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Love

Advent 2018  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  36:47
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The greatest of all is Love!

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This sermon was crafted along with the following resources:
Spurgeon, C. H. “Love’s Foremost.” Sermon Outlines for Evangelistic Services. Edited by Al Bryant. Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel Publications, 1992.
Spurgeon, C. H. “Love’s Foremost.” Sermon Outlines for Evangelistic Services. Edited by Al Bryant. Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel Publications, 1992.
Pentz, Croft M. Sermon Outlines on the Epistles: Galatians–II Timothy. Dollar Sermon Library Series. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Book House, 1971.
Pentz, Croft M. Sermon Outlines on the Epistles: Galatians–II Timothy. Dollar Sermon Library Series. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Book House, 1971.
[[Sermon 139: On Love >> https://ref.ly/logosres/wslyserm?art=serm139]] | Sermons, on Several Occasions
Outlines on the Gospel of John and First John 14. Love—The Ethical Test of Divine Sonship (1 John 4:7–12)

14

Love—The Ethical Test of Divine Sonship

1 John 4:7–12

I. The Exhortation (v. 7a)—“Beloved, let us love one another.”

II. The Demonstration (vv. 7b, 8).

A. The presence of love in one’s life demonstrates that he knows God (v. 7b).

B. The failure of a person to exhibit love in his life demonstrates that he “knoweth not God” (v. 8).

III. The Motivation—God’s Love (vv. 9, 10).

A. The visibleness of God’s love (v. 9).

B. The greatness of God’s love (v. 10). The greatness of the divine love is indicated in at least four ways:

1. It is seen in the greatness of the gift which love prompted God to bestow on us: “his only begotten Son” (v. 9).

2. The greatness of the divine love is seen in the purpose of the Son’s mission: “that we might live through him” (v. 9).

3. The greatness of God’s love is brought out by a consideration of the recipients of His love: “he loved us” (v. 10a).

4. The greatness of God’s love is seen in the propitiatory of Christ’s death. God sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins (v. 10b).

IV. Love Fulfills Two Functions (v. 12):

A. It is the visible evidence that God dwells in us (v. 12a; cf. John 13:34, 35).

B. When we practice love, His (God’s) love is “perfected in us” (v. 12b).

V. The Obligation (v. 11)

A. The character of the obligation (v. 11).

B. The claim of the obligation (v. 11).

15

Love and Its Perfection

1 John 4:17–21

I. Love’s Perfection in Relation to Self (vv. 17, 18).

A. It causes us to have boldness in the day of judgment (v. 17).

B. It casts out fear (v. 18).

II. Love’s Perfection in Relation to Others (vv. 19–21).

A. The principle of love (v. 19).

B. The profession of love (v. 20).

C. The proof of love (v. 21).

16

The Reason and the Evidence for Brotherly Love

1 John 5:1–3

Our text is vitally related to the last two verses of the preceding chapter. To our mind it presents two important aspects of love among Christian brethren:

I. The Reason for the Obligation of Brotherly Love (v. 1). The duty to love our Christian brethren is here based on our common relation to God. The order of the apostle’s thought seems to be this:

A. The Christian brother is a true believer in Jesus the Christ. “Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ” is included by John among the Christian fraternity.

B. Every true believer in Jesus the Christ is a child of God. “Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is begotten of God” (ASV).

C. Every child of God should be loved by God’s children—“loveth him also that is begotten of him.”

II. The Evidence for the Genuineness of Brotherly Love. “By this we know that we love the children of God” (vv. 2, 3). Two remarks, we think, will help us to understand John’s meaning:

