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Summary: Real love does not damage you or hurt you – real love makes you whole.

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THE MISUNDERSTOOD GOD**: THE HAIR-TRIGGER GOD

1 CORINTHIANS 13:1-4

Big Idea: Real love does not damage you or hurt you – real love makes you whole.

Supporting Scripture: Psalm 86:15; Jeremiah 29:11, 31:3; Romans 2:4; 1 Timothy 1:16; 2 Peter 3:9; Jude 24-25

1 If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. 3 If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing.

4 Love is patient, love is kind.

INTRO

Say it with me … Love is patient, love is kind.

It was not the first time I had a conversation with her or a conversation like this with other women. And it started … “I met this guy.” From there her story was predictable and sad. She had given herself to him with great hope that this relationship would be different but soon she learned he was a Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. In a moment he could go from charm to harm. The abuse was evident and the scars that were left on her heart were permanent.

But the she said these words … “But I know he loves me.”

Say it with me … Love is patient, love is kind.

One of the shrewdest deceptions that the Devil casts over our world is to convince us that traits that are evil, even demonic, are actually rooted in love and loving.

She has an evening free and chooses to spend it alone in another room pretending he is not there but yet he says “I know she loves me.”

Say it with me … Love is patient, love is kind.

As I said last week, what we think about love affects how we understand God. And sadly, since the meaning of love has been distorted, we have a distorted view of God.

The world has taught us that love is the exact opposite of everything written in chapter 13.

Think about how the world loves:

• Is it patient?

• Is it not self-seeking?

• Does it not keep record of wrongs?

And, brace yourself, this understanding of love has, in a perverted manner, been embraced by Jesus’ followers. We have taken Satan’s upside down spin on love and tried to make it divine. In doing so, we give God the personality and motivation of the Devil.

We have been taught that niceness (kindness) is a tool of manipulation. When someone is nice what do we often say? We say “What do you want?”

We have been taught that love is impatient. If you love something rush headlong into it; do not hesitate or wait! Therefore, many of us act like God is impatient.

• But impatience includes impulsiveness.

• It means one is reacting to immediate circumstances.

• It suggests God has been counting to ten and could just snap at any moment.

• It implies that he’s a seething volcano and the fire of his wrath is right under the surface just waiting to erupt.

• Impatience suggests God is sent off the rails by our sin and failure.


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