Thomas Cosmades



Apraham Hoja of Aintab


Chapter 14


Apraham Hoja’s Letters

and his Latter Days


Love is fundamental

“A new commandment I give unto you, that you love one another(John 13:34)

We all are encountering a peril if we forget or neglect this fundamental rule.  To be correct in creed is honorable.  To be steadfast in its teaching is admirable, but not enough. Creed must be exercised in daily living.  Our blessed Lord with this last command to his disciples impressed upon them the truth that love emanating from him is essential and a special mark of every believer.  If our creed does not help us to live like Christ, what is it good for?  There are those who forget brotherly love.  They allow trifles to shape and control their conduct.  This attitude inevitably leads them to envy and strife.  Beware of the wiles of the devil!  He is the most cunning and crafty creature, lying in wait to deceive and manipulate careless believers.  We need to make the thirteenth chapter of I Corinthians our life motto.


Unity among believers and display of love one toward another is the most pressing need in churches.  There is no substitute for brotherly love.  Nothing can take its place.  The need is not for eloquent preachers, but for those who live their sermons eloquently.  The need is not for men and women endowed with wisdom who can prove the deity of Jesus Christ through logic, but it is for believers who daily demonstrate proof of Christ’s deity by the testimony of their lives and witness.  Whenever people are persuaded that Christ is living in a certain person, they are speechless.  They can have no objection because the person is living an unobjectionable life.  Men and women can and do object to everything, but they can never object to a genuine Christian life.  Objections can be raised against the most profound and capable preacher, but no one can object to the humble believer who lives the life of Christ.  These people work for Christ most effectively.  Brothers!  Believe this and strive to let Christ be seen in you.  This is the daily need of those who are in the Church of born-again believers.  I know for sure that he who denies the new birth cannot manifest the love of Christ in his or her life.  He can only display its counterfeit.  The appearance of that love basically is spurious.  It is absolutely clear that the person who has not received that true life from Christ cannot live the Christ-like life.  It doesn’t matter how earnestly he tries, he cannot display the love of Christ.  For such a person the vital confession which needs to be uttered is seen in the words of St. Paul: “Oh wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?”  (Romans 7:25).


The reason for the decline of the Christian faith to such a low level in our time is the number of counterfeit Christians who do not live Christ’s life.  It befalls on each one of us to seriously examine ourselves.  It is a great blessing to be found on the solid rock of Truth.  It is very good to say to Christ, “My Lord and my God!” but if that life does not fit the professed faith, if it doesn’t measure up to his standard, Satan laughs at it.  Orthodoxy and correct doctrinal persuasion are good.  Satan will never be afraid of these.  There are literally millions of people who do not read the Bible, and no doubt there are some who are satisfied by reading the lives of Christians.  People are aware of what you are really like and what you profess.  The person who knows the truth of Christianity and is born of God loves even as God loves.  This reality will certainly impress observing people.  Therefore, let us be on our guard because people are constantly reading us.  He who is living a genuine Christian life can show men and women the way to Christ.  The most essential thing in the sight of God is for his children to be like Christ. Those who are like him do the greatest work in the world. 


How can it be known if a person is a true Christian? By his Christ-like love.  Love is greater than faith and hope.  This is specifically stressed in I Corinthians 13:13.  If Christ-like love is lost then everything else is of no value.  This causes a deadly blow to Christ’s work and irreparable injury to his testimony.  Of how much value will your fingers be if your thumb is cut off?  If we do not love one another fervently, esteeming each other better than ourselves, seeking each other’s interest, our Christianity becomes a hollow mockery.  We simply get involved in formalities.  When we strive among ourselves as to who should be the greatest, then and there we deny the Christian faith. 


Dr. S. D. Gordon explains it this way, “Christians, like the Holy Bible, must live the breath of God; they must be the breath of God; they must receive their very life from God.”  Such a person will accomplish great deeds because whatever he speaks he speaks from God.  He can do more than the author of many books.  Every word of his has a powerful influence because it is God working in him, speaking through him, both to will and do his good pleasure.  Prove righteousness by your life, rather than trying to defend this doctrine apologetically.  Let all men and women know of a truth that Christ is living in you and working through you.  Don’t be ashamed of the Gospel, and Christ will not be ashamed of you. 

                                                                                                                              Apraham Levonian ~~ Aleppo