Weekly Teachings by Erik Momsen
As Christ loves the Church
by Erik Momsen
This is not a sermon about marriage even though the topic will come up quite often. It is a message about love, and especially about how God loves us, His church. Paul's often quoted passage in Ephesians 5 is about God's love but as I googled I again noted how we make most things about us. The first twenty hits, typing in only "As Christ loved the Church" were almost exclusively about what husbands should do. We make the things of God into self-help info bytes and forget the depth of truth and love God has for us. Bringing this topic to a close, Paul writes; "This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the church." (Ephesians 5:32)
It is as if Paul is saying, "PS ... this is not about marriage but God's love".
Note that this so-called passage about marriage starts with the words;
"Therefore be followers of God, as dear children. And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us, and has given Himself for us as an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet smelling savour." (Ephesians 5:1,2)
GOD'S LOVE IS NOT LIKE A HUSBAND'S FOR A WIFE
God's love is what a husbands love should be for his wife. Husbands don't love their wives like God loves His church - but when we see the husbands lovelessness we see how God truly loves.
While preaching on the topic of love I had a vision - revelation - heavenly download about some friends and their marriage. The first truth I felt the Holy Spirit impressing on me was that God's love was not like the love of that husband. The conviction was not a judgment but a sadness. "If only he could love her like this ..."
He had almost given up. He was disapproving and critical of his rather contrary wife. He was even embarrassed to be with her because he never knew when she would start the next fight. He had hidden his heart from her because he was tired of getting it trodden on.
She on the other hand lived with a gnawing fear. She did not really know what she was afraid of. All she wanted was his approval.
I made a statement a while ago that some ladies might have construed to be permission to stop the flowers and the "romance". I said, "Most of what we see in romance is not love. True Godly love is sacrifice".
True love is staying close even while your heart is getting tramped on. True love is putting away the disapproval even in the face of sin. Could true love be a gift even in the face of adultery? God has done this for His bride -- US
This love is far away from roses and candles. This love gives everything even while it is being thrown back in your face. This is God's kind of love.
A song by U2 speaks of our jealous lover, a new heart and a broken one:
Lay down your treasure
Lay it down now brother
You don't have time
For a jealous lover
As you enter this life
I pray you depart
With a wrinkled face
And a brand new heart
I don't know if I can take it
I'm not easy on my knees
Here's my heart you can break it
I need some release, release, release
We need - Love and peace - Love and peace
WHAT IS GOD'S LOVE LIKE?
"For you shall worship no other god. For the LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God; lest you make a covenant with the inhabitants of the land, and they go whoring after their gods, and do sacrifice to their gods, and call you, and you eat of his sacrifice;" (Exodus 34:14,15)
"And they refused to obey, neither were they mindful of Your wonders which You did among them. But they hardened their necks, and in their rebellion appointed a captain to return to their bondage. But You are a God ready to pardon, gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and did not forsake them." (Nehemiah 9:17)
"And the LORD passed by before him and proclaimed, Jehovah! Jehovah God, merciful and gracious, long-suffering, and abundant in goodness and truth, keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, and who will by no means clear the guilty , visiting the iniquity of fathers on the sons, and on the sons of sons, to the third and to the fourth generation." (Exodus 33:6,7)
"Christ redeemed us from the curse of the Law, being made a curse for us (for it is written, 'Cursed is everyone having been hanged on a tree')" (Galatians 3:13)
Date Added: 2009-08-02
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