Developing The Love Of God
Developing The Love Of God in our lives should be our highest priority. In order to do that, we must first understand that love is not just an attribute of God; God is love. Love is what God is. Love is not a feeling or an emotion, love is a person; the person of God. Lets look at the Word of God and see what it has to say about His love.
The commandment of Love
1Jn:4:8. He who does not love does not know God, for God is love.
1Jn:4:16. And we have known and believed the love that God has for us. God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him.
There are 4 different Greek words translated love in the new testament, the one we are looking at is agape. The God kind of love. Romanized agape Pronounced ag-ah'-pay, love, i.e. affection or benevolence; specially (plural) a love-feast: dear, love.
This is the kind of love that the apostle John was talking about in ;
Jn.3:16: For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.
1Jn:4:7: Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God.
Jn:13:34: "A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another.
Jn:15:12: "This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.
Jn:15:17: "These things I command you, that you love one another.
Rom:13:8: Owe no one anything except to love one another, for he who loves another has fulfilled the law.
Rom:5:5: Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.
Paul was saying that the Holy Spirit places the Love of God in our hearts,
This is not the natural or carnal type of love, this is the very love of God.
This is the God kind of love, and the Holy Spirit will teach us to walk in it.
1Thes:4:9: But concerning brotherly love you have no need that I should write to you,
for you yourselves are taught by God to love one another
God the Father loved us first.
1 John 4:19. We love, because he first loved us.
Ephesians 2:4. But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us,
5. even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved),
6. and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus,
7. that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.
Love works in unity, and unity is the will of God.
Philippians 2:3. Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself.
1Pt:1:22: Since you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit in sincere love of the brethren, love one another fervently with a pure heart,
1Jn:3:11: For this is the message that you heard from the beginning, that we should love one another,
1Jn:3:23: 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.
2Jn:1:5: And now I plead with you, lady, not as though I wrote a new commandment to you, but that which we have had from the beginning: that we love one another.
Eph:1:4: just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love,
Eph:3:17: that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love,
Ephesians 4:2. with all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love,
Eph:4:15: but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head Christ
16. from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love.
Eph:5:2: And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma.
Col:2:2: that their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together in love, and attaining to all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the knowledge of the mystery of God, both of the Father and of Christ,
1Thes:3:12: And the Lord make you to increase and abound in love one toward another, and toward all men, even as we do toward you:
1Jn:4:15: Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God.
16. And we have known and believed the love that God has for us. God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him.
17. Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness in the day of judgment; because as He is, so are we in this world.
18. There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love.
Love is Godís will.
Jesus said Who are my brothers, --- (obedience and love go hand in hand.)
Mt:12:48: But He answered and said to the one who told Him, "Who is My mother and who are My brothers?''
49. And He stretched out His hand toward His disciples and said, "Here are My mother and My brothers!
50. "For whoever does the will of My Father in heaven is My brother and sister and mother.''
What is the will of God. To love God and to love one another.
Without faith it is impossible to please God, as He.11:6. Says.
Heb:11:6: But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.
However faith works through love, as Paul said to the Galatians.
Gal:5:6: For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision avails anything, but faith working through love.
Lu.10:33. "But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was. And when he saw him, he had compassion on him,
34. "and went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine; and he set him on his own animal, brought him to an inn, and took care of him.
35. "On the next day, when he departed, he took out two denarii, gave them to the innkeeper, and said to him, `Take care of him; and whatever more you spend, when I come again, I will repay you.'
36. "So which of these three do you think was neighbor to him who fell among the thieves?''
37. And he said, "He who showed mercy on him.'' Then Jesus said to him, "Go and do likewise.''
Love the lord your God.
Matthew 22:37. Jesus said to him, " `You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.'
38. "This is the first and great commandment.
39. "And the second is like it: `You shall love your neighbor as yourself.'
40. "On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.''
Mark 12:30. `And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.' This is the first commandment.
