The Grit and Grace Café - Part 2
The Character of Love (AGAPE)
1 Corinthians 13:4-8a
1 Corinthians 13:5, Love - “does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered,”
This is Supernatural (You can’t love like this – Only the Holy Spirit in you – expressing AGAPE Love can make this happen in your life)
#1 – The Character of Love is revealed in its Standards
AGAPE - “does not act unbecomingly”
· W/out proper shape (deformed); not according with the standards that are appropriate
Because AGAPE has a standard
That standard is expressed in
· How we behave.
· How we live
· How we treat people
Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children; 2 and walk in love, just as Christ also loved you and gave Himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God as a fragrant aroma.
3 But immorality or any impurity or greed must not even be named among you, as is proper among saints; 4 and there must be no filthiness and silly talk, or coarse jesting, which are not fitting, but rather giving of thanks. 5 For this you know with certainty, that no immoral or impure person or covetous man, who is an idolater, has an inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God.
1 Peter 2:11-12
Beloved, I urge you as aliens and strangers to abstain from fleshly lusts which wage war against the soul. 12 Keep your behavior excellent among the Gentiles, so that in the thing in which they slander you as evildoers, they may because of your good deeds, as they observe them, glorify God in the day of visitation.
We can’t explain our faith if we are constantly having to explain our character
Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. 32 Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.
#2 – The Character of Love is grounded in its Motives
AGAPE - “does not seek its own”
Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; 4 do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others.
"But go and learn what this means: 'I DESIRE COMPASSION, AND NOT SACRIFICE,' for I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners."
· A reference to Hosea 6:6 (Judgement on Israel)
God is more pleased with our character than he is with our practices.
Micah 6:8, “He has told you, O man, what is good; And what does the LORD require of you But to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your God?”
· Do the right thing
· Love being kind toward people
· Walk in humility with God
#3 – The Character of Love is Experienced through Grace
#A - “is not provoked” (Present Passive)
Love is not easily provoked (easily injured)
· “The meaning of the phrase in the Greek is, that a man who is under the influence of love or religion is not "prone" to violent anger or exasperation; it is not his character to be hasty, excited, or passionate. He is calm, serious, patient. “
· He looks soberly at things; and though he may be injured, yet he governs his passions, restrains his temper, subdues his feelings.”
#B - “does not take into account a wrong suffered”
· Love doesn’t Keep a list of wrongs done
· “Love writes our personal wrongs in water.”
Love doesn’t hold people accountable for something they never said
The Grit and Grace of the Gospel