You must always have at least one note in the system at all times. To achieve this, either edit this current demo note with your own sermon text or create a new note using the ‘CREATE NOW’ button located in the user menu on the left side. If you create a new note, you can then remove this demo note from the system in the MANGE NOTES page.


Christ commanded us to love one another even as . For us to know how to love each other we must understand the character of the rich deep love that Jesus Christ that Paul describes in Ephesians 3 as surpassing knowledge.

(MULTILINE REVEAL SMALL)

I. His love is unmerited

A. 1 John 4:10 “In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the .”

B. Ephesians 2:4-7 “But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.”

C. What escapes definition is that even when we reject Him, we disobey Him, we sin against Him, . We call it ‘’, unmerited love from God to His rebellious creation.

D. God’s unmerited love is given to us, people who don’t deserve His love to transform and change us into new creations.

E. We are such undeserving beneficiaries of God’s . He reached down to us in our absolute total depravity and lifted us to Himself pouring out His grace to us.

(MULTILINE REVEAL SMALL)

II. His love is unlimited

A. He, who loved us forgave us, doing so without limit.

1. Revelation 1:5 And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood,

2. Luke 23:34 Then Jesus said, ‘Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they do.’ And they divided His garments and cast lots.

B. John 3:16 For God so loved the world that He gave his only begotten Son…

(MULTILINE REVEAL SMALL)

III. His love is unselfish

A.

1. 1 Corinthians 13:5-6 Love “Does not behave itself unseemly, seeks not her own, is not easily provoked, thinks no evil; Rejoices not in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth.”

2. Jesus is the perfect example of selflessness. Matthew 20:28 says, ‘Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give His life a ransom for many.’

B.

• 2 Corinthians 8:9 “For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich.”

• John 10:10 ‘The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it] more abundantly.

(MULTILINE)

When you think about suffering, what comes to mind? Do you envision bedraggled children with distended stomachs, a hospital patient hooked up to life-sustaining medical equipment, or a courageous veteran dealing with the aftermath of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.  Adversity seems to be a common denominator to human existence, but what does the Bible have to say about suffering?

Jesus spoke to His disciples about suffering. One of the most well-known verses reads, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me” (Matthew 16:24 ESV). The Greek word for cross in this verse is staurós. It refers to the crossbeam which the lowest criminals carried as they trudged toward their execution. The cross symbolized degradation and indescribable pain as well as sacrifice.

While the invitation to eternal life is free, it comes at a price–certain suffering.

(MULTILINE)

The Oral

presentation

The purpose of this exercise is to develop skill at preparing an oral presentation plan that engages the audience and faithfully presents the text message.
Text: Mark 12:31
  • Makes sure sermon ideas are clear and well worded.
  • Plan with the dynamics of oral communication.
  • Design the presentation to follow the text.
  • Design the presentation to engage the audience.
  • Plan balanced appeal for the whole person.
  • Plan for the audience and the occasion.
This exercise involves planning the design of your sermon for an oral presentation. This form follows the motivated sequence outline combined with the traditional introduction-body-conclusion format.
Introduction: Attention

After receiving Jesus, the most important issue of life is Love. There is no aspect of our daily walk in Christianity that is more important than love. There is no aspect of our daily walk in Christianity that is more challenging than love. There is no aspect of our daily walk in Christianity that unlocks the power of God in our lives more than love. There is nothing that gets God’s attention in our lives more than love. Love is the key to living the abundant life that Jesus died to give us.

Need

Therefore, it is extremely important for us to understand what love is, and what love is not. First, let’s discuss what love is not. Love is not a feeling or an emotion. Love is not an attraction, passion, or desire. Love is not those bubbly feelings you get when you are into someone. All of those categories would fall under the word like, but not love. God didn’t command us to like one another, He commanded us to love one another whether we like it or not.

Bridging Sentences

Subject: Love Modifier: Neighbor

Textual Idea:

To show that sacrificial love for others is the key to the heart of God.

Sermon Idea:

God desires for us to love others with an intensity and passion that matches our love for self.

Interrogative:

What is love?

Transition:

Jesus said, 30 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. 31 The second is this: Love your neighbor as yourself. There is no commandment greater than these (Mark 12:30-31).

Body: Satisfaction:

The reason there are no commandments greater than the commands to love God and people is because love is the expression of the very heart and nature of God. The more we love, the more like God we become.

