2010

21 Feb 2010

For victory

What does it mean – to love God? Have you ever asked yourself such a question? At the church meeting on 21 February pastor Dmitry Vladykin suggested thinking about the answer based on the Scripture.

We have got used to love those who we can see. We can’t see God and that is why sometimes it is very difficult to understand what it means — to love our heavenly Father. Doubts can lead us to another question — does God exist? We shouldn’t be misled by our own thoughts like that: if I sin, if I’m not faithful to God in something, it means that I don’t love Him. Maybe it was the reason of Jesus asking Peter three times if he loved Him. It was after the resurrection and maybe Jesus showed that in spite of Peter’s betrayal he still was His disciple. “This is how God showed his love among us: He sent His one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins” — it is written in 1 John 4:9, 10.

We can see from these verses that God was the first to love us and He showed and still shows it. Jesus said: “If anyone loves me, he will obey my teaching” (John 14:23). Doing what He taught is one way of showing our love to Him. We try to help those who we love, do something good for them. The opposite is also true: if we hate our neighbor we can’t love God. We should improve our relationships with people and then we can learn how to love God. Another very important point is to respect God’s leadership, obey His will. He doesnt want bad for us.

A week ago the Olympic games in Vancouver started. Many sportsmen came there not just to participate in them but to win. Senior pastor Pavel Zhelnovakov talked about this in his sermon. We participate in competitions to get something at the end, some reward. This concerns Christian as well. The Bible clearly speaks about the reward for the winner. Only winners take it all. Others can be saved by Gods mercy. “Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever” (1 Corinthians 9:24, 25). We read a lot about the reward in Revelation. We see the conclusion: “He who overcomes will inherit all this, and I will be his God and he will be My son”  (Revelation 21:7). In Matthew 5:11, 12 we see that this reward is for those who are insulted, persecuted and against whom people falsely say all kinds of evil against because of Christ. Very often we have to sacrifice something for the victory.

After the sermon the church recalled Christ sufferings and death in the sanctity of the holy communion.

 



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