Luke 10:27. So he answered and said, " `You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind,' and `your neighbor as yourself.' ''
28. And He said to him, "You have answered rightly; do this and you will live.''
Love your neighbor as yourself
Matthew 19:19. `Honor your father and your mother,' and, `You shall love your neighbor as yourself.' ''
Romans 13:9. For the commandments, "You shall not commit adultery,'' "You shall not murder,'' "You shall not steal,'' "You shall not bear false witness,'' "You shall not covet,'' and if there is any other commandment, are all summed up in this saying, namely, "You shall love your neighbor as yourself.''
10. Love does no harm to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.
Galatians 5:14. For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this: "You shall love your neighbor as yourself.''
James 2:8. If you really fulfill the royal law according to the Scripture, "You shall love your neighbor as yourself,'' you do well;
Love your enemy
Rom:12:20: Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head.
Matthew 5:43. "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;
Love of God perfected
Philippians 3:7. But what things were gain to me, these I have counted loss for Christ.
8. But indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ.
1Jn:2:5: But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this
we know that we are in Him.
1Jn:4:11: Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.
12: No one has seen God at any time. If we love one another, God abides in us, and His love has been perfected in us.
Gal:6:10: Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith.
Psalms 133:1. Behold, how good and how pleasant it is For brethren to dwell together in unity!
2. It is like the precious oil upon the head, Running down on the beard, The beard of Aaron, Running down on the edge of his garments.
3. It is like the dew of Hermon, Descending upon the mountains of Zion; For there the Lord commanded the blessing Life forevermore.
The Excellence of Love
Col:2:2: That their hearts might be comforted, being knit together in love, and unto all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the acknowledgement of the mystery of God, and of the Father, and of Christ;
You notice It didnít say, it is Godís power that is holding us together. Love is the glue
or the binding agent that holds the body of Christ together. "Unto understanding and acknowledgement," this is talking about having confidence in who you are in Christ,
and God the Father. You become assured by your understanding, or another way of saying it is, you become confident in your knowing, because you know Him, you are confident.
-- Living Bible
1 Corinthians 13:4. Love is very patient and kind, never jealous or envious, never boastful or proud,
5. never haughty or selfish or rude. Love does not demand its own way. It is not irritable or touchy. It does not hold grudges and will hardly even notice when others do it wrong.
6. It is never glad about injustice, but rejoices whenever truth wins out.
7. If you love someone you will be loyal to him no matter what the cost. You will always believe in him, always expect the best of him, and always stand your ground in defending him.
8. All the special gifts and powers from God will someday come to an end, but love goes on forever.
The New King James Bible says it this way, :8. Love never fails. Paul saying by the Holy Spirit, love never fails. Thatís because God is love and God never fails, if you are walking in love you are walking in God, and that means you are walking in victory.
As long as you stay in the Love of God, you will not fail. I would like to point out something else in this passage of Scripture. Paul said, and if I have the gift of prophecy, and know all mysteries and all knowledge; and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. And if I give all my possessions to feed the poor, and if I deliver my body to be burned, but do not have love, it profits me nothing.
He is saying you can have the ministry gifts of faith, and prophecy, the word of wisdom and the word of knowledge operating in your life, even give all your money to feed the poor, but if you are not walking in love, you will not profit from it. It did not say others would not profit from it, it said you would not profit from it. If you gave all your money to the poor, the poor would surely profit from getting all your money wouldnít they? If you were to prophecy over people and give them words from God, they would profit from that wouldnít they? If you were to speak words of wisdom and knowledge over people, they would surely profit from that wouldnít they? Sure they would, to all these things! God is saying regardless of what we do, we have to do it in love. God looks at our heart and at our motives, He knows why we are doing things. If we are doing something to be seen or to draw attention to ourselves or have an ulterior motive, then we are not doing it out of a pure heart; sure, others may profit from these things, but you will not! Thatís a pretty sobering thought isnít it? I donít know about you, but I want to profit from the things I do. Most people do, if they are truly honest, and arenít walking in some sense of false humility.
God wants us to profit. He wouldnít be telling us these things if He didnít. Heís telling us to walk in love so that we can profit, and have others profit as well. Thatís truly the way the love of God works, He wants us all to profit. Glory to God. Amen