Summary: A Christ Followers involvement in the world is to be salt and light. What happens to a culture when the light is dimmed and the salt looses its saltiness?
Authentic Christian love John 13:31-36
The church is moment by moment becoming more and more like the world around it. Instead of changing the world we are being changed by the world.
We have bought in to a deformed love that has a defective and inauthentic DNA. We have weakened our power and our impact because we have changed the definition of love. We have made it sappy and saccharine sweet and politically correct.
Basic Truth: Real Christian love is the most powerful force in the universe
Jesus taught us to be in the world but not part of it. A Christ Followers involvement in the world is to be salt and light. What happens to a culture when the light is dimmed and the salt looses its saltiness? That culture suffers
We are to be transformed and not conformed to the world system, and then to become transformers.
How very little difference there is between the church and most benevolent institutions and para-church organizations. Isn’t the church supposed to be different? Isn’t it supposed to have a different power source and purpose?
In our journey through John we are now nearing the crucifixion. Jesus has saved his most important teachings for the moment of most impact. That time is now and He releases a powerful statement that is to, forever, progender the authentic DNA for the church.
There has always been only one way to recognize the authentic DNA of a Christian. How we love is the badge of authenticity.
Burning Question: What does real Christian love look like?
Real love is all about bringing glory to God. John 13:31 When he had gone out, Jesus said, “The Son of Man is now glorified, and God has been glorified in him. 32If God has been glorified in him, God will also glorify the Son of Man in himself, and he will glorify him at once.
The complete antithesis to bringing glory to God is found in the sentence preceding vs. 31 where in Judas set out to do his dastardly dead. He loved the world more than he loved God.
Jesus knew that the events that had just been set in motion would bring glory to Father God.
When we love the unlovely we do it because God is glorified.
The contemporary idea of love is human focused and thereby flawed.
When we keep our marriage vows we sometimes do it because God is glorified by doing so.
When we keep our word even though it causes us pain and loss may, in fact, bring Glory to God, the ultimate value of a Christian.
Martin Luther said, Faith is a living well-founded confidence in the grace of God, so perfectly certain that it would die a thousand times rather than surrender its conviction. Such confidence and personal knowledge of divine grace makes its possessor joyful, bold, and full of warm affection toward God and all created things -- all of which the Holy Spirit works in faith. Hence, such a man becomes without constraint willing and eager to do good to everyone, to serve everyone, to suffer all manner of ills, in order to please and glorify God, who has shown toward him such grace.
Ole Hallesby, a Norwegian Theologian understands glorifying God in a prayer he once prayed. He said, "Lord, if it will be to Your glory, heal suddenly. If it will glorify You more, heal gradually; if it will glorify You even more, may your servant remain sick awhile; and if it will glorify Your name still more, take him to Yourself in heaven."
#1. If your love is rooted in either your heart of in the heart of another person it is inauthentic. It has defective DNA. Authentic love always is present to bring glory to God.
#2. Rethink your relationships and base them on bring glory to God and you will discover they will take on a powerful dimension in your life.
TS: Real love always brings glory to God and it most often involves the next painful consideration.
Real love involves sacrifice
33Little children, I am with you only a little longer. You will look for me, but what I told the Jews I now tell you, ‘Where I am going, you cannot come.’
Jesus was going someplace we could not go. He was going to die as a substitute for sin. He was not going to die for His sin, because He was sinless.
This perfect model reveals that love is willing to pay any price.
Most of us have love and relationships turned around backwards. We love when we get something in return. We love as long as we feel emotionally high and well compensated. The Biblical kind of love and the kind of love that changes the world is based not on what can be gained, but on what can be given.