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For the LOVE of God. The Epistles of John UMW Spiritual Growth Study Catherine Gunsalus González and Justo L. González. For the LOVE of God. Rev. Dana McKim Ordained ,WNCC 1985 Dual appointment The Village Church Pfeiffer University Pat McKim

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for the love of god

For the LOVE of God

The Epistles of John

UMW Spiritual Growth Study

Catherine Gunsalus González and Justo L. González

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For the LOVE of God
  • Rev. Dana McKim
  • Ordained ,WNCC 1985
  • Dual appointment
    • The Village Church
    • Pfeiffer University
  • Pat McKim
    • Macedonia UMC, Youth and Children’s Ministry
  • Aaron, 16 & Ashley, 7
  • Missions & Disaster Response
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For the LOVE of God

PFEIFFER UNIVERSITY

  • 1885 – our 125th Year
  • 1 of 13 UMW Schools
  • ONLY Missions Major
  • Also, CE, Youth Ministry, MAPT, Deacon Studies Program
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For the LOVE of God

The Village Church

  • One of a kind UMC
  • Students Faculty Staff
  • 35% Worship Increase
  • Integrated in University
  • Multiple Ministries
  • 4 Mission Trips
  • UMW Unit
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For the LOVE of God

The Epistles of John

UMW Spiritual Growth Study

Catherine Gunsalus González and Justo L. González

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For the Love of God
  • Introduction
    • We live in a world of First Century Spirituality
      • No faith or trust in institutions
      • Access to a wide variety of world views and options
      • Ease of access to information – globalization
      • New tools and more effective communication
      • Hunger to know and experience more
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For the Love of God
  • Personal Holiness
    • At the core of Wesleyan theology
    • Wesley had a passion for the Epistles of John
      • Simple
      • Direct
      • Heart of the Gospel
      • Encourage spiritual growth
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For the Love of God
  • Misconceptions of Spirituality
    • Spirituality is incompatible with the Material
    • Spirituality is the same as doctrine
    • Spirituality is only individual
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For the Love of God
  • What “cannot be changed” in your life?
  • What could be changed in your life?
  • What discernment do you need for things that are a hindrance in your life?
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For the Love of God
  • The Law of Cause and Effect:
    • "For every action there is equal and opposite reaction."
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For the Love of God – John 1:6 - 2:2

IF…

THEN!

we lie and do not live by the truth.

we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.

we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.

  • If we claim to have fellowship with him yet walk in the darkness,
  • But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light,
  • If we claim to be without sin,
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For the Love of God – John 1:6 - 2:2

IF…

THEN!

he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.

we make him out to be a liar and his word has no place in our lives.

we have one who speaks to the Father in our defense—Jesus Christ, the Righteous One.

  • If we confess our sins,
  • If we claim we have not sinned,
  • if anybody does sin,
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For the Love of God
  • The General Rules:
    • DO NO HARM – AVOID EVIL
    • DO ALL THE GOOD YOU CAN
    • STAY IN LOVE WITH GOD (Attend to the ordinances of God)
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For the Love of God
  • Purpose statement: The organized unit of United Methodist Women shall be a community of women whose purpose is to know God and to experience freedom as whole persons through Jesus Christ; to develop a creative, supportive fellowship; and to expand concepts of mission through participation in the global ministries of the church.
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For the Love of God
  • 1 John 2:9-11 (Contemporary English Version)

9If we claim to be in the light and hate someone, we are still in the dark. 10But if we love others, we are in the light, and we don't cause problems for them. [a]11If we hate others, we are living and walking in the dark. We don't know where we are going, because we can't see in the dark.

