Christians know as fact that God declares us favored in His eyes. We also know we are here by His grace, to worship and proclaim His mighty name. And though some may try to tempt, persuade, lure or belittle the faith of a Christian, no one can ever take Christ’s light away from us.
1 Peter 2:9 But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.
Knowing attacks would rage against the Christian body to cause harm, God in His wisdom gave us rules of conduct which Christians are to follow, so that Christians will not imitate the ways of evil.
So, how are we to live our Christian faith and declare His praises even while under verbal attack by those of other faiths, doubters, and especially those with pure hatred of Christ followers in their heart?
I would love you to read five important Bible verses where God offers us instruction to this question:
1.God tells us to love the LORD your God.
Joshua 22:5 But be very careful to keep the commandment and the law that Moses the servant of the LORD gave you: to love the LORD your God, to walk in obedience to him, to keep his commands, to hold fast to him and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul.”
First and foremost, remember to keep the love of God in your heart. Jesus told us to “ ’Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ God is The One who provides us with strength to over come any evil that comes against us.
2.God tells us to love your enemies, do good to them.
Luke 6:32-35 “If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners do that. And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, expecting to be repaid in full. But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked.
Jesus said, “But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, Yes, it’s very easy to do good to those who do good to us. However, when we truly live out our faith through love, we are called to look past the sin against us and give love to the person offending us. This action reflects the love Jesus has for us onto others, thus we are living out our faith through His love.
3. God tells us to serve one another humbly in love.
Galatians 5:13-14 You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love. For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.”
When we do for others, we serve Christ. In Jesus’ words—‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’
4. God tells us to forgive one another in love.
Colossians 3:12-14 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.
Let’s be honest, this is the tough rule, especially when feelings are hurt and you physically/mentally ache with pain and suffering. The best way I remember to forgive is by remembering Jesus’ words from the cross as he hung beaten, torchered, bloodied and about to take His last breath— “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”
5. God tells us love does not delight in evil.
1 Corinthians 13:4-7 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
As you read this five verses, did you see a common thread? The greatest way, God tells us, to live out our faith is by acting through love. Jesus continually demonstrated His love through actions, from changing water into wine to raising three people from the dead.
We, of course can’t preform miracles on our own the way that Jesus did. But we can live out our faith through love, which brings us closer the Jesus, by utilizing His rules in our daily lives.
Remember, first and foremost we must love the Lord. When we love the Lord, the next four steps seem like a natural progression. How can one have hate in one’s heart if the love of God resides within it? Then with God’s love living inside of us, the acts of loving, serving, forgiving, and rebuking evil feel like the natural things to do..