Preaching, Teaching, and Notes

A more excellent Way.

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

Some say there are many “ways” to God. There are not; the only way to come to God is through our Lord Jesus Christ. He is the way, the truth and the life.

But once we have come to Christ and been born again; our gifts and talents are to be for the service of Jesus, to honor the One who saved us.

But it is serving out of love, that is the more excellent way.

We should love Him, for He first loved us. (1 John 4:19)

1 Corinthians 13:1 “Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity (love), I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal”

Though I could speak in every language of this earth; proclaiming the gospel far and wide.

And if I could testify of the gospel story in angels language:

If love for Jesus is not the motivation for all that preaching…

It would be just so much noise.

Loud noise; “sounding brass” like trumpets. “How great!” man will say; but to God it would be just noise.

Soft noise; “tinkling cymbal” like the end of a orchestra piece. Empty and just noise.

1 Corinthians 13:2 “And though I have the gift of prophesy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing.”

This is the one that used to shake me up. I am a preacher; and I study a lot. But all of that study and knowledge would be useless if I don’t use this knowledge, so I know Jesus, the lover of my soul, more.

And faith to remove mountains; that’s something that everyone wants….but without love to Jesus as our motive; we will be nothing.

Remember Paul was writing this; and he had great knowledge, and understood many mysteries.

But Paul also understood, that to do for God, without love to God; is really doing for a reward from God.

Which is another way of saying, you are doing it to please yourself.

1 Corinthians 13:3 “And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing.”

If I give all my possessions to God’s work of feeding the poor; and if I die a martyr’s death: burned at the stake, as many down through the ages have.

Though it cost me everything, as well as my life; if love for Jesus is not the reason; then it profits me nothing, with God.

I am none the better, for eternity, for it.

You say, surely that can not be!

But let us consider what love is. We love, when we prefer a certain One, over others.

Love is willed. We think of emotions and surely, they are there.

But love is a choice, and our choices come from our wills.

God is asking, “Will we love Jesus?”

He does not ask the world; they hate God and Christ.

But He asks Christians, those who have been saved from sin; will you love Jesus?

There is a price for love.

It is certainly, a turning away from others, to the One loved.

It is giving time and effort to please the One loved.

And most of all, it is standing with that One, even till death.

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

The “more excellent way” is to love the Lord with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. The first and greatest commandment.

And the Holy Spirit within us gives us that fruit of love, if we will.

1 Corinthians 13:13 ” And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.”

To truly love God is the greatest work we can do.

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