Loving Well: Love as Central: Various texts

September 11th, 2017

Loving Well: Love as Central

Various Texts

The Centrality of Love

  • At the heart of the Gospel message is love (John 3:16)

    • Which is true because love is one of the fundamental characteristics of God Himself (1 John 4:8, 16)
  • As followers of Christ, we are called to be imitators of God (Eph. 5:1)
    • And thus, should be known for our love as well (John 13:34-35)
  • However, how do we love like Jesus?

 

What is Love?

  • Biblically, love is NOT an emotion

    • God never commands us to feel a certain way
  • Love is NOT condoning the sinful actions of another (Rom. 12:9; Jude 1:21-23)
  • Love is a choice
    • To treat others as we would like to be treated (Luke 6:31)
    • To put the needs of others before our own desires (1 Cor. 13:4-8a)
  • Love is telling each other the truth (Eph. 4:15)

 

How Do We Love Well?

  • We must understand that our concept of love must be informed by God’s character and truth (1 John 4:19; 2 Cor. 5:14)
  • We must learn to love in a way that meets people as they are
    • This is how God treats us

      • Because God knows us fully (1 Cor. 13:12)
      • Deeper knowledge à deeper love
        • Including loving ourselves as an extension of knowing God’s great love for us (Mark 12:31)
      • We are to love others in ways that fit who they are
        • ) "Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it." (Prov. 22:6)

          • Literally, “Train up a child in his way”: a way that fits that child
        • Which means loving in a way that the receiver can understand
          • It is about speaking their language

 

Love Languages

  • There are 5 love languages that are generally recognized

    • “The 5 Love Languages” by Gary Chapman


  • Words of Affirmation
  • Quality Time
  • Gifts
  • Acts of Service
  • Physical Touch
  • 6th language?

 

  • We all give and receive love in each of these ways

    • However, some forms are more effective for certain individuals than others
  • The key is to know the languages that best speak to you and to others to love well
  • A word on “dialects”

 

So What?

  • We will spend the next 6 weeks looking at each of these languages so that we might understand:

    • How God shows love to us in each way
    • How we can love one another in each way
    • And how we can love our community in each way
  • Are we ready to learn how to love well?

 

Meditation Verse: John 13:34-35

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