A. Our love to the brethren is genuine when we love God.

B. Our love to God is genuine when we cheerfully keep His commandments.

Intro

Advent Series - Romans - Revelation
Find: &
Cover lots of ground today so get ready!!
Hope - Joy - Peace - Love
Hope
Joy
Peace
Joy
Peace
Love… What is LOVE?
God is Love =
1 John 4:8 ESV
8 Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love.
.
Love is a Spiritual Fruit =
Galatians 5:22–23 ESV
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.
What love IS/DOES…?
How Love manifests itself… ;
1 Corinthians 13:4–8 ESV
4 Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant 5 or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; 6 it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. 7 Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. 8 Love never ends. As for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away.
1 Cor 13.4-
1 Corinthians 13:13 ESV
13 So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.
1 Corinthians 13 ESV
1 If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. 3 If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing. 4 Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant 5 or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; 6 it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. 7 Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. 8 Love never ends. As for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away. 9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part, 10 but when the perfect comes, the partial will pass away. 11 When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I gave up childish ways. 12 For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known. 13 So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.
What is the greatest act of love ever displayed in the history of the universe!?
Christmas =
John 3:16 ESV
16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.
Birth of Christ = &
Matthew 1:18–25 ESV
18 Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. 19 And her husband Joseph, being a just man and unwilling to put her to shame, resolved to divorce her quietly. 20 But as he considered these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. 21 She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” 22 All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had spoken by the prophet: 23 “Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall call his name Immanuel” (which means, God with us). 24 When Joseph woke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him: he took his wife, 25 but knew her not until she had given birth to a son. And he called his name Jesus.
Luke 2:1–7 ESV
1 In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. 2 This was the first registration when Quirinius was governor of Syria. 3 And all went to be registered, each to his own town. 4 And Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the town of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, 5 to be registered with Mary, his betrothed, who was with child. 6 And while they were there, the time came for her to give birth. 7 And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling cloths and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.
On that night Shepherds came to see this Jesus who was born because the angels told them about him.
Soon wise men of the east came to see this Jesus because the scriptures prophesied of him long ago.
Why are you here today?
Religion
Tradition
Right Reasons!? = love for Him
First text second text let me tell you the story
Jesus is invited to a dinner party = prestigious party = pharisee
Prostitute - alabaster flask of ointment - crying on his feet - wiped with hair - kissed - anointed
If this man were a prophet… !!
Jesus askes...
Luke 7:41–42 ESV
41 “A certain moneylender had two debtors. One owed five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. 42 When they could not pay, he cancelled the debt of both. Now which of them will love him more?”
Lk 7.41-42
Simon = the larger debt = Correct!
Woman - Your House = no water - no kiss - no anointing oil
Her sins = much forgiven = much love / little forgiven = little loved
Luke 7:36–50 ESV
36 One of the Pharisees asked him to eat with him, and he went into the Pharisee’s house and reclined at table. 37 And behold, a woman of the city, who was a sinner, when she learned that he was reclining at table in the Pharisee’s house, brought an alabaster flask of ointment, 38 and standing behind him at his feet, weeping, she began to wet his feet with her tears and wiped them with the hair of her head and kissed his feet and anointed them with the ointment. 39 Now when the Pharisee who had invited him saw this, he said to himself, “If this man were a prophet, he would have known who and what sort of woman this is who is touching him, for she is a sinner.” 40 And Jesus answering said to him, “Simon, I have something to say to you.” And he answered, “Say it, Teacher.” 41 “A certain moneylender had two debtors. One owed five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. 42 When they could not pay, he cancelled the debt of both. Now which of them will love him more?” 43 Simon answered, “The one, I suppose, for whom he cancelled the larger debt.” And he said to him, “You have judged rightly.” 44 Then turning toward the woman he said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? I entered your house; you gave me no water for my feet, but she has wet my feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair. 45 You gave me no kiss, but from the time I came in she has not ceased to kiss my feet. 46 You did not anoint my head with oil, but she has anointed my feet with ointment. 47 Therefore I tell you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven—for she loved much. But he who is forgiven little, loves little.” 48 And he said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.” 49 Then those who were at table with him began to say among themselves, “Who is this, who even forgives sins?” 50 And he said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”
Luke 7:41–42 ESV
41 “A certain moneylender had two debtors. One owed five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. 42 When they could not pay, he cancelled the debt of both. Now which of them will love him more?”
Lk 7.36-
Luke 7:42 ESV
42 When they could not pay, he cancelled the debt of both. Now which of them will love him more?”
Lk 7.42
Luke 7:50 ESV
50 And he said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”
Hope - Joy - Peace - Love = Circular Cycle

Pray

1 John 4:7–5:5 ESV
7 Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God. 8 Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love. 9 In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him. 10 In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. 11 Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. 12 No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God abides in us and his love is perfected in us. 13 By this we know that we abide in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit. 14 And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world. 15 Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. 16 So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him. 17 By this is love perfected with us, so that we may have confidence for the day of judgment, because as he is so also are we in this world. 18 There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love. 19 We love because he first loved us. 20 If anyone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen. 21 And this commandment we have from him: whoever loves God must also love his brother. 1 Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ has been born of God, and everyone who loves the Father loves whoever has been born of him. 2 By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and obey his commandments. 3 For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments. And his commandments are not burdensome. 4 For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith. 5 Who is it that overcomes the world except the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?
..... xxx .....
Philippians 1:8–9 ESV
8 For God is my witness, how I yearn for you all with the affection of Christ Jesus. 9 And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment,

