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BIBLE STUDY > Bible Study: "God's Love" Week # 1

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message 1: by Evangelist (last edited Jan 22, 2017 08:57AM) (new)

Evangelist Jordan (chosenwithcare) | 2150 comments Mod
Subject: The Greatest Power Ever Known: Part 1
Week # 1

Beginning Prayer:
Father God, I come into your presence so aware of my human frailty and yet overwhelmed by your love for me. I thank you that there is no human experience that I might walk through where your love cannot reach me. If I climb the highest mountain you are there and yet if I find myself in the darkest valley of my life, you are there. Teach me today to love you more. Help me to rest in that love that asks nothing more than the simple trusting heart of a child. Father, as we study on You love bless us to remember that You first loved us. Give us this day our daily bread as we study this lesson on love. We praise and thank You for all You have done for us. Let the words of our mouth and the meditation of our heart be accepted in You sight O Lord, our help and our strength. In Jesus name, Amen

The addition of faith revolutionizes the power of love. (Online Study)

The beautiful ballroom of the Marriott Hotel in Chicago was crowded to capacity with more than 1,300 college students and Campus Crusade staff members. I explained one of the most exciting spiritual discoveries that I had ever made -- how to love by faith.
For years I had spoken on the subject of love. I had a simple 4-point outline:
God loves you unconditionally.
You are commanded to love others -- God, your neighbors, your enemies.
You are incapable of loving others in your own strength.
You can love others with God's love.
But, as in the case of most sermons on love, something was missing. Then some years ago, in an early hour of the morning, I was awakened from a deep sleep. I knew that God had something to say to me. I felt impressed to get up, open my Bible and kneel to read and pray. What I discovered during the next 2 hours has since enriched my life and the lives of tens of thousands of others. I had learned how to love. With this discovery, God gave me the command to share this wonderful truth with Christians around the world. In that life-changing time of fellowship with the Lord, I was given a fifth point for my sermon on love -- we love by faith. Love is the greatest thing in the world -- the greatest privilege and power known to man. Its emphasis in life and word changed the course of history as the first-century Christians demonstrated a quality of life never before witnessed on this earth. The Greeks, Romans, Gentiles, and Jews hated one another. The very idea of love and self-sacrifice was foreign to their thinking. When they observed Christians from many nations, with different languages and cultures, actually loving one another and sacrificing to help each other, they responded in amazement, "Behold, how these people love one another!"
I challenged the students at the conference to become part of a revolution of love. I suggested that they make a list of all the individuals they did not like and begin to love them by faith.
Early the next morning, a young woman with sparkling eyes and face aglow said to me, "My life was changed last night. For many years I have hated my parents. I haven't seen them since I was 17, and now I am 22. I left home as a result of a quarrel 5 years ago and haven't written or talked to them since, though they have tried repeatedly to encourage me to return home. I determined that I would never see them again. I hated them.
"Before becoming a Christian a few months ago," she continued, "I had become a drug addict, a dope pusher and a prostitute. Last night you told me how to love my parents, and I could hardly wait to get out of that meeting and call them. Can you believe it? I now really love them with God's kind of love and can hardly wait to see them."
Everybody wants to be loved. Most psychologists agree that man's greatest need is to love and be loved. No barrier can withstand the mighty force of love.
There are 3 Greek words translated into the one English word "love"; eros, which suggests sensual desire -- it does not appear in the New Testament; phileo, which is used for friendship or love of one's friends or relatives -- it conveys a sense of loving someone because he is worthy of love; and agape, which is God's love: the purest, deepest kind of love -- it is expressed not through mere emotions but as an act of one's will.
Agape is God's supernatural, unconditional love for you revealed supremely through our Lord's death on the cross for our sins. It is the supernatural love He wants to produce in you and through you to others, by His Holy Spirit. Agape love is given because of the character of the person loving rather than because of the worthiness of the object of that love. Sometimes it is love "in spite of" rather than "because of."
God underscores the importance of this kind of love through the inspired pen of the apostle Paul, as recorded in 1 Corinthians 13. In this beautiful and remarkable passage of Scripture, Paul writes that, apart from love, anything that you might do for God or others is of no value. Consider these words:
If I had the gift of being able to speak in other languages without learning them, and could speak in every language there is in all of heaven and earth, but didn't love others, I would only be making noise.
If I had the gift of prophecy and knew all about what is going to happen in the future, knew everything about everything, but didn't love others, what good would it do? Even If I had the gift of faith so that I could speak to a mountain and make it move, I would still be worth nothing at all without love.
If I gave everything I have to poor people, and if I were burned alive for preaching the Gospel but didn't love others, it would be of no value whatever.
In other words, no matter what you do for God and for others, it is of no value unless you are motivated by God's love.
Prayer:
Heavenly Father, we live in a world where the security we once seemed to enjoy has been eroded right away and so many dark clouds of unknowing seen to be looming on the future's unpredictable horizon - and all that seemed to be so secure and reliable has turned to sawdust in our hands and evaporated like the morning mist. But Lord we praise Your name that we can entrust our future in Your safe-keeping, knowing that Your love surrounds us and that Your grace is sufficient.. no matter how black the circumstances of life may appear. Thank You Lord that You hold the world in the palm of Your hand, and nothing can snatch us from that secure position in Him. Thank You that we are accepted in the beloved and loved by the Father and thank You Lord that no danger may overtake any of Your children, that is not permitted by You – and which will not be used to fulfill a just and glorious purpose. Keep our hearts from unnecessary fretting or worry and in the power of the Holy Spirit may we build ourselves up in your most holy faith.. by praying in spirit and truth and walking the way of righteousness. May we learn day by day to prevent our eyes from focusing on the trials and tribulations that are coming on the earth - and rather help us to look to Jesus, knowing that in all things He is the victor - and we are securely positioned in Him - through time and into eternity...Thank You in Jesus name, Amen

