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Summary: Love is eternally excellent.

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WHAT REALLY COUNTS

I Corinthians 13:8-13

S: Love

C: Love is eternal

Th: Live the Difference

Pr: LOVE IS ETERNALLY EXCELLENT.

?: How? How do we know?

KW: Explanations

TS: We will find in our study of I Corinthians 13:8-13 four explanations why love is eternally excellent.

The _____ explanation is that…

I. OUR SPIRITUAL GIFTS WILL END (8).

II. OUR SCHOOLING IS INCOMPLETE (9-10).

III. OUR SEASONING IS EXPECTED (11).

IV. OUR SIGHT IS COMING (12).

PA: How is the change to be observed?

Version: ESV

RMBC 10 October 04 AM

INTRODUCTION:

ILL Notebook: Love (infinity and beyond)

Ashton, a four-year-old, loves the two movies called “Toy Story,” and particularly the space ranger hero Buzz Lightyear.

Recently in Sunday School, they were learning that God’s love has no limits. At the end of class, the teacher, reviewing the lesson, asked, "So, how much does God love us?"

Quoting Buzz’s big line in the film, Ashton replied, "To infinity and beyond!"

Well, you know, he might have something there, don’t you think?

How about you?

Have you a grasp of the depth and width of agape?

God’s love is truly beyond our understanding.

It is to infinity and beyond.

TRANSITION:

Last week, we began our study of I Corinthians 13 which is known as the “love chapter.”

And although the emphasis of this portion of the letter is on agape, it is not communicated in the context of romance or marriage as we so often use and apply it.

The context is the church and the using of spiritual gifts during worship.

As we have made note in preceding weeks, the church in Corinth had their eyes on the wrong things.

They had focused their attention on the spiritual gift of tongues, because they considered it a superior gift.

It was, according to them, the language of the angels.

So, in their reasoning, those that were the most spiritual were the ones that had this particular gift.

But Paul doesn’t go for that line of reasoning.

He says that there is something far superior than spiritual gifts.

And so, he admonishes both them and us, that…

1. We are to live the excellent way.

There is an excellent way to live.

It is a righteous way.

It is the way of love.

It is agape.

For just as Peter notes that love covers a multitude of sins (I Peter 4:8), the lack of love causes a multitude of sins.

If we do not show agape, there is going to be a lot of trouble.

Therefore, we need a great love like agape.

We need to live God’s kind of love that is deliberate and unending.

For…

2. Agape never ends.

Love never fails.

At no time will agape ever fall apart and become ineffective.

It will never be abolished.

It will never be defeated.

It will persist even when it is slighted or rejected.

For, it is never used up.

It keeps on coming.

And so, it is beyond comparison.

Therefore, let us put the two thoughts together.

We are to live the excellent way and agape never ends.

This means that…

3. LOVE IS ETERNALLY EXCELLENT.

It is, as one writer put it, the very air of heaven.

Agape is the very air of heaven.

It is the real language of heaven.

And those that do not live this excellent way, are missing kingdom priorities and living.


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