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Summary: Many of us are special objects of God’s love -- not because we are special, but because He made us special in His eyes.

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Beloved of God

(I Thessalonians 1:4-6)

Intro (acknowledging Father’s Day)

1. A clergyman walking down a country lane and sees a young farmer struggling to load hay back onto a cart after it had fallen off.

"You look hot, my son," said the cleric. "Why don’t you rest a moment, and I’ll give you a hand."

"No thanks," said the young man. "My father wouldn’t like it if I rested."

"Don’t be silly," the minister said. "Everyone is entitled to a break. Come and have a drink of water."

Again the young man protested that his father would be upset. Losing his patience, the clergyman said, "Your father must be a real slave driver. Tell me where I can find him and I’ll give him a piece of my mind!"

"Well," replied the young farmer, "he’s under the load of hay."

[source: www.ahajokes.com]

2. Some dads can be patient, but even patience has its limits.

Like all human beings, dads can learn a lot from dad. In a sense, being a good dad is reflecting the ways of our heavenly Father to our children -- like unconditionally loving them and making them feel special.

Main Idea: Many of us are special objects of God’s love -- not because we are special, but because He made us special in His eyes.

I. Can We KNOW That We Are Chosen (4)?

A. YES!

We can know. "I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life." I John 5:13

But what are "these things?" Evidence that Jesus is living inside you!

B. Brothers and SISTERS with other true believers

1. I John 3:14 reads, "We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love our brothers."

2 Peter 1:10, "Therefore, my brothers, be all the more eager to make your calling and election sure."

2. We are now part of a new society…not based on income, education, color, politics, or career…CHRISTIANITY IS A PERSONAL FAITH THAT IS LIVED OUT IN A COMMUNITY OF FAITH AND A COMMUNITY FAITH THAT IS LIVED OUT INDIVIDUALLY IN DAILY LIFE…

3. This being Father’s Day, I might mention the importance of men feeling like they are in a spiritual brotherhood…Men’s Bible Study/Men’s Meetings -- a start

4. Often we guys identify with our co-workers, fellow hunters, or sports enthusiasts -- which is fine -- but sometimes we miss the most important camaraderie…

5. One sign of our being chosen by God is the love that we develop for fellow Christians, even though we may have little in common besides the Lord…

C. Specially LOVED by God

1. "Paul reminds them that God loves them (beloved) and that He chose them (election). The two go together. When we love someone, we naturally choose them." (David Guzik)

2. Two tracks in God’s love: His general love for all mankind, and His special love for those He has chosen…

3. We know God loves us not because everything in life goes well (because it doesn’t), but because God the Son became man to die on the cross for us; His love was both spoken and demonstrated:

Demonstrated: Romans 5:8, "But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us."


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