|Tweet||Printable Version||Email This|
Image by: Photos8.com
It’s Valentine’s Day and our hearts just turn to thoughts of love. If Christianity could be condensed down into one word, that word would be love. In the Greek language, however, it is not just one word; there are at least three words, agape, phileo, and eros.
Agape love is by far the most intense and deepest form of love. It is the love Jesus expects spouses to have for each other; it is also the kind of love He demands that we have for each other. In 1 Corinthians 13 the Apostle Paul gives us some lessons in love.
1. Love is our highest priority, (1 Corinthians 13:1-3)
A. Love is more important than tongues – (Even devils can speak with tongues)
B. Love is more important than prophecy – (Fortune tellers can foretell the future)
C. Love is more important than the gift of faith – (Misguided faith can send one to Hell)
D. Love is more important than benevolence – (An atheist can be a philanthropist)
E. Love is more important than martyrdom – (Muslims are willing to die for Islam)
F. LOVE is the only real test of Christianity; “By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples . . .” (John 13:35)
2. The attributes of real love, (1 Corinthians 13:4-8)
A. Love is patient:
B. Love is kind:
C. Love is not envious:
D. Love does not boast: (boasting implies “I’m better than you.)
E. Love is not proud:
F. Love is not rude: concerned with other’s feelings
G. Love is not self-seeking: looks out for other’s welfare
H. Love is not easily angered: (not impossible, but not easy)
I. Love doesn’t keep score of transgressions:
J. Love rejoices in truth, not in evil
K. Love protects
L. Love trusts
M. Love has hope for the future
N. Love perseveres; it hangs in there through thick and thin
O. Love never stops
3. Love is a durable commodity
A. Even spiritual gifts will end, but love never will pass away.
B. The world today places little value on the durability of love.
C. Illustration: Make a new public commitment to wife
I. My love is not based on her beauty
II. My love is not based on my standard of perfection
III. My love is not based on what she can do for me sexually
IV. I love her and I stay with her because I have entered into a
life-long covenant with her that will be superseded by an
even greater relationship in eternity.
4. Love is the product of maturity
A. Babies know little about love: inherently selfish
B. Children must be taught how to love; also selfish
C. Hormones complicate adolescence, confusing sexual attraction with love
D. The ability to love grows deeper with advancing years.
5. The fullest expression of love is only possible to those who know God
A. “And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him.” (1 John 4:16 NIV)
B. Do you want a better marriage? Let God live in you.
C. Do you want better sex in marriage? Let God in your bedroom. He created sex and gave it to marriage.
D. Do you want better relationships at work? Let God govern your life.
E. FACT: All other love is counterfeit unless you know God.