Let love be genuine; hate what is evil, hold fast to what is good; 10 Love one another with mutual affection; outdo one another in showing honor. 11 Do not lag in zeal, be ardent in spirit, serve the Lord. 12 Rejoice in hope, be patient in suffering, persevere in prayer. 13 Contribute to the needs of the saints; extend hospitality to strangers. 14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them. 15 Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. 16 Live in harmony with one another; do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly; do not claim to be wiser than you are. 17 Do not repay anyone evil for evil, but take thought for what is noble in the sight of all. 18 If it is possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. 19 Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave room for the wrath of God; for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.” 20 No, “if your enemies are hungry, feed them; if they are thirsty, give them something to drink; for by doing this you will heap burning coals on their heads.” 21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. -nrsv
When you play the card game Hearts, after the 2 of clubs is played, you lead with hands that you think will win all the Hearts and the Queen of Spades or None of them. If you are able to take them all or avoid them all, you “Shoot the Moon”.
Paul, if he had played cards, which we have no idea what games they played, could have summed up this whole teaching by saying, When it comes to loving, “Shoot the moon!” Avoid all the evil, take all the opportunities to do Good, and you will know what love is.
Wendy and I had the opportunity to go to Paris for the Millennium celebration. I told her I had a watch night service at the church. She said this is the Millennium. John paused, and in that pause all most forfeited his ticket and invitation. One notable thing is Paris was it appeared that it was appropriate to kiss where-ever and when-ever you like. The witness of lovers.
Tina Turner would ask: What’s love got to do, got to do with it, What’s love but a sweet old fashioned notion, What’s love got to do, got to do with it, Who needs a heart when a heart can be broken
Ke$ha and Katy Perry: Walk by and I’m a nervous wreck, The way you smell, the way you dress, so perfect My tongue is tied, cause I can’t translate these feelings inside, I I oh, I can’t speak I am terrified, Cause if I say the wrong thing, You might see how hard I’m trying, Is this made up or true love..
Romantic Love is an wonderful and awesome thing, but there is a greater love.
Couples who come to get married, most all of the time have a great infatuation for one another. Usually their love has not been tested, stretched and threatened.
Paul points us to LOVE that has been through the ringer, mature and whole. In this text is a lesson to teach us that we are all LOVERS.
AND.. that we are called to witness to the world, as such.
When we say in our MEMBERSHIP vows that we will give our witness, most folks assume that means we are to prepare our spiritual testimony and hit the street corners trying to convert the world. Paul offers a more practical approach
9 Let love be genuine;
- hate what is evil, … hate goes with evil. Do all in your power to NOT love what is NO good.
- hold fast to what is good; Put your Trust in Goodness.
- Love one another with mutual affection; Mutual Affection, calls for communication & relationship
- outdo one another in showing honor. Ere on the side of doing what is honorable.
- Do not lag in zeal, See the Good in others, Starting NOW
- be ardent in spirit, serve the Lord. Look for God’s presence and witness
- Rejoice in hope, Don’t Give Up
- be patient in suffering, Don’t Give Up, even when that’s hard
- persevere in prayer. Actually Pray about it, not just say we will.
- Contribute to the needs of the saints; Help some one, some how, be involved.
- extend hospitality to strangers. Remember you have been stranger, make a friend
- Bless those who persecute you; Pray for Good to come to those who don’t deserve it.
- bless and do not curse them. Refrain from speaking ill of others.. don’t complain
- Rejoice with those who rejoice, Celebrate the good in all things, and times.
- weep with those who weep. Be compassionate with all who hurt.
- Live in harmony with one another; Harmony honors our differences, but doesnt insist on melody
- do not be haughty, Don’t let pride eat you up.
- associate with the lowly; Be intentional about friend-ing the friendless.
- do not claim to be wiser than you are. When you think you know it all, think again
- Do not repay anyone evil for evil, Don’t model evil’s behavior.
- take thought for what is noble in the sight of all. We a wintess of what is Good. Take the high road.
- If it is possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. You start the peace making first.
- Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave room for the wrath of God; God is judge, not you.
- “if your enemies are hungry, feed them; Feed the hungry, even if you don’t like it.
- if they are thirsty, give them something to drink; Quench the thirsty, even if you don’t trust them.
- Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. Lead with Goodness.