create a new life by means of their union. Procreation is only between a man and a woman, and therefore gay marriage cannot be God’s plan neither can gay marriage be equal to God’s definition of marriage.
  • If God had intended the human race to be fulfilled through both heterosexual and homosexual marriage, He would have designed our individual bodies to allow reproduction through both means and made both means of sexual intercourse healthy and natural. Romans 1:26-27 reminds us that homosexuality is not natural and is “against nature”.
  • All of God’s creation not only speak of God’s attributes, but they speak of God’s intentions and purpose. Even the animals that God has created speak against homosexuality because every male animal needs a female animal to procreate. It would be unnatural for animals of the same sex to be sexually intimate. Why should this understanding be so difficult for man to grasp?

For those who support homosexuality and gay marriage this issue might be hard to accept. However if we read God’s word and accept God’s word over our own personal opinions, then we will realise that God’s word is the final authority on this matter. The world might create its own laws and opinions – but for the Christian believer, God has already advised us on this particular matter through His scriptures and most importantly through the physical and biological manner in which He created us. Man’s laws and opinions may change – but God’s word and God’s nature does not change. Therefore whatever is a sin in God’s eyes, shall always remain a sin – even if we change our worldly laws to suit our personal opinions.

1 John 1:9-10 NKJV
If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

Does God love gay people? Yes He does. God loves all of us despite our flaws and misgivings. However God does not love sin. God warns us that there are consequences when we choose to walk in sin.
God does not want sin to have control over our lives. God, through His Son Jesus Christ, wants us to overcome sin. In God’s eyes, homosexuality is a sin. He loves gay people, but He hates the sin.
Whenever we confess and repent of our sins, God is just and faithful to forgive us no matter how horrible our sin is.

Romans 5:8-11 NKJV
But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him. For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life. And not only that, but we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation.

God’s View of Sexuality

1 Thessalonians 4:3 ESV
For this is the will of God, your sanctification: that you abstain from sexual immorality

The world and the people of the world see and define life more differently than God. Therefore in life there is always two opposing views regarding a particular circumstance or various issues in life. First there is God’s view and then there is the worldview.
For example, this is why God tells us through His word that we should “not be conformed to the standards of this world” (Romans 12:2). God does not want us to be influenced in our thinking and in our beliefs by the philosophies and teachings of the world.
God will also tell us that His “thoughts are not our thoughts” and that His “ways are not our ways” (Isaiah 55:8,9). God wants our thoughts to be the same as His thoughts. He wants us to seek after His ways and His standards.

One of the main issues affecting our culture and society where God and the world differ is the issue of SEX. The world has it’s ever changing and evolving view, while God has always remained firm regarding His view of sexuality.

The World’s View of Sexual Behavior
The World’s view of sexuality today is that

  1. It’s okay to have sex before you are married;
  2. It is okay to have sex with multiple partners;
  3. If you are STILL a virgin then you’re not “cool” or there must be something “wrong” with you;
  4. Homosexuality is okay;
  5. You need to try and experiment with sex first in order to see if you are “compatible”
  6. Sex equals love; sex increases love; you can’t live without sex
  7. Masturbation is okay
  8. It’s boring to stay faithful and have sex with only one person for the rest of your life.

God is NOT a killjoy. God is NOT anti-sex. God created sex. However, God wants sex to be appreciated and performed according to His guidelines and not according to the guidelines of the world.

God’s view of Sexual Behaviour

  1. Sex is not for the unmarried. It is only to be enjoyed among the married. (Hebrews 13:14 ESV – “Let marriage be held in honor among all, and let the marriage bed be undefiled, for God will judge the sexually immoral and adulterous”)
  2. If you are married, you should not have an extra-marital affair. You should remain faithful to your spouse. (Exodus 20:14 ESV – “You shall not commit adultery”)
  3. There is nothing wrong with being a virgin. It’s perfectly OKAY to be a 40 year old virgin. If you are a young unmarried person and all your peers are having sex, it does not mean that you should follow their behavior. (2 Timothy 2:22 ESV – “So flee youthful passions and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace, along with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart”)
  4. You do not need to experiment with sex. Sex is only for your future spouse. Masturbation is not God’s best – even if “you’re not hurting anyone” – you are hurting yourself – and hurting God’s feelings (1 Corinthians 6:18 ESV – “Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body”)
  5. Homosexuality is not God’s best for anyone’s life. God DOES NOT hate any people or individual who is homosexual and neither does God encourage hatred towards anybody who is a homosexual. God loves us all despite our flaws – however though He loves us, it does not mean that He has to support our bad habits or behaviors. (1 Corinthians 6:9-10 ESV – “Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.”)

God Forgives
God is able to forgive anybody who has committed any type of sexual immorality. When you ask God to forgive you, God will cleanse you of ALL sin and He will not condemn you.

1 John 1:9 ESV
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.