Love Guides

Sep 4, 2022

Am I guiding people to Jesus? Are my words guiding people to Jesus?

Context: Ephesians 3:12–21 Ephesians 4:14-16

We will speak the truth in love. Ephesians 4:14-15
Paul uses the same word “speaking truth” in Galatians 4:16 in reference to communicating the truth of the Good News of Jesus, distinguishing it from false narratives, and explaining the implications of this truth.

Love Guides to Jesus

“Paul speaks of a confessional stance that is founded on God’s love, mutual love, and an edifying missionary zeal.” – Markus Barth

“The Kingdom of God is not in the wisdom of the world, nor in eloquence, but in the faith of the cross and in the virtue of dialogue.” – Saint Cyprian

Hebrews 1:1-3

“People’s receptively to truth is largely connected to the clarity of our love and long-term commitment to them. Nobody wants truth shot at them from the outside with no personal commitment. Truth is shared best in loving relationship. Jesus never dropped truth bombs and then abandon people to their own devices. Jesus instead gave truth and gave himself. Or to be more precise he gave himself and in so doing gave truth. I am the truth Jesus said he was completely truth telling and loyal.”
– Redeeming How We Talk by Ken Wytsma and AJ Swoboda

“The tongue can bring death or life; those who love to talk will reap the consequences.” – Proverbs 18:2

“Wise words bring many benefits, and hard work brings rewards. Folks think their own way is right, but the wise listen to others.” – Proverbs 12:14-15

“Am I about to offer healing or harm? Will these words draw in or turn away the child of God who stands before me? As Christ’s ambassador to this person, how can I frame my speech to be honest, inviting, and lead him or her to a closer relationship with the source of true and abundant life?” – Redeeming How We Talk by Ken Wytsma and AJ Swoboda

Am I guiding people to Jesus? Are my words guiding people to Jesus?

2 Corinthians 5:14-21 The love of Jesus moves us. God is making his appeal through us. We are Christ’s ambassadors.

Good News: God saves sinners.

“The gospel is good news about what has been done by Jesus Christ to put right our relationship with God.” – Timothy Keller Center Church

“The gospel is good news, not good advice. The gospel is not primarily a way of life. It is not something we do, but something that has been done for us and something we must respond to.” – Timothy Keller Center Church

Tell the story.
Good News as narrative

Where did we come from? From God: the One and the relational
Why did things go so wrong? Because of sin: bondage and condemnation
What will put things right? Christ: incarnation, substitution, restoration
How can I be put right? Through faith: grace and trust
– Timothy Keller Center Church

How should we respond? Spend some time with these questions:

Am I looking to the love of Jesus for direction?
Do I live for myself? Do I live for Jesus?
Do I look at other people the way that Jesus does?
Am I living on the mission of reconciliation, representing Jesus, motivated by His sacrificial love?
Who is the one person that God would have me reach out to? One person.
What is one step that I can take in that direction? One step.

With integrity. Words are checks. Actions are cash.
“Speak and act as those who are going to be judged by the law that gives freedom.” – James 2:12

Don’t just say it, live it, and directly meet needs of people to whom you are speaking. James 2:14-16

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