Believe as I believe — no more,
That I am right, and no one else,
Feel as I feel, think only as
Eat what I eat, and drink but what
Look as I look, do always as I do;
And, only then, I’ll fellowship
That I am right, and always right,
Because MY OWN CONVICTIONS tell
And to be right is simply this:
Entirely and in all respects
To deviate a jot, or to begin
To question, doubt, or hesitate,
Let sink the drowning man, if he’ll
Upon the plank that I throw out
Let starve the famishing, if he’ll
My KIND and QUANTITY of bread
Let freeze the naked, too, if
he’ll not be
Supplied with garments such as made
‘Twere better that the sick should
die than live,
Unless they take the medicine
‘Twere better sinners perish than
To be conformed to my peculiar
‘Twere better that the world stood
still than move
In ANY way that I DO NOT APPROVE.
Isn’t it a shame that people often see the “church” living within this narrow-mindedness, egocentric, self-promoting, critical and bigoted spirit? How often are Christ-followers characterized by preconceived notions and disgraceful condemnation of brothers and sisters in the body of Christ? My pastor heart breaks for the innumerable lives that have been brought to the edge of hopelessness, despair and devastation by someone who thought themselves to be better, more important, or too pious to bend down and offer a helping hand to a fallen sister or brother who truly desires to walk in righteousness.
Love does not try to glorify itself or seek to profit from climbing over another one for whom our Savior also died. Genuine Christian love will be embodied if, when, we live as beloved children of God and the Body of Christ.
7”Beloved, let us love one another, because love is from God; everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. 8Whoever does not love does not know God, for God is love. 9God’s love was revealed among us in this way: God sent his only Son into the world so that we might live through him. 10In this is love, not that we loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the atoning sacrifice for our sins. 11Beloved, since God loved us so much, we also ought to love one another. 12No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God lives in us, and his love is perfected in us.
13 By this we know that we abide in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit. 14And we have seen and do testify that the Father has sent his Son as the Saviour of the world. 15God abides in those who confess that Jesus is the Son of God, and they abide in God. 16So we have known and believe the love that God has for us.
God is love, and those who abide in love abide in God, and God abides in them.” ~ 1 John 4:7-16