Summary: The importance of loving others
May 2, 2004
This is the message you heard from the beginning: We should love one another. Do not be like Cain, who belonged to the evil one and murdered his brother. And why did he murder him? Because his own actions were evil and his brother’s were righteous.
We Should Love One Another
• A timeless truth
• Cain – the example of evil (Genesis 4)
– Actions controlled by sin
– Abel’s righteousness highlighted Cain’s selfishness
– Envy was his downfall
1 John 3:13-15 (NIV)
Do not be surprised, my brothers, if the world hates you. We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love our brothers. Anyone who does not love remains in death. Anyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life in him.
Hatred of the World
• Your call to righteousness is considered offensive
– To agree with you would be to admit wrong
Proof of New Life
• Love for our brothers
– Recognition of our common bond
– Supercedes normal relational barriers
• Economic status
1 John 3:16-17 (NIV)
This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers. If anyone has material possessions and sees his brother in need but has no pity on him, how can the love of God be in him?
• Jesus laid down his life
– Down out of love
– Nothing held back
• We should lay our lives down for others
– It is often easier to die for someone than to live for them
– Improving the lives of others without expecting something in return.
1 John 3:18-20 (NIV)
Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth. This then is how we know that we belong to the truth, and how we set our hearts at rest in his presence whenever our hearts condemn us. For God is greater than our hearts, and he knows everything.
Love is an Action
• Love is not proven by the the words “I love you”
• Love is proven through action
– Our actions will keep our conscience clear
– God sees the action of the heart
1 John 4:21-22 (NIV)
Dear friends, if our hearts do not condemn us, we have confidence before God and receive from him anything we ask, because we obey his commands and do what pleases him.
The Right to Ask
• Obedience puts us in the right perspective to make requests of God
– Obedience in love puts our focus on others
– A heart turned outward is a heart that asks with unselfish motives
1 John 3:22-24 (NIV)
And this is his command: to believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ, and to love one another as he commanded us. Those who obey his commands live in him, and he in them. And this is how we know that he lives in us: We know it by the Spirit he gave us.
• Believe in Jesus
• Love one another
– Obedience brings an intimate relationship with God
– The Holy Spirit gives evidence of this intimate relationship
**Powerpoint available on request