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Love one another?

A key element of 1 Thessalonians is Paul's Love for the Thessalonians

1 Thessalonians 2:7–8 ESV
But we were gentle among you, like a nursing mother taking care of her own children. So, being affectionately desirous of you, we were ready to share with you not only the gospel of God but also our own selves, because you had become very dear to us.
1 Thessalonians 3:7–10 ESV
for this reason, brothers, in all our distress and affliction we have been comforted about you through your faith. For now we live, if you are standing fast in the Lord. For what thanksgiving can we return to God for you, for all the joy that we feel for your sake before our God, as we pray most earnestly night and day that we may see you face to face and supply what is lacking in your faith?

Why should we love one another?

God Instructs Us To Love One Another

1 Thessalonians 4:9 ESV
Now concerning brotherly love you have no need for anyone to write to you, for you yourselves have been taught by God to love one another,
Deuteronomy 10:19 ESV
Love the sojourner, therefore, for you were sojourners in the land of Egypt.
1 John 3:23 ESV
And this is his commandment, that we believe in the name of his Son Jesus Christ and love one another, just as he has commanded us.
John 15:12 ESV
“This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.
Galatians 5:14 ESV
For the whole law is fulfilled in one word: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”
Romans 13:10 ESV
Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfilling of the law.

God First Loved Us

1 John 4:19 ESV
We love because he first loved us.
Romans 5:8 ESV
but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
1 John 3:16 ESV
By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers.
1 John 4:11 ESV
Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.
John 13:35 ESV
By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”
1 John 2:10 ESV
Whoever loves his brother abides in the light, and in him there is no cause for stumbling.
1 John 3:14 ESV
We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we love the brothers. Whoever does not love abides in death.
1 John 4:7 ESV
Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God.
1 John 4:16 ESV
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.
1 John 4:20 ESV
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.

Love Promotes Unity

Proverbs 10:12 ESV
Hatred stirs up strife, but love covers all offenses.
Proverbs 17:9 ESV
Whoever covers an offense seeks love, but he who repeats a matter separates close friends.
Ephesians 4:2 ESV
with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love,
1 Peter 4:8 ESV
Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins.

Love Promotes Service

1 Thessalonians 2:8 ESV
So, being affectionately desirous of you, we were ready to share with you not only the gospel of God but also our own selves, because you had become very dear to us.
Proverbs 17:17 ESV
A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.
2 Corinthians 12:15 ESV
I will most gladly spend and be spent for your souls. If I love you more, am I to be loved less?
Galatians 5:13 ESV
For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.
Philippians 2:30 ESV
for he nearly died for the work of Christ, risking his life to complete what was lacking in your service to me.
Philippians 4:10 ESV
I rejoiced in the Lord greatly that now at length you have revived your concern for me. You were indeed concerned for me, but you had no opportunity.
1 Thessalonians 1:3 ESV
remembering before our God and Father your work of faith and labor of love and steadfastness of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ.

How do we express our love for each other?

In caring for the sick

Job 2:11 ESV
Now when Job’s three friends heard of all this evil that had come upon him, they came each from his own place, Eliphaz the Temanite, Bildad the Shuhite, and Zophar the Naamathite. They made an appointment together to come to show him sympathy and comfort him.
Matthew 25:36 ESV
I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’
Galatians 4:14 ESV
and though my condition was a trial to you, you did not scorn or despise me, but received me as an angel of God, as Christ Jesus.

In meeting material needs

Deuteronomy 15:7–8 ESV
“If among you, one of your brothers should become poor, in any of your towns within your land that the Lord your God is giving you, you shall not harden your heart or shut your hand against your poor brother, but you shall open your hand to him and lend him sufficient for his need, whatever it may be.
Matthew 25:35 ESV
For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me,
1 John 3:17 ESV
But if anyone has the world’s goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God’s love abide in him?

