Summary: Remember the greatest love: 1. Because it can bind us together with God (vs. 9-10). 2. Because it can bring us great joy (vs. 9-11). 3. Because it blazed a trail for us to follow (vs. 12). 4. Because it bled for us (vs. 13).

Remember the Greatest Love

John 15:9-13

Sermon by Rick Crandall

Grayson Baptist Church - May 26, 2013

*On this Memorial Day, hopefully you will get to spend some time with family and friends. -- But as we do, we should remember the over 40 million Americans who have served in the military to help keep us free. We should also remember that over one million of those men and women have died to defend our liberty.

*Many of those fallen heroes were buried far away from home. Edward Chinn tells us that: "In India there is a cemetery where the bodies of American soldiers are buried. Over the entrance to this cemetery these words are written: ’Tell Them We Gave Our Todays for Their Tomorrows.’" (1)

*This is what we remember on Memorial Day. And their sacrifice is a picture of the one who gave His life so that we could live forever. Just a few hours before the Son of God died on the cross for us, Jesus said: "Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends." This greatest love can change everything in our lives! So today, let me urge you to remember the greatest love.

1. Remember the greatest love, first because it can bind us together with God.

*The greatest love can bind us together with God in a close personal relationship. Think for a moment about the relationships in your life. Think how important your family and friends are to you.

*Rick Warren once explained this importance by saying: "I have been at the bedside of many people in their final moments, when they stand on the edge of eternity. And I have never heard anyone say, ’Bring me my diplomas! I want to look at them one more time. Show me my awards, my medals, and that gold watch I was given.’

*When life on earth is ending, people don’t surround themselves with objects. What we want around us is people, – people we love and have relationships with. In our final moments we all realize that relationships are what life is all about." (2)

*Bearing that in mind, think about what Jesus said to His followers in vs. 9, "As the Father has loved Me, I also have loved you. . ." Can you imagine how close God the Father is to God the Son? -- No relationship could possibly be closer.

-In John 10:30, Jesus said: "I and My Father are one.’’

-And in John 14:6-9, Jesus said:

6. "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.

7. If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also; and from now on you know Him and have seen Him.’’

8. Philip said to Him, "Lord, show us the Father, and it is sufficient for us.’’

9. Jesus said to him, "Have I been with you so long, and yet you have not known Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father. . ."

*The Father and Son are one. No love could be stronger. No relationship could be closer. But wonder of wonders, God wants to be that close to us! God Himself wants to be our Father and Best Friend! Jesus said, "As the Father has loved Me, I also have loved you. . ."

[1] The greatest love can bind us together with God! How? -- Through faith in Jesus Christ.

*As the Lord said in John 3:16-18:

16. "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

17. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.

18. He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God."

*And in Romans 10:9-13, the Apostle Paul explained:

9. that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.

10. For with the heart one believes to righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made to salvation.

11. For the Scripture says, "Whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame.’’

12. For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek, for the same Lord over all is rich to all who call upon Him.

13. For "whoever calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.’’

*The greatest love can bind us together with God through faith in Jesus Christ.

[2] But then, after we believe, what should we do?

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