Romans 12:14-21 & 1 Corinthians 12-14
The Principle of Love Part 2
Actuality v.9 - 21 are a description of what Love looks like / 3 places
V.9- 13 Love looks like in the Church / v.14-16 What love looks like in the world in general / v.17-21 what Love looks like in mist of conflicts
Last week we focused on Paul description of what Love is to look like in the Church.
Sincere / Hate sin love sinner / Committed love - family bros./
Love that regards others above self / Energetic fervent / rejoices in hope /
responds to needs…. given to hospitality
NEXT LOOK AT LOVE FOR THE WORLD IN GENERAL V.14-16
1ST Love that speaks well of those who persecute you . v.14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse.
A) The bible tells us that all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution.
I heard you say to love our enemies. I am only six and do not have any yet. I hope to have some when I am seven. Your friend, Love, Amy
B) Maybe in the form of loss of Job / or not getting a deserved promotion - because not “ one of the guys or gals “
1) Perhaps ridiculed at school - or in your family - many forms of persecution - living for the Lord - what do you do .
C) Paul says Bless them - speak well of them - in other words don’t fall into that trap of bad mouthing those people .
D) Jesus told us to pray for those who persecuted us ! - Turn to Matt. 5 :38
38 "You have heard that it was said, 'An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.',39 "But I tell you not to resist an evil person. But whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also. David Wilkerson
43 "You have heard that it was said, 'You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.'
44 "But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you,
45 "that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.
46 "For if you love those who love you, what reward have you? Do not even the tax collectors do the same?
47 "And if you greet your brethren only, what do you do more than others? Do not even the tax collectors do so?
48 "Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect.
Nowhere did the Law teach hatred for one’s enemies. Passages like Exodus 23:4-5 indicate just the opposite! Jesus defined our enemies as those who curse us, hate us, and exploit us selfishly.
Since Christian love is an act of the will, and not simply an emotion, He has the right to command us to love our enemies. After all, He loved us when we were His enemies (Rom. 5:10).
We can show this love by blessing those who curse us, doing good to them, and praying for them.
When we pray for our enemies, we find it easier to love them.
It takes the “poison” out of our attitudes.
Jesus gave several reasons for this admonition.
(1) v.45 This love is a mark of maturity, proving that we are sons of the Father, and not just little children.
(2)V.45 also indicates that It is Godlike. The Father shares His good things with those who oppose Him.
It suggests that our love “creates a climate” of blessings that makes it easy to win our enemies and make them our friends.
Love is like the sunshine and rain that the Father sends so graciously.
A) Our Love can be that which is refreshing like a summer rain - that - cools off in the mist of burning summer heat .
B) Or sunshine - that comes out when - there have been nothing but dark clouds for such a long time.
Example : When the first missionaries came to Alberta, Canada, they were opposed by a young Cree Indian chief named Maske/ petoon.
But eventually he responded to the gospel and accepted Christ.
Shortly afterward, a member of the Blackfoot tribe who hated Maske/petoon killed his father.
The chief rode into the murderer's village and demanded that he be brought before him. Confronting the guilty man he said, "You shall ride my best horse and wear my best clothes."
In utter amazement and remorse his enemy exclaimed, "My son, now you have killed me."
The hate in his heart had been erased by Maskepetoon's forgiveness and kindness.
(3) It is a testimony to others. 47 "And if you greet your brethren only, what do you do more than others? Do not even the tax collectors do so?
This is a good question. God expects us to live on a much higher plane than the lost people of the world who return good for good and evil for evil.
As Christians, we must return good for evil as an investment of love.
The word perfect in Matthew 5:48 does not imply sinlessly perfect, for that is impossible in this life.
It suggests completeness, maturity, as the sons of God.
As Christians, we can live on one of three levels. We can return evil for good, which is the satanic level.
We can return good for good and evil for evil, which is the human level.
Or, we can return good for evil, which is the divine level
As God’s children, we must do more than give “an eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth” (Matt. 5:38-48), which is the basis for justice.
We must operate on the basis of mercy, for that is the way God deals
The truth of the matter is: the Father loves His enemies and seeks to make them His children, and we should assist Him!
We are reflections of Him!!!
