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Summary: To Help One and all Understand What God Expects of Love and His People. (A true definition.)

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The Greatest of these is Love

1 Corinthians 13:1-13

Thesis: to help one and all understand what God expects of love and His people. A true definition.

Introduction:

1. The badge of our discipleship is our Love

a. A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another. [John 13:34-35]

2. One cannot be saved unless he loves

a. Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love. [I Jn 4:7-8]

3. This lesson today is designed to define the Love that God expects us to demonstrate.

ACTIONS WITHOUT LOVE

1. [1 Cor 13:1-3]

a. Speaking with the tongues of….meaningless noise without love

b. All other spiritual gifts….amount to nothing without love

c. Benevolence…no profit without love

2. Christianity involves more than duties to perform, obligations that need to be met, or rituals to be practiced, IT INVOLVES THE HEART

3. {2 Cor 13:5} Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves.

WHAT LOVE DOES NOT DO

1. Love does not envy [13:4]

a. Envy is mentioned as one of the works of the flesh [Gal 5:21]

i. Cain killed Able because of envy [1 Jno 3:12]

ii. The Jews killed Jesus because of envy [Matt 27:18]

iii. The apostles were imprisoned because of envy [Acts 5:17-18]

2. Loves does not vaunt or parade itself [13:4]

a. A spirit of arrogance is not a fruit of love

b. “When someone sings his own praises, he usually sings alone”

c. Love esteems others rather than self [Phil 2:3]

3. Love does not behave unseemly or rudely [13:5]

a. Love is courteous towards others

b. Some take pride in “tactlessness” by stating their “only being honest”, or “the truth is”

i. However, more often than not it is a sign of their lack of sensitivity.

4. Love does not seek its own [13:5]

a. Love is not selfish; it should always consider others

b. Love involves self denial; [Romans 15:1-2]

5. Love is not provoked [13:5]

a. A Christian should not be noted for his “anger” but his peaceful nature

i. Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath: For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God. [James 1:19-20]

b. Although injured by others, love returns good for evil

i. Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good. [Rom 12:21]

6. Love takes no account of evil [13:5]

a. Love does not keep a running list of injuries sustained or sins committed by others

7. Love does not rejoice in iniquity [13:6]

a. Love does not enjoy watching, listening to, or participating in unrighteousness of any kind.

WHAT LOVE DOES DO!

1. Love suffers long [13:4]

a. Love is merciful and forbearing with others

b. Knowing what it is like to be guilty of sin, we ought to be patient and longsuffering with others when they sin and fall.

2. Love is kind [13:4]

a. Kindness will seek to spare another’s feelings even while being provoked.

b. (Eph 4:32) Be kind to one another

i. And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God, for Christ’s sake, hath forgiven you. (Eph 4:32)

3. Love bears all things [13:7]

a. Doing the unpleasant is one of the greatest tests of love

b. (1 Peter 4:8) Love covers a multitude of sins

i. And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins.(1 Ptr 4:8)

4. Love believes all things [13:7]

a. This does not believe we should be naïve or gullible, but we should be ready to believe the best in people

b. Innocent until proven guilty is not just an American philosophy, it is a Christian based way of life.

5. Love hopes all things [13:7]

a. Love expects the best in life and the best in men

b. A pessimistic Christian is about as natural as a refrigerator in an igloo.

c. Love should anticipate that “all things work together for good”

i. “to them that love God, to them that are called according to his purpose (Romans 8:28)

6. Love endures all things [13:7]

a. No doubt, by the end of your life, we will have many battle scars from our walk with Christ, however love endures

i. From this day forward; let no man trouble me: for I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus [Gal 6:17]

ii. Love endures all trials and tribulations, never gives up on the one you love, and in return never gives up on you!

Conclusion

1. Love is essential to our salvation, therefore we must work to possess these qualities of genuine love

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