#147 – LOVE ABOUNDING IN KNOWLEDGE (14/7/20)
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‘And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ—to the glory and praise of God.’ (Philippians 1:9-11)
Love is a word that has become confused and distorted. For many, it means doing what you feel passionate about until you stop feeling passionate about it. The idea of love being a choice to sacrificially serve has been lost, and such an idea may even be scorned.
Take a moment to recall a really bad decision that you have made in the past. What advice would you give your past self? Have you become the kind of person who would take that advice?
Paul prays that their love would abound in ‘knowledge’. Our love must be informed by knowledge of God and His will as revealed in the Bible. God is most clearly revealed in Jesus, and we must come to know Him, His teachings, His lifestyle, His death for sinners… and ensure that the way that we love conforms to this.
Paul could say,
‘God can testify how I long for all of you with the affection of Christ Jesus.’ (1:8)
He could say this because he had knowledge of the affection of Jesus and was praying for and seeking to mirror this in the way that he loved.
All of our reading of the bible is a study in who God. Our knowledge of God informs how we are to live a life of love. Perhaps it would be helpful to spend some time meditating on God’s love from Romans 5:8.
‘But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.’ (Romans 5:8)
COMMUNITY GROUP STUDY – LOVE ABOUNDING
It might be good to begin with notices. Please share from this week’s Church News.
Particularly, encourage people to be aware of and praying in regard to our gift days.
What is the best decision you’ve ever made and why?
Introduction - please share in your group
We are to make decisions out of love. We need to ask “is this choice or attitude loving to God and others?” However, for us to make such choices, it’s vital that we understand what love is.
How do you think that the word ‘love’ can be misused when making decisions?
Please read Philippians 1:9-11.
Paul prays that their ‘love would abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what is best…’
i)Love abounding in knowledge
For us to love correctly, we need knowledge of God and His ways from the Bible.
ii) Love abounding in insight and discernment
Once we have correct knowledge, we can then make good moral choices – ‘discern what is best’.
How has knowledge of God and His ways shaped a memorable decision in your life?
Discuss/share/pray in smaller groups:
1. What is the Holy Spirit speaking to you about (maybe from Sunday's message or your bible reading this week)?
2. What will you do in response?
3. How can we pray for you?
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