Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Love and Freedom ... and Kindness

Have I mentioned how much I like Scot McKnight's Jesus Creed web site?

Below is part of one of his posts:

Spirit, freedom, and love. I begin by quoting all of Galatians 5:13ff. Now here’s my question: Can you spell freedom without including Spirit and love? Can you spell Spirit without it meaning love and freedom? Can you spell love without it meaning Spirit and freedom?

13 You, my brothers, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the sinful nature; rather, serve one another in love. 14 The entire law is summed up in a single command [here Paul quotes the second half of the Jesus Creed: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” 15 If you keep on biting and devouring each other, watch out or you will be destroyed by each other. ...

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self‑control. Against such things there is no law. 24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires. 25 Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.

This reminded me that at the Seton Hill Worship Group we sing a song by Brian McLaren about being kind. A song about kindness may seem silly, but don't we ridicule what makes us most uncomfortable as a way to distance ourselves from it?

When I hear that song, it seems so simple just to be kind. And it also seems to sum up the gospel message. But it's probably the hardest thing to do. Is it?

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