Summary: We are in our series on Core Values. Core Values are the DNA that define who we are, what we are in infancy and in greatness. What God has called us to be. They are not just creeds on plaque or notes in book somewhere. They are the essence of who we a
Core Values: Love – 1 Corinthians 13:1-13
1 If I speak in the languages of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal.
2 If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.
3 If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing.
4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.
5 It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.
6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.
7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
8 Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away.
9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part,
10 But when perfection comes, the imperfect disappears.
11 When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me.
12 Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.
13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
We are in our series on Core Values. Core Values are the DNA that define who we are, what we are in infancy and in greatness. What God has called us to be. They are not just creeds on plaque or notes in book somewhere. They are the essence of who we are, if you were to describe our church in 12 words, the core values would be it. The core values we’re going to be speaking of for the next few months are establishing a foundation for New Mercy Community Church – Prayer, Holy Spirit, Evangelism, Equipping, Relationships, Love, Family, Sound Doctrine, Character, Excellence, Worship, and Missions. Today we’re going to talk about LOVE.
a. Love is a very popular word in our society. Amazon.com lists 2,652 book titles regarding “Heaven,” 10,304 for “Money,” 16,765 for “Sex,” 18,818 for “God,” and 30,066 for “Love.” Love is one of the deepest human needs of all, yet it is also a very misunderstood and misused concept.
b. THIS IS LOVE
i. In the 1986 “Crocodile Dundee” movie, Dundee is, of course, from Australia and visits New York City for the first time.
ii. As best I recall, he is being accompanied by a female newspaper writer and suddenly finds himself cornered by a gang of young thugs. When Crocodile Dundee does not give them his wallet, one young hoodlum pulls out a switchblade and threatens Dundee.
iii. Crocodile Dundee simply reaches behind his back, while saying, “that’s not a knife,” and pulls out a large Bowie-type knife, saying, “THIS IS A KNIFE!”
iv. As we read I Corinthians 13, we can almost hear the apostle Paul saying to the Corinthians about the world, “That’s not love...THIS IS LOVE!” The world’s version of love is not love! Most of the time it deals with lust.
c. Love is like a bridge that connects our hearts when we’re apart, The rainbow that colors our world when we’re together, And the bond that keeps us learning and growing together in the LORD!
i. Matthew 22:39 "And the second [great commandment] is like it: ’Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments."
ii. John 13:35 "By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another."
iii. 1John 4:8 says, “Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.”
e. You can’t say you know God and fail to love others. It’s a sign you know him—and know him by experience.
f. Love is the distinguishing mark of the child of God. It is also the distinguishing mark of the church of God!
g. "Christ demands that the driving force in your life must be love. All other things, although important, are secondary. Love is the sign of true discipleship. "
i. Romans 5:8 says, “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” He willingly laid down his life for us.
ii. John 15:13 says, “Greater love has no man than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.”