Ephesians 5:1-10 (ESV)
1 Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children. 2 And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God. 3But sexual immorality and all impurity or covetousness must not even be named among you, as is proper among saints. 4 Let there be no filthiness nor foolish talk nor crude joking, which are out of place, but instead let there be thanksgiving. 5For you may be sure of this, that everyone who is sexually immoral or impure, or who is covetous (that is, an idolater), has no inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God. 6Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience. 7 Therefore do not become partners with them; 8 for at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light9 (for the fruit of light is found in all that is good and right and true), 10 and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord.
Pastor Chris returned from freedom ministry in Switzerland. He’s marinated on this message about authentic biblical love for a few weeks. In this 12th week of learning in-depth about the book of Ephesians: True Identity, we learn that there is much more to understanding and living out godly love.
Three Aspects of Biblical Love
- Walk in Love – “…be imitators of God…walk in love” (v. 1)
- Love Guards – “…do not become partners with them [sinful behavior]; 8 for at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord” (vv. 7-8)
- Love what He Loves – “Walk as children of the light…discern what is pleasing to the Lord.” (vv. 9-10)
- Walk in Love
The Bible’s Teaching about Love
In the Bible, God’s love has two sides to it:
- One is with Christians who do believe the Bible is God’s word –
- Ahab (ahh-hobb) ~ God’s passionate affection.
Ahab translated to Greek is the word agape (in English,divine love); God’s love meaning His unconditional love, His passionate feelings
16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. John 3:16–17 (ESV)
- The other is with people who don’t believe the Bible is God’s word
- Hesed (heh-said) ~Loving and kind faithfulness to a covenant.
Hesed translated to Greek is the word charis (in English, grace); Grace meaning unmerited favor; it’s what God extends when we are wrong/in sin.
Covenant – A covenant is an unchanging pledge based in unchanging truth; God’s love is his faithfulness to a set of truths that don’t change
“5They are from the world; therefore they speak from the world, and the world listens to them. 6 We are from God. Whoever knows God listens to us; whoever is not from God does not listen to us. By this we know the Spirit of truth and the spirit of error. 7 Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God. 8 Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love.” 1 John 4:5–9 (ESV)
“Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant 5 or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; 6 it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. 7 Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 (ESV)
“29 For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.” Romans 8:29 (ESV)
- Love Guards –
“7 Therefore do not become partners with them; 8 for at one time you were darkness, but now you are light in the Lord.” Ephesians 5:7-8 (ESV)
- Love What He Loves
“Walk as children of light 9 (for the fruit of light is found in all that is good and right and true), 10 and try to discern what is pleasing to the Lord.” Ephesians 5:9-10 (ESV)
“Walk as Children of Light”
City Central Life Groups – Click the link for more information
- What do most popular songs mean by “love?” How does secular society that is its definition of love? (e.g., advertising, movies, social norms, etc.
- What is your definition of love? What influenced you in arriving this description?
- Considering the passage from Eph. 5:1-10, what does the Bible have to say about love? In Chris’ message we learned several Hebrew and Greek words are used to describe biblical love. Based on these definitions, how do you think Christians could better demonstrate the kind of love God has for us?
- Why do you think authentic, biblical love is important to God and our relationship with him and each other?
- How are you connected with the community of believers at City Central?
- If you discover that you don’t have regular connection (besides Sunday Services), what Life Group might you try? (Remember: “Stick Six” – try one group for six weeks or try out six groups and then commit to one)