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Jesus led by example in his love of mankind

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POSTED: January 1, 2013 3:00 p.m.

(This is part 2 of a two-part series looking at the example Christ provided for humans)

Jesus is the example of how to love our fellow man. Prejudice did not have a place in the life of the Lord.

This is clearly seen when he talked with a Samaritan woman (John 4:6ff). The Samaritans were thought of by most Jews as being lower than dogs; they were to be avoided. When Jesus spoke to this woman, she even asked him about this: “Then saith the woman of Samaria unto him, How is it that thou, being a Jew, askest drink of me, which am a woman of Samaria? for the Jews have no dealings with the Samaritans” (John 4:9). Not only did he talk with her, he taught her and her people.

To Jesus, it did not matter what the nationality of a person was — what mattered was they had a soul. This is a lesson needed today. God loves all men, no matter the color of their skin or what nationality they are.

Jesus is the greatest example of the willingness to sacrifice for others. He left the glories of heaven to take on the form of man and to die at Calvary for mankind (Philippians 2:5-11). Imagine leaving heaven to come to this world for sinful man. Now that is a sacrifice. He willingly gave his life; man did not take his life, he freely gave it for man. “Therefore doth my Father love me, because I lay down my life, that I might take it again. No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father” (John 10:17-18).

Jesus is our example of forgiveness. From the very cross where he was slain came these words: “...Father forgive them...” (Luke 23:34). At a time when he could have called for the death of those who crucified him, we see the beauty of his nature. Forgiveness must be a part of the Christian life if this part of the Lord’s beauty is to be seen. Nowhere do we see a spirit of hatefulness or revenge portrayed by Jesus. Mankind holds grudges and tries to get back at those who have hurt us. We must look to the example Jesus left us and learn to forgive.

Jesus showed us the example of faithfulness to the father. He faithfully carried out his mission faithfully, doing the will of the father, and man must do the same. After becoming a Christian, one must be faithful to God. This means to worship and serve him as we are directed in his word. Here, it seems, some look away from the “example” and start doing things their way rather than God’s way. Before long, their life is so far from God that they are unrecognizable as his children.

Just as the child can turn the page and start again following the pattern of the example strayed from God. To his children, God offers the opportunity to start again. John wrote, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9). It must be remembered this is only offered to those who have been baptized for the remission of their sins.

We desire our children to learn to write to the best of their abilities so we check their work to make sure they are following the example. Christ is our perfect example that we must follow.

 

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