Summary: The purpose of life; the work of God’s creative community, is posed by Jesus as a paradox. Of course a paradox is a statement or proposition that, despite sound, (or apparently sound) reasoning from acceptable premises, leads to a conclusion that seems senseless...
The Purpose of Life.
The purpose of life; the work of God’s creative community, is posed by Jesus as a paradox. Of course a paradox is a statement or proposition that, despite sound, (or apparently sound) reasoning from acceptable premises, leads to a conclusion that seems senseless, logically unacceptable, or self-contradictory.
Jesus said these powerful words in, Matthew 10:38-39NIV, Whoever does not take up their cross and follow me is not worthy of me. 39 Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for my sake will find it.
The greatness of God is this—As you take up your cross, and follow, Jesus walks with you. Primarily because, you become aware of His presence. His presence changes everything.
To follow someone—insinuates that somebody is moving… Jesus is moving…He always moves forward…Onward.
However, for those unwilling to take up their cross, Jesus isn’t inside their conscious, the heart is kindled by something, or someone else. P.H
To the non-believer—The cross is a hard sell.
Love itself is a transforming journey. In our culture centered on self-gratification, is it any wonder why churches find it so hard to develop, sustain, and expand a missional focus?
I’m proud to express the fact that CECC is an exception to the rule.
Most churches look outward and only see themselves.
Illustration: Have a mirror and call someone up for them to tell what they see—Themselves.
Have a piece of glass, and call someone up for them to tell them what they see—others.
Fact: You were created to help others, to see and heal the pain of others and fill it with God’s love.
Listen closely to today’s text—1 Corinthians 13:1-8NKJV Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal. 2 And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. 3 And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing.
4 Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; 5 does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; 6 does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; 7 bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. 8 Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away.
This kind of love in the Greek means, Agape love, It’s a love without conditions.
This Love is far greater than brotherly love, or phileo love. This love is greater than, erotic love.
God’s love given to you, is based solely upon faith. Faith doesn’t have to see love, faith doesn’t feel love, faith is rock solid, because it’s based upon our stance with Jesus Christ. P.H
Again, Love never fails… Say that.
The Apostle Paul knew this for a fact, He understood that his love and emotions had limits, but God’s love was given without measure, or boundaries.
I want you to hear Paul’s prayer for each of you.
Ephesians 3:16-19NLT I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will empower you with inner strength through his Spirit. 17 Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. 18 And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. 19 May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God.
One person wrote, God's Love has no limit. God's Grace has no measure. God's Power knows no boundaries.
Romans 5, expresses that God demonstrated His love for us, that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us.
That’s the whole premise of love—Jesus Christ died for you!
As we learn to operate in, and through this kind of love, we will flow with life—God’s life.
Again, Love—God’s love.
As translated in the Message Bible, the words of 1 Corinthians 13 are full of mystery, inconvenience, and unwavering focus away from a center of self.
1 Corinthians 13:1-4TM If I speak with human eloquence and angelic ecstasy but don’t love, I’m nothing but the creaking of a rusty gate.
2 If I speak God’s Word with power, revealing all his mysteries and making everything plain as day, and if I have faith that says to a mountain, “Jump,” and it jumps, but I don’t love, I’m nothing. 3 If I give everything I own to the poor and even go to the stake to be burned as a martyr, but I don’t love, I’ve gotten nowhere. 4 So, no matter what I say, what I believe, and what I do, I’m bankrupt without love. Love never gives up. Love cares more for others than for self. Love doesn’t want what it doesn’t have.