March 12, 2017 “Disciples are driven by 3 Loves”

Message map:  Heb 13: 1 – 6

  • The 3 loves by which Christians are known: Agape, Philos & Eros
  • 13: 1-4 God’s love Leads us to a) be better Brothers, b) Handle Hospitality, c) to Prop up those in Prison & d) manage Marriage
  • The Wrong Love Leaches (Drains) Life, so we need to distinguish & discern what’s godly
  • Contentment in Christ Is Great Gain
  • They’ll Know We Are Christians By Our Love

John 13:35 & Heb 13: 1 – 6

John 13:35: By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”

3 Loves Are Laid Out For Those Who Want To Live The Christian Life:

Heb 13: 16 ESV 

1Let brotherly love continue. 2Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares. 3Remember those who are in prison, as though in prison with them, and those who are mistreated, since you also are in the body. 4Let marriage be held in honor among all, and let the marriage bed be undefiled, for God will judge the sexually immoral and adulterous. 5Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” 6So we can confidently say, “The Lord is my helper; I will not fear; what can man do to me?”

There Are 3 Types of Love Listed in Heb 13: 1-4

The Bible distinguishes 3 types of Love:

  • agape, (agapáō) which is Christ’s divine, perfect, sacrificial benevolence and good will.
  • philos, which is friendship, brotherly/sisterly love
  • eros is a sensual love that motivates and can help us manage marriage.

1) There is Agape love, (pronounced: uh-GAH-pay), which is the highest form of love. It is a selfless, sacrificial, unconditional love.  The word is used in Bible verses like John 3:16, which says, “For God so loved the world that He gave Hs only begotten son, that whosoever believes in Him will not perish but have everlasting life.”  Jesus accepting the mission to die on the cross and receive from God the punishment we each owe for our sins is Agape Love.  Agape is caring enough about another person or others to the extent that you want to give and do for them.

2) There is friendship love, called Phileo, which is – the type we have for our pals and co-workers, and even on a deeper level that which we feel for other patriots, who are engaged in our great struggle for freedom.  The deeper level of friendship love comes from having spent more time with each other in activities we deem as meaningful, which builds a tighter bond of camaraderie.

3) There is a sensual or feeling type of love called Eros or erotic.  Because these feelings can be very strong at times – especially towards someone whom appeals to us physically, we can get caught up in them with people with whom we really are not intellectually nor spiritually compatible.  Once the strong physical attraction wanes or is overshadowed by the emotional and psychological issues we have with the other person, people say, “We fell out of love.”

Love Leads Us to be better Brothers

Heb 13: 1“Let brotherly love continue.”

This calls us to identify as Brothers (& Sisters) those who are our “fellow believers” in Christ.

The commonality we have in Christ is supposed to supersede all differences, so overall our relationships are characterized and over-shined by love.

Love helps us be hospitable

Heb. 13: 2 Hospitality is the friendly and generous reception of guests, visitors, or strangers by giving food, entertainment and lodging, which by doing some have entertained  angels whom are emissaries sent from God

Agape divine love of benevolence and good will helps us be hospitable to strangers, with whom we have no friendship or common connection.

Those who have the gift of hospitality “Do not neglect (overlook or failing to notice a need) to show hospitality (hospitable love or the readiness to be hospitably generous by entertaining in one’s home to strangers.

Hospitality some have entertained (the friendly and generous reception and entertainment of guests, visitors, or strangers by giving food and lodging to) angels (a supernatural messenger from God, which in Rev 2: 3, serve God in conjunction with these seven local churches.) unawares (unconsciously or in a way that escaped our notice, or something to which our eyes are shut).”

This calls us to discern spirits, philosophies, happenings and events.

Heb 5:14 But solid food is for the mature, for those who have their powers of discernment trained by constant practice to distinguish good from evil.

Love provide for the persecuted in prison

Heb. 13: 3 “Remember (be mindful of) “those who are in prison,” (bound against their will)  as though in prison with them, and those who are  mistreated  meaning 1) afflicted, 2) being treated evilly, 3) being made destitute by persecution; 4) driven from their homes and the places they work, so they no longer can provide for themselves and families, “since you also are in the body  (the mystical Body of Christ, the Church, the one true people of God”).

Our hearts should be bound together with the persecuted church.

What challenges us to come alongside the persecuted? a)  time, as we are busy; b) insecurity, as we feel inadequate we actually can make a difference; c) fear, as we don’t want to be guilty by association;

  1. d) judgement, as we believe it is their fault they are persecuted.

Love helps us manage marriage

Heb. 13: 4 “Let marriage (cohabitation with the blessings of the Messiah’s kingdom) be held in honor (considered of great price, precious,) among all, and let the marriage bed be undefiled, (not impaired, completely ethical) for God will judge (bring to trial to make a determination of innocence or guilt in relation to our actions and motives) the sexually immoral (sex outside of marriage) and adulterous.”

God explains what marriage is in His eyes in Gen 2:24 The two leave their families and cleave to one another.)

Being honorable is the only way to be right with God and your spouse in marriage.  Honor, a high regard for God’s way, is what helps us overcome The Johnny Cash song, “Jackson,” with lines that begin with “We got married in a fever, hotter than a pepper sprout.  We’ve been talkin’ ’bout Jackson, ever since the fire went out.” Honor helps us do the right thing despite how hot we feel for each other at any given moment.