Division 1 Statement      

So, today I want to focus of verse 31 which is to love your neighbor as yourself.

Explanation      

The Bible tells us that God is love. 1 John 4:8 Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. Therefore, love is to encompass the very heart and nature of God. The Greek word used in this passage for love is Agapè. The word Agapè represents the deepest form of love. The simplest definition of Agapè, is that it is “the God kind of love.” Meaning, it is the way God loves. There aren’t enough words in any language to adequately express God’s love, but Paul did a great job trying to explain it in 1Cor. 13:4-8 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails…

In reading that list, it becomes clear that love is the absence of selfishness which is also the absence of sin; or we can say, love is the opposite of sin.

Illustration

Let me give you a great example. The word love is thrown around a lot these days. People say, “Love is love.” And what that means is that a person can love whomever they want, however they want; and therefore no one can challenge it because it’s “love.” But that is the world’s definition of love. What does the Bible say about love? It states, “love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.” For example, if a relationship between two people is not approved and sanctioned by the word of God and the Spirit of God, regardless of how those two people feel about each other, that relationship cannot be real love? The relationship can be filled with passion, desire, emotional longing, and some happiness; but those things do not constitute the God kind of love. Passion, desire, emotional longing, and happiness can spur someone on in their love for another, but those things in and of themselves are not love. My physical attraction, my sexual and emotional desires, and my passions for my wife help me in my love for her, but those attractions, passions, and desires are not love. They are expressions of the way that I feel. I could have the same attractions, passions, and desires for a woman who is not my wife, and if I pursue them, then those same attractions, passions, and desires that help me love my wife, would then help me sin against her, and violate our covenant. The thing that matters with love is that it’s “the God kind of love.” Being in a relationship with someone in a way that opposes God’s truth is the opposite of love. It doesn’t matter if you are attracted to the person or how you feel about them. What matters is God’s truth concerning the relationship. If it violates His truth, then it cannot be in His love. This includes all our personal relationships. If it violates God’s truth, then it is not His love. I know that everyone does not understand what I am saying right now, but those who are spiritually mature are able to decern it. Let me give you another example. If you are in a dating relationship and the two of you feel like you love each other, is it then okay to have sex? The two of you are “in love,” and sex is a great way to express your feelings for one another. However, you must first find out God’s truth about sex. God said that “It’s not good for man to be alone.” However, He didn’t stop there. Many of us wish He did stop there, but He didn’t. He went on to say, “For this reason a man would leave his father and mother and be joined to His wife, and that the two would become one.” That is God’s order of operation, (His PEMDAS, for all you math nerds). In math the order of operation is PEMDAS. Well, God has an order of operation as it pertains to intimate relationships. First, there must be the joining of a man and a woman (3x). That joining is what we call marriage, which makes them husband and wife. Then, after the joining in marriage, the two become one flesh through sexual intercourse.

Therefore, God’s truth says that sex is reserved for marriage—between a husband and wife— because it makes the two—the man and the woman—into one. Becoming one with someone expresses love only when it is done in the context of God’s truth. Otherwise, it cannot be classified as love. It can be classified as a lot of things, but not love.
Argumentation

