Summary: This sermon is designed to guide the hearer to the usefulness of love. The God kind of love is unknown to the flesh. It is a work of the Spirit. Love has power to alter many of the challenges we have in life, if we would learn to use it.

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I. Introduction

A. The Love Fruit

1. Love (Agape Love) is love of the mind, reason and will

2. Agape love is love that

a. Loves regardless of feelings – whether we feel like loving or not

b. Loves even if the person does not deserve to be loved

c. Loves the person who is utterly unworthy of being loved

3. Love is the core of the Fruit of the Spirit

a. The Holy Spirit has only one fruit

b. Love is the core

c. The rest are other aspects (characteristics of the fruit

d. Like an apple

i. In the core there are seeds (that can be planted for more fruit)

ii. The meat

iii. The juice

iv. The aroma

v. The skin

vi. The stem

4. It is love possessed by God Himself

a. For God so loved . . .

b. He gave . . ..

c. His only . . .. Son

5. Love demonstrated by Christ – no greater love than this – a man lay down his life for his friends

6. Agape love cannot be learned

7. It is a gift of God

a. Experienced only if a person knows God personally

b. Received Christ in his or her life

8. The Fruit of Love has power

9. Power to create a different approach to life

a. Power to change the unchangeable

b. Power to Heal brokenness

c. Power to reveal the invisible

d. Power to save the dying soul

B. Love Problems

1. Nobody knows how to love

a. We use it loosely

b. Generously

c. The text reveals what it means

d. It does not teach us how to love

2. We have assumed we know because we feel something for someone

a. Why?

b. Selfishness

c. It’s all about us

3. Not natural for the human (flesh) spirit

4. People

5. History with people

6. Doubt and fear

7. Expectations that are unmet

8. Miss the power to overcome by faith

9. It takes Power to Love

a. The Power to Love

b. Comes with the Power of Love

10. Amen!

II. The Power of Love

A. The Value of Love

1. Remember, the Corinthians were Greeks, and they prided themselves on their great orators, i.e. Plato, Socrates, and Aristotle were all Greeks.

2. And Paul is saying though I had their tongues,

a. Though I had the power to sway vast crowds with my oratory,

b. If I did not love, I am nothing.

3. Paul says that all of the great speeches of

a. Human language

b. Heavenly language

c. Have no value without love

4. And the reverse of that truth is

a. That the humblest person whose words are backed with love is greater than great speakers

5. Read verse 2:

a. Spiritual gifts without love

b. Faith without love

c. Equals = Nothing of value

d. The word Paul used means "worthless, meaningless, of no value".

e. Love says psychiatrist A.A. Brill, "is necessary to survival.

f. It is quite as essential for a person to have love," says a doctor, "as to have pure air and food to sustain him."

6. Verse 3: “And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing.”

a. Bankrupt without love

b. Good deeds without love: I will feel better

c. No matter how much I do, I reach a dead end

d. I wanted it for me rather than for them and God.

B. The Power of Love

1. Love has Power

a. Authority

i. The right to command weakness to find its potential for strength

ii. Divine permission overcome hate

b. Ability

i. A natural capacity to love the unlovable

ii. Competence in spite of faults

2. It has the Power of Permanence -

a. The first aspect mentioned after love

b. The Power remains as long as it is used

3. Love has the Power humility

a. Power of patience – WITH PEOPLE

b. Power of kindness - GIVING

c. Cares more for others than for self

4. The Power of maturity -

a. Not jealous of what others have

b. Content

c. Doesn’t strut with an arrogant life

d. Doesn’t have a swelled head

5. The Power of Respect

a. Doesn’t force itself on others

b. Isn’t always Me first

c. Doesn’t fly off the handle

d. Power to not get even with an attitude

e. Doesn’t keep score of the sins of others

6. The Power of Assurance

a. Power to seek truth and not rumors or opinion

b. Power to put up with the temporary

c. Trusts God always

d. Never looks back

e. Keeps going to the end

III. Conclusion

A. The Choice is Yours

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