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If The World Hates You - Part 4

Good Morning My Beloved,

Thank you for joining us today.
I know with everything happening in our world
we're frequently distracted, so I appreciate your making
a point to join us.

Heavenly Father,

Thank You for Your holiness
Your Sovereignty, Your grace
Thank You for Your incredible mercies

Lord, we want to be faithful to proclaim the truth 

to speak openly and honestly about evil and sin and judgment and hell 
so that sinners can flee from Satan and run toward Christ.  
help us to be faithful, help us to always be faithful, to remember that in this world
this wicked fallen world, we will have trouble, and remind us 
that You have overcome the world

Help us to always be of good cheer, we always triumph in Christ 
and if we are to have fruit that remains, if we are to have fruit,
help us to be used to gather in the elect to salvation, to speak the truth
help us to boldly confront the sin in the world and in our communities and show them the way of grace 
forgiveness and salvation through Jesus Christ

Lord, we also pray for those believers around the world, that need awakened
those who have become complacent, who have turned to worldly ways,
those who have strayed from Your teaching.. Lord, we pray for them 
Father, we pray for those who are suffering, who are imprisoned, who are persecuted
who are under the constant threat of death we pray that somehow in the dire circumstances 
they’re in, they would have enough faith to stand firm for their Savior

We pray these things in Your name
Your sweet and precious name

"This I command you, that you love one another. If the world hates you, you know that it has hated Me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, because of this the world hates you. Remember the word that I said to you, ‘A slave is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you; if they kept My word, they will keep yours also. But all these things they will do to you for My name’s sake, because they do not know the One who sent Me.  If I had not come and spoken to them, they would not have sin, but now they have no excuse for their sin. He who hates Me hates My Father also.  If I had not done among them the works which no one else did, they would not have sin; but now they have both seen and hated Me and My Father as well.  But they have done this to fulfill the word that is written in their Law, ‘They hated Me without a cause."
John 15:17-25

Today's Message: If The World Hates You - Part 4  

As many of you know, we have been studying the 15th chapter of John, so today, let’s return there.
And we drew to a conclusion the first few verses of our text, verses 1-20. Now, in moving forward,
we'll begin with verse 12, John chapter 15, verse 12.

And while you’re turning to that particular section of our text, and before I begin reading it to you, I'd like to pose a question to all of you today.

What would you think if I came to you and said, "Do you want to be my friend? You can be my friend. I'm inviting you to be my friend. But, there’s one condition. In order to be my friend, you must to do everything I ask you to do. Do you want to be my friend?"  

What would you think of that?
I'm sure, like myself, you'd be thinking...Really? Are you kidding me?
I'm fairly certain that most of you couldn't even imagine someone, anyone trying to initiate a friendship with a comment like that, am I right? 

Well, that's because when we think of friendship, we think of equality. We think of equality.
We think of sort of face to face communication. We don’t think of friendship of having a list of demands, conditional commands, requiring submission and being under someones authority. We don’t think of friendship as a kind of hierarchy. We don't think of friendship in that way. We just don’t look at friendship that way. But, in that rather strange reality of "you can be my friend, if you do everything I say to you" is exactly what Jesus says in this passage. "I want you to be My friend. But if you expect to be My friend, then you must do everything I ask you." 

Let’s look at the text in verse 12.

"This is My commandment, that you love one another, just as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends. You are My friends if you do what I command you. No longer do I call you slaves, for the slave does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I have heard from My Father I have made known to you. You did not choose Me but I chose you, and appointed you that you would go and bear fruit, and that your fruit would remain, so that whatever you ask of the Father in My name He may give to you. This I command you, that you love one another."
John 15:12-17

Now, I know it seems foreign to us, rather strange, that in calling people friends, to keep repeating to them a list of commands, but that is exactly what our Lord does. That's exactly what Jesus does.

And, just in case you're joining us for them first time, so that you know where we are in this text, we find ourselves again on that Thursday night, which is a night like no other. Why? Because, it is Thursday night, and the last night He would spend with His disciples. It would be final week of our Lord’s life. The next day, Friday, He would be sent to die on the cross; But this is Thursday. So far, the entire evening has been spent with the disciples. They were all there to start with. All twelve of them, for the Passover meal, were in the upper room. Now the meal has ended, Judas has been dismissed; having Satan entered into him, he is now gone to gather together those that will come to the garden, arrest Jesus, take Him to those who would unjustly try Him and put Him on the cross the next day. Only eleven of the twelve remain. They have left the upper room where they were beginning in chapter 13, and they have finished the Passover meal, Judas has departed to do what he needed to do to set things in motion, that would ultimately lead to Christs' crucifixion. Jesus and the remaining eleven disciples are now walking through the darkness, they're headed for the garden where He will spend some time in prayer and then Jesus will be arrested.