LOVE

God’s Love
Breadth, Depth, Length & Height…
John 3:16 ESV
16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.
My Prayer therefore for us is found in
Lk 2.22-
Luke 2:22–35 ESV
22 And when the time came for their purification according to the Law of Moses, they brought him up to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord 23 (as it is written in the Law of the Lord, “Every male who first opens the womb shall be called holy to the Lord”) 24 and to offer a sacrifice according to what is said in the Law of the Lord, “a pair of turtledoves, or two young pigeons.” 25 Now there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon, and this man was righteous and devout, waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him. 26 And it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. 27 And he came in the Spirit into the temple, and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to do for him according to the custom of the Law, 28 he took him up in his arms and blessed God and said, 29 “Lord, now you are letting your servant depart in peace, according to your word; 30 for my eyes have seen your salvation 31 that you have prepared in the presence of all peoples, 32 a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and for glory to your people Israel.” 33 And his father and his mother marveled at what was said about him. 34 And Simeon blessed them and said to Mary his mother, “Behold, this child is appointed for the fall and rising of many in Israel, and for a sign that is opposed 35 (and a sword will pierce through your own soul also), so that thoughts from many hearts may be revealed.”
Sermon Outlines on 1 Corinthians Love Is the Greatest (1 Corinthians 13:1–13)

Love Is the Greatest

1 Corinthians 13:1–13

Introduction

A. The church at Corinth was lacking in love.

1. It had “gifts” and it was a busy church.

2. It is often easier to be busy than to extend love.

B. “God is love” (1 John 4:16). Jesus wants His followers to demonstrate love (John 13:35).

I. The Setting of the Love Chapter (1 Corinthians 13)

A. This chapter may be the greatest thing Paul wrote. It is one of the greatest of writings found anywhere.

B. This great passage is central in a discussion of “spiritual gifts.”

1. The possession of “gifts” did not always make them spiritual.

2. Paul has already informed them that they were “worldly” (1 Corinthians 3:1).

C. Many were promoting themselves because of lack of love.

II. The Source of Christian Love

A. The love of God is called “agape.”

1. The word was seldom used in the Greek writings but is used often in the New Testament.

2. This word does not refer to sexual love, romantic love, friendship or sentiment.

B. This chapter gives us a definition of “agape” love.

1. “Agape” is a sacrificial love for others even when they are unworthy. “Agape” is more concerned with giving than receiving.

2. Consider these Scriptures: John 15:9; Colossians 3:14; 1 Thessalonians 3:12; Hebrews 10:24.

C. The real basis of “agape” love is commitment.

III. The Strength of Christian Love (v. 13)

A. Love is the greatest because it is the very nature of God (1 John 4:7–11; John 3:16).

1. Faith and hope are important.

2. When we love, we show the nature of God.

B. Love is the greatest because it leads others to the Savior (1 John 4:10).

Conclusion

A. Love is a command, but it is also a work of the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:22). We must express our love for it to be the real thing.

B. Faith will be replaced by sight when we get to Heaven. Hope will become a reality, but the love of God will always remain.

Illustration

I am always several years behind on my filing system. Years ago I found a note that I had neglected to file. The date on the note was over 20 years in the past. The note was a reminder of a time I walked through the kitchen of our home, hugged my wife on impulse, and said, “Pat, I love you. I don’t know why, but I do.” As I went out the back door, my wife said, “Well, love is like that. If it wasn’t, it wouldn’t be love. It would just be generosity.” I think that’s good! I’m going to file it someday.

Ephesians 3:17–19 ESV
17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, 18 may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, 19 and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.

The Breadth of God’s Love

How Wide does the Love of God reach?
“For God so loved the world”
the World = defining the meaning
Powerful Love
Luke 13:29 ESV
29 And people will come from east and west, and from north and south, and recline at table in the kingdom of God.
Patient Love -
Pardoning Love
Romans 5:8 ESV
8 but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Perfecting Love
This shows God’s Love is a Powerful Love -
Jeremiah 31:3 ESV
3 the Lord appeared to him from far away. I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore I have continued my faithfulness to you.
Past / Present / Future
[Clint Eastwood] Good / Bad / Ugly
Luke 13:29 ESV
29 And people will come from east and west, and from north and south, and recline at table in the kingdom of God.

