Church explores love within the community

Published 2:00 pm Tuesday, April 13, 2010

By Eason Franklin
The Lowndes Signal

First John 2:7 says, “Whoever loves his brother lives in the light, and there is nothing in him to make him struggle.”

This was the key verse used in the lesson of “Love within the community” during Sunday School at the New Bethel Baptist Church in Braggs last Sunday.

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Derril Strickland used verse after verse to describe what the Apostle John passed on to those who did not know the name of Jesus.

“We have to love, not only our friends, but our enemies as well,” said Strickland.

John was the oldest surviving disciple of Jesus and is often referred to as the Apostle of Love, though he was not always this way.

Classmates discussed the progress of John’s maturation during his life and the development of his behavior toward friends and enemies.

As the Sunday topic developed, members discussed the various ways the scripture helps people negotiate and navigate their way through the darkness, or the absence of light.

Strickland continued to elaborate saying “many times a person may be able to navigate their way through a dark room in their own home without turning on any lights.”

The intentions of the allegory were to help explain how many people may negotiate a means to not serve God’s intent and, through those negotiations, they can mentally navigate around the lessons taught by Jesus and remain in mental and spiritual darkness.

One lesson gives regard to the world and the material possessions within it.

“People get caught up on what they have and not what gets them there,” said Julian Stephens.

Many teachings, Eastern and Western, explore the importance of the process of achievement and not the product thereof.

Strickland explained “people do not often have that eternal mindset,” referring to those experiences gained that people take with them to Heaven.

“The world and its desires pass away, but the man who does the will of God lives forever,” said Strickland.