Summary: Message 40 in our exposition of 1 Corinthians. This is the seventh of seven messages exploring the nature and practice of genuine love.
Chico Alliance Church
Pastor David Welch
Impossible Love Part 7 or “Unimaginable Love Realized”
Love is a desire and decision to meaningfully connect with others
evidenced by sacrificial deeds and energizing interaction.
I. Realize His Unimaginable Love
A. God is love
God is love, and the one who abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him. 1 John 4:16
God always loves. It is His nature to desire and decide to connect with us. He delights to relate to His children. He seeks responders. (John 4) Everything God does is motivated by a desire to relate to us.
B. Love comes from God and is taught by God.
hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out (spilled, gushed out – perfect tense verb indicating a past action with continuing results i.e. poured out and still there!) within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us. Rom 5:8
God instills a deep longing to connect with others and serf others at salvation. He floods every believer’s soul with a desire for connection.
For God has not given us a spirit of timidity, but of power and love and discipline (self-control).
God teaches us to love.
Now as to the love of the brethren, you have no need for anyone to write to you, for you yourselves are continually taught by God to love one another 1 Thess 4:9-12
C. Love for God and others is the central point of the entire Bible.
And He said to him, " 'YOU SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL, AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND.' "This is the great and foremost commandment. "The second is like it, 'YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.' "On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets." Matthew 22:37-40
Let all that you do be done in love. 1 Cor. 16:14
Intimate relationship with God and meaningful connection with people is the heart of the Gospel. As ambassadors for Christ we are to beg people to be reconciled to God. That means we are to beg people to enter into intimate relationship with God again. To reconcile is to restore unhindered relationship.
D. Love is the result of surrender to work of the Holy Spirit
“The fruit of the Spirit is love…” Gal 5:22
Love is the natural result of walking by the direction and energy of the Spirit.Walking by the Spirit comes by active trust in God, not ourselves, to produce the impossible in us on the basis of His promise.
E. The body of Christ teaches us and motivates us to love
But you followed my teaching, conduct, purpose, faith, patience, love, perseverance, persecutions, and sufferings, 1 Tim 3:10-11
let us consider(study intently) how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds, not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more, as you see the day drawing near. Hebrews 10:21
Not only do other body members teach us to love by encouragement and example but through continual prayers for our increased love (Paul prayed continually that they would increase in love.)
F. Love may continually grow and increase
Now as to the love of the brethren, you have no need for anyone to write to you, for you yourselves are taught by God to love one another; for indeed you do practice it toward all the brethren who are in all Macedonia. But we urge you, brethren, to excel still more, 1 Thes. 4:9-10
Now may our God and Father Himself and Jesus our Lord direct our way to you; and may the Lord cause you to increase and abound in love for one another, and for all men, just as we also do for you; so that He may establish your hearts unblamable in holiness before our God and Father at the coming of our Lord Jesus with all His saints. 1 Thess 3:11-13
And this I pray, that your love may abound still more and more in real knowledge and all discernment, so that you may approve the things that are excellent, in order to be sincere and blameless until the day of Christ; having been filled with the fruit of righteousness which comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.
Desires can grow stronger. Growing in love has to do with the intensity of desire as well as the increase in deeds. We learn though words as well as witness. We learn through explanation as well as example.
G. Love involves personal participation
God enables us to love first by purifying the selfish bent inherited from our forefathers. God enables us to love by flooding our hearts with His love. God teaches us to love.