Turn back to Romans 12
So the 1st thing Paul says is to Pray for them / bless them ! Speak well of them .
A) Not natural - need to call upon the supernatural power of the Lord -
through the H.S.
2nd True love identifies w/ the ups & downs of human life ! v. 15 Rejoice with those who rejoice, and weep with those who weep.
A) In this life whether you are a believer or not there are going to be good times & not so good times .
B) Now we live in a dog eat dog world - world filled w/ selfishness / where people often have the tendency to - belittle others blessings out of Jealousy
1) Ever notice that - person gets a raise or a promotion - and someone says they must have felt sorry for him
C) Gal announces she is getting married & a jealous single lady responds - he must be marrying her for her money.
1) That is the way of our world .
D) Belittle other peoples successes & laugh at their grief - walk by any play ground see the wickedness of this fact in kids
1) Laugh at any one who is down or different - / follows into adulthood
E) Swindol describes Characteristics of many in our society . Indifference, non-commitment, disengagement, no sharing or caring . . . meals eaten with hi-fi headsets turned up loud, even separate bedrooms, each with a personal telephone, TV, and turntable, private toilet, and an it's none-of-your-business attitude. No hassle . . . no conflict . . . no accountability. No need to share. Or reach out. Or give a rip.
Shouldn’t be the case w/ us who know the Lord .
A) Rejoice in other people’s victories & weep w/ them in their struggles
B) Notice Paul didn’t say preach to those who weep but weep w/ those who weep .
1) Why is it that we can be so good at pointing the finger & judging - and so bad at weeping & showing compassion.
C) A teenager - falls away from the Lord - our tendency is to say - we saw it coming why didn’t the parents
1) Parents praying for teens that is what all about - love that !!!!
Quote from George fox - Pastor of Quaker Pastor
I prayed to god that He would baptize my heart into all conditions so I might be able to enter the needs and conditions of all. “
Last thing Paul mentions in this section : True love doesn’t show partialityv.16 Be of the same mind toward one another. Do not set your mind on high things, but associate with the humble. Do not be wise in your own opinion.
A) Unfortunately in every church there are those who strive to try & fit into what they perceive is the “ in crowd “.
B) Maybe it is those who seem like the important people - maybe it is the pastoral staff. Maybe it is those who appear affluent .
1) Paul says don’t do that
C) In essence Paul is saying here - to be yourself - don’t try to be someone or something you are not .
1) Be humble - don’t be wise in your own opinion
V.3 For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith.
Looked at this in detail in our first study - of the body - don’t think more highly of yourself than you ought to think . But soberly - realistically
A) I noted in that study that the word measure at the end of v. 3 can also be translated - standard - which in context makes the most sense.
B) The idea is that each believer has a standard of faith by which he is to
measure himself & that standard is Christ !
C) Paul is not asking the believer to measure himself according to his
feelings which - go up & down .
1) He is not asking that we measure ourselves according to our successes - which can be few or many
D) And he is not asking us to measure ourselves - by comparing ourselves w/
others - Husband / father / Christian / the standard is Christ .
1)And when I see myself in light of Him / it is both sobering & humbling
Fall short / Yet encouraging - God’s goal - making me like His Son!
E) When I see myself in light of Christ , in comparison to Christ - I am reminded of how far I have to go /
1) of how much work the Lord still has do in me .
F) Helps me to see others in that same light.
So in this section - what Love looks like in the world in general
Love speaks well of persecutors / love identifies w/ the ups & downs of human life / love doesn’t show partiality
Lastly Paul explains what Love looks like in the mist of conflict v.17-21
1St True love doesn’t seek to avenge itself v. 17-19 17 Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men.18 If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men.
19 Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, "Vengeance is Mine, I will repay," says the Lord.
A) Again this is not natural - the natural tendency of ours is to hit back when we are to hit .
B) Not natural to turn other cheek - to do so means we will trust God . / Spirit
1) Vengeance is his . David w/ Saul 15 yrs -
C) Even though he had many opportunities to take matters into his own hands
David knew that Saul was God’s responsibility.
1) Even when others said - Look the Lord has delivered him into your hand.
D) David didn’t even talk bad about Saul - He reserved all of his frustration for his prayer life.
