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According to 1st Corinthians 13:13, Faith, Hope and Love abide but greatest is LOVE. I am convinced that this not mere human love because earlier in the text love is described and man’s love can’t be that way –it bears ALL, hopes ALL and endures ALL-love NEVER fails (13:7-8). Furthermore, Love is said to be perfect yet the spiritual gifts are partial. No human love can perfectly fit this description. To us our love has some sort of elastic limit, some point beyond which our love will cease. So how can such a just and righteous God demand such a love in us if he knew that it’s not only close to impossible to do but also very and extremely impossible to have such a love. The only love that could just fit this description is GOD’s love.
1st Corinthians 12 we see the spiritual gifts and the fact that they are from God and its God’s working in us; the chapter ends with Paul exhorting people to desire greater spiritual gifts and tells them he will show them a more excellent way-LOVE. The same way the gifts are from God then this perfect love described in 1st Corinthians is from God. Romans 5:5-8 now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us. For when we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would dare to die. But God demonstrates His love towards us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Now that is God’s love. It is only God who can do that-show mercy to the ones whom not even an ounce of mercy was to be shown.
So is it possible for someone to love if one is not saved i.e. is not born of the spirit of God? In Galatians 5:22-23, But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. This commonly used scripture shows crystal clear that Love is not in man before the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit teaches us to love, to be joyous, to be in and of peace, to be longsuffering, to be gentle, to be good etc. So the Spirit does not supplement what “good” attributes we deem ourselves to possess but rather produces them in us. My claim to love someone or something should be from the revelation of God in our hearts by the Spirit of God. This in a nutshell just says- you cannot love if God’s love in not in us!
What we believers need to do is to know what God has already given us as His sons and daughters in salvation. This is achieved by the revelation of the Holy Spirit as in 1st Corinthians 2:6-13, however, we speak wisdom among those who are mature, yet not the wisdom of this age, nor of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing. But we speak wisdom which God ordained before the ages for our glory, which none of the rulers of this age knew; for had they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. But as it is written:
“Eye has not seen, nor ear heard,
Nor have entered into the heart of man
The things which God has prepared for those who love Him.”
But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God. For what man knows the things of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him? Even so no one the things of God except the Spirit of God. Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God. These things we also speak, not in words which man’s wisdom teaches but which the Holy Spirit does.
With this revelation from the Holy Spirit via the word of God I believe true love will thrive in our churches and lives. This is because our focus on God as our source and litmus for true love. His love transcends all and just fits what 1st Corinthians 13. The greatest portrayal of His love is Christ dying for us to be reconciled to God 2nd Corinthians 5:17-21.
Let’s share God’s love.

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Table Of Contents

Introduction………………………………………………………………………………………… 2
An Explanation of the Study Guide……………………………………………………………….. 2
For Leaders………………………………………………………………………………………… 3
Lesson 1: Introduction to Finally Alive……………………………………………………………. 4
Lesson 2: What Is the New Birth? ………………………………………………………………… 6
Lesson 3: Why Must We Be Born Again? Part 1…………………………………………………. 8
Lesson 4: Why Must We Be Born Again? Part 2…………………………………………………. 10
Lesson 5: Born Again Through the Washing of Regeneration…..……………………………….12
Lesson 6: Born Again Through Faith in Jesus Christ……………………………………………. 14
Lesson 7: Born Again Through Intelligible Good News………………………………………….. 16
Lesson 8: The New Birth Overcomes the World…………………………………………………. 18
Lesson 9: Regeneration, Faith, Love……………………………………………………………… 20
Lesson 10: Freedom from the Practice of Sinning………………………………………………. 22
Lesson 11: Loving Others with the Love of God………………………………………………….. 24
Lesson 12: Helping Others Be Born Again………………………………………………………. 26
Appendix: Leading Productive Group Discussions………………………………………………. 28

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