If you search the scriptures, you will begin to see that love is righteousness in action. Let me just develop this quickly. There are two aspects of righteousness. There is the state of righteousness, which is required to enter the presence of God. Then, there is the lifestyle of righteousness or living in righteousness, which is required to enjoy the abundant life of Christ. The state of righteousness has to do with the condition of the heart. A righteous heart is required to experience the eternal presence of God. However, there is one problem. The Bible teaches us that “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God (Rom. 3:23).” The condition of every human heart is that it is full of sin and needs to be made righteous to enter the glory of God. Romans 3:22 states, “This righteousness is given through faith in Jesus Christ to those who believe.” And in Romans 4:5 it states, But people are counted as righteous, not because of their work, but because of their faith in God who forgives sinners.” Therefore, we see that the state of righteousness is credited to those who believe, not based on how good they are, but strictly based on their faith in God. This means that the moment you accept Jesus into your heart, He makes the condition of your heart righteous. Not because you deserved it, but because He loved you and died for your sins. When you put your faith in Jesus, sin no longer has the power or authority to condemn you because you are made righteous in God’s sight through the blood of Jesus. (Ladies and gentlemen, this is the Good News about Jesus Christ.) Jesus gave His life so that the condition of the human heart can be changed from unrighteous to righteous. So, that we can dwell in the Lord’s presence forever. All of that pertains to the state of righteousness, which is the condition of the heart. On the other hand, the lifestyle of righteousness has to do with the position of our heart. This pertains to our walk of righteousness. Which is something that we control. For example, Romans 12:1 states, “Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. And Matt. 6:33 states, “Seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. These verses represent how we must position our hearts, to live the life God desires for us to live. The position of our heart has to do with integrity, virtue, purity of life, right and correct thinking, feeling, and acting. The state of righteousness has to do with God removing sin from us. Whereas the position of righteousness has to do with us removing ourselves from sin. Let me say that again. The state of righteousness has to do with God removing sin from us. That’s His job, which Jesus took care of on the cross. All we must do is believe. Once you receive Jesus and believe in His work on the cross, He washes away all your sins, past, present, and future. As far as God is concerned, there is no sin in anyone who has been washed by the blood of Jesus. Does this give us a free pass to do whatever we want? Absolutely not. Romans 6:1-2 States, “1 Well then, should we keep on sinning so that God can show us more and more of His wonderful grace? Of course not! Since we have died to sin, how can we continue to live in it?” We died to sin because of what Jesus did for us. However, we stop living in sin, by how we position our hearts towards Him. That is the lifestyle of righteousness, which is our responsibility. Now, let me bring this all back together because we are talking about love. We must position our hearts to live in righteousness. What does that look like? Well, what is the one thing that fulfills God’s law of righteousness? Love. If love fulfills the law of righteousness, then we could say that love is the absence of sin. Which is why, “God is love.” We could also say that love is the lifestyle of righteousness. Let me give you an example. 1 John 3:10 By this the children of God and the children of the devil are obvious: anyone who does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor the one who does not love his brother and sister. Look how righteousness and love are tied together. There is no such thing as practicing righteousness without walking in love. There is no such thing as walking in love without practicing righteousness. They are one and the same. Love is righteousness, and righteousness is love. You may think that because you come to church weekly, and read your Bible, and pray every day that you are practicing righteousness. Those practices, though they are important, are not the gauge of your acts of righteousness. The gauge of your acts of righteousness are dependent on how well you love others.

Application

1 John 2:9-11 Anyone who claims to be in the light but hates a brother or sister is still in the darkness. 10 Anyone who loves their brother and sister lives in the light, and there is nothing in them to make them stumble. 11 But anyone who hates a brother or sister is in the darkness and walks around in the darkness. They do not know where they are going, because the darkness has blinded them.

Our walk of righteousness is totally dependent of how well we love. In the body of Christ, we are often so concerned about not “stumbling” that we have created a “Do Right” theology. “Do this. Do that. Or don’t do this. Don’t do that.” Which is the exact dogma that Jesus came to expel. Jesus did not come teaching a “Do Right” theology. Rather, He came teaching a “be right” theology. Doing right and being right are two very different things. Doing right is to try to work towards righteousness. Whereas being right is to allow righteousness to do its work in us. Doing right has to do with fear. Whereas being right has to do with love. You can’t do like Jesus did until you become like Jesus is. Many of us try to do like Jesus in order to be like Him. Instead, we ought to focus on becoming like Jesus, so that we can do like Him, in love.

Eph. 5:1-2 (GNT)

1 Since you are God’s dear children, you must try to be like Him. Your life must be controlled by love, just as Christ loved us and gave His life for us as a sweet-smelling offering and sacrifice that pleases God.

Your life must be controlled by love. I don’t know that we have even scratched the surface of this. To be like Jesus, our lives must be controlled by love. We so often try to do the right thing because we are Christians, rather than becoming Christ-like, so that we can love unconditionally. Trying to “do the right thing,” is impossible on a consistent bases if we are not like Christ. Which is why the passage doesn’t say “try to do like Jesus.” Rather, it commands us to “try to be like Him.” This “do right” theology has actually produced a weak Church. Instead of discipling people to be like Jesus, we are teaching them to do right. We say, “Be a living sacrifice.” Then, we heap rules and regulations on people. “Be a living sacrifice” doesn’t mean to do right; it means to be like Jesus by living your life controlled by love. We can consistently pray, read the Bible, go to a Church service weekly, and try to do the right things our whole life, and never be anything like Jesus if we don’t love our neighbor. Love is the only thing that makes us Christ-like.

