11-26-17 – “The Greatest Gift” 1 of 4

The GREATEST GIFT… Christmas Sermon Series.

 

What’s the Greatest Gift you’ve ever received!?  

 

G – It all starts with God!  “God” so loved the world that He gave…

 

John 3:16-17 NLT – 16 “For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.17 God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him.

 

Message: 16-18 “This is how much God loved the world: He gave his Son, his one and only Son. And this is why: so that no one need be destroyed; by believing in him, anyone can have a whole and lasting life. God didn’t go to all the trouble of sending his Son merely to point an accusing finger, telling the world how bad it was. He came to help, to put the world right again. Anyone who trusts in him is acquitted; anyone who refuses to trust him has long since been under the death sentence without knowing it. And why? Because of that person’s failure to believe in the one-of-a-kind Son of God when introduced to him.

 

God didn’t just give us ‘A Gift’ He gave us THE GREATEST GIFT HE COULD GIVE…  He gave Himself!   

Romans 6:23 NLT – 23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.

1 John 4:9-10 NCV – This is how God showed his love to us: He sent his one and only Son into the world so that we could have life through him. 10 This is what real love is: It is not our love for God; it is God’s love for us. He sent his Son to die in our place to take away our sins.

Ephesians 2:8-10 NLT – God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it.10 For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.

2 Corinthians 9:15 NASB – 15 Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift.

 

 

God has a different kind of love for mankind than the rest of creation.

  • God “spoke” all of creation into existence. However, with mankind He took the time, effort, energy to form him into His own image, with His own hands from the dust of the earth, and breathed his own breath into Him to bring Him to life.  (Gen 2)

 

  • Then God created a special place (Garden of Eden) just for Adam, and gave Him dominion over the garden and the rest of Creation.

 

  • He saw that Adam was lonely so He formed someone specifically for Him, someone suitable for Him, a help mate for Him… taken from one of his own ribs.

 

  • And God Himself came down every evening to walk and talk with Adam and Eve. Relationship/Fellowship.

 

  • God gave them a free will to choose… a free will to obey or disobey Him (KNOWING that they would disobey!)

 

The Bible is a Love Story…  filled with God’s pursuit of Man!  (People (myself included) have said the Bible is a love letter, but it’s really more of a Love STORY.)  It’s a love story about God’s never ending, unexplainable, undeniable, overwhelming, amazing Love and His pursuit of (US) His creation. 

 

So many times we let things in the world (circumstances); things of the world, (Satan, and those little god’s in our life) deceive us into thinking that God doesn’t really love us. 

 

NOTHING could be further from the Truth!  It’s who God is… It’s His Character and Nature…  HE IS ABSOLUTE, PERFECT LOVE!

 

God’s Love is ‘Limitless and Infinite…’

  • Romans 8:35-39 NCV – 35 Can anything separate us from the love Christ has for us? Can troubles or problems or sufferings or hunger or nakedness or danger or violent death? 36 As it is written in the Scriptures: “For you we are in danger of death all the time. People think we are worth no more than sheep to be killed.” – Psalm 44:22

37 But in all these things we are completely victorious through God who showed his love for us. 38 Yes, I am sure that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor ruling spirits, nothing now, nothing in the future, no powers, 39 nothing above us, nothing below us, nor anything else in the whole world will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

God’s Love is Eternal:

  • Psalm 136:1-2 NCV – Give thanks to the Lord because he is good.His love continues forever. Give thanks to the God of gods.  His love continues forever.

 

 

God’s Love is Never Changing:

  • Hebrews 13:8 ESV – Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.

 

God’s Love is Sacrificial:

  • Romans 5:8 NLTBut God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.

 

God’s Love can’t be earned:

  • Titus 3:4-5 NLT – When God our Savior revealed his kindness and love,he saved us, not because of the righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He washed away our sins, giving us a new birth and new life through the Holy Spirit.

 

  • Ephesians 1:5 NCV – Because of his love, God had already decided to make us his own children through Jesus Christ. That was what he wanted and what pleased him, and it brings praise to God because of his wonderful grace. God gave that grace to us freely, in Christ, the One he loves. In Christ we are set free by the blood of his death, and so we have forgiveness of sins. How rich is God’s grace, which he has given to us so fully and freely.

 

  • Hosea 6:6 CSB – For I desire faithful love and not sacrifice, the knowledge of God rather than burnt offerings.

 

God loves us deeply and profoundly and will not give up on us!

More than anything else, He wants a relationship with each and everyone one of us! 

 

A love relationship with God is the single MOST important factor in our life!

Psalm 139:17-18 – How precious are your thoughts about me, O God. They cannot be numbered! I can’t even count them; they outnumber the grains of sand!

CONCLUSION:

There is nothing we can do to make God love us less and nothing we can do to make Him love us more!

 

All we can do is accept God’s Gift, open it, embrace it, experience it, put it on…  and live in it!  John 1:12 ESV – 12 But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God,

 

Romans 5:1-5 NLT – (Romans 4 was all about Abraham and His Faith in God.)

Therefore, since we have been made right in God’s sight by faith, we have peace with God because of what Jesus Christ our Lord has done for us.Because of our faith, Christ has brought us into this place of undeserved privilege where we now stand, and we confidently and joyfully look forward to sharing God’s glory. We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation. And this hope will not lead to disappointment. For we know how dearly God loves us, because he has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love.