A. The Love of Christ is known the world over. Christ is the standard by which all love must be compared
1. We want to examine the Love of Christ in our lesson today.
B. Love is the greatest commandment in scripture:
a. All commands of Scripture are aimed at teaching us how to love God and each other.
a. Love obviously will treat others right.
b. If I love you, I won t steal from you, lie or gossip about you, be rude to you, exclude you, etc.
C. It matters to God HOW we show our love to each other:
1. 1 John 3:18
a. Love is not just something we think or feel it is something we DO.
2. 1 Corinthians 13:1-8a
a. Vs.1-3 show that love is not just good deeds, even giving all you own to feed the poor.
b. The problem is that any deed can come from good or bad motives.
1) You may be nice to someone because you care about them, or because you want something.
c. Vs.4-8a show that love is not emotion, for emotion is easily provoked, does seek its own, etc.
d. Together these verses show that love is an attitude. Love is the way that we approach each other.
D. We have a New commandment to love each other.
1. John 13:33,34
2. What is new is the perfect example of love that Jesus left us. As I have loved you
2. What can we learn about Love from Christ?
A. Christ loved everyone.
B. Christ even loved his enemies
a. When did you last bless (speak good and kind to or about) someone who cursed at you?
b. Do you daily pray for those who mistreat and take advantage of you?
2. Luke 23:34
a. father forgive them (those who had just nailed him to a cross)
3. Some protest that Jesus could do things I can t because he was/is God.
a. Remember Stephen? He wasn t God yet he prayed just as did Jesus:
b. Lord, lay not this sin to their charge (of those who were stoning him) Acts 7:60
a. It is not a matter of whumping up warm fuzzies for our enemies, it is a matter of doing good.
C. Christ's love was unconditional
1. Romans 5:8
a. While we were yet sinners, not since we were so loveable .
b. My love for my children is unconditional.
c. Whereas they could do certain things to get kicked out of my house, I will always love them.
D. Christ's love is the standard for love in the home:
a. That means, give them the big piece of candy. Spend the extra $ on them, etc.
E. Christ's love was very costly and not often fun . It was not an emotional high feeling.
a. Jesus didn't feel good about going to the cross.
b. He didn't enjoy sleeping on rocks, etc. But he loved us enough to do it anyway.
c. Love is based on choice and commitment, not how good it makes us feel.
d. Your wedding vows were for better or worse not for better or I'm outta here
F. Christ's love included rebuke & discipline:
1. Luke 23:33
a. Can you imagine how hurtful this was to Peter? Do you think Christ didn't love him anymore?
b. We know Jesus loved him, but at this moment rebuke was needed.
a. Discipline is never enjoyable, but it produces godliness
b. Which is desperately needed and greatly enjoyable.
A. Remember your love is to be measured by (at least) these five aspects.
1. Do you love even your enemies?
2. Is your love unconditional?
3. Do you imitate Christ in your love?
4. Will your love endure the emotionally difficult times?
5. Do you love enough to compassionately confront others?