Archive of Pastor Darby's Sermon Notes, transcribed from his original typewritten documents

 

John 14:15

IF YE LOVE ME

Mar 15, 1970 pm

THE GREATEST MOTIVATION OF MANKIND IS FOUND IN ONE OF THE SHORTEST VERSES IN THE BIBLE

  • Jesus was in the middle of one of the most touching messages to his close disciples-
  • "If ye love Me" is not an improbable condition; indeed, it is expected - "If" could be "since"
  • The action following the motivation is "keep my commandments" -- precepts, laws, principles

Here is the driving force that should inhabit every Christian and lead us to victory

JUST WHAT ARE THE COMMANDMENTS OF CHRIST?

We do not find a catalogue of laws in the New Testament like the decalogue of the Old

JESUS WAS ASKED CONCERNING THE FIRST COMMANDMENT OF ALL, OR THE GREATEST COMMANDMENT-  MARK 12:28

  • The summary of the commandments to Israel can be summed up in this: Love God
  • This is a repetition of Deut. 6:5- and all the law is summed up in this precept
  • But the New Testament continues to emphasize - Love God with all your heart, soul and might-

BUT THERE WAS GIVEN A SECOND COMMANDMENT, AND THIS SECOND COMMANDMENT IS AN EXTENSION OF THE FIRST

  • In reality, Mark 12:31 - Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself - contains two parts-
  • There is a need for a Godly motivated self-love - good self image- then love your neighbor likewise
  • It is this 2nd commandment that brought out the story of the Good Samaritan - Luke 10:29 ff

BUT JESUS GAVE TO HIS CLOSE DISCIPLES A NEW COMMANDMENT - WITH SPECIAL POWER - JOHN 13:34

  • During the touching scene of the Last Supper, the Lord, knowing their bickering, spoke gently
  • His new commandment was simple - that they love one another!  What a strange commandment
  • Indeed, He made this commandment the very special sign that men could see their discipleship

If our Christianity today is measured by this - some do not have much!  Some show it.

WHAT CAN WE DO WITH THIS SPECIAL COMMANDMENT?

Jesus did not intend that we treat this commandment lightly - this is very important.

JESUS EMPHASIZED THAT THIS IS HIS COMMANDMENT - JOHN 15:12,17

  • The personalization - this is not Moses' law, nor Caesar's, but this is the commandment of Christ
  • Notice the extent of the commandment- "as I have loved you" -and v.13,14 shows depth
  • Note the force- v.17, These things I command you!  Why should it be so hard?

JESUS CHALLENGED PETER AT THAT LAST TENDER MEETING BESIDE GALILEE WHEN THEY WERE FISHING - JOHN 20

  • In John 31:15, the heartbreak of being asked three times if he loved Jesus - Peter broke.
  • "Thou knowest" -v.17, the knowledge of love and the proof of love are often far apart.
  • If you love Me- Jesus said - feed My lambs - sheep - care for My people!

JOHN THE APOSTLE YEARS LATER STILL CONTINUED THE SAME STRANGE COMMANDMENT - I JOHN 2:7

  • The strange play on words- comes out in v. 10 - love your brother - and antithesis - v.11
  • Why is it so important that this commandment be repeated so often?  Should not be needed-
  • We must search our hearts deeply; are we examples of keeping this commandment?

If you know someone who does not LIVE AND SHOW his love- he is not a Christian!

TO OBEY GOD'S COMMANDMENT IS A NARROW ROAD!

Some people want to have God's favor, but their own will; lawless, careless, indifferent

TO OBEY GOD'S LAW OF LOVE INVOLVES SOME NEGATIVE MATTERS, NOT JUST IDEALISTIC FOOLISHNESS

  • In at least 10 passages in the Bible, it tells us of God's hate - Psa 97:10 - hate evil
  • The God of love is a God of jealousy - II Cor 11:2 - and we need to beware of teasing this
  • The fickle-minded, double-hearted one who tries to serve two masters misses both!

GOD DOES NOT WANT US ENTANGLED WITH THE LOVE OF THIS WORLD, FOR IT IS DESTRUCTIVE

  • I John 2:15-17 should be memorized by every Christian - and keep "things" in focus-
  • Do you really believe that God has something better for you than this world?  Then act like it.
  • Many today like Demus - II Tim 4:10 - depart from God because they love this present world

GOD WANTS US TO RECEIVE FROM HIM THE POWER OF HIS LOVE, AND TO LIVE IT OUT TO ALL OTHERS

  • I John 4:7 gives the challenge, and also the source of love - "born of God, knoweth God"
  • The only way to this love is I John 5:1,2 - through being born again!  No shortcuts.
  • God's commandments are not grievous, but founded on His great love for us!

If this love is strange to you - then you have not experienced the new birth

DOES YOUR PRACTICAL LIFE EXHIBIT THE PROOF OF YOUR FAITH AND LOVE?  OR IS IT LACKING?

  • Many of us should get down on our knees and examine our own hearts - do we really love?
  • We need to practice love more - kindness, gentleness, forgiveness - true love
  • We need to bring people to God's love that they can experience the wonder of new birth - and become a part of His loving family!