THE FOUNTAIN OF LOVE
The Beatles sang, “All you need is love,” but if that is true, then there seems to be a severe shortage of it. We experience divorced and torn apart families. We live in tension filled communities. We see a nation in political turmoil. We shudder at the news of international terrorism and war.
The Spanish explorer came to Florida, searching for a fountain of youth. But he searched in vain. Is a fountain of love just a similar myth?
The Apostle Paul wrote: “Now the purpose of the commandment is love from a pure heart, from a good conscience, from sincere faith.” Let’s note a few things from this verse:
First, the commands of God (or doctrine, teaching – v. 3) are not the end, but a means to an end. The purpose of Christian teaching is to produce love, the love of Christ. This is the love which seeks the welfare of someone else, even at the cost of self-sacrifice. It is the love Jesus demonstrated to us on the Cross. Doctrine, commands, and teaching are not superfluous, but they are essential to producing love.
Next to be observed is the three-fold fountain of love. It is from a pure heart, a good conscience, and a sincere faith. The heart here is not the blood pump, but it is the seat of our motivation, desires, and will. It is where decisions are made and loyalties are chosen. It is inward as opposed to an outward or ceremonial activity. And Paul says it is to be pure. Admonitions to purity of heart are found many times in Scripture – Matt. 5:8; 6:22-23; Jn. 15:3; 2 Tim. 2:21-22; Titus 1:15.
The conscience is the little voice inside us which says we are doing right or wrong. It is closely related to knowledge because our conscience must be educated as to what is right and wrong. In order to have love as the fruit of our Christian actions, then we must be strong in a knowledge of the truth. In this same epistle to Timothy, Paul mentions two negative examples of the conscience. Hymenaeus and Alexander had made shipwreck of the faith, in part because of their rejection of a good conscience – 1 Tim. 1:19-20.
Faith as used in the text here signifies our individual trust, our commitment to Christ. This trust or commitment is expressed in obedience to the Lord’s teaching. Faith without obedience is not the Biblical idea of faith. This faith is to be sincere, or genuine. There are many people who try to pass off counterfeit things to us, but we cannot allow that to happen. If love is in short supply, then maybe we need to check if our obedience is genuine or just pretence.
The refreshing, vitality of love which is so desperately needed in our world, flows from Christ through His teaching. This doctrine changes our hearts, our heads, and our actions. When we have this love it will fill and overflow our lives and be a blessing to others.
Bruce was born in Warren, Ohio in 1959. His father, Emanuel Daugherty, is a gospel preacher. He married the former Gayle Gleaton of Fairview, Georgia in 1981. He and his wife have two sons: Mike age 28, lives in Chicago, working in the advertising community and Vince, age 25 who is married to Tiffany and teaches high school in Daytona Beach.
Bruce received his B. A. in Bible from Freed-Hardeman College in 1981. He received his M. A. in Church History from Harding Graduate School of Religion in 2006.
Bruce served as an associate minister for the Reynoldsburg (Ohio) Church of Christ from 1981-1983. He was a missionary in Cervignano, Italy from 1983-1990. He preached for the Beville Road congregation in Daytona Beach, FL from 1990-2000. He preached for the 10th & Clairmont Church of Christ in Cambridge, Ohio from 2000-2011. In November 2011 he returned to Beville Road to serve as their preacher. He has held gospel meetings in Florida, Ohio, West Virginia, and Tennessee. ,.......more
What you can expect when you visit.
• The December Fellowship Meal follows the morning worship service 12/10/2017. We invite our visitors to stay and be our guests for lunch.
• Our Friday Night Bible Study will be this Friday, the 15th, at 6:30 PM in the annex. Please bring finger foods. Emanuel Daugherty will be teaching the lesson.
• A “Joy of the Season” fellowship is planned for the Young at Heart group on Friday, December 22nd from 10:00 AM to Noon in the annex. Please RSVP to Barbara Bourgeois at 225-802-1229.
• MEN: Ushers are needed for 2018. Please sign the list on the bulletin board if you are able to help.
• If you have pictures of congregational activities for 2017, please submit them to Bruce by December 28th for the end of year slide show.
• Be planning to attend the New Year’s Breakfast on January 1st. Please sign the list on the Ladies’ table if you plan to attend so the men will know how many to prepare for.
• Check the bulletin boards for activities at Area Congregations