2nd True Love returns evil w/ good v.20-21 20 Therefore "If your enemy is hungry, feed him; If he is thirsty, give him a drink; For in so doing you will heap coals of fire on his head." 21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
A) In Paul s day. when a fire went out in a home, it was a real problem to re-ignite it. Didn’t use matches - they used coals
B) Therefore. if someone's fire was out. the women would carry live coals In clay jars upon their heads to share with the person who had no fire.
C) Thus, the implication here was not of burning one's enemy, but of warming him, blessing him in order to ultimately win him to the Kingdom.
1Tim. 1:5 5 Now the purpose of the commandment is love from a pure heart, from a good conscience, and from sincere faith,
Now we have noted in this study as we did last week - over & over again that to love on this type of level is naturally impossible - unattainable
A) To Love on this type of plane takes being empowered by a supernatural power - that only comes through a life that is yielded to the H.S.
B) In fact everything that we have looked at in this series of studies on the body of Christ is the result of the H.S. moving in your life.
1) Empowering your life.
C) We noted in our first study that these gifts are not natural talents that we possess at birth - not through human gene pool
1) But the gifts are given to us by the H.S. as He wills - as He sees the need - and as He desires us to full fill our function in the body.
D) But in order to open the door to the H.S. using us in this type of way it is important that we know we have received the Spirit in this way.
1) What do you mean. Turn to Acts 19
19:1 And it happened, while Apollos was at Corinth, that Paul, having passed through the upper regions, came to Ephesus. And finding some disciples
2 he said to them, "Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?" So they said to him, "We have not so much as heard whether there is a Holy Spirit."
3 And he said to them, "Into what then were you baptized?" So they said, "Into John's baptism."
4 Then Paul said, "John indeed baptized with a baptism of repentance, saying to the people that they should believe on Him who would come after him, that is, on Christ Jesus."
5 When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus.
6 And when Paul had laid hands on them, the Holy Spirit came upon them, and they spoke with tongues and prophesied.
7 Now the men were about twelve in all.
Here in Acts 19 Paul comes to Ephesus and meets a group of people referred to as disciples!
A.) He asks them a very interesting question - "Have you received the spirit since you believed?"
1.) Valid question - good question - one every believer should consider and be able to answer!
B) Paul - assuming - believers ( referred to as disciples - notices something
missing with these guys! Something not there!
1.) I have been around folks like that - know doctrine, fundamentals down - right on - right - dead right!
C.) But something missing / worship is drudgery - witnessing is non
existent - no life - no excitement - enthusiasm
D) Lack of fullness; lack of vibrancy in things of God / love toward God
1) Paul asks - question - Have you received Spirit… since believed !
Fact that Paul asked this question makes it a valid question!
Question we all should be able to answer as confidently as - Have you received Jesus?
But Many in church today are like these guys - what mean - never heard?
Now what did Paul mean when he asked this question & how does it relate to what we have been talking about. Why is it so important?
A.) First of all - Paul assuming believers - we know that when a person is
born again - become Christian
1.)He is Born of Spirit - Romans 8:11 - "Spirit of God dwells in you"
A) 1Cor.12:13 13 For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body;
B.) Exactly what Jesus taught his disciples in John 14 - Leaving
1.) Not leave orphans/ give helper / great Father's heart not on own
C.) He dwells with you/ Shall be in you!
1.) 2 fold relationship of the Holy Spirit - with / Convicting -drawing
but at Salvation /conversion comes to dwell in you!
D.) Brings life to your spirit takes up residence in you'
1.) This took place for disciples in John 20 - Breathed - receive ye Holy Spirit & And when Jesus says - do something - It happens!
E) So at that moment the disciples were saved! ( No salvation until after cross & Resurrection / when they saw Him in upper room believed convinced
1) They received the Spirit ! Dwelled in them!
But Jesus spoke of another aspect of the Spirit's work in life of believer - Acts 1:4-8 4 And being assembled together with them, He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father, "which," He said, "you have heard from Me; "for John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now."
6 you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth."
A) Speaking about an empowering of the Spirit .
1) Check this out - commands them - not a suggestion to go and wait
for the Holy Spirit to come upon them
B.)Jesus was saying - Before you can begin your ministry you need to be filled with spirit - baptized
1.) Purpose : Is for empowering - power - Word Dunamis - dynamite or dynamic!
