The Greatest Commandment

The entire law is summed up
in a single command:
"Love your neighbor as yourself.”
Galatians 5:14



If you really keep the royal law
found in Scripture,
“Love your neighbor as yourself,”
you are doing right.
James 2:8

Jesus gave us the Greatest Commandment
to love God and to love one another as yourself.





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What is the Bible about?

God asks us to do just two things!
To love God and to Love One Another.

The Greatest Commandment

The entire law is summed up
in a single command:
"Love your neighbor as yourself.”

Galatians 5:14



...of all the commandments, which is the most important? “The most important one,” answered Jesus, “Is this: Hear, O Israel the Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. The second is this: Love your neighbor as yourself. There is no commandment greater than these.”
Mark 12 28-31 NIV


Jesus replied: “’Love the Lord your God with all of 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.’”
Matthew 22:37 NIV


“’Love the Lord your God with all of your heart and with all of your strength and with all of your mind’; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’”
Luke 10:27 NIV

A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you,
so you must love one another.

John 13:34

If you really keep the royal law found in Scripture,
“Love your neighbor as yourself,”you are doing right.

James 2:8



In Everyone We See God's Face




Jesus was often quoting from the Old Testament.

See:
Deuteronomy 6:4-6
Leviticus 19:18
Leviticus 19:1-37

Love for Enemies:
Luke 6:27-36
Matthew 5:43-48
and repeated after the Resurrection. Galatians 5:13-15



A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you,
so you must love one another.

John 13:34



“As the father has loved me, so have I loved you...
My command is this:
Love each other as I have loved you.”

John 15:9-17


Be imitators of God, therefore,
as dearly loved children
and live a life of love,
just as Christ loved us
and gave himself up for us.

Ephesians 5:1






1 John 4

1 John 4:1-21

On Denying the Incarnation

4 Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. 2 This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, 3 but every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you have heard is coming and even now is already in the world.

4 You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world. 5 They are from the world and therefore speak from the viewpoint of the world, and the world listens to them.6 We are from God, and whoever knows God listens to us; but whoever is not from God does not listen to us. This is how we recognize the Spirit[a] of truth and the spirit of falsehood.

God’s Love and Ours

7 Dear friends, let us love one another,
for love comes from God.
Everyone who loves has been born of God
and knows God.
8 Whoever does not love does not know God,
because God is love.

9 This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. 10 This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.

11 Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. 12 No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.

13 This is how we know that we live in him and he in us: He has given us of his Spirit. 14 And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world. 15 If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in them and they in God. 16 And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them. 17 This is how love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment: In this world we are like Jesus.

18 There is no fear in love.
But perfect love drives out fear,
because fear has to do with punishment.
The one who fears is not made perfect in love.

19 We love because he first loved us.

20 Whoever claims to love God
yet hates a brother or sister is a liar.
For whoever does not love their brother and sister,
whom they have seen, cannot love God,
whom they have not seen.


21 And he has given us this command:


Anyone who loves God
must also love their brother and sister.


1 John 4:1-21



Be perfect (in Love), therefore,
as your heavenly Father is perfect

(in Love)
Matthew 5:48







Jesus is the great and wonderful “I AM.”
Video Presentation by Bible Basics



I AM
Bible Basics' Power Point Presentation





Fruit of the Spirit

22But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
Galatians 5:22-23

There is no fear in love.
1 John 4:16-21

16And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him. 17In this way, love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment, because in this world we are like him. 18There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.

19We love because he first loved us. 20If anyone says, "I love God," yet hates his brother, he is a liar. For anyone who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot love God, whom he has not seen. 21And he has given us this command: Whoever loves God must also love his brother.



The Way of Love

1 Corinthians 13:1-13 The Message

1 If I speak with human eloquence and angelic ecstasy but don't love, I'm nothing but the creaking of a rusty gate. 2If I speak God's Word with power, revealing all his mysteries and making everything plain as day, and if I have faith that says to a mountain, "Jump," and it jumps, but I don't love, I'm nothing. 3-7If I give everything I own to the poor and even go to the stake to be burned as a martyr, but I don't love, I've gotten nowhere. So, no matter what I say, what I believe, and what I do, I'm bankrupt without love.

