Friday, February 20, 2009

Love Out Loud - The Final Chapter

All month long here at Grace Church we have been learning how to “Love Out Loud” from First Corinthians 13. We have already seen these 11 characteristics of real, Biblical love:

Love is patient (v4)
Love is kind (v4)
Love is not jealous (v4)
Love does not brag (v4)
Love is not arrogant (v4)
Love does not act unbecomingly (v5)
Love does not seek its own (v5)
Love is not provoked (v5)
Love does not take into account a wrong suffered (v5)
Love does not rejoice in unrighteousness (v6)
Love rejoices with the truth (v6)

As we continue this Sunday we will see that love bears all things (v7). The Greek word means to cover, support or protect. Love never drags another’s faults in front of others (Proverbs 10:12). We also see that love believes all things (v7). Love is not suspicious or cynical. If there is a doubt, love chooses to believe that which is positive

The last three characteristics all say the same thing but they build in intensity. Love hopes all things (v7). This describes a person who does not bail out at the first mistake or misfortune. Love endures all things (v7). This was a military term describing an army holding a vital position at all costs. This describes a person who is willing to endure great opposition and still love you. This was demonstrated by Stephen in Acts 7:60 and Paul in 2 Timothy 2:10. Finally, love never fails (v8). This Greek word speaks of final failure. This describes a person whose love will never fall to ruin or destruction. This is the type of love that God demonstrates to us (Romans 8:35-39).

Real love also is described in the book of First John through the following six principles:

Real love is produced by God and demands a personal knowledge of God (4:7, 8)
Real love does not need a response in order to function (4:10)
Real love is best seen by what it does (3:17, 18)
Real love is defined by its ability to give (3:16)
Real love is developed by obedience to God (2:5)
Real love is hidden by sin in our lives (3:11, 12)

A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love one for another.” (John 13:33-35)

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