Owasso Spirit-Filled Church

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Let’s go back to when Jesus was having His last meal with the disciples. They had all gathered to celebrate the Passover meal, and Jesus started by washing the disciple’s feet.

Jesus did this as an example. If the Son of God can wash our feet, surely we can serve each other even when the job is, well, dirty and humbling.

Then they had a meal together, complete with Jesus letting everyone know that Judas was about to betray Him. Talk about an open conversation.

Finally, Jesus wraps up the evening. He actually wraps up the previous three years of discipleship by giving them one simple commandment. Take a look:

John 13:34-35 NLT – So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.

This final instruction from Jesus is the key to effective evangelism. It’s how Jesus becomes an open display for the world to see.

But Christianity as a whole has yet to get it right.

Somehow, we’ve modified the most important commandment into something that is now antichrist. We changed it just slightly, and it now leads people toward a fake version of Christ, the antichrist.

Let me give you the woke translation of John 13:34 to help you understand.

“So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love everyone. Just as I have accepted your behaviors, you should accept each other. Your tolerance for one another will prove to the world that you are a good person.” -Woke Translation

Let’s contrast this with what Jesus actually said.

John 13:34-35 NLT – So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.

So many people misunderstand scripture because they rush over it and don’t take the time to understand what is really being said. To get it right, we must stop and reflect.

“Who is Jesus talking to?” Here, He is talking to the disciples. Who did He tell the disciples to love? Each other. You mean He didn’t say to love everyone?

How did He tell them to love each other? As He had loved them. What did Jesus do to reveal His love right before? Washed their feet. What else? He revealed His betrayer to the entire group.

This new commandment is all about how the body of Christ interacts with each other. We are to serve selflessly and protect each other by calling out those who betray Christ.

Yet, somehow we got it all mixed up. The church now prioritizes loving the world over loving the body of Christ.

But that’s not how they know we belong to Jesus. According to Jesus, if we do not love each other, nobody going to know we belong to Jesus. They’ll just think we are one of them.

I’ve yet to find where Jesus told us to entice the world with the gospel. To make everything comfortable and nice. And be sure to relate to them by explaining how you don’t really like the church either. But you do love Jesus.

Well, apparently, John knew we’d be tempted to do this. So he addressed it repeatedly in 1 John and then some more in 2 John. Take a look:

1 John 4:20 NLT – If someone says, “I love God,” but hates a fellow believer, that person is a liar; for if we don’t love people we can see, how can we love God, whom we cannot see?

Loving God and loving believers are synonymous. You can’t do one without the other. After all, we are talking about Christ and the body of Christ. They can’t be separated.

If you don’t love the body of Christ, then you don’t love Christ.

When I talk to people who used to go to church and don’t anymore, I ask why. Do you know what the most common response is? Church hurt.

They tell about how someone hurt their feelings. Or about how their sin wasn’t accepted. Or about how the pastor wouldn’t ever let them preach or do what they were called to do.

So, they stop going to church altogether. And not only that, but they tell everyone how terrible the church is and how you can love Jesus without going to church.

But the Word of God teaches us otherwise. You cannot love God without loving believers. And if you truly love believers, you’ll prioritize gathering with other believers, also known as “church”.

I’m not saying you must stay with a certain church forever. If you are at a woke church, you better get out of there. If you are at a good church and God is calling you elsewhere, you better go.

Here’s what I am saying:

Hebrews 10:25 NLT – And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near.

No more sympathizing with people who experience church hurt. Instead, encourage them to forgive quickly and get back to meeting together, especially now that the return of Jesus is so close.

Plus, if you are wallering in church hurt, it means that you were following a church, not Jesus. If you are following Jesus, then you stick with the church. Why? Because Jesus loves His bride.

If you don’t love the body of Christ, then you don’t love Christ. 

That’s why John reminds the church to love each other again in his second letter.

2 John 1:5 NLT – I am writing to remind you, dear friends, that we should love one another. This is not a new commandment, but one we have had from the beginning.

I am reminding you today to love each another. I’ve heard there have been some challenges lately. And guess what? There will be more. Why? None of us are perfect.

The body of Christ is not perfect. We are going to say things we shouldn’t say, do things we shouldn’t do. We are going to unintentionally hurt each other from time to time.

The Apostle Paul gives us the antidote to our imperfection.

Ephesians 4:2 NLT – Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love. 

You have faults. I have faults. That’s why I choose to believe the best even when you are acting a fool. That’s why I am patient as you work it out. Because I have faults too.

There are two types of people who cause trouble in the church. And you are one of the two. That’s right. We all do our fair share of troublemaking.

First are those who are pursuing God, learning to overcome bad behaviors, and causing trouble along the way. But as they grow, they cause less trouble.

I am talking about everyone in this room. That’s why we must choose to be patient with each other and make room for each other’s faults.

The second group that causes trouble in the church are those who betray Christ by promoting sin and bashing the body of Christ. Just like Jesus did with Judas, we are to make their betrayal public and have them leave the gathering.

None of you are in this group. If you were, I would have already taken care of it.

But I am watching as many of you are working out your faults. And the main fault being worked out right now is not being patient with someone else’s fault.

Y’all, we have to be patient with each other. The enemy is working hard to destroy unity here, and we must all refuse to let it happen. The answer is simple. Be patient. Be humble. Remember, you have faults, too. Extend grace as we all go from glory to glory.

This is how we prove Christianity to the world: We love each other as Christ has loved us. We serve each other selflessly and protect each other from those who betray Christ.

The best thing you can do for the world is love the body of Christ. That’s how they see Jesus in us.

About the Author

Kade Young

Kade Young is the lead pastor of NoLimits Church.