The Depth of God’s Love

To what Depths will God go to prove His love for you?
“That he gave his only son”
Powerful Love -
Jeremiah 31:3 ESV
3 the Lord appeared to him from far away. I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore I have continued my faithfulness to you.
Patient Love - /
Romans 5:8 ESV
8 but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
2 Peter 3:9 ESV
9 The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.
This shows God’s Love is a Pardoning Love -
Ephesians 2:4–5 ESV
4 But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, 5 even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved—
All has been given / No more can be done
Heaven - Earth / Earth - Cross / Cross - Grave / Grave - sky
quickened while in sin
2 Corinthians 5:21 ESV
21 For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

The Length of God’s Love

How Long will His love last?
“That whoever believes in Him should not perish”
Pardoning Love -
Ephesians 2:4–5 ESV
4 But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, 5 even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved—
Whoever… Energizer bunny… going and going / generation-gen
This shows God’s Love is a Patient Love -
Romans 5:8 ESV
8 but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
2 Peter 3:9 ESV
9 The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.
Length / Depth = hand in hand
Though all of us deserve death - He waits! = for us to repent / turn from sin to him / from death to life
However = whoever [believes]
Requirement = = Something for us to do
Romans 10:13 ESV
13 For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
Rom 1
Reception = = Christ turns none away
Who = in Him
John 6:37 ESV
37 All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out.
Jhn 6
Repentance = & = God wants you!
John 3:16 ESV
16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.
2 Peter 3:9 ESV
9 The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.

The Height of God’s Love

What is the Height of God’s love for me?
“But have everlasting life”
The sky’s the limit… not here!
This shows God’s Love is a Perfecting Love -
1 John 3:1 ESV
1 See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him.
Provision & Pleasure for this life =
John 10:10 ESV
10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.
Pleasure for this life
Promise for next life =
John 11:25–26 ESV
25 Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, 26 and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?”
What brought you here today?
Do you know this LOVE?
Do you have a relationship with God?
Do you know this LOVE?
What brought you here today?

LOVE

Our Response
Remember the Story in for the Pharisee and the Sinful Woman...
How to love God? How to love God more? -
Salvation - Deprivation - Infatuation
Remember the Story in for the Pharisee and the Sinful Woman...
Luke 7:41–42 ESV
41 “A certain moneylender had two debtors. One owed five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. 42 When they could not pay, he cancelled the debt of both. Now which of them will love him more?”
My prayer for us is found in
Philippians 1:8–9 ESV
8 For God is my witness, how I yearn for you all with the affection of Christ Jesus. 9 And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment,
How do we love God? How do we love God more?

Salvation

The road to eminence in love is just the plain way of salvation, which all who are in Christ must travel. = C.H. Spurgeon
The road to eminence in love is just the plain way of salvation, which all who are in Christ must travel.
All in debt - own this personally
Loving Lord Forgives - personally - we must feel this
He Forgives Frankly - free gift of grace / undeserved favor
To love the LORD, you must be saved!
Without being born again you cannot love God!

Deprivation

= Depravity of the self = No good within us
We Must Aim at a Deep Sense of Sin. = C.H. Spurgeon
Sinful Woman = Consciousness of GREAT Indebtedness = GREAT Love
We Must Aim at a Deep Sense of Sin.
Cultivate This - Take Aim = tender heart
Clear Requirements of Law
The Love of God to Us
The Cost of Redemption
Persuasion of Perfection of Pardon

Infatuation

This Will Lead to a Highly Loving Conduct Toward Our Lord. = C.H. Spurgeon
We shall desire to be near Him, even at His feet.
This Will Lead to a Highly Loving Conduct Toward Our Lord.
We shall desire to be near Him, even at His feet.
We shall show deep humility, delighting even to wash His feet.
We shall show deep humility, delighting even to wash His feet.
We shall exhibit thorough contrition, beholding Him with tears.
We shall exhibit thorough contrition, beholding Him with tears.
We shall render earnest service; doing all that lies in our power for Jesus, even as this woman did.

Close / Pray

John 3:16 ESV
16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.
Luke 7:41–42 ESV
41 “A certain moneylender had two debtors. One owed five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. 42 When they could not pay, he cancelled the debt of both. Now which of them will love him more?”
Luke 7:42 ESV
42 When they could not pay, he cancelled the debt of both. Now which of them will love him more?”

