Summary: 2nd in a 3 part series on Love
ILL - A man bought a new hearing aid and said it is wonderful. So I said what kind is it? To which he replied, “It is about quarter ‘till 3.”
What I about to say this morning is so important I want you to turn your hearing aid up!!!
I hear so many churches say - “we are such a loving church ... hugs ect.
That’s what every church wants to be known for. But what many churches are known for in the community is for being unloving. I hear people say all the time - I used to go to so and so church until someone said ... (something so mean and evil) Or someone did this to me or that.
ILL - Old man to his wife felt a tender moment - “so proud of you - I’m tired of you too”
I want you to hear me this morning.
Sunday we learned that real human value is measured by love. Otherwise “I am nothing!”
In---every Christian there must be…
Loving in Speech v.1
“ In Spirituality v.2
“ In Service v.3
Chapter 12 discusses the gifts given by God to the individuals of the church, to be used as tools to do the work of the church. These gifts, or tools, are worthless without love.
ILL>> If the gifts of the HS are the engine that gets the work of the church done (we are all the working parts), then love is the fuel. A car is dead without gas. Now to stretch this illustration even further, even gasoline is just a liquid without a spark. When was the last time you were on fire for God? Is your fuel tank on empty? God can give you all the love you need if you ask.
Before the New Testament times two words were commonly used for love, Eros and Phileo.
Eros was the name of a Greek god, the son of Apaphrodite the goddess of love and beauty. Eros was also called Cupid by the Romans. The love of Eros was often passionate lust, it was animalistic and sexual in its fervor but it could also be the emotion one feels when looking at a beautiful sunset or a magnificent work of art. Eros was a physical love based purely upon the selfish needs or wants of the one "in love." Eros love always takes, whether it is a pleasure of a kiss or the pleasure of a new car, the benefit is a selfish one. Josh McDowell in his book, "Givers, Takers and Other Kinds of Lovers" defines Eros love as "Love, if." In other words eros love is conditional. It always depends upon something or someone outside of itself to bring it pleasure. If the outside source of pleasure ceases, so does this type of love.
(1 John 2:16 KJV) For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.
How does John describe the love of the world?
The second word for love was the word phileo, it meant a mutual shared love. It was the love of friendship and the love of family. This type of love was based not upon a physical, selfish desire but upon something found within the object loved. This might be a noble quality or a bond of family or shared experiences of life. McDowell calls this love, "Love, Because." This is a love which has a deeper reason for its existence. It shares, respects and cherishes it’s object of love. Yet this word was not strong enough for New Testament believers for even it could cease. Though much stronger than eros, it nevertheless was a love based upon mutual benefit, if the benefit should cease so does the love. Husbands and wives quit loving each other and friends become enemies because something changes and "phileo" love is not strong enough to survive.
The love which Paul writes of and the word which is used in the New Testament to describe it was used in classic Greek for sacrifice, it was the word agape. The writers of the New Testament took it up as their own for it described the love they experienced from God through Jesus’ death for them. He had sacrificed himself and told them to "love one another even as I have loved you." What other word could possibly be adequate except a word for sacrifice. McDowell describes this love as "Love, Period." This love is not based on something external, but internal, for it is the love of God shed abroad in our hearts. Once I become a child of God, washed from my sin by the shed blood of the lamb, this love abides within me. I cannot manufacture or fake it, for it is as much a part of my new nature as eternal life itself.