Foundation Series #4: Love Is The Answer


Photo by Leighann Renee on Unsplash

1 Corinthians 13:1-3 (KJV) 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.

What Is “Love”? Why Is “Love” So Important?

I grew up hearing songs about “love” – and I’m sure you did as well. Whether you like Rock Music, Pop Music, Country Music, or (yuk) Rap Music you’ve all heard bands, groups, and famous singers speak about “love”. Love was advertised on the Soap Operas like General Hospital or The Young and the Restless. It didn’t take me long to figure out the reason they were young and restless is because of their weird ideas about love. Love was on the radio.

George Jones sang about “The Love In Your Eyes”
Another group sang about that “Crazy Little Thing Called Love”
My Momma’s favorite singer Elvis sang
“Can’t Help Falling In Love”
Not having a clue as to what they were saying, a British Band sang
”All You Need Is Love”

Our impression as to what love is has been shaped by what we’ve heard on Radio or seen on Television or in the Movies. They almost got it right when they sang:

Light of the world, shine on me
Love is the answer
Shine on us all, set us free
Love is the answer

Jesus Christ is “The Light Of The World”.

John 8:12 (KJV) … I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.

Jesus Christ is God in the Flesh. When the Bible says “God is love” (1 John 4:8, 16) it bids you to look to Jesus. What did Jesus say to those who would heed Him?

John 13:34 A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. (also John 15:12, 17)

Love GIVES More Than it TAKES

To find the Biblical definition of love you need to turn to Paul’s letter to Corinth. These were saved people. They were born again by the Word of God which liveth and abideth forever (1 Peter 1:23). The Apostle addressed Corinth as:

1 Corinthians 1:2 (KJV) … the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, …

Inwardly they were saved, but outwardly they were a mess! The Apostle told them:

1 Corinthians 3:1 (KJV)  And I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, even as unto babes in Christ.

What Is A BABY? What Characterizes A Baby?

The baby is first of all PRECIOUS. Normal people love babies.
They are so cute!

BUT the “baby” is HEARD. It cries incessantly.
The “baby” wants to be the CENTER of attention.
It screeches “Hey, look at ME!”
The “baby” crawls away from the parents and grabs things.
Mine!” it shouts!
The “baby” hurts itself by disobeying its parents,
then blames the parent.
Oh, did I mention the “baby” SMELLS.

My children were very generous.
If it smelled, they gave it to me!

Every one of my children peed or pooped on me when they were babies. They threw up on me. I fed them, burped them, then I had to change my shirt. But I tolerated it because they were MY kids, and I loved them. But I expected them to grow up! Every parent wants to see their child grow into mature, functioning citizens that act like they have good sense. The Corinthians were still babes in Christ.

The difference between the “Mature Christian” and the “babe in Christ” is based on whether you TAKE love or GIVE love. The mature believer GIVES. You were created to GIVE Love.

Love Matters So Very Much!

1 Corinthians 13:1 (KJV) 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.

You can be highly educated, with many college degrees. You can have the ability to speak numerous languages. But if love is not evident in your life you are only so much noise. Love is to give unselfishly to others. Love is to be concerned for others, and to seek the highest good for them.

The Bible tells us …

John 3:16 (KJV) For God so loved the world, that _______

What did God DO to prove His love? Did He just SAY “I love you” or did He DO something. God loved us, so He did the highest good for us.

John 3:16 (KJV) For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

God laid everything down on the table for us. He didn’t just have an emotion, but He DID.

1 Corinthians 13:2 (KJV)  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.

The gift of Prophecy is a God given gift. The gift of Discernment is a God given gift. In fact, faith itself is a gift from God. But if love for others is not in your life then Beloved you are not what God wants you to be.

Several years ago I met a great man who knew a lot about Bible prophecy. It fascinated me to hear Him talk about coming events and the return of our Lord Jesus. I asked the man several times to teach a Wednesday night class to the Church I pastored, but he refused. I asked him to assist me by reaching out to the local Nursing Home, to minister to the elderly saints there, but he refused. He had no time to reach out to others in love. He was less than God wanted him to be because he would not GIVE LOVE.