Close

This is the love God has loved you with, this is the plight God has saved you from, this is the truth of the reason you are here this very day so that God could once again remind you, call you, woo you with His AMAZING LOVE and then allow me to ask “now which of you will love Him more?”
May our hearts burst within us as we exclaim!!!.... Me LORD, Let it be ME!
PRAY
Sermon Outlines for Funerals 25. “God Is Love” (Romans 15:1–5; I John 4:8)

25

“God Is Love”

Romans 15:1–5; 1 John 4:8

1. Misconceptions of God are common

a. After WWI man portrayed God as an angry, vengeful God

b. Many think of God as a tyrant trying to yoke mankind

2. 1 John 4:8 is a comforting description of God

3. Shakespeare: “They have not loved who do not show their love.”

I. God Shows Love by Providing for Our Salvation

A. Humans do not deserve salvation

B. In spite of this, God loves us

1. So much that He sent His Son—John 3:16

2. So much that He established the church as a guiding light

3. So much that He is willing to forgive the vilest of sinners

II. God Shows Love by Providing for Our Sustenance

A. In hours of temptation and affliction

1. God released Paul and Silas from jail—Acts 16:16–40

2. Paul learned to be content—Phil. 4:11

B. In hours of sorrow and sadness

1. In the “valley of the shadow of death”—Ps. 23

2. In Israel’s affliction God was afflicted—Isa. 63:9

3. It is hard to believe, but God understands our feelings

a. An artist was teaching a boy to draw. The boy became discouraged at his lack of progress. The artist encouraged him by saying, “You draw as good as I did when I was your age.”

b. The Word became flesh, suffered and died

C. A man tried to wipe frost from a window in order to see out

1. A friend said, “Let me light a fire and it will melt.”

2. God says, “Let my love come in and the frost will melt away.”

Philippians 1:8–9 ESV
8 For God is my witness, how I yearn for you all with the affection of Christ Jesus. 9 And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment,
Philippians 1:9 ESV
9 And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment,
Ephesians 3:18–19 ESV
18 may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, 19 and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.

LOVE’S FOREMOST

“Tell me, therefore, which of them will love him most?” (Luke 7:42).

I. We Must First Be Saved in the Same Manner as Others.

The road to eminence in love is just the plain way of salvation, which all who are in Christ must travel.

1. All are in debt; we must heartily own this to be our own case.

2. The loving Lord forgives in each case: personally we have exceeding great need of such remission. We must feel this.

3. In each case He forgives frankly, or without any consideration or compensation; it must be so with us. We must accept free grace and undeserved favor.

II. We Must Aim at a Deep Sense of Sin.

1. It was the consciousness of great indebtedness which created the great love in the penitent woman. Not her sin, but the consciousness of it was the basis of her loving character.

2. It is to be cultivated. The more we bewail sin the better, and we must aim at great tenderness of heart in reference to it. In order to cultivate it we must seek to get—

A clearer view of the law’s requirements (Luke 10:26, 27).

A deeper consciousness of the love of God to us (1 John 3:1, 2).

A keener valuation of the cost of the redemption (1 Peter 1:18, 19).

A surer persuasion of the perfection of our pardon will also help to show the baseness of our sin (Ezek. 16:62, 63).

III. This Will Lead to a Highly Loving Conduct Toward Our Lord.

1. We shall desire to be near Him, even at His feet.

2. We shall show deep humility, delighting even to wash His feet.

3. We shall exhibit thorough contrition, beholding Him with tears.

4. We shall render earnest service; doing all that lies in our power for Jesus, even as this woman did.

A spiritual experience which is thoroughly flavored with a deep and bitter sense of sin is of great value to him who has had it. It is terrible in the drinking, but it is wholesome in the bowels, and in the whole of the after-life. Possibly much of the flimsy piety of the day arises from the ease with which men reach to peace and joy in these evangelistic days.

We would not judge modern converts, but we certainly prefer that form of spiritual exercise which leads the soul by the way of the Weeping-cross, and makes it see its blackness before it assures it that it is “clean every whit.” Too many think lightly of sin and, therefore, lightly of a Savior.

He who has stood before His God, convicted, and condemned, with the rope about his neck, is the man to weep for joy when he is pardoned, to hate the evil which has been forgiven him, and to live to the honor of the Redeemer by Whose Blood he has been cleansed.

Bold blasphemers ought to be enthusiasts for the honor of their Lord when they are washed from their iniquities. As they say, reclaimed poachers make the best game-keepers, so should the greatest sinners be the raw material out of which the Lord’s transforming grace shall create great saints.

• I have heard say the depth of a Scotch lake corresponds with the height of the surrounding mountains. So deep thy sense of obligation for pardoned sin, so high thy love to Him Who has forgiven thee.