God is not asking us to do loving things, He is asking us to become His love. Become patient. Become kind. Become joyful at the success of others. Become humble at your own success. Become one who honors rather than dishonors. Become one who looks out for the well-being of others. Become one who is not easily angered. Become one who never holds a grudge, and who easily forgives. Become one who despises evil but rejoices with the truth. Become a protector. Become trusting of those who care for you. Become one who never loses hope. Become one who always perseveres. Become one who never gives up on love. If you want to shake the foundations of the earth like Jesus did, then become love like Jesus is. If you want to move mountains and walk on water like Jesus did, then become love like Jesus is. If you want to experience the deaf hearing and the blind seeing like Jesus did, then become love like Jesus is. We always pound faith, faith, faith, faith, faith. We say, “If you want God to do this, you need to have faith.” “If you want God to do that, you need to have faith.” Faith is an amazing gift from the almighty; and I wouldn’t leave home without it. However, the word says “And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love” (1 Cor. 13:13). Love is greater than faith and greater than hope. The reason why many of us do not see our faith materialize is not because we don’t have enough faith—all it takes is a mustard seed of faith to move a mountain. So, why are we not seeing these proverbial mountains moved? It’s because we don’t have enough love. Love is the work of faith. Love is faith in action. Love is the secret ingredient that powers faith. Love is the engine of faith; it is the motor that makes faith go. Love is the work of faith. Therefore, faith without love, is dead.

If you want to see the miraculous workings of God in your life, then become His love.

So, I have no problem saying this again…

1Cor. 13:4-8 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails…
Transition (Div. 1 to Div. 2)

If you want to continuously see the miraculous power of God working in your life, then become His love; by allowing your life to be controlled by His love. How do we allow love to control us? It’s simple.

Division 2 Statement      

Love your neighbor as yourself.

Explanation

When Jesus commanded us to love our neighbor as we love ourselves, He knew exactly what he was saying. Let me clarify that a neighbor is any other person, we meet, irrespective of nationality or religion. We must love our neighbor by desiring for that person only the good things we desire for ourselves. We are patient with ourselves, and very kind to ourselves. We don’t intentionally dishonor ourselves; and we are very quick to forgive and forget our own wrongs. We don’t desire evil for ourselves. We protect ourselves. We have no problem trusting ourselves. We have no problem hoping in ourselves. We never stop trying to preserve our own life. We never stop loving ourselves. Knowing this, Jesus commanded us to love our neighbor in the same exact way. What a challenge.

Illustration      

Imagine if every single person you met had a mirror in front of their face. So, no matter who they are or how they look, what you see when you look at them is a reflection of your own face. Would you interact differently with people if every time you looked at them, you saw your own reflection? Most likely you would. You would likely be far more sympathetic, empathetic, and compassionate. You’d also likely be far more gracious, generous, and merciful.

Argumentation      

Well, Jesus commanded us to view others as though they were us, and to love them as we love ourselves. As far as it concerns me, as a Christian, I must view everyone that I meet as though they were me; and I am to treat them exactly as I would treat myself. It’s so big of a challenge that we often skip over it as though it were impossible. However, because Jesus commanded it, He makes it possible. If He did it, we can do it. Why? Because “I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength” (Php. 4:13).

Application

Plan your development as application. Application spells out the implications of the biblical idea and calls for change and action in a faith response.

If all Christians were to operate in the God kind of love, as a lifestyle, we would flip the whole world on its head. We saw it happen in the early church.

Acts 4:32-35 32 All the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of their possessions was their own, but they shared everything they had. 33 With great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And God’s grace was so powerfully at work in them all 34 that there were no needy persons among them. For from time to time those who owned land or houses sold them, brought the money from the sales 35 and put it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to anyone who had need.

Now, let’s go back up to verse 31. It states, “After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly.”

God’s grace was so powerfully at work among them that…

  1. They were of one heart and mind.
  • Someone say, “That’s love.”
  1. They sacrificed of themselves for the needs of others.
  • Someone say, “That’s love.”
  1. There were no needy persons among them.
  • Someone say, “That’s love.”
  1. They prayed and the place was shaken.
  • “Now, that’s God’s response to love..”

