1. What is one of the most valuable characteristics of God? 1 John 4:8

1 John 4:8 KJV He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.

  1. How extensive is God’s love? Jeremiah 31:3

Jeremiah 31:3 KJV The Lord hath appeared of old unto me, saying , Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee.

  1. What is the greatest form of love?John 15:13; Romans 5:7,8

John 15:13 KJV Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.

Romans 5:7,8 KJV For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

  1. How is God’s love manifest? 1 John 4:9-10

1 John 4:9-10 KJV In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him. [10] Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.

  1. Do we need to show this love in our lives? John 13:34-35

John 13:34-35 KJV A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. [35] By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.

  1. How important is it for us to exemplify this love in our lives? 1 John 4:7

1 John 4:7 KJV Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God.

  1. How do we show true love? 1 Corinthians 13:4-8

1 Corinthians 13:4-8 KJV Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,  Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. [8] Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away.

  1. In what different ways is true love expressed? 1 John 3:17; Matthew 5:44,46; Hebrews 13:1-3

1 John 3:17 KJV  But whoso hath this world’s good, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him?

Matthew 5:44,46 KJV  But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same?

Hebrews 13:1-3 KJV Let brotherly love continue. Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares. Remember them that are in bonds, as bound with them; and them which suffer adversity, as being yourselves also in the body.

  1. Does God value the love that is seen in the marriage relationship? Proverbs 18:22

Proverbs 18:22  KJV Whoso findeth a wife findeth a good thing, and obtaineth favour of the LORD.

  1. How sacred is the marriage relationship?  Ephesians 5:25

Ephesians 5:25 KJV Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;

  1. Who is constantly seeking to take this true love from us? Matthew 13:19  

Matthew 13:19 When any one heareth the word of the kingdom, and understandeth it not, then cometh the wicked one, and catcheth away that which was sown in his heart. This is he which received seed by the way side.

  1. Are there any ways that we can disqualify ourselves from experiencing this true love? Exodus 20:3,4

Exodus 20:3,4 KJV Thou shalt have no other gods before me. Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me;

  1. What happens if we have more than one object of love in our lives? Matthew 6:24

Matthew 6:24 KJV No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.

Note: We can see all around us examples of this sad lack of true love. Though many people think that they have love they rob themselves of its true blessing and never understand its joy because they fail here. In the modern system of dating we find that the heart and its affections are given to so many different sources and ends in the sure result of sadness. When these persons who are so accustomed to engaging in romance and then breaking apart meet Christ they use the same methods in their relationship with Him. How deadly is this practice to the soul.

Dating, a more modern approach, begins when either the man or the woman initiates a more-than-friends relationship with the other, and then they conduct that relationship outside of any oversight or authority. Dating may or may not have marriage as its goal.” Piper, John; Taylor, Justin (14 June 2005). Sex and the Supremacy of Christ. Crossway. p. 146.

  1. What way does God want young people to get to know each other since marriage is so highly valued by Him? 1 Corinthians 14:40; Proverbs 3:5-7

1 Corinthians 14:40 KJV Let all things be done decently and in order.

Proverbs 3:5-7 KJV Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the LORD, and depart from evil.

“Courtship ordinarily begins when a single man approaches a single woman by going through the woman’s father, and then conducts his relationship with the woman under the authority of her father, family, or church, whichever is most appropriate. Courtship always has marriage as its direct goal…” Piper, John; Taylor, Justin (14 June 2005). Sex and the Supremacy of Christ. Crossway. p. 146.

  1. If we make God first and foremost in this experience what success will we find? Matthew 6:33,34; 1 Corinthians 2:9

Matthew 6:33, 34 KJV But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.

1 Corinthians 2:9 KJV But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.

  1. How can we maintain true love in our hearts? 1 John 2:15-16

1 John 2:15-16 KJV Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.

Note: Is there a way that Satan is using the love of the world to destroy our true love? Maybe even through a supposed love for another person?

  1. How long does True love endure? 1 Corinthians 13:8

1 Corinthians 13:8 KJV Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away.

  1. How lasting is human love? Isaiah 49:15, Psalm 103:15-17

Isaiah 49:15 KJV Can a woman forget her sucking child, that she should not have compassion on the son of her womb? yea, they may forget, yet will I not forget thee.

