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Eternal Love

Summary: Without love everything we do is empty


Key Scripture (1 Corinthians 13): Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing. Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part. But when that which is perfect has come, then that which is in part will be done away. When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things. For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known. And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.

The Powerlessness of Service Without Love (vv. 1-3


Scripture (1 Cor. 13:1-3): Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing.” 


A. The whole gospel message is God’s great love story


B. Speaking without Love is just noise


1. No matter how you speak - you are weak without love


2. No matter your words - they are worthless without love


3. No matter how sincere - you will fail without love


C. Spiritual gifts without love are just nothing


1. The gift of prophecy: knowing the future


2. The gift of understanding: All the mysteries


3. The gift of knowledge: Knowledge of God’s will


4. The gift of faith: Power to move mountains


D. Sacrifice without love is just nonsense


1. Even if I bestow all my goods to feed the poor


2. Or give my body to be burned

  

Important Takeaway: No matter what we do, without love our service is without power

The Practical Effects of Love (vv. 4-7)


Scripture (1 Cor. 13:4-7): Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.


A. Love suffers long (love in action): Puts up with many things


1. Peter: “How many times shall I forgive?”


2. It’s amazing what small things can shake and break us!


B. Love is kind. The positive side


C. Love doesn’t envy. Envy springs up from catering to self


D. Love doesn’t parade itself. Is not puffed up


E. Does not behave rudely. Doesn’t seek its own


F. Is not easily provoked. Not irritable


G. Thinks no evil. Hardly notices when others do it wrong


H. Does not rejoice in iniquity. Never glad about injustice.


I. Rejoices in the truth. Bears all things.


J. Believes all things. Instead of looking for little faults (or even big ones for that matter) love expects and believes the best.


K. If we’re truly living according to 1 Cor. 13, we’ll believe the best in others rather than thinking the worst. We’ll give everyone the benefit of the doubt. That’s what agape love is.


Important Takeaway: Love has many practical effects

The Performance of Love (vv. 8-13)


Scripture (1 Cor. 13:8-13): Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part. But when that which is perfect has come, then that which is in part will be done away. When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things. For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known. And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.


A. Love never fails. It won’t get obsolete.


B. Prophecy will fail


C. Tongues would cease


D. Even the special gift of knowledge would disappear


E. But not love. It remains.


Important Takeaway: Love is the only thing that lasts

Conclusion:


A. The fruit of the Spirit is love (Gal. 522-23)


B. Full surrender to the HS produces this love in us.