Summary: We are reborn through an eternal seed so that we might produce an eternal love.
Title: Flowers Fade
Text: 1 Peter 1:22-25
Topic: The eternal word should produce an eternal love.
1. That the listener will realize that there is more to salvation than the hope of heaven; there is the mandate of love for the brethren.
2. That the listener will be challenged to think about how they ought to love as compared to how they currently love.
3. That the listener will be motivated to love freely based upon God’s model of love through Christ, The call of their salvation and the fact that love is an eternal investment based upon an unfading promise.
Theme: We are reborn through an eternal seed so that we might produce an eternal love.
In our home is a bowl of flower petals… a reminder of past expressions of love to some. To others, a picture of a lot of money dried up and shriveled away. Warning men… this dried up money is a good investment.
But God gives us a better investment that is guaranteed to never fade. How many of you would really like to get an investment tip this morning from God?
Background of text:
Peter tells us that Christ has done a great work on our behalf. Then he shows us that in light of this work and our response to it there ought to be changes in our lives. In this passage He tells us of a mandate for Christians to invest their lives to love. Have you ever thought, “I wonder, wonder, wonder, wonder who, who wrote the book of love?” Well, Peter adds his chapter as he explains the when, who, how and why of love.
Read 1 Peter 1:22-25
1. When does the mandate for love begin?
When we are saved, it is not only for heaven, but for a renewed relationship with our Father and thus with His family (brethren). vs 22 a.
-not just heaven
-not just health and wealth
-not just right doctrine
-not just kingdom work… but to love.
When? This mandate begins at our salvation… and only then are we fully able to love. Mind, body, emotions, will and SPIRIT.
2. Who are we to love?
-Salvation is regarded as many things but one of the greatest pictures is that of ADOPTION. Rom 8:15-16 (read)
-Adoption brings a restored relationship to the Father through the Son.
-Adoption, according to Peter, also brings us to a restored relationship with those who by grace also receive this cleansing!
Who? 22b. We are to love one another (brothers and sisters in Christ)
Therefore, the last place there ought to be ill will or lasting resentment is the church. The place where it should be the hardest to rock the boat should be the church. The one place where we ought to find true love in this world is in the church… not just the building, but the homes, the workplaces, the playgrounds and the classrooms of God’s people. And before it happens in the church it must happen in it’s leader.
- If this doesn’t begin with the one who proclaims the word of God, where and when will it?
3. How are we to love?
A. We are to love one another with agape love (not eros nor philea) according to Peter’s text. 22 b
(1 cor 13) based on a decision to love. It is unconditional. It is a guaranteed love.
-We decide to love even if we don’t want to. Just like going to work in the morning, or going to the doctor for a test. Like paying taxes, we love because we decide to love.
-We love those who are not easy to love. Jesus tells us to love these folks too. Anyone can love the rich, good-looking, nice… but Jesus did not love like that. Think about it! He loved His enemies… that’s me and you.
B. We are to love one another fervently(in the Greek this means to strain with all of our energy). Here Peter also adds an adverb. By the way, an adverb can only describe a verb. Hint. Love is a verb, something we do, and the way we are to love (agape) is with all of our strength.
Ill: snowman. Recently my son and I built a snowman. We rolled the ball around the yard too far away from the base and when we got it back to the base it was huge. Since my son is only 7 years old, the job of lifting that ball on top of the base was mine. It took every sinew of muscle in my body to strain and lift that ball of snow into place. That’s how we ought to love one another.
(other possible illustrations of how we ought to love)
-soldiers in the battlefield