• Matt Beaney

#624 (16/6/22) LOVE ALWAYS PERSEVERES



‘Love… always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.’ (1 Corinthians 13:7-8a)

Love never stops loving. Like Jesus, our love is to be covenantal; It’s, ideally, to be an unbreakable commitment that we make to do good for others, particularly those in the church.


TO PERSEVERE IS TO WAIT

Persevere (hupomenó) means to stay behind, to await, endure. I love this idea of waiting for the last and lagging. Maybe you’ve had the experience of coaxing the last and lagging on a long walk; it can be tiresome! Jesus leaves none of us behind.


TO PERSEVERE IS TO REMAIN

To ‘remain’ is another way to translate this word. Remaining in church fellowship through testing times is to love like Christ. To remain in a marriage; to remain in a friendship; to remain in a neighbourhood; to remain in a church… are all concrete examples of persevering love.


God’s love is covenantal. It’s an unbreakable commitment to be faithful to us. We are His people purchased through the blood of Christ and this is to be reflected in how to ‘wait for’ and ‘remain with’ one another. The word ‘fellowship’ expresses this covenantal devotion.


RESPONSE

Let’s finish by meditating on this text which expresses God’s perseverance with us:

‘He will also keep you firm to the end, so that you will be blameless on the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is faithful, who has called you into fellowship with his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.’ (1 Corinthians 1:8-9)
 

COMMUNITY GROUP NOTES AND STUDY

1. Notices

It might be good to begin with notices. Please share from this week’s Church News.

 

2. Icebreaker

Do you have any encouragements to share from how God has been speaking to you from His word recently?

 

3. Recap of Sunday's message - please share in your group


On Sunday, we continued with our series 'Becoming Love' from the book of 1 Corinthians, looking at the next aspect of love.


Please read 1 Corinthians 13:4-7


Last week we looked at how 'Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.' This week, we are considering the next attributes of Christian love: ‘Love… always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.’ (1 Corinthians 13:7-8a)


On Sunday, Jem told of an incident when, as they approached the beach, a younger member of his family, overcome with excitement, ran away and toward the sea. Jem - being the hero that he is! - dropped everything and pursued and ‘rescued’ him from potential danger. These final aspects of love are around the theme of protecting those that we love.


THE LOST SHEEP

The Parable of the Lost Sheep is a perfect illustration of what it means to always protect, always trust, always hope, always persevere and never fail in our love.


Please read Matthew 15:1-7


Jesus is the perfect Good Shepherd. He left heaven and sacrificed so much in order to find each of us - we were the 'one'!


Like Jesus, we are to seek to love like him. Our love is to always:

i. Protect - We seek to bring the lost and those who are struggline back to Jesus and truth.


ii. Trusts and hopes and perseveres - We will be enabled to persevere if we trust and hope in God; our faith that God can change the person we are seeking to help will keep us from despairing and giving up on them.


Discussion questions

i) Did you feel that God spoke to you from any particular aspect of Sunday's message?

ii) What does The Parable of the Lost Sheep teach us about God's love for us?

iii) What does The Parable of the Lost Sheep teach us about how we are to love others?

iv) How do 'trust' and 'hope' keep our love from 'failing'?

v) Do you have experence of someone being like a good shepherd to you?

SIV - What effect will having love that 'always protects, trusts, hopes, perseveres and never fails' have on our witness?

SIV - Do you have any encouraging stories of sharing your faith with your friends?

SIV - How do you plan to 'serve, invest and invite' into your friendships?

SIV - Let's pray for the Spirit to lead us in reaching our community.










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