Weekly Scripture Reading: (please explain which love this scripture is referring too, ( 1 John 4:8, 16)

Weekly Word: Agape Love

Week # 1 Study Questions:
1). List and discuss the characteristics of God's love found in 1 Corinthians 13.

2). Name a synonym for or give a short description of each characteristic. Share what each quality means to you.

3). Discuss ways in which the church as a body of Christian believers can express its love for God and one another.

Quiz:
1) Which did Jesus say was the most important of all God's commandments?
Love God with all your heart and soul.
Love your neighbor as yourself.
Do not murder.
Honor your father and mother.

Read verses that provide guidance on topics relating to love such as; relationships, marriage, family, children, strength, and love of others. The Bible says that God is love, which makes it the perfect source to learn how to love others, even those who are difficult for us to. Our world has skewed the meaning of true love but God's Word remains a steadfast, true source of knowledge on how to love. Read the below scripture from the Holy Bible about love in relation to God, Jesus Christ, and the Christian faith and begin seeing the change in your heart and mind!

Weekly Reading Assignments: I Corinthians 13


message 2: by Evangelist (new)

Evangelist Jordan (chosenwithcare) | 2150 comments Mod
NOTE:

The weekly word doesn’t mean that the weekly scripture reading is the meaning of that week’s word; the assignment is to identify the different kind of words for the word (LOVE). Read the Scripture reading and then give what word you think is the meaning in that scriture. Remember there a weekly word, weekly scripture reading, and a weekly reading assignment.


message 3: by Evangelist (new)

Evangelist Jordan (chosenwithcare) | 2150 comments Mod
This Week’s Prayer:

Father God, I come into your presence so aware of my human frailty and yet overwhelmed by your love for me. I thank you that there is no human experience that I might walk through where your love cannot reach me. If I climb the highest mountain you are there and yet if I find myself in the darkest valley of my life, you are there. Teach me today to love you more. Help me to rest in that love that asks nothing more than the simple trusting heart of a child. Father, as we study on You love bless us to remember that You first loved us. Give us this day our daily bread as we study this lesson on love. We praise and thank You for all You have done for us. Let the words of our mouth and the meditation of our heart be accepted in You sight O Lord, our help and our strength. In Jesus name, Amen


message 4: by Evangelist (new)

Evangelist Jordan (chosenwithcare) | 2150 comments Mod
The addition of faith revolutionizes the power of love.

The truth is not only that God loves, it is that God is love (1 John 4:8, 16). Everything God does is loving. He consciously chooses to reflect who He is for the good of those impacted by His redemption plans and purpose, You are never not loved by God.


message 5: by Evangelist (new)

Evangelist Jordan (chosenwithcare) | 2150 comments Mod
The Weekly Word: Week # 1

Agape Love
This is a special term which represents the divine-love of the Lord towards his Son Jesus Christ, the human beings and all believers. This is the best of the three types of love in the bible, in fact Jesus himself showed this type of divine love to his Dad in heaven and humanity. Agape love is the love that God commanded all believers to have for everyone whether he/she is a believer or not. Agape love should never be determined by our feelings; it is more of a set of behaviors or actions. With agape, you do not have to actually feel it for you to give it, which means that you can be able to show love without feeling anything at all. At times feelings can follow after showing this kind of love.

Agape is universal love, such as the love for strangers, nature, or God. Unlike storge, it does not depend on filiation or familiarity. Also called charity by Christian thinkers, agape can be said to encompass the modern concept of altruism, defined as unselfish concern for the welfare of others. Recent studies link altruism with a number of benefits. In the short term, altruism leaves us with a euphoric feeling—the so-called "helper's high." In the long term, it is associated with better mental and physical health, as well as longevity. At a social level, altruism serves as a signal of cooperative intentions, and also of resource availability and so of mating or partnering potential. It also opens up a debt account, encouraging beneficiaries to reciprocate with gifts and favors that may be of much greater value to us than those with which we feel able to part. More generally, altruism, or agape, helps to build and maintain the psychological, social, and, indeed, environmental fabric that shields, sustains, and enriches us. Given the increasing anger and division in our society, and the state of our planet, we could all do with quite a bit more agape!


message 6: by Evangelist (new)

Evangelist Jordan (chosenwithcare) | 2150 comments Mod
Weekly Scripture Reading:

(please explain what love this scripture is referring too)
(1 John 4:8, 16)

“He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.”