1 Corinthians 13:3 (KJV) 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.

Love is more than emotion – it is proper motivation. It is to give as Christ would have us give. It is to be obedient to Him Who gave all for us. Jesus said:

Matthew 5:43-48 (KJV)  Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbor, and hate thine enemy.  [44]  But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;  [45]  That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.  [46]  For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same?  [47]  And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so?  [48]  Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.

To love the unlovable is the mark of perfection.
See Love on Heaven’s Throne!
How Do We Know This Is Love?
See The Nail Scars, The Torn Brow.
The whip lines in His flesh.
It is love to do good when bad is done to you.
See Jesus!

The group Crowder illustrates what love is in one of my favorite songs Forgiven:

I’m the one who held the nail
It was cold between my fingertips
I’ve hidden in the garden
I’ve denied You with my very lips
God, I fall down to my knees
With a hammer in my hand
You look at me, arms open
Forgiven, I’m Forgiven!

Jesus had every right to be worshiped. He is Eternal God in perfect Human form. The Scripture declares:

John 1:1-3 (KJV) In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 The same was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.

John 1:14 (KJV) And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, …

Christ lowered Himself voluntarily to pay for our sins. He did not love us from afar, but loved us near, where it was harshest. Christ lowered Himself to raise us up. As a Shepherd would lay down His life for His sheep,

John 10:15 (KJV) … I lay down my life for the sheep.

Jesus lay His life down for us all, not in a quick death, but a long torturous one. Oh how He suffered for you and for me. But this is the proof of love – and as He loved we are called to love.

Love’s Portrait

1 Corinthians 13:4 (KJV)  Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,

Love is patient with others. See Love hanging on the Cross. “If you are the Son of God come down from that Cross” (Matthew 27:40). Jesus could have come down. “Don’t you realize I could ask My Father for thousands of angels to protect us, and He would send them instantly?” (Matthew 26:53). Oh how patient Christ was with us.

Love is kind to others. Jesus always thought of others before Himself. He did the highest good He could to others. Lepers run after Jesus. “Jesus You could heal me if you would”. The unkind thing would be to say “Get away from me, you leper. You are unclean!” But Jesus said “I am willing” and touched that diseased person – just like He touched that filthy you on the day of your salvation. “I am willing – be cleansed!” (Matthew 8:3)

Love is confident in itself, and does not envy others. God loves you as you are. God has given you what you need. Do not covet another person’s stuff, but be loved of God and be satisfied that He loves you!

Love does not brag on itself. Jesus showed us love over and over again, but particularly just before He was crucified. We read in …

John 13:1-5 (KJV) Now before the feast of the passover, when Jesus knew that his hour was come that he should depart out of this world unto the Father, having loved his own which were in the world, he loved them unto the end. 2 And supper being ended, the devil having now put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, to betray him; 3 Jesus knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he was come from God, and went to God; 4 He riseth from supper, and laid aside his garments; and took a towel, and girded himself. 5 After that he poureth water into a bason, and began to wash the disciples’ feet, and to wipe them with the towel wherewith he was girded.

Jesus took off all His clothing but His underwear and washed the disciples feet. I have read this passage over and over again for years, but it did not strike me until this day:

Jesus humbled Himself and
SERVED His greatest enemy.

Jesus washed the feet of Judas Iscariot! Jesus knew that Judas was going to betray Him, and yet knelt and washed his feet anyway. Why would He do that? Because that’s what love does.

Love loves regardless as to whether love is loved back.
Love loves regardless as to whether love is loved back.
Love loves regardless as to whether love is loved back.

This is the Love that God calls you to do, dear Christian. John said:

1 John 4:7-8 Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. (8) He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.

We Are To Radically LOVE
Through God’s Empowering

Romans 8:1, 13-14 (KJV)  And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness.  …  [13]  For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.  [14]  For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.

God is love. If God is in you, you will love like God. See that woman taken in adultery cast before Him. Will He condemn her? No, but Jesus comes along side of her.

Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.
Woman, where are your accusers?
Go and sin no more.