That should bring all of you up to date as to where we are. It’s actually an amazing night. It was the last official, legitimate, authorized Passover meal. The night was fraught with the horrible reality of Satan and Judas. But beyond that, our Lord has for all the hours as recorded in chapters 13, 14, 15, and 16, been making some amazing, really astonishing promises to His disciples. And He’s been giving them some warnings along the way; but primarily, these are words of great, great promise. As they walk, the Lord, one more time, gives them an amazing promise: "You are My friends if you do what I command you."

It’s really been a night of incomparable, unparalleled love. A love that would culminate the next day in the greatest act of love, ever to be recorded in human history. The Lord, Jesus Christ, giving up His life for His own. And He even said it, didn’t He: "Greater love has no man than this, that a man would lay his life for his friends." This has really been a night of love.

If we go back to chapter 13, at the point where it all started, they had been in the Upper Room, Jesus knew that His hour had come. He knew the hour of death had arrived. Jesus knew He would soon be departing from the world, that He would soon return to the Father. 

John chapter 13, verse 1 opens with, "Now before the Feast of the Passover, Jesus knowing that His hour had come that He would depart out of this world to the Father, having loved His own who were in the world, He loved them to the end." Having loved His own who were in the world, He loved them to the end. Jesus loved His own, To the end. He loved them in the greatest capacity that anyone could love. That love was the reality of all of His promises, it was the underlying reality of His warnings. Love was the dominating reality of the night. It's the one reality that dominates this whole night. It's love. It’s recorded in chapters 13, 14, 15, and 16; and then His prayer that night in 17. So it’s a huge chunk of the New Testament that features this one night. But what really dominates this night is love.

John even identifies himself in John 13:23, as "There was reclining on Jesus’ bosom one of His disciples, whom Jesus loved." And then in verses 34, 35: "A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another." And then in chapter 14, verse 15
"If you love Me, you will keep My commandments." Now go down to verse 21, "He who has My commandments and keeps them is the one who loves Me; and he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and will disclose Myself to him." And verse 23, "Jesus answered and said to him, “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our abode with him." 

And again in our text, we covered this previously, John chapter 15, verses 9 and 10, "Just as the Father has loved Me, I have also loved you; abide in My love. If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love; just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love."

Now let's jump ahead a little bit to chapter 17, verse 25-26, "O righteous Father, although the world has not known You, yet I have known You; and these have known that You sent Me; and I have made Your name known to them, and will make it known, so that the love with which You loved Me may be in them, and I in them." Jesus begins this particular section of Scripture with love and He wraps it up with love.

This has been a night of love, it’s all about love. This Thursday night, is a night of love like no other night ever. Ever. This is where the love of God is promised through Christ to all who belong to Him. Love is behind all the promises. Love is behind all the warnings. Love is behind all the
commandments. He showed His love by washing their feet in a humble, loving way. He shared His love by lavishing upon them the promises of eternal life, peace, joy, divine presence forever, righteousness, answered prayer, assurance. Jesus would provide them, that night, everything they would ever need. His focus is on love.

Then love reaches a high point in the verses that I read early, verses 12 -17; and the climatic point, I'm speaking of is of course, John chapter 15, verse 13: "Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends." In this profound paragraph that we just read, the Lord expresses His love and commands His disciples to love Him and to love others, to live in love. The Father loves the Son, the Son loves the Father. The Father and the Son love us. We are to love them and love each other. Love defines this entire relationship.

In Closing... 

We'll wrap things up there, on verse 13 for today, and we'll begin with verse 14, the next time.
Love. That's an absolutely tremendous way to end a message, wouldn't you agree? If only every thing we did ended in love. It can, we can. If we would just position our hearts, our minds, our behaviors to focus on love. God's love. God's love is unlimited. We have His love in us. Jesus commanded us to love another, and others, the way He loved us. He gave us His love, not that we would keep it to ourselves, but that we would give it away.. share it with others. Let's do that. The world desperately needs that. Even though most of them do not even realize it.

Let's share the love we've been given..
Love, with grace, in truth.
As we each go about our day, let's focus on Christs' love for us.

"Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends."

And now may the Lord bless you and keep you;

the Lord make His face shine upon you,
And be gracious to you;

The Lord lift up His countenance upon you,
And give you peace.

Now and forever, in Jesus' name

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Brian Monzon Ministries

The Brian Monzon Ministries



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