Unconditional Love – The Missing Ingredient (part 5)
December 6, 2020
Unconditional Love – The Missing Ingredient (part 5)
15 Characteristics of Love (part 2) from 1 Corinthians 13:6-8
Pressure brings out our flaws!
Spirit of antiChrist: typified by lawlessness, deceit, lies.
Matthew 24:12 (NLT)
Sin will be rampant everywhere, and the love of many will grow cold.
Matthew 24:12 (MSG)
For many others, the overwhelming spread of evil will do them in — nothing left of their love but a mound of ashes.
The antidote for what we deal with today is love:
A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. (35) By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.
15 Characteristics of Love from 1 Corinthians 13 (part 1)
Here is a description of what this love that God has placed inside of you looks like…
For the love of God to move through us, we must work on it.
Here is the classic scripture in the NT on what love looks like.
1 Corinthians 13:4-8 (NKJV)
Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; (5) does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; (6) does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; (7) bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
(8) Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away.
1. Love is willing to suffer a long time.
2. Love treats people kindly.
3. Love is not jealous.
4. Love does not brag.
5. Love is not proud.
We continue today:
6. Love is not rude.
Does not behave rudely
It’s a badge today!
The Greek word for rudely is achemoneo, and means to assume a negative form, or to act in an unbecoming way.
it is not rude (unmannerly) and does not act unbecomingly.
This word has to do with proper social graces.
A loving person will not do or say things, or assume attitudes of which later he or she will be ashamed, or that would bring shame to Jesus and to the kingdom of God.
Love never acts in an ugly, shameful way, with crudeness, violence, off-color language, or anything else disrespectful.
A person walking in love maintains good manners and social graces in whatever situation they are in.
To get real with this one, a person walking in love will never display coarse or crude behavior: cursing, using off-color slang expressions, off-color language, body noises such as burping, flatulence, excessive or not enough clothing, etc.
Our present culture desperately needs some lessons in this!
A loving person will not do or say things, or assume attitudes of which later he or she will be ashamed.
Love works hard at doing what is fitting, appropriate, and mannerly.
7. Love puts others first.
Does not seek its own.
Love, (God’s love in us) does not insist on its own rights or its own way, for it is not self-seeking;
Agape is not self-seeking in that it brings with it a self-last characteristic.
Self last others first
Agape causes us to seek the welfare of others before ourselves and does not calculate what benefits we may gain in return.
Just a reminder to all of us that the major effect of Adam’s sin on all of us is self-centeredness.
In the gospels, Jesus continually encourages us to deny ourselves, take up our cross, and follow Him.
In his book, How to Win Friends and Influence People, Dale Carnegie’s thesis is that people think of themselves first. And that if you want to help others, get them to talk about themselves, and show them that you value their thoughts and opinions.
With the love of God entering us in the New Birth, we have the potential to become others-minded.
Mrs. C. Nuzum: The Life of Faith: [Mrs. C. Nuzum, The Life of Faith (Springfield, MO: Gospel Publishing House, 1928, 1956), p. 85]
How many of us, when we have a real right to a place, time, honor, benefit, or possession, refuse to strive for it, refuse even to keep it, but cheerfully, gladly let another have it.
For instance, this quality of ‘not seeking its own’ keeps us from being upset when we’re not recognized for difficult work we accomplish for our company, or when someone else is recognized for work that we have done .
If we are not seeking our own stuff first, then it will not bother us when we are passed over for a promotion and someone else is promoted with less skill and ability than we have.
When love rules, we put ourselves last, and think of God and others first.
In the last analysis, there are in this world only two kinds of people – those who always insist upon their privileges and those who always remember their responsibilities; those who are always thinking of what life owes them and those who never forget what they owe to life. It would be the key to almost all the problems which surround us today if people would think less of their rights and more of their duties. Whenever we start thinking about ‘our place’, we are drifting away from Christian love.
