August 18, 2018
Last week was Christian Community part one. The following is Danny’s review:
I would like to highlight a few of the points from last week for those who weren’t here:
God wants and desires each of us to be an integral part of His community – the Christian community.
We have a record of the New Testament church found in Acts 2, where they devoted themselves to:
And as a result of this, they had a heart transformation.
Their love for God and man entwined, because the Holy Spirit was transforming them from the inside out, into the individuals and collective church that He wanted them to be. And as a result:
Committed everything to God in prayer, which was the underlying foundation of all that they did.
Can you imagine, what that church must have looked like? People could actually feel the love, because it was the real deal. That is when church changes from a place to a community. When people know that they are loved, by not only our words but more importantly by our actions .That is the kind of church God wants us to be
And for church to be like that, we as the individuals need the heart transformation. Because we as the individuals are the church – it’s not the building, nor the programs, not the service – but us the people.
What is ‘Love’? Write down your definition of ‘Love’ in the context of the “Christian Community. Can there be different kinds of love between people? What about out there in the world, is it different?
Read 1 Corinthians 13:1-3. What insights does Paul give to the value of living with or without love?
What is it about love and why does love make a difference to doing the things mentioned in the above passage?
Discuss in your group the following:
Our society confuses love and lust. Unlike lust God’s kind of love is directed outward toward others, not inward toward ourselves. It is utterly unselfish. This kind of love goes against our natural inclinations. It is impossible to have this love unless God helps us set aside our own natural desires so we can love and not expect anything in return.
Taken from ‘Life application Study Bible’.
Read the following: 1 John 4:7-8, 16. Is there a difference between ‘God is love’ and God doing loving things’? If so what is it?
Discuss the following:
Volumes have been written about the characteristics of God, but when it is distilled to the most basic categories, He is love (1 John 4:8), life (Jeremiah 10:10; Revelation 22:1), and holiness (Psalms 99:9). And in reality, His life and holiness are based upon and are an expression of His love: love gives, so He gives life; love desires the best, so holiness proceeds from Him.
Love is not something he chooses to do or give. It is the very essence of who He is. He doesn’t just love-He is love (1 John 4:16). It motivates His every action, directs His activities, and reflects His desires (1 John 4:10). Love is the greatest and purest essence of who a person is and its proper expression brings fulfilment. Read more on this here.
Read Galatians 5:22-23. What does Paul mean when he uses the word ‘fruit of the Spirit’ compared with Galatians 5:19 ‘work of the flesh’ (rsv.), ‘Acts of the sinful nature’ (niv.), ‘following the desires of your sinful nature’ (nlt.)? What is the difference between the two?
Read 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 and discuss the following
Everyone believes love is important, but love is usually thought of as a feeling. In reality, love is a choice and an action as 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 shows. God is the source of our love: He loved us enough to sacrifice His Son for us. Jesus is our example of what it means to love: everything He did in life and death was supremely loving. The Holy Spirit gives us the power to love: he lives in our hearts and makes us more and more like Christ. God’s love always involves a choice and an action, and our love should be like His. How well do you display your love for God in the choices you make and the actions you take?
How is love demonstrated in the following?
Consider and discuss Danny’s examples of showing love at churchatpv.
How can we show love to each other with our actions?