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TEXT: I Corinthians 13:4c
SUBJECT: Attributes of Love #5: Love is Not Proud
Kids, listen up!
This afternoon, we're going back to the chapter we've been studying a few months now, it's I Corinthians 13. Before I tell you anything about it, however, I want you to tell me some things about it.
These are some things the chapter teaches, but before we go on, let me ask you a couple of other things-they're in the chapter also, but not as clearly as the other things I asked about.
It's good to review and remember what we've already learned, but now it's time to move on. In the last part of v.4, the Bible says that love.
"Does not parade itself [and] is not puffed up".
What does it mean to parade yourself? Have you ever been to a parade? A couple of years ago, there was a parade, right behind the church on Niles Boulevard. My family and I stood on the sidewalk and watched people and things go by. If I remember rightly, there was a high school marching band; there were some girls twirling batons; old fashioned cars drove by slowly; a few floats came by with pretty girls on top waving to everyone; and a Scottish club marched by with men carrying flags, playing the bagpipes, and wearing dresses!
The groups were very different: old people and young, churches, clubs, businesses, marching, driving, riding horses, and so on. But all the people in the parade had one thing in common: they wanted to be seen!
That's what it means to parade yourself. It means you want to be noticed; it means showing off.
The other part of the verse says love is not puffed up. What does this mean? Did you ever see a balloon that was not blown up? How big was it? It was pretty small-and hardly noticeable. But if you blow it up, what happens to the balloon? It gets much bigger-maybe ten or twenty times bigger-and is much more noticeable.
That's what it means to be puffed up. It means you want people to notice you; it means showing off.
Does love parade itself? Is it puffed up? No. This means the loving person is not a showoff, he doesn't need to be the center of attention all the time. In other words, love is humble or if you love others, you won't be proud of yourself.
EXAMPLES OF PRIDE
Like all other sinful things, pride is inside of you. But it never stays there; no matter how carefully you keep an eye on it, it has a way of coming out of you.
The biggest hole in your body is your mouth and, so that's where pride most leaks out of you. How?
Pride is also seen in what you do and not just in what you say. For example:
Pride is also seen in your attitude. For instance:
Do you know what incompatible means? It means two things don't go together. For example, wet fire or square circle or white blackbird or honest hypocrite.
Love and pride are not just different things-like height and weight or color and shape-they are incompatible things! They don't go together, they cannot fit together.
Do you know why? Because pride thinks about you and love thinks about someone else.
No one is completely free from pride-not me, not you, nobody! But if pride is your lord and master, then you are not the loving person God wants you to be. And, to not have love is to not have God or hope or heaven.
Just a minute ago, I told you no one is completely free from pride-nobody. That's almost true, but not quite. There is one Man without any pride at all-not a speck of it in His body or soul.
Who is that Man?
The Lord Jesus Christ. His life was full of love-love for all kinds of people, including His enemies. He could love them because He wasn't full of Himself; He wasn't proud and conceited or worried about looking good to other people.
You and I ought to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ and follow His example of humility and love.
When people reviled Him, He did not revile them back. Why not? Was He deaf? Did He not know the ugly words they used or what they meant by them? No, that's not true. He did not cuss at people who cussed at Him because He was humble and His humility allowed Him to love His enemies.
THE DUTY, THE WAY, AND THE BLESSING
To humble yourself is not easy, but God commands you to do it, and what He commands you to do, He gives you the grace to do, if you want to do it.
How do you humble yourself? You think realistically about yourself. You don't have to call yourself a worm and a toad and the ugliest sinner who ever lived! No, just think about yourself as you really are, and that will humble you.
From there, think about Christ, for no one who's near Him thinks too highly of himself. Peter was a good man, but when he met Jesus Christ, he could only say, "Depart from me, Lord, I am a sinful man".
There are great blessings that come from humility.
If you want to be a loving person, you've got to humble yourself, for whatever else love is, love is not puffed up and does not parade itself.
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