School of Love | Growing in Love | George Hinman

1 John 2:12-17

January 29, 2017

Review:  Were you able to identify any specific temptations to hate your brother this week?  In those circumstances what were you able to bring gratitude into the picture?  Were you able to entrust yourself to the Advocate, Jesus Christ?

Introduction:  This is week three of our seven week sermons entitled “The School of Love”.  We are seeing what we are able to learn about love from the words of the apostle dubbed ‘The Apostle of Love”.  We are hoping to learn how we might live in intentional community designed to retrain our hearts in gospel love.

This week we examine one of the threats to gospel love – unhelpful desires – and how we might refocus out desires through our experience of the love God has already shown us.

Pray:   Lord Jesus, grant us your wisdom and understanding as we read from John’s letter and examine our own desires.  Soften our hearts that your word might refocus them on you.  Amen.

Read: 1 John 2:12-17

Discussion:

  1.  Read Genesis 3:1-7 with 1 John 2:16.  How are Eve’s thoughts about the forbidden fruit similar to John’s words in verse 16?
  2.  Which of these areas of stumbling mentioned in verse 16 are most likely to trip you?  How do these desires separate you from fellowship with God?
  3. Read Ephesians 2:1-8.  What does this passage tell you about who can get you out of the trap of unhelpful desires? 

  4. 1 John 2:17 says “The world and its desires pass away, but whoever does the will of God lives forever.” (NIV)  What do you know about the will of God? How can you know what the will of God is?  (See the following passages and any others that you know. Matthew 18:14; John 10:10; John 15:8-12; Romans 8:26; Romans 12:1-2; Hebrews 13:15; 2 Timothy 3:14-17.)

Application: Choose a verse either from references in question 4 or another verse of your choosing.  Write it neatly on a piece of paper or a note card and read it just before bed and first thing in the morning as a re-orientation to God’s best plan for you.  Be prepared to report whether this intentional refocusing on the will of God had an effect on your week.

Pray:  Lord, help us to desire what you desire for us. Thank you for your love, your care, your grace and your word that enfolds us, upholds us, cleanses us and sustains us. Amen.

 

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