Responding to Our Knowledge of God - Love

Faith Church June 30, 2007 Romans 8:35-39

 

Introduction:

1.  We’re continuing our new series today in our Worship Service:  Reaching New Heights in Our Knowledge of God!

- our goal is to further APPLY the subject to our lives as an ABF, so we’ve entitle our ABF study: Responding to Our Knowledge of God

2.  Remember the words if Daniel: 

  • Daniel 11:32 "…but the people who know their God will display ___________ (?) . . . strength and _______________ (?) . . .take action.”

- Christianity is a religion of action . . . we are to be doing what God wants us to do!

- this ties in with Paul’s words:

  • Philippians 3:10 that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death

know’ = knowledge based on personal experience (because of the interaction/relationship)

- not just an intellectual knowledge, but a PRACTICAL knowledge of God (a life of obedience, a attitude of hope, and high motivation for future service to demonstrate that faith in God and what you truly believe about Him!)

4.  Keep in mind the purpose of our study:

*  The purpose of our study:

1) to glorify God by with our praise of worship of Who He is

2) to put that knowledge into ACTION!

Input: What keeps us from putting our knowledge into action?

  • Unbelief – lack of faith, or a wrong understanding of God
  • Fear – we know what we should do but we’re afraid of failure, etc.

> even the fear of man can be ‘snare’ to the soul and keep you from doing God’s will!

  • Proverbs 29:25 The fear of man brings a snare, but he who trusts in the LORD will be exalted.

Input: How does a person overcome fear?

  • 1 John 4:18 There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves punishment, and the one who fears is not perfected in love.

- there is no greater example of love than God Himself!

I.  Reaching New Heights in Our Knowledge of God’s LOVE!

- that is (or was – depending on your ABF) the subject of our study in the worship service

*  love = agapa – a self-sacrificing kind of love (the deepest type of love possible)

* One of our goals in this study is to learn more about God . . . and His LOVE so we will understand that He is always loves us unconditionally!!  

1)  exercising our faith in a God Who always loves us!

2)  proclaiming this truth of God’s love to others

3)  modeling this the confidence in our God loving us no matter what!

> His love does not exclude His justice (because God is holy); sometimes a loving father has to discipline his child, to not do so would be unloving – cf. Hebrews 12.

- each week, we’re going to be asking a set of questions for you to consider in the context of the specific aspect of God that is being presented in the Worship Service!

II.  Responding to Our Knowledge of God’s Love

Q: Do you really believe that God loves you?

  • What other passages communicate this attribute of God? [various answers]
  • John 3:16 – most popular verse!
  • Key Passage: Romans 8:35-39 [READ]

Other verses:

  • Romans 5:5 and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.
  • 1 John 4:9 By this the love of God was manifested in us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world so that we might live through Him.
  • Romans 5:5 and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.
  • Romans 5:8 But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
  • Ephesians 3:19 and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God.
  • 1 John 3:1 See how great a love the Father has bestowed on us, that we would be called children of God; and such we are. For this reason the world does not know us, because it did not know Him.
  • Jeremiah 31:3 The LORD appeared to him from afar, saying, "I have loved you with an everlasting love; Therefore I have drawn you with lovingkindness.
  • What impact should this attribute have in the following areas: [various answers]
  • Temptation to sin:

- God loved me enough to send His Son to die for the very sin I’m about to commit!

- because God loves me unconditionally does not mean I sin at will and face no consequences!

- because of God’s love, I don’t need to sin – I don’t need what I’m wanting, I need Him

  • Facing Trials (suffering, illness, disappointments)

- God cares about me and what I’m facing . . . besides Him being glorified, He really has my best interest at heart (i.e. wanting to conform me to the image of Christ)

  • Conflicts with people:

- How does God treat me when I sin against Him . . . He loved me and sacrificed His Son for me . . . therefore how can I show love to this person who sinned against me!

  • Prayer Life:

- The God of Heaven and Earth, the Awesome Creator actually loves me and invites me (really commands me) to pray to Him – WHAT A PRIVILEGE to talk to God!!!

> and He listens to us!

- Like a father, the Lord wants to grant us our requests . . . if we will ask  - because He loves us even more than our earthly fathers!

  • Time we are afraid (fearful):

- Let our love for God, and mainly focus on His love for us, to motivate us to DO what He is calling us to do!!

  • What are some examples in the Scripture of God revealing His love? [various answers]

- Abraham having a son

- God choosing Israel, not because of their size . . . but because He loved them

  • Deut. 7:7 – 8 The LORD did not set His love on you nor choose you because you were more in number than any of the peoples, for you were the fewest of all peoples, but because the LORD loved you and kept the oath which He swore to your forefathers, the LORD brought you out by a mighty hand and redeemed you from the house of slavery, from the hand of Pharaoh king of Egypt.

- all the miracles Christ performed out of His love for people!

  • In what ways does our church emphasize/model this quality? [various answers]

- the various ministries of FBC + Community Ministries (Single Moms, Habitat, Red Cross, Living Nativity, Passion Play, Deacons Fund, etc.)

- EMPHASIS on the “One Another” ministries!

  • In what ways do we as a church need to GROW in the way we emphasize/model this attribute? [various answers]

- keep growing in looking past the outside to the inner man (the heart)

- more community service projects (ABF’s doing more of that as a small group)

- improve our Single Moms ministry!!!

  • How can you emphasize this attribute to your family (spouse, children) and friends?

- READ the Word, talk about it – when something happens (Good or Bad) remind them that God is love and He cares about us!

- Sing songs about the love of God – there are many of them!

- when we pray, thank the Lord for His love for your family

  • How can we help each other grow in this quality?

- remind each other that God is LOVE and there’s nothing we can do to separate us from the Love of God!!

- model it to each other – show the love of Christ to each other and to the community

- when we pray, thank the Lord for His love for us

  • What causes you to doubt God’s love?

- He doesn’t do what we think He should do – so we don’t get our way, and we don’t think God loves us

- the curse of sin leads us to doubt His love – we can’t fully comprehend it, we often reject it

IMPORTANT: A failure to focus on the CROSS – the grandest demonstration of love!!

  • Can you think of other O.T. examples of Israel failing to acknowledge God’s love?

- Israel gripping in the wilderness about the water/manna – attitude: God doesn’t love us!

  • KEY QUESTION:  What impact should this attribute have on the following?
  • Outreach:  if God loves us, we should love one another and show it to the world and proclaim it with our lives and voices!
  • Praise/Worship: Gratitude for His unconditional love!!
  • Discipleship/Growth: His love for us should motivate us to grow and change to be moer like Christ who loved us and gave himself for us
  • Serving (use of gifts/abilities):  God’s love should motivate us to serve, use our God-given gifts and abilities to the MAX, not just when we’re comfortable!
  • One another ministry (Building Meaningful Relationships): God showed His love to people, so should we!!!

IMPORTATNT: APPLY THIS TO THE FOLLOWING:

  • COMMUNITY PICNIC & Grand Opening – show love to others, be kind to one another, serve one another because God loves us!
  • JULY INTRO TO FAITH (July 11th [1st night] God has brought us a number of visitors over the past few weeks, who do you know that you can invite to the Intro to Faith (childcare is provided)

Conclusion:

Q: Are you seeking to acknowledge God’s love for you?

Q:  In what ways does your knowledge of God’s omnipresence truly impact your actions/choices/thoughts?

Key Verse:  Romans 8:35-39

Faith Church