Monthly Archives: January 2019

Clear Focus, Part 4: Love Others (#961)

Clear Focus, Part 4: Love Others (#961)
Good morning. We’re going to continue this series we’ve done for the end of 2018 and the beginning of 2019 on what we call clear focus; what should we focus on?  There are so many things in life, so many topics in the scriptures, so many things going on in society, so many things in each of our individual lives; sometimes we have a hard time figuring out where we should put our attention. So, to help with that, we have a series of teachings we’re part way through, and we’ll continue for a number of more sessions, called Clear Focus. Where God tells us specific things to focus on. And last week we focused on the topic that God loves us and we read many wonderful scriptures talking about God’s tremendous love and care for us and realizing that is always there. Other things may come and go in life, hopefully we want the good things to stay and the bad things to go, but no matter what we do things change in life. And, sometimes we can do something to help it sometimes we can’t. But, we always know that God loves us; that is a constant in our lives that we should focus on. And I know I’ve had a great couple of weeks thinking about that, during the day as I pray, thinking about life, just remembering just how much God loves us. Now, today we’re going to sort of look at the other side of the same coin, on the importance to us to love others. As you know when the Pharisees challenged Jesus Christ about what was the most important law in the Old Testament law, he said that simply ‘Love God and love your neighbor.’ Those were the two focuses. And last time we read about God loving us, now we’re going to talk about how we should love others. And this is such a great point in life. I can just think of so many times in my life where this has been critical. I remember I had a job once where the office politics were just killing me. Everybody was making my life difficult, and I just wanted to go screaming down the hall the boss and make noise and cause a raucous, but instead I just prayed and asked God what to do and He just said: “walk in love.” So instead of spending all day being mad at my coworkers and my supervisors, I just decided to be a kind as I could to everybody. And I don’t even remember what the problem was at work, but whatever it was it went away in like two days. It had been bugging me for weeks. And that still happens to me today, I read the Bible in the morning and I pray for a lot of people; so many times I’m praying for someone and God just says: “love them.” Love them, you know it’s not that I have to do some big complicated thing, I just have to walk in love. And it is such a big part of life. The more we can just walk in love; that just solves so many things. There is a verse that I don’t think is in the list of verse we are going to read today, but it says somewhere in I think the epistles it says ‘love covers a multitude of sins,’ it really does. You can do all kinds of things wrong and we all do, we are not perfect, but when we walk in love; that love just covers a multitude of sins. People don’t worry so much about this, that, and the other thing if they know that they are loved. And, it is just the greatest thing in the world. So, there are many, many things that we’ll focus on as we go through these sessions in the weeks to come. But, knowing that God loves you and knowing that you should love others are two very big ones. So, we’ll start in Proverbs 15…
As taught by Bruce Mahone, 20190127.  All Rights Reserved.
Verse Listing and Notes
Proverbs 15:17          Better is a dinner of herbs than a stalled ox
Proverbs 17:9            He that covereth a transgression seeketh love
Proverbs 17:17          A friend loveth at all times
Matthew 5:43-46       Bless them that curse you
Matthew 18:21-22     Forgive seventy times seven
Matthew 22:37-40     Love thy neighbor as thyself
Mark 12:28-34            More than all whole burnt offerings
Luke 6:27-38               Be ye therefore mericful, as your Father also
Luke 7:36-50               To whom little is forgiven, loveth little
John 13:34-35             By this shall all know that ye are my disciples
John 15:9-13 (-19)      If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love – greater love hath no man than that he lay down his life for his friends
Clear Focus, Part 4: Love Others (#961)

Clear Focus, Part 3: God Loves Us (#960)

Clear Focus, Part 3: God Loves Us (#960)
God bless you, wonderful saints. We’re here again for another wonderful session in God’s word. I may be teaching, but obviously what we are focusing on is God and His word; I’m just the guy reading it to you and making a few comments. God’s word is where the power and the strength lies.
We started in December on a new topic called: “Clear Focus.” We have to know where to focus our thoughts, there are so many things to think about everyday. Just think about it, tomorrow is a new day; some people are going to school, some people are going to work, some people are working at home, some people just have a big long to-do list that takes them all over the place. Everybody’s got a little bit different situation, but tomorrow’s a new week and the way of the world and our adversary is to get us to focus on many negative things that tend to get us negative, perhaps scared, but God wants us to focus on Him and His ability to take care of us. We’ve already had a few sessions on having a clear focus and we’ll have several more where we’ll focus on different aspects of what God’s word wants us to think about. And today we have a very, very, simple, wonderful focus that’s at the basis of really everything we do, which is acknowledging that God loves us. And that’s very important to focus on, because in the days ahead you will be around people that don’t love you very much. It could be that they’re just neutral and don’t care and don’t want to help you, it could be they’re actively working against you, we run into both of those things from time to time. But, we want to focus on how much God loves us, and it is good to remember that. So, when you’re in one of those situations where perhaps the people around you aren’t quite as nice as you’d like, you can remember, and at least focus on God’s love.
Because He always loves you. People are going to come and go; sometimes you’ll be surrounded by wonderful people that love you and take care of you, sometimes you’ll be surrounded by people that are just neutral, they don’t care about you one way or another and may ignore you; sometimes you’ll be around people actively antagonistic towards you. We will have all three happen to us. It depends on the week and the day and who you are and who you are around; its not always going to be consistent, but all three of those will happen. But the great thing is that no matter whether you’re surrounded constantly by people that love you, which is the best. Or constantly surrounded by people who hate you, which is the worst. Or like most people where its somewhere in between; some people are very kind and helpful, some people ignore you, other people are somewhat antagonistic. It doesn’t matter, because God loves you and He’s always there. Enjoy it when people love you and help you, and when they don’t, just realize, God is still there and He still loves you and He will help you though whatever challenges you might have.
So, we know this, we’ve read this, but we tend to forget it sometimes and our minds get dragged off to focus on other things in this world that aren’t as positive and uplifting, which is why we’re going to read several scriptures today about God’s love for us. Let’s start with a very favorite one we read all the time in Deuteronomy; Deuteronomy chapter seven…
As taught by Bruce Mahone, 20190113.  All rights reserved.
Verse Listing and Notes
Deuteronomy 7:8        God’s motives
Deuteronomy 23:5      God turned the curse (of Balaam) into a blessing, because He loved
Psalms 13:5-6               I have trusted in thy steadfast love
Psalms 34:8-10             O taste and see that the Lord is good; they that seek the Lord shall not lack any good thing —
Psalms 36:7-9               How excellent (precious) is thy lovingkindness
Psalms 92:1-2               To shew forth (declare) thy lovingkindness in the morning
Psalms 119:165            Great peace have they which love thy law, and nothing shall offend
Jeremiah 9:23, 24         He knoweth the Lord which exercises lovingkindness (vs 24)
Jeremiah 31:3                With lovingkindness He drew us.
Romans 8:28                 All things work together for good
Romans 8:38, 39           Nothing can separate us
Ephesians 1:4-6             Holy and without blame, lovely and acceptable
I Thessalonians 4:9-12  You are taught of God to love one another (vs. 11 – aspire to lead a quiet life, aspire to live quietly, let it be a point of honor with you to keep calm)
Clear Focus, Part 3: God Loves Us (#960)