God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him. In this way, love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment, because in this world we are like him. There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.
what pastor mark batterson said this morning at church on the power of the Word
Prof. Davis: It’s interesting that none of the so-called prophetic books of the Bible, the books that actually have the names of prophets attached to them, like Jeremiah, Isaiah, Amos, all of those books bring us to despair if we take them seriously. If we apply them to our lives they, in a sense, bring us to our knees. But none of them ends without what they call in the book of Jeremiah “the book of consolation.” None of them ends without a picture of the people of God returning to a healthy relationship with God, and all of them have a picture of the land being fruitful and productive, in celebration you might say, of that restored relationship between God and humanity, God and Israel.
And as kind of a parallel to that, when I began working in this area and I saw how deep the problems were, I got more and more depressed. I noticed this happens with my students when we begin studying this. The first movement is into depression.
Ms. Tippett: Mm-hmm.
Prof. Davis: But then there begins to be a sort of brightening on the path, you might say, as we begin to see that there are other people seeing the same things, we’re seeing and working on these things.
Ms. Tippett: You know, you use phrases in your writing that are kind of countercultural. You know, you speak of “a tenacious but severely chastened hope” or “things that are encouraging and deeply sobering.” And maybe it is that kind of realism that we have to have about hope, how closely it can be mingled with our despair and yet survive.
Prof. Davis: Certainly there is a difference between hope and a foolish optimism. And in order to have hope, you have to see the depth and the dimensions of the problem.
You think that everyone should agree with your perfect knowledge. While knowledge may make us feel important, it is love that really builds up the church. Anyone who claims to know all the answers doesn’t really know very much. But the person who loves God is the one God knows and cares for.
Run away from sexual sin! No other sin so clearly affects the body as this one does. For sexual immorality is a sin against your own body. Or don’t you know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself, for God bought you with a high price. So you must honor God with your body.
When I wrote to you before, I told you not to associate with people who indulge in sexual sin. But I wasn’t talking about unbelievers who indulge in sexual sin, or who are greedy or are swindlers or idol worshipers. You would have to leave this world to avoid people like that…
It isn’t my responsibility to judge outsiders, but it certainly is your job to judge those inside the church who are sinning in these ways.
For the Kingdom of God is not just fancy talk; it is living by God’s power.