I believe it’s the love of God which we should have toward one another. That love is Agape love.


message 7: by Evangelist (new)

Evangelist Jordan (chosenwithcare) | 2150 comments Mod
Week # 1 Study Questions:

1). List and discuss the characteristics of God's love found in 1 Corinthians 13.

In this chapter it talks about God’s love, which is charity, and this love is agape love.
This word translated "love" (or "charity" in some translations and versions of this passage of Scripture) comes from the Greek word agape which is God’s kind of love. To love with His love means to love the same way as God loves, to manifest God's love towards another, whether it is towards God Himself, the Lord Jesus Christ, yourself, your Christian neighbor, or towards anyone else. We are to walk in faith, have hope, and must of all have love in our hearts as God has loved us. These characteristics is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, and temperance, (Galatians 5:22-23).

2). Name a synonym for or give a short description of each characteristic. Share what each quality means to you.

A. Faith: “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” Faith is the substance or assurance of things we hope for, but have not yet received. Faith (confidence, belief, trust) is also our evidence of that which is not seen—the invisible spiritual things. Faith comes before a prayer is answered or before an individual has received what he or she has requested from God. If we have received what we asked for, then faith is not needed.
B. Hope: The Greek word translated hope means “to have an expectation”. As believers, we have an expectation (a hope) of spending eternity with the Lord. And because of our faith in what He accomplished for us, we can be sure that what we hope for will come to fruition. Some call this our “blessed assurance”. “Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen (what is happening in this world), but on what is unseen (what will happen in the next world). For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal” (2 Cor. 4:16-18). In other words, “We live by faith, not by sight” (2 Cor. 5:7). What is happening here will soon be over for us, but what will happen there will last forever.
C. Charity: The word charity is found primarily in the King James Version of the Bible, and it nearly always means “love.” In the great “love chapter”—1 Corinthians 13—the KJV translates agape as “charity” while the modern translations render it more accurately as “love.” The only use of the word charity to indicate “giving” is Acts 9:36, which refers to Dorcas, a woman “full of good works and charity.” The Greek word here means “compassion, as exercised towards the poor; beneficence.” The KJV translates it “almsgiving.”

3). Discuss ways in which the church as a body of Christian believers can express its love for God and one another.
Scripture teaches us about ourselves, our condition, and our God. God’s love, of course, is a focal point of Scripture and a focal point of our stories of salvation. God’s love is aimed at the individual, yes, but also to the Body of Christ, comprised of his redeemed individuals. The local church is a centralized representative of this body, a body promised to conquer even the gates of Hell (Matt. 16:18). There are perhaps innumerable ways to describe God’s love in relation to the local church, but here are four significant ways our churches can reflect God’s love properly to each other and the world.

1. Christ-Centered Leadership: Leaders should strive for excellence and use their gifts, but never in a way that compromises their call to love people with the love of God.
2. Community Engagement: Living in community with one another and in the midst of outsiders is challenging and not for the faint of heart. But we must fight for it because God’s love is reflected in our love toward people. This is why the Great Commandment, according to Jesus, is to love God and love others. And this is why Jesus reminds his disciples that love for each other identifies with love for Him (John 13:35).

3. Church Membership: Believes are adopted into God’s family (Romans 8:15, Ephesians 5:1) to receive His blessings (Ephesians 1:14) and do His work (Ephesians 2:10). Simply put, the life of a believer is now bound to advancing His Kingdom. Believers are identified and called through new life in Christ. Jesus specifically gives the keys to this Kingdom to His followers (Matthew 16:19) and tells them that this a blood covenant (Matthew 26:28). When God’s people reflect the character of Christ, bear one another’s burden, break bread together, and live life on God’s mission, His love is clearly evident in the midst of them. AMEN.

4. Church Discipline: Discipline in the Church results in life within the body. Some of the greatest stories of repentance and rejuvenation that I’ve encountered (and experienced) began with a person being held accountable for their actions. Likewise, God’s love for us is often disciplinary, but it is for our good (Hebrews 12:1-17).


message 8: by Evangelist (new)

Evangelist Jordan (chosenwithcare) | 2150 comments Mod
Quiz:

1) Which did Jesus say was the most important of all God's commandments?

Love God with all your heart and soul.


message 9: by Evangelist (new)

Evangelist Jordan (chosenwithcare) | 2150 comments Mod
Read verses:

This provide guidance on topics relating to love such as; relationships, marriage, family, children, strength, and love of others. The Bible says that God is love, which makes it the perfect source to learn how to love others, even those who are difficult for us to. Our world has skewed the meaning of true love but God's Word remains a steadfast, true source of knowledge on how to love. Read the below scripture from the Holy Bible about love in relation to God, Jesus Christ, and the Christian faith and begin seeing the change in your heart and mind!

Weekly Reading Assignments: I Corinthians 13: I have read this week’s assignment:
1 Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal. 2 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, and have not charity, I am nothing. 3 And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing.
4 Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, 5 Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; 6 Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; 7 Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. 8 Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away. 9 For we know in part, and we prophesy in part.
10 But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away.
11 When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things. 12 For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.
13 And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.


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