4. Evangelism: The Messenger (Part 2)

July 25, 2021
Posted in Sermons
July 25, 2021 UCC User

 The Messenger – Lover of People

A Lover of God will grow in their love for people as God’s love flows out of that person.

” 28 One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?” 29 “The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. 30 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ 31 The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”

32 “Well said, teacher,” the man replied. “You are right in saying that God is one and there is no other but him. 33 To love him with all your heart, with all your understanding and with all your strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself is more important than all burnt offerings and sacrifices.”

34 When Jesus saw that he had answered wisely, he said to him, “You are not far from the kingdom of God.” And from then on no one dared ask him any more questions.” – Mark 12:28-34

Sermon Points

I. Lover of people, not the world

II. Love overcomes barriers

III. A lover of God will be a Gospel Messenger filled with God’s love for people

Further reading from the Works of A.B. Simpson on the power of love from Christ:

Every life can be summed up in some controlling principle. With some it is selfishness in the various forms of avarice, ambition or pleasure. With others it is devotion to some favorite pursuit of art or literature or invention and discovery. With Jesus Christ the one principle of His life was love, and the law that He has left for us is the same simple and comprehensive law of love, including every form of duty in the one new commandment “A new commandment I give unto you that ye love one another as I have loved you” (John xiii. 34; xv. 12). This is not the Old Testament law of love with self in the center, “Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.” But this is a new commandment with Christ in the center “that ye love one another as I have loved you.” Love for His Father, love for His own, love for the sinful, love for His enemies, this covered the whole life of Jesus Christ and this will comprehend the length and breadth of the life of His followers. This will simplify every question, solve every problem and sweeten every duty into a delight and make our life as His was an embodiment of that beautiful ideal which the Holy Spirit has left us in the thirteenth chapter of First Corinthians. “Love suffereth long and is kind. Love envieth not. Love vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not provoked, thinketh no evil, rejoiceth not in iniquity but rejoiceth in the truth, beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.”

Every life must have a standard by which it is regulated, and so Christ’s life was molded by the Holy Scriptures. “These are the words that I spake unto you while I was yet with you that all things must be fulfilled which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the Psalms concerning Me” (Luke xxiv. 44). It was necessary that Christ’s life should fulfill the Scriptures and He could not die upon the cross until He had first lived out every word that had been written concerning Him. It is just as necessary that our lives should fulfill the Scriptures and we have no right to let a single promise or command in this holy Book be a dead letter so far as we are concerned. God wants us while we live to prove in our own experience all things that have been written in this Book, and to bind the Bible in a new and living edition in the flesh and blood of our own lives.

Whence did He derive the strength for this supernatural and perfect example? Was it through His own inherent and essential deity? Or did He suspend during the days of His humiliation His own self-contained rights and powers, and live among us simply as a man, dependent for His support upon the same sources of strength that we enjoy? It would seem so. Listen to His own confession (John v. 19, 30; vi. 57). “The Son can do nothing of Himself but what He seeth the Father do. I can of Mine own self do nothing. As I hear I judge. As the living Father hath sent Me and I live by the Father, so he that eateth Me even he shall live by Me.” This seems to make it very plain that our Lord derived His daily strength from the same source as we may receive ours, by communion with God, by a life of dependence, faith and prayer, and by receiving and being ever filled with the presence and power of the Holy Spirit. Would we therefore walk even as He walked let us receive the Holy Ghost as He did at His baptism. Let us constantly depend upon Him, and be filled with His presence. Let us live a life of unceasing prayer. Let us draw our strength each moment from Him as He did from the Father. Let our life for both soul and body be sustained by the inbreathing of His so that it shall be true of us “In Him we live and move and have our being.” This was the Master’s life and this may be ours. What an inspiration it is for us to know that He humbled Himself to the same place of dependence to which we stand, and that He will exalt us through His grace to the same victories which He won.