The place being shaken was God’s response to the outpour of love experienced amongst His people. Do you want to see the world around you shaken? Walk in God’s love. Love your neighbor as yourself. Do you want to experience the miraculous power of God working in your life? Walk in God’s love. Do you want to see people flock to the Good News about Jesus Christ? Walk in love.

See, you’ve been trusting God for something for a while now, and you haven’t yet seen the manifestation of it in your life. You keep hearing, “Have more faith. Have more faith.” But I want to challenge you today, rather than trying so hard to “Have more faith,” add to your faith more of God’s love. Someone repeat after me, “Have more love.” Focus your heart and your mind of loving others, rather than on your own needs, wants, or desires and watch how quickly God begins to move in your situation.

Matt. 6:33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. You may not realize it, but this command is exactly the same as when God commanded us to “Love the Lord with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself.” For us to seek first His kingdom we must love Him with our all. And we’ve already established that love fulfills the law of righteousness. Therefore, to seek His righteousness is to love your neighbor as yourself. We try to make it so hard, but it’s really simple. If we love the Lord with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength and if we love our neighbor as ourselves, “all these things will be added to us as well.” All what things?

Matt. 6:31 So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’

What we drink, eat, and wear encompasses all our needs. So, when Jesus said, “All these things will be added to you as well,” He was referring to all our needs being met. Love puts us in position to have all our needs met. Love is the ingredient that causes our faith to receive the power it takes to move mountains. You are trying to appeal to God to move in your life, but your focus is on increasing your faith. Well, the greatest way to increase your faith is by increasing in His love. The greatest way to increase in His love is by abiding in His presence.
Conclusion: Visualization      

The more we increase in His love, the more potent our faith becomes. Just look at how this worked in the life of Jesus.

Philip. 2:3-11 Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others. In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made Himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled himself by becoming obedient to death—even death on a cross! Therefore God exalted Him to the highest place and gave Him the name that is above every name, 10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Reiteration      

Listen, “In our relationships with one another, we ought to have the same mindset as Christ Jesus.” What was Jesus’ mindset? Jesus’ mindset was that although He was God, He made Himself a servant. What does scripture say was the result of that mindset? He was exalted to the highest place and given a name that is above every name. Jesus is our example that the way up, is down. The way for us to be exalted in the kingdom of God, is for us to humble ourselves in love. If we lay down our lives for one another, the Father will elevate us for our sacrifice of love because it reflects Jesus. Jesus said, “There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends” (John 15:13 NLT). For loves sake, Jesus regarded the life of others over His own life. What is God’s response to that kind of love? God raised Him up and elevated His name above every other name. Guess what? You carry His name inside of you. It is written on your heart. Therefore, if you carry His love inside of you, there is a lifting up for you. Faith powered by love is what causes God to see us and to move on our behalf. Some of us are afraid because we don’t want to become a “doormat” for others. However, it’s impossible to exercise the love of God and become a “doormat” because God elevates those who love. Just look at the life of Jesus. Jesus was not a “doormat,” and He was not weak. Love is not a weakness, it is the exercise of the power of God to extend mercy, kindness, and grace to another as though you were extending it to yourself. Therefore, our main focus in life ought to be that we love our neighbor as we love ourselves. Gal. 5:14 For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.”

Action

Now here is the challenge for us all. It is easy to sit say “hallelujah” and “amen” to what you are hearing, but it is not so easy to love your neighbor as yourself. That kind of love requires deep intimacy with the Holy Spirit. Here is the secret to the success of living in the Godkind of love. Jesus said, “Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me. “I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.” In order to be like Jesus, we have to spend plenty of time abiding in His presence through the Holy Spirit.

Appeal

Romans 8:26-27 26 The Spirit helps us in our weakness. (our weakness is our inability to love.) We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. 27 And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God.

What is the will of God? That we love Him with all of our heart, soul, mind, and strength; and that we love our neighbor as our self. That is His whole law.

Galatians 5:16 16 So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. 17 For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want.

The Spirit desires that we walk in love. Everything the flesh desires—which is our sinful nature—is contrary to love.

If you want to see the foundation of the world around you shaken, and you want to receive elevation in the kingdom of God, walk by the Spirit. Develop the habit of spending plenty of time in God’s presence. Then, the Holy Spirit will lead and guide you in love and your faith will produce much fruit, and you will change the world.

 

x