Love doesn’t see the prostitute, the drug addict, the lesser than, the failure. Love sees each person as being made in the image of God. Love sees the person COULD be. Love carries His Cross down the dusty street while others lovelessly mock and scorn Him. Love bears the nails tearing into His flesh, as an undeserving creation spits and laughs. Love hangs patiently while bearing the sins of the world at a place called Calvary. Love cries “Father forgive them, for they know not what they do”. Love is of God. Unless you are born of God you cannot know true love. But if you are born of God you are capable of great Love as He is Love.

1 Corinthians 13:5 (KJV)  Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;

Love does not walk with the ways of the world, nor does it seeks it’s own good first. Love does not think evil of others, but seeks to uplift, to encourage, to do the highest good. Love does what God would do, just as Jesus did. Jesus surrendered everything in order to love. One day a young Scribe came to Jesus and said:

Matthew 8:19-20 (KJV) …. Master, I will follow thee whithersoever thou goest.  [20]  And Jesus saith unto him, The foxes have holes, and the birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay his head.

Jesus gave up everything in order to reach as many as He could. The King of glory lived as a pauper on this earth. He lowered Himself, and showed us what love is to be. Love doesn’t put self first, but puts God and others first. It does not behave itself unseemly but clothes itself in Godly robes. Love does not think evil of others.

seeketh not her own”

“Seeketh not her own” in verse 5 is another way of saying Divine Love is not about me – it’s about God and others”

Divine love always stands in the gap for others, interceding for man before Almighty God.

A Christian is compelled to love, ordered to love, and designed to love.
(1 Corinthians 13:5)

Love is filled with JOY over the RIGHT THINGS.

1 Corinthians 13:6 (KJV)  Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;

The ancient preacher Jerome said: “The church of Christ has been founded by shedding its own blood, not that of others; by enduring outrage, not by inflicting it.

The Philosopher and Engineer Archimedes once said “Give me a place to stand and with a lever I will move the whole world.” That was wishful thinking. But Beloved, if we stand on the promises of God and love as He commands WE WILL move THE WORLD!

1 Corinthians 13:7 (KJV) {Love} Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.

Love encourages. Most of all, love will not cut and run. Love endures all things. It overcomes. This is why John in the Book of Revelation spoke of overcoming in reference to salvation. Do you remember?

Revelation 2:7 (KJV) … To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God.

Revelation 2:11 (KJV) … He that overcometh shall not be hurt of the second death.

Revelation 2:17 (KJV) To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it.

You can’t be in love with Jesus one day and at odds with Jesus the next and be saved. The saved love the Lord. The saved stay with the Lord. Whoever is born of God overcomes the world (1 John 5:4).

It Is Time To Be Adults

The Apostle started this Book by telling the Corinthians they were babes in Christ. Now he says:

1 Corinthians 13:11 (KJV)  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.

It’s fine to be a Child when you are born. It’s fine to lay about crying, waiting for momma or daddy to feed you. It’s all right to wet yourself, to be spoon fed. If you are a baby you don’t choose your own wardrobe or your own bed time. But when you grow up you are to put away childish things.

You must all choose to follow Christ, doing as He has commanded. You must get up from your beds and find a place of worship every day. You must read and do His Word. You must get past the diaper stage. You must stop expecting others to do everything. The mega-Churches are filled with babies that paid staff cater to. Beloved, the christian way of life is a Christ centered way of life. The only time someone changed Christ’s diapers was when He was a baby. It’s time to put away childish behavior and childish things. It’s time to quit being spoon fed. It’s time to get up and walk, Beloved, to be the light that Christ has called us to be.

Hebrews 10:23-24 Let us hold fast {not waffle, but HOLD FAST} the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;) (24) And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works:

Let’s let God love through us. Let’s quit being babies, sitting around all day playing on a game console while life passes us by. Let’s love. Let’s love like Christ loved. Let’s move forward into adulthood. Now. This moment.

May God lead you to trust in and be like Christ Jesus our Lord.

About bibleteacherorg

A searching Pastor, I am looking for a people who love the Lord and love one another. Daily I pray for the Church. Most of what the world sees today is not the Church, but clubs pretending to be the Church. God is calling to Himself a people willing to be righteous, not self righteous, serving not served. I am called to pastor God's people, those who want to change the world by willingly and willfully following Jesus Christ. Only God is able to change the world, and we must follow His Christ. He is able! Praise His Name! Come quickly Lord Jesus!
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