By Kenneth W. Hagin
Christian charity means love in action. If we’d decide to walk in love at all times, our faith would be as powerful as dynamite, because “faith worketh by love” (Gal. 5:6).
What is love? The best description we have of real love—real Christian charity—is found in the Bible.
“Charity [love] suffereth long, and is kind; charity [love] envieth not; charity [love] vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. Charity [love] never faileth.” (1 Cor. 13:4–8).
If you read through the above list carefully, you will see that love is described in terms of actions. Love is not just emotions, or feelings. Scripture very clearly shows us that real charity—real love—is carried out in actions.
The only commandment given in the New Testament is to walk in love. You see, if we learn to always walk in love, we’ll never break any other commandment given under the Law. If you love someone, you’re not about to kill him, steal from him, or covet what is his.
If you have Christian love, you’re going to love the unlovely. I vividly remember as I was preaching one night in a church, two unsavory looking characters walked in and sat down on the back row. One had on a tank-top shirt with a picture of the devil on the front. On his shoulder was a tattoo that said, “Born to raise hell.” His jeans were so dirty, they probably would have stood in the corner by themselves. He had on sandals and his feet looked as if they hadn’t been washed in years. His hair was long and matted, and he smelled horrible. The other guy didn’t look any better.
I noticed them the second they walked into the church. They stood out! I also noticed the reactions of people sitting near them. Some of those self-righteous saints of God turned around and looked at the two guys as if to say, “Who invited you? What are you doing here in our church?” If they’d had enough nerve to do so, they probably would have said, “We don’t allow your kind in here. Get out.” They kept looking at these two guys out of the corners of their eyes, sort of pulling their “righteous” garments a little bit closer around them.
If it had been up to those church members, the two guys would have been escorted out by an usher. What kind of love is that? That night those two young men came forward during the altar call and got saved. They found out about the love of God, but not with the help of anyone sitting by them.
Love is more than just talk. It’s time to demonstrate our love to this world. You can talk all you want to about how much faith you’ve got, but I want to see your love in action. If you expect your faith to work, you have to demonstrate love.