Sermons

Summary: God's love for us is not abstract but real, practical and eternal; so when Jesus says we should love our neighbour it means our love for those around us should also be real and practical.

OT Reading - Deuteronomy 6 v.1-9

NT Reading - 1st Corinthians 13 v.1-13

SERMON: True love is practical love

The Pop charts always seem to include many love songs,

such as “All you need is love” and “Love, love me do” by the Beatles in the 1960’s;

"Love me tender, love me true", by Elvis Presley;

“Love is all around” by Wet Wet Wet,

and “How deep is your love” by Take That.

But the pop industry’s image or understanding of love

is a million miles away from the kind of love that is taught by the Bible.

Love for many today, if not most, suggests physical pleasure,

and involves getting rather than giving,

and usually without any long-term commitment,

whereas Biblical love is about God’s long-term and steadfast,

and undeserved, love,

which He gives to those who believe in Him and His Son,

and who resolve to keep His commandments.

…..................................................................................................................

I was amazed to find out that there are 793 references to love and loving

in the NIV of the Bible,

144 in the Psalms alone.

…..................................................................................................................

The word appears in every book in the Bible, from Genesis 20:13

where Abraham tells Sarah to show her love for him

by telling everyone they met

that he was her brother,

in case they killed him to get her,

right through to to Revelation 22:15,

which contains a vision of the new Jerusalem

and the promise that those who love evil and falsehood

will not be allowed to enter it.

…....................................................................................................................

The Hebrews, or Israelites, or Jews

were reminded in Deuteronomy 6 verse 3

that God loved them and had chosen them to be His people;

and how He had brought about their escape from slavery in Egypt

and their safe journey to “a land flowing with milk and honey”.

In return they were commanded in Deuteronomy 6:5

to love God “with all their heart, with all their mind and with all their strength”,

and the Gospels tells us that Jesus commanded His disciples to do likewise,

adding words found in Leviticus 19 verse 18, “love your neighbour as yourself”.

…......................................................................................................................

So, the first message today is that these words mean we are allowed,

even encouraged, to love ourselves,

for if we do not love ourselves, how can we love others?

This does mean we should become conceited,

like Narcissus who fell in love with his reflection in a pool,

and that Greek story gives us the word 'narcistic'.

But it does teach us that we should appreciate ourselves for being children of God,

saved sinners, members of the Body of Christ, the redeemed of the Lord.

…...........................................................................................................................,

God loves us, each and every one of us,

not beause WE are wonderful, but because God is wonderful

and He considers us worthy to receive His love,

not because of any goodness or merit on OUR part

but because of the steadfast love on HIS.

….............................................................................................................................

How much does God love us?

The answer is contained in John’s Gospel chapter 3 verse 16

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son,

so that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life

…..................................................................................................................

And Paul wrote in his letter to the Ephesians chapter 2, vv 4-5

“God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us,

even when we were dead in our sins, He made us alive together with Christ”.

…................................................................................................................

Notice those words “because of His great love with which He loved us”.

…............................................................................................................................

God does not “only” love us, which would be fine enough; He “greatly” loves us, which is even more wonderful.

….....................................................................................................................

The Bible says we are children of God,

co-heirs with Christ, the apple of God’s eye,

so whenever we feel down and worthless,

attacked and accused by the devil, the 'father of lies'

we shouldn’t go by our feelings but go by our faith;

our faith that God loves us, and sent His only-begotten and sinless Son

to take the punishment thatvwe deserve for our sins.

….............................................................................................................

So the first message is, I repeat, that we are allowed, even encouraged,

to love ourselves, because Almighty God the Creator of the Universe, loves us,

but in case we are tempted to become vain and conceited about this love,

the second message is that we are instructed, commanded,

to love our neighbour at least as much as we love ourselves,

and as often.

….......................................................................................................................

The Hebrew word used in the OT which is translated as LOVE is "Hesed"

which means steadfast love or unfailing love or loyalty,

as opposed to temporary love or conditional love, or passing infatuation.

…..............................................................................................................................

The Bible says God has "Hesed" for all who belong to Him

and upon whom He showers His grace,

and just as we receive it and benefit from it,

Copy Sermon to Clipboard with PRO Download Sermon with PRO
Browse All Media

Related Media


A Father's Love
SermonCentral
PowerPoint Template
Agape
SermonCentral
PowerPoint Template
Talk about it...

Nobody has commented yet. Be the first!

Join the discussion