Love and Temptation (Intro)

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            Love is the focal point of the two greatest commandments of God.

(Matthew 22:36-40)   “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” Jesus replied: “’Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. ’This is the first and greatest commandment.  And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

            Love not only conveys the nature and desire of God but also acts as a means for our sanctification. Love will force us to face every temptation laid out in scripture: (1)Pride, (2)Greed, (3)Jealousy, (4)Lust; you name it. It is in the midst of that temptation that we come into a deeper dependence on God. Through love we must be willing to fight the temptations of this world that drive us to selfish desire and inward focus. (James 1:14) But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. We must put others before ourselves even if doing so causes us to suffer. It’s through love that we show the world God, and that we also grow closer to God by becoming as close to His unconditional love for us as we possibly can in our fallen human condition.

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(1 Corinthians 13:4-7) Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

 

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