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Summary: The highest calling of any person is to fully love God from our hearts. This message extends that theme as we show our love for God by our love to each other.

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THE SECOND GREATEST COMMANDMENT

Matthew 22:36-40; 1 John 4:7-21

Dorn Ridge February 16, 2014

INTRODUCTION:

1.) In my message last week as we were leading up to valentine’s Day we looked at “The Greatest Commandment.”

A.) We saw that the greatest commandment is to love the Lord our God with everything that is within us.

2.) This morning I want to start at that high level of love for God, and progress further as we look at the extension of our love of God in the love we give to others.

I. LOVE FOR GOD MEANS WE ALSO LOVE ONE ANOTHER. (I John 4:11)

1.) No one has ever seen God;

---Which brings us to the question:

A.) Can Christians love a God they have never seen?

aa.) Through the ages one of the problems of man and his worship is that many have felt the need to have some kind of a tangible presence of God that can be seen, touched, held, felt, etc.

ab.) Man’s desire to have some kind of form that he can see and experience with his five senses, has brought him to the place that foolishly many have bowed down to a piece of wood or metal, or something else of a physical nature.

ac.) Even the Israelites bowed down to worship a calf made of gold, and receive on themselves the wrath of God because of their wickedness.

B.) As Christians we do claim to love a God we have never seen.

ba.) Judaism and Christianity differ from world religions in so many ways.

bb.) One of those differences is this very thing that we can believe in God, trust in Him, and have faith and a relationship with Him even though we have never seen Him.

bc.) Unlike pagan religions that require statues and images that can be experienced with the five senses, the Christian faith recognizes that God is greater than any of these.

bca.) Jesus said: “God is Spirit; the true worshippers are those who worship in Spirit and truth.” (John 4)

2.) Even though we may have never actually seen Jesus Christ, we are together the temple of God, where He makes His dwelling place.

A.) New Testament Scripture most often speaks of our bodies as being the temple of God when it speaks on the sexual and intimate areas of our lives.

B.) The reason for this is that as the temple of God we are to be holy and pure before God.

ba.) It is therefore possible that the temple of God can be defiled by that which is sinful and outside of the will of God.

baa.) 1 Cor. 6:15-20

bab.) 2 Cor. 6:14-17

bb.) Yet when the Temple of God is in a state of holiness, in which we will welcome the presence of God, we become holy temples.

bc.) When God is at home in our bodies, with our minds, and spirits given to Him, the presence and power of Almighty God will be seen in our lives, and in our interaction with others.

bd.) This in turn will not only attract the world around us to the love of God seen in Jesus Christ, but it will also serve as evidence that we in fact do love God with all our heart, and soul, and mind, and strength.

3.) Scripture states: “if we love one another, God lives in us.” (1 John 4:12)

A.) And His love is made complete in us.

B.) God’s love is made complete in us because we are the living temple of God.

ba.) As a Christian, each one of us individually is both the place and the person where the love of God is displayed and given to the world who is looking for God and His love.

bb.) The reason that Loving our neighbour as ourselves is the second most important commandment is that we who bear the name of Jesus Christ have the duty and obligation to show forth the Love of God to the world.

bba.) We have been given such an awesome task, responsibility, and may I say joy because as Christians, we are the redeemed of the Lord.

bbb.) As the redeemed of the Lord, we are the primary reflections of who God is in this world.

C.) The evidence of this love for God is in the love we have for our neighbour.

ca.) When we love our neighbour as ourselves, we are in fact showing that we have come to love God with our entire being.

cb.) “For anyone who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot love God, whom he has not seen.” (1John 4:20)

cc.) “Whoever loves God must love his neighbour.” (1 John 4:21)

4.) We know that we live in Him and He in us:

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