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SERMON DATE AND TITLE: 20150208 - THE POWER OF LOVE

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Senior Pastor Phil Roland

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Pastor Ray Scott

 

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THE POWER OF LOVE
SERMON STARTER
          We live in a generation that mistakenly believes that love is a "three-letter-word." We don't know what human love is all about, so it stands to reason we don't have a clue about what God's love is about. I was 31 years old before I experienced God's love in my own live.
          I had known human love: a mother's love a devout wife's love, the for and by my children. As sweet and good as all this has been it is a glimpse of the awesome love that Jesus has for me, personally. Jesus' love is reciprocal, because as John wrote,

19 We love Him because He first loved us.   1 John 4:19

          There is great power in Christ's love once you've experienced it. My sermon explores the power of that love.
What is the power of his love? Is it something that can be commercially marketed like porn? Can you package it, program it or put a price on it? Is it found in a great cathedral? (Read my poem from 1960.)  

WITHIN THE HEART

 
I once walked the streets in search
Of God, and found a church:
Its lengthy spires gleamed in the sun,
Beneath its magnificence I was stunned.
  
“Surely God is here,” said I,
“Within this church, beneath this sky.”
I entered through a towering hall,
Beside such walls I seemed so small.

“My God is here,” my voice fell cold
Along the walls so ancient and old.  
Within this structure of stone and steel
I failed the presence of God to feel.

“But where can we see our God?” you say.
He dwells in us each brightened day.
May I open my heart anew
To let the face of God shine through.

          My sermon this morning explores how powerful God's Love is when our hearts are open to receive it.
Pastor Phil  <><<


February 8, 2015 - Sheepfold Ministries
Pastor Phil Roland

THE POWER OF LOVE
1 JOHN 3:14-24

“People who have experienced God's Love are not superior to other Christians.  God's love in a person's heart does not make them superior, it makes them more vulnerable."                                                                       Pastor Phil

"But eagerly desire the greater gifts. And now I will show you the most excellent way."                                                                                           1 Cor 12:31

14 We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love the brethren. He who does not love his brother abides in death.        1 John 3:14
agape = A=GA=PAY = John 3:16 = God’s love for and in us.
filew = PHIL-AYE-O = John 21:17 = Do you love Me, Peter?
storge = STOR-GAY = Septuagint, Family Love
eros = ER-OS = Septuagint, Sexual Love in Marriage

I.  THE EVIDENCE OF THE POWER OF LOVE
“We know that we have passed from death unto life, because we love the  brethren. . .”
            A. Unimpeachable Evidence . . .
                        1. We love fellow-believers
                        2. First Century Jewish/Roman Historian, Josephus writes,
                         “See how much they love one another!”
                         "See how they lay down their loves for each other!"
a. Roman culture people hated one another
                                    b. Roman culture murdered one another
            B. Road blocks to Loving, then and now
                        1. Hostility. . .Resentment - Political, "Class Warfare"
                        2. Jealousy. . .Hatred
            C. There is Murder in Anger - v. 15
           
15 Whoever hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer
               has eternal life abiding in him.
                        1. Harboring anger is a danger to your spiritual life - Matt. 5:22                            21 "You have heard that it was said to those of old, 'You shall not
                          murder, and whoever murders will be in danger of the judgment.'
                        22 But I say to you that whoever is angry with his brother (without a
                          cause) shall be in danger of the judgment. And whoever says to his
                          brother, 'Raca!' shall be in danger of the council. But whoever says,
                          'You fool!' shall be in danger of hell fire.   Matt. 5:22,23
                        2. The Evidence of the Power of Love is the Ability to Witness

 

THE POWER OF LOVE, cont., p.2

                                8 But 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."   Acts 1:8

II. THE ACTION OF THE POWER OF LOVE
 “This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us.”
            A. Agape acts by Giving -
                        1. See John 3:16- “God loved so much, He GAVE. . .”
2. See John 15:13 - “Greater love has no man than this: . .”
            B. Believers ACT OUT their love for one another. . .
                        1. “And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers. . .”
                        2. Evidence of the Power of Love is ACTION. . .

III. THE ORIGIN OF THE POWER OF LOVEVerse 23a
“And this is his command: to believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ,
          A. Jesus Christ is the origin of God’s Love. . .
      B. “Believe on the Name”-Accept, Believe, Commit - John 3:36

IV. THE SHARING OF THE POWER OF LOVE
 A. By the Power of God’s Holy Spirit
            B. Expensive

1 John 3:14-24
14 We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love the brethren. He who does not love his brother abides in death.
15 Whoever hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him.
16 By this we know love, because He laid down His life for us. And we also ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.
17 But whoever has this world's goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him?
18 My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth.
19 And by this we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before Him.
20 For if our heart condemns us, God is greater than our heart, and knows all things.
21 Beloved, if our heart does not condemn us, we have confidence toward God.
22 And whatever we ask we receive from Him, because we keep His commandments and do those things that are pleasing in His sight.
23 And this is His commandment: that we should believe on the name of His Son Jesus Christ and love one another, as He gave us commandment.
24 Now he who keeps His commandments abides in Him, and He in him. And by this we know that He abides in us, by the Spirit whom He has given us.

Dying Man's Last Words to His Wife
For 36 years Jeno and his wife delighted in one another. But one day Jeno suffered a stroke. For weeks he lay in the hospital, slipping in and out of a coma. Day and night his wife sat at his side. One evening, she put her head on his hand and fell asleep.
Jeno awoke during the night and seeing his wife, picked up an envelope and pencil and scribbled these words: "Softly, I will leave you, for my heart would break if you should wake and see me go. So I leave you. Long before you miss me. Long before your arms can beg me stay for one more hour, one more day. After all of the years, I can't stand the tears to fall, so I leave you softly."
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V-wDQHMvsD8
Today in the Word, February, 1991, p. 32.

 

Within the Heart

 
I once walked the streets in search
Of God, and found a church:
Its lengthy spires gleamed in the sun,
Beneath its magnificence I was stunned.
 
“Surely God is here,” said I,
“Within this church, beneath this sky.”
I entered through a towering hall,
Beside such walls I seemed so small.
 
“My God is here,” my voice fell cold
Along the walls so ancient and old.  
Within this structure of stone and steel
I failed the presence of God to feel.
 
“But where can we see our God?” you say.
He dwells in us each brightened day.
May I open my heart anew
To let the face of God shine through.