C.) Before you can be truly useful in body of Christ and in World / you need to experience - dynamic of Holy Spirit
1.) The spirit coming upon your life!
D.) Listen these guys had spent 3 years with the best teacher ever / trained by God Himself - yet something lacking
1.) Jesus insisted they needed more - go wait!
This wasn't optional for them and should be for us!
E.) We are foolish think - 5 years school - faulty professors prepare us!
F.) Jesus knew this would be the key to their effectiveness, to their ability
to witness to the world and to serve the body of Christ!
1.) They needed the empowering that comes from being baptized with the spirit!
G) It is through the Baptism of the H.S. that the door way to the gifts of the spirit are unlocked .
1) Perhaps Through study our study on the gifts you felt - I don’t think I have any of those gifts - God can’t use me
H) Question Have you received the spirit since you believed ? Have you been baptized in the Spirit.
Now there are those who suggest that Paul was not referring to the Baptism of the Spirit / but to Salvation
A) In Essence they suggest Paul was asking them Are you really disciples / are you really in Christian ?
B) That is so silly / if that is what Paul meant / that is what he would have said / plus it makes no sense to say concerning salvation : Have received spirit
1) Given : Scriptures are clear : Spirit indwells you when saved
C) The Problem these brothers & sisters have is they don’t understand why a person who has received the Spirit when saved / in dwelling
1) Why do they need a “ second work or experience “ If you have the H.S. in you How can you get more of Him they ask?
D) This is where they mess up / When saved - you get all of the spirit - He is dwelling in you.
1.) Baptism of Spirit or the Empowering of the spirit / isn’t you getting more of Him it is Him getting all of you
E) Like sail on a sail boat - half way up - wind is only getting part of the sail
All the wind that is there that day is available but only getting half of sail
F) Open it all the way - and boom - power the boat goes
G) The baptism; filling; empowering with the spirit is essential if you want to
be effective for Lord!
1.) If you want to fulfill your calling / if you want to know what your gifts are & what your purpose in the body is.
Others are Hung up on terminology? Baptism/ filling empowering Doesn't matter what call it, what matters do you have it?
That's question: Do you desire all God has for you? Do you desire to be used? Know gifts?
Have your received the spirit since you believed?
A.) I believe everyone of us should be able to firmly say yes! Filled w/ the Spirit you see a difference
1.) Some tongues / others strong desire for the word ! / some desire to share faith & a boldness
B) Have you received Spirit? How does it happen?
1.)Promise of Father - just ask - Luke 11 - He will give spirit them that ask
Bb) God wants to empower you - in asking you are acknowledging your need - your dependency!
1.) He promises to empower you!
I believe that all of us should be able to pin point an initial time - filled with spirit - prayed; sensed change
A.) But After the initial filling with the spirit comes a refilling! Whenever you feel dry or powerless - ask
B.) Ephesians 5:18 - Be ye continually being filled! Whenever you feel a lack of power - ask the Lord to fill you!
1.) So many times where felt so out of it / unequipped - asked the Lord to fill me / sudden power
Now here in Acts 19 - Paul asks question - no clue what he was talking about
A.) Never heard of Holy Spirit - next Paul asks - who's baptism?
1.) John's ---- repentance; preparation
B.) Guess what - these guys were not saved yet; not only did they not have Holy Spirit - they didn't have Jesus!
C) Verse 4 - John - told of Jesus
A.) Paul shared gospel - baptized in water name of Jesus
B.) V.6 - Laid hands - spirit fell and spoke in tongues and prophesied
C.) Some here today - not saved! Never really received Lord - First step
1.) Maybe you are saved -but have you received the spirit
D.) Is there Power in your life? Know what gifts are - what function is in body!
1.) If not you need receive baptism of spirit!
E.) Maybe you have received the Baptism but tonight feel Powerless; dried up? Refilled!
1.) Today we want to give you a chance to do that!
F.) Laying on of hands - point of contact release your faith!
1.) Some sense immediately - you might prophecy - might speak in tongues
G.) Others on way home!
1.) Some might keep seeking - you need this power in your life!
H) Some tomorrow direction in that situation ( Word wisdom - discernment )
1) Boldness at work / or a new sense of burden for the lost !