—C.H.S.

• Love to the Savior rises in the heart of a saved man in proportion to the sense which he entertains of his own sinfulness on the one hand, and of the mercy of God on the other. Thus the height of a saint’s love to the Lord is as the depths of his own humility: as this root strikes down unseen into the ground, the blossoming branch rises higher in the sky.

—William Arnot

C.H. SPURGEON

What’s Happened to Love?

About 200 years ago a well-known encyclopedia discussed the word “atom” with the use of only four lines. But five pages were devoted to a discussion of “love.”

In a recent edition of the same encyclopedia five pages were given to the word “atom”; “love” was omitted.

THIS ONE IS GOOD
Sermon Outlines on the Epistles: Galatians–II Timothy God’s Great Love (Ephesians 3:17–19)

GOD’S GREAT LOVE

Ephesians 3:17–19

See God’s great love here as compared with John 3:16. His love is beyond measure and reasoning.

I. THE BREADTH OF GOD’S LOVE

“For God so loved the world.”

1. Powerful love—Jeremiah 31:3. Everlasting love seen.

2. Patient love—Romans 5:8. While still in sin, God loved us, and Christ died for us.

3. Pardoning love—Ephesians 2:4–5. Quickened while in sin.

4. Perfecting love—1 John 3:1. Made sons of God.

II. THE LENGTH OF GOD’S LOVE

“That he gave his only begotten Son.”

1. Praying Son—Luke 22:39–46. Prayer of dedication.

2. Peaceful Son—John 14:27. He always brings peace.

3. Perfecting Son—Matthew 8:6. He healed all the sick.

4. Poor Son—2 Corinthians 8:9. Though rich, became poor.

5. Popular Son—Matthew 21:1–15. Jesus made king.

6. Purging Son—Hebrews 9:22. His blood cleanses us.

7. Powerful Son—Matthew 28:1–18. He overcomes death.

III. THE DEPTH OF GOD’S LOVE

“That whosoever believeth in Him should not perish.”

1. Requirement—Romans 10:13. Something for us to do.

2. Reception—John 6:37. Christ turns none away.

3. Repentance—2 Peter 3:9. God wants all saved.

IV. THE HEIGHT OF GOD’S LOVE

“But have everlasting life.”

1. Provision for this life—Isaiah 53:5. Christ’s death.

2. Pleasure of this life—John 10:10. Enjoyable life.

3. Promise of this life—John 11:25, 26. Though dead, yet we have eternal life in Christ. Eternal life begins the moment we accept Christ.

“How to …” Sermon Outlines 32. How to Measure God’s Love

32. How to Measure God’s Love

“Being rooted and grounded in love … may [you] be able to comprehend … what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height” (Eph. 3:17–18).

I. God’s Love Reaches Up

His great love made us “sit together in heavenly places” (Eph. 2:4–6).

A. God’s love reaches higher than the tallest mountain, the highest star. When we love, heaven is brought near. God is close because He is love.

B. Love reaches those who climb the social ladder, kings and presidents. Saturated with God’s love, all believers become one in Christ Jesus (1 John 5:2).

II. God’s Love Reaches Down

“Thou hast in love to my soul delivered it from the pit of corruption” (Isa. 38:17).

A. God’s love reaches down into the slums, the ghetto, skid row, the lowest of the low. It reaches down to the drunkard, gambler, prostitute, thief, liar.

B. His love penetrates deeper than the stain of sin. All who repent and believe may be lifted out of the miry clay of sin.

III. God’s Love Reaches In

“His love is perfected in us” (1 John 4:12).

A. God’s love reaches into the heart and soul to mellow, freshen, enrich, purify, and heal. It breaks down evil, casts out fear, and perfects the spirit (1 John 4:18).

B. God is love—within us. He brings strength, courage, kindness, patience, compassion, and forgiveness.

IV. God’s Love Reaches Out

“God so loved the world … that whosoever believeth … should not perish” (John 3:16).

A. God’s love reaches out to the far comers of the earth. There is no limit to His reach. It solves problems, lifts burdens, and forgives sins on the mission fields.

B. God’s love reaches out through our prayers to our loved ones far and near and to His people around the world.

V. God’s Love Reaches Through

Nothing “shall be able to separate us from the love of God” (Rom. 8:39).

A. There is no defense against God’s love. It can penetrate any situation. It reaches through prison walls, walls of resentment and strife—to victory.

B. Love reaches through darkness, trial, suffering, sorrow, bereavement, and death, to bring eternal life.

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