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Christianity 102: Live to Benefit Others      Lk. 6:27-38. 41-42, 46-48, (HCSB)      04-01-12


Introduction 

       The most appropriate expression of the Christian life is love. You could say a course titled Christianity 102: Live to Benefit Others, is basic Christianity.

 

1.   Live to Benefit Others Through . . Loving Actions. Lk. 6:27-29, 35-36

       A.   Loving Actions to the . . Unlovable. vs 27-29

27 “But I say to you who listen: Love your enemies, do what is good to those who hate you,

       28 bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.

       29 If anyone hits you on the cheek, offer the other also. And if anyone takes away your coat, don’t hold

       back your shirt either.

 

       B.   Loving Actions to the . . Ungrateful. vs 35-36

35 But love your enemies, do what is good, and lend, expecting nothing in return. Then your reward will be

       great, and you will be sons of the Most High. For He is gracious to the ungrateful and evil.

       36 Be merciful, just as your Father also is merciful.


       Most of us expect an action in return to any loving actions we give. Perhaps we do that because of the way we were taught. I can still hear my mom say, “Jimmy did you remember to say thank you.” We know we should not give with an expectancy of getting something in return. But when we show acts of kindness to an enemy it is an act to an unlovable person and it may draw them to Christ. He urges us to do things like turning the other cheek and giving a coat and in addition a shirt to one who demanded our coat. These people Jesus talks about may be ungrateful but many have been ungrateful about the grace of God and He gave it anyway. We need to try and follow His example.

 

2.   Live to Benefit Others Through . . Loving Actions of Unselfishness. 6:30-34

       A.   Loving Actions of Unselfishness to those who Do Not Return . . Love. vs 30-32

30 Give to everyone who asks from you, and from one who takes away your things, don’t ask for them

       back. 31 Just as you want others to do for you, do the same for them.

       32 If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them.

 

       B.   Loving Actions of Unselfishness to those who Do Not Return what is . . Lent. v 33-34

33 If you do what is good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners do that.

       34 And if you lend to those from whom you expect to receive, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend

       to sinners to be repaid in full.


       Christ told us to do actions of love to selfish people. We’re not to just love people who return acts of love. Jesus said our actions need to be different than those of the people called sinners. What about lending to someone who has no intention of returning the favor. Many of us do not have an excess of money and we would need our money returned. Is the Lord encouraging us to trust Him as we do these good deeds?


 

3.   Live to Benefit Others Through . . Loving Concern without Judging. LK. 6:37-38, 41-42

       A.   Loving Concern Of . . Humility. vs 37-38

37 “Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven.

38 Give, and it will be given to you; a good measure—pressed down, shaken together, and running over—will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you.”

       B.   Loving Concern without . . Hypocritical Actions. vs 41-42

41 “Why do you look at the speck in your brother’s eye, but don’t notice the log in your own eye?

       42 Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Brother, let me take out the speck that is in your eye,’ when you

       yourself don’t see the log in your eye? Hypocrite! First take the log out of your eye, and then you will see

       clearly to take out the speck in your brother’s eye.

              

       Have you noticed how easy it is for some people to be judgmental. Judging others may be easy to do until, so to speak, the shoe is on the other foot. Many times we may have to eat our words as we do the same thing we judged another for doing. We need to ask the Lord for the quality of humility and then we may not be so judgmental. The person in the text who quickly judges another’s actions may find himself trying to remove a speck from someone’s eye when he has a beam in his own. It is sometimes easier to notice others faults than our own.

 

4.   Live to Benefit Others Through . . Loving Obedience. Lk. 6:46-48

       A.   Loving Obedience with . . Demonstration. vs 46-47

46 “Why do you call Me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and don’t do the things I say?

       47 I will show you what someone is like who comes to Me, hears My words, and acts on them:

 

       B.   Loving Obedience with . . Dependence. v 48

48 He is like a man building a house, who dug deep and laid the foundation on the rock. When the flood came, the river crashed against that house and couldn’t shake it, because it was well built.


       I think of this statement of the Lord often. If we call Him Lord we need to demonstrate His Lordship throughout our daily lives. Many people do not want anyone being Lord over them, but we should gladly testify to His lordship and demonstrate it in our daily lifre. If anyone can point out an area of our life that seems to be an exception to the Lordship of Christ we should seek His guidance to correct it. Certainly Lordship is part of Christianity 102: Live to Benefit Others. Amen? Amen!