Psalm 103:15-17 KJV As for man, his days are as grass: as a flower of the field, so he flourisheth. For the wind passeth over it, and it is gone; and the place thereof shall know it no more.

But the mercy of the LORD is from everlasting to everlasting upon them that fear him, and his righteousness unto children’s children; 

  1. Can we trust the feelings of our heart when it comes to love? Jeremiah 17:9

Jeremiah 17:9 KJV The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?

  1. Why is it so dangerous to trust our own feelings on this subject? Jeremiah 3:13

Jeremiah 3:13 KJV But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived.

  1. What is the spiritual equivalent to adultery? Ezekiel 6:9

Ezekiel 6:9 KJV And they that escape of you shall remember me among the nations whither they shall be carried captives, because I am broken with their whorish heart, which hath departed from me, and with their eyes, which go a whoring after their idols: and they shall lothe themselves for the evils which they have committed in all their abominations.

 What had God commanded concerning these idols? Leviticus 18:3,30

Leviticus 18:3,30 KJV  After the doings of the land of Egypt, wherein ye dwelt, shall ye not do: and after the doings of the land of Canaan, whither I bring you, shall ye not do: neither shall ye walk in their ordinances.  Therefore shall ye keep mine ordinance, that ye commit not any one of these abominable customs, which were committed before you, and that ye defile not yourselves therein: I am the LORD your God.

  1. Are we in danger of doing the same? 1 Corinthians 10:11

1 Corinthians 10:11 KJV Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come.

Note: Is there not even in our time a day set apart for love? But does this day match more with the characteristics of true love or false love? Is February 14 a day that Christians can safely celebrate as a day of Christlike love?

To the Romans, February was also sacred to Juno Februata, the goddess of febris (“fever”) of love, and of women and marriage. On February 14, billets (small pieces of paper, each of which had the name of a teen-aged girl written on it) were put into a container. Teen-aged boys would then choose one billet at random. The boy and the girl whose name was drawn would become a “couple,” joining in erotic games at feasts and parties celebrated throughout Rome. After the festival, they would remain sexual partners for the rest of the year. This custom was observed in the Roman Empire for centuries.

Now notice the name Cupid. It comes from the Latin verb cupere, meaning “to desire.” Cupid was the son of Venus, Roman goddess of beauty and love. Also known as Eros in ancient Greece, he was the son of Aphrodite. According to myth, he was responsible for impregnating numerous goddesses and mortals. Cupid was a child-like archer (remember, Nimrod was a skilled archer). Mythology describes Cupid as having both a cruel and happy personality. He would use his invisible arrows, tipped with gold, to strike unsuspecting men and women, causing them to fall madly in love. He did not do this for their benefit, but to drive them crazy with intense passion, to make their lives miserable, and to laugh at the results.

After Constantine had made the Roman church’s brand of Christianity the official religion of the Roman Empire (A.D. 325), church leaders wanted to do away with the pagan festivals of the people. Lupercalia was high on their list. But the Roman citizens thought otherwise.

It was not until A.D. 496 that the church at Rome was able to do anything about Lupercalia. Powerless to get rid of it, Pope Gelasius instead changed it from February 15 to the 14th and called it St. Valentine’s Day. It was named after one of that church’s saints, who, in A.D. 270, was executed by the emperor for his beliefs.

Ref: https://rcg.org/articles/ttbsvd.html

  1. If this festival was so horrible that the church leaders wanted to get rid of it, Why did the people want to keep it? Jeremiah 4:22

Jeremiah 4:22 KJV For my people is foolish, they have not known me; they are sottish children, and they have none understanding: they are wise to do evil, but to do good they have no knowledge. {Jeremiah 4:22}

  1. As we turn from these evil, pagan practices, what are we admonished to do?

Romans 12:1-2, Titus 2:11-14

Romans 12:1-2 KJV I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. {Romans 12:1-2}

Titus 2:11-14 KJV For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.

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