Fellowship of loving is the only way to pleasing God.

I Cor. 12:31-13:1-8

There is a song I love to hear, “I am satisfied with God” but the question is, is God satisfied with me?

As a church and more specific is God pleased with us.

David was a man after God’s own heart, and I believe David as great as he was, he wanted to please God.

Psalm 19:14, “Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD my strength and my redeemer.”

I personally want to hear God say well done my good and faithful servant, when my life is done over here.

As a church how can Greater Hopewell be pleasing in God’s sight.

Individually, how can we be pleasing in God’s sight?

The theme for the 118th church anniversary is, “A church obeying God’s commandment to love.” (John 13:34-35)

The Corinthians church according to the text was not loving as God had commanded.

“But covet earnestly the best gifts and yet show I unto you a more excellent way.” (I Cor. 12:31).

They were gifted, talented, and financially well to do. They had educated people in this church. People who were socially connected. People of power and influence in their community.

However, all of that without love, is nothing in the eyes of God.
  • They were divided over gifts.
  • They were divided over opinions.
  • They were divided over preferences.
The Bible says a house divided can not stand and cannot please God.

Because God loves them, He gives them the pathway of pleasing Him.

I.     Ministry without loving equals to nothing- vs. 1-3.
II.   Fellowship is demonstrated through loving people- vs. 4-7.
III.  Fellowship is God’s eternal plan for his people- vs. 8.

God commands us to do many things, but none outweighs the commandment to love one another.

Loving makes us more like God.

Loving compels us to give like God gives.

The church in Corinth was doing a lot of good things but they were not living a life of loving fellowship with one another.

When the church of the living God is loving like God loves, the church grows spiritually mature.

I.     Ministry without loving equals to nothing- vs. 1-3.
  1. The gifts that God gives does not please Him.
  • The church in Corinth was boasting about their gifts.
  • Their love for their gifts were dividing the church.
  1. Proper use of the gifts to build up the body of Christ is what pleases God.
  2. Utilization of gifts without love in the eyes of God amounts to nothing because there is no fellowship among the saints of God.
  • Speaking in tongues is just making noise without loving people.
  • Prophecy without loving people is nothing.
  • Faith to move mountains without loving people is nothing.
  • Feeding the poor and sacrificing one’s body without loving people is nothing.

II.    Fellowship is demonstrated through loving people- vs. 4-7.
Paul writes to a church that is not loving each other and he tells them what love is and what love does.
It is not enough to say I love you with no evidence of loving.
  1. What love does and does not do.
  • Love is long suffering, which is to have patience with people, endurance.
  • Love is kind, means gentle, tender, not harsh.
  • Love envies not, means not jealous or against people.
  • Love vaunteth not itself, is not boasting, bragging.
  • Love is not puffed up, that’s pride.
  • Love does not behave itself unseemly- improper conduct.
  • Love seeks not her own- not selfish.
  • Love is not easily provoked- not easily angered.
  • Love thinks no evil- negative motives of others.
  • Love rejoices not in iniquity- in sin.
  • Love rejoices in truth- goodness of others.
  • Love bears all things- covers, not made known.
  • Love believes all things- believes motives are good.
  • Love hopes all things- regardless how bad the situation, love believes it is going to get better.
  • Love endures all things- bears under without murmuring persecution at the hands of others.
  1. This is the concise picture of a loving relationship with people, no matter how they treat you.
  2. This is how we show the love of Christ and give God’s love to everyone.
  • I John 4:21, “And this commandment have we from him, that he who loves God love his brother also.”
  • We cannot love God without loving people.

III.  Fellowship is God’s eternal plan for his people- vs. 8.

“Charity never faileth but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away.”

  1. All the things that excited the Corinthians were temporary.
  • These were sign gifts given for a particular time to prove the presence and power of God.
  1. Love is elevated above these three sign gifts.
  • Prophecies shall fail- no longer needed.
  • Tongues shall cease- no longer needed.
  • Knowledge shall vanish away- no longer needed.
  1. Love never fails because God is love.
  • Love is eternal because God is eternal.
  1. If we are going to please God, let us love people like God loves us.

Growing spiritually mature through loving God and people.

Loving makes us more like Jesus!

God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in him should not perish but have everlasting life.