How to Love and How to Be Loved

Galatians 5:19-23

Adrian Rogers

Sermon Overview

Scripture Passage: Galatians 5:19-23

Love isn’t a feeling or an emotion, and it doesn’t just happen. Love involves choice and conduct; we choose to love. The Bible reveals to us how to love and how to be loved.

Galatians 5:19-23 describes the fruits of the Spirit—the attributes of a true Believer—the first one being love.

1 Corinthians 13 describes this godly, agape love:

  • Steadfast: Love enables us to be patient and long-suffering.
  • Serving: Love urges us to be kind, and kindness is serving one another.
  • Sincere: Love does not consider someone else’s gain its own loss; it rejoices in other’s blessings.
  • Self-effacing: Love teaches us to be humble; it is not proud or puffed up. Adrian Rogers says, “Pride and love do not dwell in the same heart. You cannot be big-headed and big-hearted at the same time.”
  • Self-restraining: Love is not rude; instead, it is courteous of others and puts them first.
  • Self-denying: Love does not seek its own rights or privileges; instead, it seeks the welfare of Jesus, His glory, and the welfare of others.
  • Serene: Love is not easily provoked or quick-tempered. An explosive response is a sure sign that the love of Jesus is not operating.
  • Sacrificial: Love does not keep a record of faults or a collection of grudges. It forgives and forgets, even at its own cost.
  • Sympathetic: Love hurts over others' failures rather than gossip about them.
  • Suffering: Love “...bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things” (1 Corinthians 13:7).

We cannot love without suffering; there are burdens to bear and risks to take when we love. Love will break our hearts, but we must choose it anyway, because God chose to love us first.

The development of this love is a supernatural experience. We don’t produce it; we simply bear it. The vine (Jesus) is within us; if we abide in Him, we’ll bear the fruit.

This fruit is meant to be desired and consumed. The world needs this love that the Lord wants to produce through us. We must abide in Him in order to offer His love to the world.

Apply it to your life

Do you abide in Jesus and bear the fruit of His character? Spend time in God’s Word today and pray that the Lord will work through you and develop the love this world needs.