Love never gives up.
Love cares more for others than for self.
Love doesn't want what it doesn't have.
Love doesn't strut,
Doesn't have a swelled head,
Doesn't force itself on others,
Isn't always "me first,"
Doesn't fly off the handle,
Doesn't keep score of the sins of others,
Doesn't revel when others grovel,
Takes pleasure in the flowering of truth,
Puts up with anything,
Trusts God always,
Always looks for the best,
Never looks back,
But keeps going to the end.

8-10Love never dies. Inspired speech will be over some day; praying in tongues will end; understanding will reach its limit. We know only a portion of the truth, and what we say about God is always incomplete. But when the Complete arrives, our incompletes will be canceled.

11When I was an infant at my mother's breast, I gurgled and cooed like any infant. When I grew up, I left those infant ways for good.

12We don't yet see things clearly. We're squinting in a fog, peering through a mist. But it won't be long before the weather clears and the sun shines bright! We'll see it all then, see it all as clearly as God sees us, knowing him directly just as he knows us!

13But for right now, until that completeness, we have three things to do to lead us toward that consummation: Trust steadily in God, hope unswervingly, love extravagantly. And the best of the three is love.



The Excellence of Love

Corinthians 13:1-8 NASB



1If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but do not have love, I have become a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. 2If I have the gift of prophecy, and know all mysteries and all knowledge; and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. 3And if I give all my possessions to feed the poor, and if I surrender my body to be burned, but do not have love, it profits me nothing.

4Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, 5does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, 6does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth; 7bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

8Love never fails; but if there are gifts of prophecy, they will be done away; if there are tongues, they will cease; if there is knowledge, it will be done away. 9For we know in part and we prophesy in part; 10 but when the perfect comes, the partial will be done away. 11When I was a child, I used to speak like a child, think like a child, reason like a child; when I became a man, I did away with childish things. 12For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face; now I know in part, but then I will know fully just as I also have been fully known. 13But now faith, hope, love, abide these three; but the greatest of these is love

Footnotes: a. 1 Corinthians 13:3 Early mss read that I may boast



Rules for Holy Living

Colossians 3:7-17

5Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. 6Because of these, the wrath of God is coming.

7You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived. 8But now you must rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips. 9Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices 10and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator. 11Here there is no Greek or Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave or free, but Christ is all, and is in all.

12Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. 13Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. 14And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.

15Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. 16Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God.

17And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.



Love

1 Corinthians 13:1-8 NIV

1If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 2If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. 3If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing.

4Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. 8Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away.

9For we know in part and we prophesy in part, 10 but when perfection comes, the imperfect disappears. 11When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me. 12Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known. 13And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.



Forgiveness is a Gift from God

Is Forgiveness: the greatest expression of Love?

Forgiveness is a gift from God...
to us and for us to forgive others.



Forgiveness

“Peace be with you.”

19On the evening of that first day of the week, when the disciples were together, with the doors locked for fear of the Jews, Jesus came (through the locked door) and stood among them and said, "Peace be with you!" 20After he said this, he showed them his hands and side. The disciples were overjoyed when they saw the Lord.

21Again Jesus said, "Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you."

22And with that he breathed (New Life!) on them and said, "Receive the Holy Spirit.

23If you forgive anyone his sins, they are forgiven; if you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven." John 20:19-23

“Peace be with you.”

Jesus said it twice to his disciples!

After the Resurrection, Jesus came to the Disciples through “locked doors.” Jesus can and will come through the locked doors of your heart. “Peace be with you.” Jesus will give you his peace; a peace that the world cannot give; a peace that transcends understanding.

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you.
I do not give to you as the world gives.
Do not let your hearts be troubled
and do not be afraid.

John 14:27


"I have told you these things,
so that in me you may have peace.
In this world you will have trouble.
But take heart! I have overcome the world."

John 16:33





Forgiveness

Forgiving someone is setting the “prisoner” free
and finding out that you were the prisoner!

3So watch yourselves. "If your brother sins, rebuke him, and if he repents, forgive him. 4If he sins against you seven times in a day, and seven times comes back to you and says, 'I repent,' forgive him."
Luke 17:3-5



Forgiveness:

1. Releases you from the bondage of being a victim.

2. Releases the “forgiven” person from the bondage of shame.

3. Both of you are released from bondage; given “FREEDOM.”

When we don’t forgive one another or when we don’t forgive ourselves, we fear - we run and go and lock the doors; we lock the doors to our heart. We shut others out and we lock ourselves in.