[Barclay, William. The Letters to the Corinthians (The New Daily Study Bible) (p. 143). Westminster John Knox Press. Kindle Edition]
8. Love will not respond with anger and offense.
Is not provoked.
it is not touchy or fretful or resentful;
The Greek word is paroxuno and means to sharpen alongside or figuratively to exasperate.
It means to rouse someone to anger.
This is when we get upset at another’s actions or words, and we become sharp, pointed, and irritable in our responses to them.
There is overt and covert anger. There is anger that is obvious, like returning sharp responses to someone you disagree with. Then there’s anger that shows in more subtle ways, like giving the silent treatment, snide critical remarks, or sarcastic responses. All of these may stem from anger.
Being offended with someone is also a form of anger. The root of this may be self-centered thinking.
Psalm 119:165 reads, Blessed are they that who love thy law, and nothing shall offend them.
Mrs. C. Nuzum: [Mrs. C. Nuzum, The Life of Faith (Springfield, MO: Gospel Publishing House, 1928, 1956), p. 85]
If I am offended, no matter how much cause I have to be offended, the problem with me is that I have not the love which nothing will offend.
Amplified gives the words touchy, fretful, and resentful as nuances of being provoked.
How do you feel around a person who is touchy?
You feel like you’re walking on eggshells, that you have to watch every single thing you say. You have to think about the angle of how and what you are saying so the person will not be offended!
Touchy – Definition:
1. Apt to take offense on slightest provocation; irritable 2. requiring caution, tactfulness, or expert handling; precarious, risky. 3. easily ignited
If you are touchy, you are probably thinking more of yourself than others, and you probably have underlying unresolved issues.
It may be a teacher, a coach, a parent, a boss, a spouse, but you have something unresolved somewhere, and it shines through you and makes you appear to others as a touchy person!
And fretful and resentful are the friends of touchy.
Fretful – Definition:
Let’s look first of all at Fret: 1) To feel or express worry, annoyance, discontent, or the like. 2) to torment, irritate, annoy, or vex. 3) to have an irritated state of mind.
disposed or quick to fret; irritable or peevish.
The feeling of resentment, or the feeling of displeasure at some act, remark, person, etc., regarded as causing injury or insult.
Touchiness, fretfulness, and resentment are all rooted in anger.
All of us must master anger if we are going to have successful relationships.
Anger is an emotion we all have.
Anger is a sign that you are engaged with life as opposed to a person that NEVER gets angry about anything. That is a person that has in some way been kept from being expressive by someone overbearing – i.e. a mom, a dad, or a self-centered spouse!
Anger in itself is not wrong. It’s what you do with it that makes it wrong.
Jesus was angry but never sinned. He got upset with the religious Pharisees of His day because they were using the temple as a way to make money. He overturned the money changers’ tables, let the animals go, and slashed a whip in the air as He confronted their deceitful and blasphemous way of making money.
When is anger wrong? Anger that is based on self-centered motives is wrong. Like when you don’t get your way in a group of people, or when you are held up by circumstances beyond your control.
Anger is right when it is directed toward injustice done to someone else!
Ephesians 4:26-27 (NLT)
And “don’t sin by letting anger control you.” Don’t let the sun go down while you are still angry, (27) for anger gives a foothold to the devil.
Proverbs mentions anger several times:
Proverbs 14:29 (NLT)
People with understanding control their anger;
a hot temper shows great foolishness.
Proverbs 25:28 (NLT)
A person without self-control is like a city with broken-down walls.
Proverbs 29:11 (NLT) Fools vent their anger, but the wise quietly hold it back.
Proverbs 29:22 (NLT)
An angry person starts fights; a hot-tempered person commits all kinds of sin.
Ecclesiastes 7:9 (NLT)
Control your temper, for anger labels you a fool.
Ask God to help you control anger.
Deal with bitter roots!
Don’t respond to someone until you have love, joy, and peace inside.
In my young years, I would go into a room and shut the door until I could control my emotions.
Even now, I tell the people around me if something makes me upset.
- What in your actions could be interpreted by others as rude?
- Ask people who know you if they think you are self-focused or others-focused.
- How do you control your anger?
- Are you easily offended?