In affectionate greetings

Genesis 33:4 ESV
But Esau ran to meet him and embraced him and fell on his neck and kissed him, and they wept.
Genesis 45:14–15 ESV
Then he fell upon his brother Benjamin’s neck and wept, and Benjamin wept upon his neck. And he kissed all his brothers and wept upon them. After that his brothers talked with him.
Acts 20:37 ESV
And there was much weeping on the part of all; they embraced Paul and kissed him,
Romans 16:16 ESV
Greet one another with a holy kiss. All the churches of Christ greet you.
1 Corinthians 16:20 ESV
All the brothers send you greetings. Greet one another with a holy kiss.
2 Corinthians 13:12 ESV
Greet one another with a holy kiss.
1 Peter 5:14 ESV
Greet one another with the kiss of love. Peace to all of you who are in Christ.

Examples of the demonstration of love for one another

Genesis 14:14–16 ESV
When Abram heard that his kinsman had been taken captive, he led forth his trained men, born in his house, 318 of them, and went in pursuit as far as Dan. And he divided his forces against them by night, he and his servants, and defeated them and pursued them to Hobah, north of Damascus. Then he brought back all the possessions, and also brought back his kinsman Lot with his possessions, and the women and the people.
Exodus 32:31–32 ESV
So Moses returned to the Lord and said, “Alas, this people has sinned a great sin. They have made for themselves gods of gold. But now, if you will forgive their sin—but if not, please blot me out of your book that you have written.”
1 Samuel 18:3 ESV
Then Jonathan made a covenant with David, because he loved him as his own soul.
Luke 7:2–6 ESV
Now a centurion had a servant who was sick and at the point of death, who was highly valued by him. When the centurion heard about Jesus, he sent to him elders of the Jews, asking him to come and heal his servant. And when they came to Jesus, they pleaded with him earnestly, saying, “He is worthy to have you do this for him, for he loves our nation, and he is the one who built us our synagogue.” And Jesus went with them. When he was not far from the house, the centurion sent friends, saying to him, “Lord, do not trouble yourself, for I am not worthy to have you come under my roof.
Luke 10:29–37 ESV
But he, desiring to justify himself, said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?” Jesus replied, “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and he fell among robbers, who stripped him and beat him and departed, leaving him half dead. Now by chance a priest was going down that road, and when he saw him he passed by on the other side. So likewise a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. But a Samaritan, as he journeyed, came to where he was, and when he saw him, he had compassion. He went to him and bound up his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he set him on his own animal and brought him to an inn and took care of him. And the next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper, saying, ‘Take care of him, and whatever more you spend, I will repay you when I come back.’ Which of these three, do you think, proved to be a neighbor to the man who fell among the robbers?” He said, “The one who showed him mercy.” And Jesus said to him, “You go, and do likewise.”
Acts 4:32 ESV
Now the full number of those who believed were of one heart and soul, and no one said that any of the things that belonged to him was his own, but they had everything in common.
Acts 16:33 ESV
And he took them the same hour of the night and washed their wounds; and he was baptized at once, he and all his family.
Acts 20:38 ESV
being sorrowful most of all because of the word he had spoken, that they would not see his face again. And they accompanied him to the ship.
Romans 16:4 ESV
who risked their necks for my life, to whom not only I give thanks but all the churches of the Gentiles give thanks as well.
2 Corinthians 2:4 ESV
For I wrote to you out of much affliction and anguish of heart and with many tears, not to cause you pain but to let you know the abundant love that I have for you.
Philippians 1:8 ESV
For God is my witness, how I yearn for you all with the affection of Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:1 ESV
Therefore, my brothers, whom I love and long for, my joy and crown, stand firm thus in the Lord, my beloved.
2 Timothy 1:16–17 ESV
May the Lord grant mercy to the household of Onesiphorus, for he often refreshed me and was not ashamed of my chains, but when he arrived in Rome he searched for me earnestly and found me—
Philemon 12 ESV
I am sending him back to you, sending my very heart.
3 John 6 ESV
who testified to your love before the church. You will do well to send them on their journey in a manner worthy of God.
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