Summary: Has you love for God grown cold? Do you find that you are stuck in a spiritual rut? Find out how God can help you to deepen your love for Him and keep your love for God alive.
Keeping Love For God Alive
Text: Revelation 2:1-7
Introduction: Have you ever bought or received as a gift something new that you have been wanting for a long time? Maybe it was a car that you really like. You bring it home for the first time and you immediately want to take it out for a drive with some friends. You call some friends and ask them if they would like to ride in your new car. You go pick them up at their house and take them to town. You look in the rear view mirror and notice one of your friends is eating a bag of potato chips, another has a pack of M&M’s, and the other one is drinking a coke. You get very upset an tell them they are not allowed to eat in your new car. When you get home you wash the car and sweep it out. Every week you wash it and you always make sure it is clean every time you get out of the car. How long did this enthusiastic attention to your car last? After driving it for a year would you still be washing it every week?
How many of you can remember the day you were saved? Can you remember the joy and enthusiasm you felt? Do you remember telling others about it? How long has it been since you have really been amazed at what God has done for you?
In our text, Christ is pointing out to the Church of Ephesus that they have left their first love. Their love for God had grown cold. What can we do to keep our love for God from growing cold?
17 warning signs that my love for God has grown cold
a. Lack of thankfulness to God for saving me from sin.
b. Lack of thankfulness for God’s daily blessings after being saved.
2. Neglect of the Bible
a. The Bible is our source of spiritual nourishment. Is it any wonder that the spiritual lives of many Christians is anemic? To neglect God’s word is to the soul what starvation is to the body.
b. The Bible is our defense against attacks of Satan and against temptation. Ps 119:105 says, “Thy Word have I hid in my heart that I might not sin against thee.”
3. Unbelief –“If you have not believed nor expected to receive the blessing which God has expressly promised—you have charged Him with lying.”—Finney
4. Neglect of Prayer
a. Prayer is the key to a close relationship with God.
b. Prayer is a time of fellowship with God. It give us opportunity to worship Him and lay our needs before Him and listen to Him as He speaks to us.
5. Mechanical, lazy prayers without feeling—praying out of a sense of duty. We would not treat a best friend this way, as if it were a drudgery to spend time with him. Neither should it be a drudgery to spend time with God.
6. Lack of love for friends and relatives. You may say, “But you don’t know my relatives.”
7. No concern for those who are lost.
“It’s the pastor’s job to win souls. It’s the missionaries job to toil on a foreign field. I don’t need to get involved with outreach.”
8. Neglect of family duty
Training of children.
Commitment and love toward your spouse.
9. Neglect to watch over the brethren
10. Materialism—a dangerous value system placing ones possessions above God. Unwillingness to surrender all our possessions to God for His use. In reality, He owns it all, we are just stewards of what He has entrusted to us.
11. Slander—To tell the truth with design to injure is slander.
15. Robbing God
16. Hindering others from being useful—casting a shadow of doubt about another’s testimony or motives.
17. Lack of self-denial.
Four points to prevent falling into sin.
1. Do not continue to do something that troubles your conscience even if it is not defined by the Bible or others as sin.
2. Do not utterly give up, just because your conscience was disturbed.
3. Do not delay making amends after sin.
4. Presumptious sin continually following repeated repentance will tend to destroy ability to believe for Salvation.
>Presumptuous sin—believing that since I know God will forgive me when I repent, I will sin now and when I am ready, I will repent and God will forgive me.
What do I need to do if my love has grown cold?
Jesus give the Church of Ephesus the formula for restoring their love for God.
1. Remember the days when you loved God more.
2. Repent of any unconfessed sin. Any sin in your life will hinder your love for God.
3. Love what God loves and hate what God hates. Jesus commended the Ephesian church because of the fact they hated the deeds of the Nicolaitans, which deeds God also hated.