Jesus is the Light of the World...
Open up your heart and let the sunshine in!

Is there is no greater expression of love than forgiveness?

Open Hearts * Open Minds * Open Doors





Unmerciful Servant

Matthew 18:21-35 NIV

21Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, "Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother when he sins against me? Up to seven times?" 22Jesus answered, "I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times. [a]

23"Therefore, the kingdom of heaven is like a king who wanted to settle accounts with his servants. 24As he began the settlement, a man who owed him ten thousand talents[b] was brought to him. 25Since he was not able to pay, the master ordered that he and his wife and his children and all that he had be sold to repay the debt.

26"The servant fell on his knees before him. 'Be patient with me,' he begged, 'and I will pay back everything.' 27The servant's master took pity on him, canceled the debt and let him go.

28"But when that servant went out, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred denarii.[c] He grabbed him and began to choke him. 'Pay back what you owe me!' he demanded. 29"His fellow servant fell to his knees and begged him, 'Be patient with me, and I will pay you back.'

30"But he refused. Instead, he went off and had the man thrown into prison until he could pay the debt. 31When the other servants saw what had happened, they were greatly distressed and went and told their master everything that had happened.

32"Then the master called the servant in. 'You wicked servant,' he said, 'I canceled all that debt of yours because you begged me to. 33Shouldn't you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?' 34In anger his master turned him over to the jailers to be tortured, until he should pay back all he owed.

35"This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother from your heart."

NIV Footnotes:
Matthew 18:22 Or seventy times seven
Matthew 18:24 That is, millions of dollars
Matthew 18:28 That is, a few dollars

Matthew Henry's Bible Commentary: Unmerciful Servant




The Grace of Being Forgiven

41"Two men owed money to a certain moneylender. One owed him five hundred denarii,[a] and the other fifty. 42Neither of them had the money to pay him back, so he canceled the debts of both. Now which of them will love him more?" 43Simon replied, "I suppose the one who had the bigger debt canceled." "You have judged correctly," Jesus said.
Luke 7:41-43 NIV

Footnotes:
a. Luke 7:41 A denarius was a coin worth about a day's wages.



The greater your sins, the greater the Gift of Grace which forgives you. You love much because you have been forgiven much.

Why do I love God so much? Why do I do what I do? Because of God’s Forgiveness. God cancelled by debt of sins – God released me from my unbearable burdens. God released this prisoner of sin, free. I did not deserve, earn, or merit this wonderful Grace from God. I am “eternally” thankful for God’s loving Mercy and Grace.



Love is Patient, Love is Kind.

1 Corinthians 13:4 NIV


Patience is such a very small thing to ask for.
But often we do not have any to give.

13 I am still confident of this:
I will see the goodness of the LORD
in the land of the living.

14 Wait for the LORD;
be strong and take heart
and wait for the LORD.
Psalm 27:13-14





Patience is really underrated, it is much more than just a virtue. Think of how many arguments we would avoid if we just had more patience with others. Patience, respect, and compassion all go together.



A fool gives full vent to his anger.

Proverbs 29:11 NIV

19My dear brothers, take note of this:
Everyone should be quick to listen,
slow to speak and slow to become angry,
20for man's anger does not bring about the righteous life
that God desires.

James 1:19-20





Sometimes we have to wait. Most often we don’t want to.

The Disciples after the Ascension of Jesus had to wait! The Disciples had to wait for the coming of the Holy Spirit. They did not know when it would come; they just knew that they had to wait. But for the Disciples waiting wasn’t so bad. Why?

· They were waiting with confidence.

· They were waiting joyfully.

· They were waiting with one another; supporting and encouraging one another.

We often think that when we forgive someone;
we are giving them the gift.
Actually when we forgive someone; we are receiving the gift.




“Holding anger is a poison.”
The Five People You Meet in Heaven By Mitch Albom

www.albomfivepeople.com Ruby: let go of anger. In Ruby's words: "Holding anger is a poison. It eats you from inside. We think that hating is a weapon that attacks the person who harmed us. But hatred is a curved blade. And the harms we do, we do to ourselves."

“Hate, jealousy, and bitterness are like taking poison
and hoping the other guy dies.”

- Unknown





Next: Jesus Walks on Water


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