Summary: Love, there is simply nothing like it. The ability of love to motivate and aceept is almost unbelievable.
A Love that runs
Love- characteristic of God’s heart
A. Love is the greatest force because it flows from the Father God’s heart and into this dark and cold world
1. It was love that sent God into the garden looking for his fallen children.
a. God went looking for Adam, Adam did not go looking for God
b. When God noticed that he was not sensing the spiritual communion of his children, he went looking for them
2. "We love him, because he first loved us." (1 John 4:19, KJV)
a. John-disciple Jesus loved- Knew that it was literally Christ that loved them first
b. But when the kindness of God our Savior, and his love toward man, appeared, not by works done in righteousness, which we did ourselves, but according to his mercy he saved us…"
(Titus 3:2-5, ASV)
3. " Behold what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called children of God; and such we are. For this cause the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not." (1 John 3:1, ASV)
Love- the force that would win the world to Jesus
Love- will always remain
A. When all the dust has settled, when even prophesies have ceased, love will remain for it is the greatest.
1. Must read 1 Cor. 13- and expound on understanding ALL MYSTERIES… Have ALL FAITH…. So that mountains would tremble at my words…. And have NOT LOVE------ It is nothing- less than nothing….
Why can’t some love?
A. Some cannot love, not having experienced it
1. How can you give, that which you do not possess?
How can you possess, that which you have not first experienced?
And how can you experience that, which you have never been exposed to?
2. As my friend Mark Virkler says in one of his books, I can study the Bible rationally, simply with the mind, and learn many facts about God.
For instance, I can learn that God loves me. But since love is an inner heart experience, I cannot fully experience God’s love until He touches my heart, heals my hurts.
When He fills me to overflowing and brings tears of joy to my eyes, then through an intuitive, spiritual experience, 1 have fully experienced the love I read about.
3. The churches I grew up in would try so hard to be kind, so hard to love, but it was a love with strings attached.
a. There were conditions to that love. The condition-you do as we approve and we will love you.
b. These people grew up in homes where they have never seen father or mother embrace. Never any open displays of affection.
Therefore, they lack having never seen that modeled before them
c. They earned a kind word, a soft hand upon them when they were obedient, and a leather strap across the back when they weren’t.
d. They learned to equate love with obedience – not relationship… a love motivated by fear.
Instead of a relationship founded in love and kindness, it was a deal bound by the adherence of endless rules and regulations.
B. What makes God’s love so wonderful, it is a love that is has no strings attached. Its simply unconditional.
1. "We love him, because he first loved us." (1 John 4:19, KJV
2. Paul say in Eph. 2:4-5- we were objects of wrath, yet the love of God has broken thru.
3. "The LORD did not set his love upon you, nor choose you, because ye were more in number than any people; for ye were the fewest of all people: But because the LORD loved you…” (Deuteronomy 7:7-8, KJV)
4. But when the kindness of God our Savior, and his love toward man, appeared, not by works done in righteousness, which we did ourselves, but according to his mercy he saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit," (Titus 3:2-5, ASV)
C. Love, with strings attached comes from a fragile & insecure heart
1. A heart not at peace with itself
2. It needs to protect itself.
It has not learned that perfect love hast cast out fear.
D. Our love or lack of it is a gauge showing the true condition of our hearts
1. Read & expound word by word 1 John 3 14-18
Verse 18- Love is more than a sign out front- We love everybody. Love is an attitude of the heart, an action of the heart
Song by Casting Crowns- If we are the body