Marriage needs to be esteemed for how God sees it. God instituted marriage, and it is so important to Him as the building block of society that He uses it as the analogy for the relationship between Himself and His church.  God intends human marriage to reflect the intimate and everlasting union Christ has with His church.

Sexual immorality has devastated our nation. Too many people have babies out of wedlock, so there is not a solid marriage team of a husband and wife to raise the kids.  When kids don’t have a mom and a dad who does things God’s way, more children end up as wards of the state, which raises them immorally and promotes all sorts of sin as human rights.

We need God’s help to rescue our nation, but if we live immorally, we will not get it.  Obedience is our only way to secure God’s blessings and see Him save our nation.

The wrong love leaches (drains) life

Heb. 13: 5 ESV – Keep your life (manner and character) free from love of money, which means not a) fond of silver,” b) covetous for money; c) materialistic; d) dominated (over-influenced) by the desire for financial gain.

It means to be non-materialistic and be content with (satisfied that) what you have (is enough and sufficient),

We can’t have it both ways. Whatever we do leads to life or vitality in Christ or in death, a dissipation of life.

Jer. 21: 8 “And to this people you shall say: ‘Thus says the LORD: Behold, I set before you the way of life and the way of death.”…

“…for he has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”

(We’ll come back to this statement at the end of today’s message. There is a synergy that happens when are conscientious of Christ we are content with our lives.

 The discerning distinguish

The discerning distinguish between love and sentimentality.  Love embraces God’s will, which requires us to discriminate between what is of God and what is not.

1 John 4:1-3 “1Beloved, do not believe (be persuaded to trust in) every spirit, but test (examine by distinguishing) the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets (one who in God’s name misrepresents God by teaching what is false) have gone out into the world. 2By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, 3and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you heard was coming and now is in the world already. (In the flesh = 1) born of a virgin, 2) lived a sinless life; 3) died a substitutionary death; 4) rose bodily from the death; 5) seated at God’s right hand!

God’s love vs. human Sentimentality

Love is not sentimentality, which is exaggerated and self-indulgent feelings of tenderness, sadness, or nostalgia:

nostalgia  is a sentimental longing or wistful affection for the past, where there was happy personal experience.

Matt 10: 37 37Whoever loves (Philos = has intimate friendship & tender, heartfelt consideration for) father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. 38And whoever does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me. 39Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.

Integration vs separation & Keeping Christ First vs. compromise

A relationship with Christ generates contentments, as Heb. 13:5 “…for he has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”

Never Leave means: “I let go, loosen, release, neglect, nor give up on you!”

Never Forsake us means Christ will not abandon, desert, leave us in the lurch nor in dire straits!”  2Tim 2:13 says, “if we are faithless, he remains faithful— for he cannot deny himself.

This is an amazing promise the Lord makes to us!

Rom. 8: 35 ESV – says, Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword?  (2Cor 6:17)  Because Christ won’t leave nor forsake us, He asks us to be absolutely loyal to Himself. 2 Cor 6:17 Therefore, “Come out from them and be separate, says the Lord. Christ always is going to hang in there with us.

In return, Christ asks us to be absolutely loyal to Hm. 2 Cor 6:17 Therefore, “Come out from them and be separate, says the Lord.  The question is will we dedicate ourselves to discipleship and hang in there with Him, as He directs us along the narrow way? ” Will we separate ourselves in dedication to Him?

The context of 2 Cor 6: 14-18 makes these contrasts to demonstrate we can’t compromise and expect to have a full partnership and harmony that produces Godly outcomes:

 In return, Christ asks us to be absolutely loyal to Hm. 2 Cor 6:17 Therefore, “Come out from them and be separate, says the Lord.  The question is will we dedicate ourselves to discipleship and hang in there with Him, as He directs us along the narrow way? ” Will we separate ourselves in dedication to Him?

The context of 2 Cor 6: 14-18 makes these contrasts to demonstrate we can’t compromise and expect to have a full partnership and harmony that produces Godly outcomes:

  • 14 = how can righteousness team up with and partner with wickedness.
  • 15 = How can a believer in Christ partner with an unbeliever and the devil?
  • 16 = what union can there be between God’s temple and idols?

Sons & Daughters Separate Themselves Unto The Lord

  • 17 says, “Therefore, come out from among unbelievers, and separate yourselves from them, says the LORD. Don’t touch their filthy things, and I will welcome you. 18And I will be your Father, and you will be my sons and daughters, says the LORD Almighty.g

John 14:21 Whoever has my commands and keeps them is the one who loves me. The one who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love them and show myself to them. (NIV)

 Loving god first & loving others too

Mark. 12: 30-31 ”30And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’31The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”

Love  =   to a) wish others well, b) take pleasure in their well-being, c) long for good things to happen to them; d) esteeming others

We only can love others the way Christ wants us to, if

  • we love Him more than anything, so
  • We are content in Him.

For only then can we serve God fully to “speak the truth in love to our neighbors whom we love as ourselves without sentimentality and co-dependency.

Loving God Most Means Being Christ Conscious & Content & Comfortable with Our Connection To Him!

To view the recorded message, go to:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I4xnN-1twA8