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For the Love of God
  • CREATOR AND HEALER OF THE WORLD, HELP US TO SEE OUR PART IN YOUR WORK OF HEALING OUR WORLD AND ITS WOUNDED PEOPLE. SHOW US WHAT NEEDS TO BE TORN DOWN AND WHAT NEEDS TO BE BUILT UP, THAT ALL PEOPLE MAY LIVE IN PEACE AND SAFETY, ENJOYING FULLNESS OF LIFE. AMEN

Upper Room Worshipbook, 2006, Mary Lou Redding

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For the Love of God
  • How do we share the light?
  • What are our ‘next steps”?
  • Where is God leading us?
  • What is God already doing?
  • How can we join in this?
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For the Love of God

We are reluctant , Author of Love and Light, to name and then set aside our hurts, anger and disappointments which we have acted upon individually and corporately in the church. Heal us with your tender touch and shine your light upon us

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For the Love of God

as we diligently seek the persons who live with a renewed commitment to seek your image in all persons. Open our eyes to your reclaiming power in out lives, your redeeming love, and reveal to us through this study how your love is made known through continued unselfish sacrifice

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For the Love of God
  • Prayers of Silent Confession
  • Assurance and Pardon

IF WE CONFESS OUR SINS, GOD IS FAITHFUL AND JUST TO FORGIVE US OUR SINS AND TO CLEANSE US FROM ALL UNRIGHTEOUSNESS.1 John 1:9

  • An Offering
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For the Love of God
  • We Are Called #2172 The Faith We Sing

Come! Live in the Light! Shine with joy and the love of the Lord!

WE ARE CALLED TO BE THE LIGHT FOR THE KINGDOM, TO LIVE IN THE FREEDOM OF THE CITY OF GOD!

Come! Open your heart! Show your mercy to all those who fear!

WE ARE CALLED TO BE HOPE FOR THE HOPELESS SO ALL HATRED AND BLINDNESS WILL BE NO MORE!

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For the Love of God

Sing! Sing and new song! Sing of that great day when all will be one!

GOD WILL REIGN AND WE’LL WALK WITH EACH OTHER AS SISTERS AND BROTHERS UNITED IN LOVE!

WE ARE CALLED TO ACT WITH JUSTICE, WE ARE CALLED TO LOVE TENDERLY, WE ARE CALLED TO SERVE ONE ANOTHER, TO WALK HUMBLY WITH GOD!

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For the LOVE of God

The Epistles of John

UMW Spiritual Growth Study

Catherine Gunsalus González and Justo L. González

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For the Love of God
  • My Journey with the UMW
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For the Love of God
  • My Journey with the UMW
    • Southwest UMC – Miami, Fl
      • Small congregation
      • My “second home”
      • WSCS & Summer Camp
        • UMW saw potential where I saw none
        • Took a risk, made an investment
      • Youth Group, VBS, Choir
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For the Love of God
  • My Journey with the UMW
    • Southwest UMC – Miami, Fl
      • Changing neighborhood
      • 1970’s Miami – “Little Havana”
      • A ‘helpful’ DS
      • A bad church growth model
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For the Love of God
  • My Journey with the UMW
    • Southwest UMC Closed and Sold
      • Hispanic Presbyterians
      • Another changing neighborhood
      • Another bad church growth model
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For the Love of God
  • Calvary Chapel – Miami
    • Multi site
    • Multi service
    • Multi cultural
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For the Love of God

As we come to greet your presence in our lives, to study your Holy Word, and to praise your name, O God, remind us of all your continued acts of mercy you freely give to us and the presence of your Holy Spirit calling us to love with the boldness of your truth being revealed through us. May this time of study be a special time for each of us calling us to restore balance and harmony in the lives of your created people. We pray through the name of Jesus. Amen

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For the Love of God
  • 1 John 2:9-11 (Contemporary English Version)

9If we claim to be in the light and hate someone, we are still in the dark. 10But if we love others, we are in the light, and we don't cause problems for them. [a]11If we hate others, we are living and walking in the dark. We don't know where we are going, because we can't see in the dark.

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For the Love of God
  • HOW are WE enabling the Light to shine?
  • WHERE is that Light shining?
  • WHERE does the light yet need to shine?
  • HOW are YOU showing your love of the world?
  • HOW is YOUR love of God being revealed?
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For the Love of God
  • Postmodern Values
    • RELATIONSHIPS not RULES
    • POSSIBILITIES not PROBABILITIES
    • AUTHENTICITY not ACCOLADES
    • TRANSPARENCY not TRIUMPHS
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For the Love of God

1 John 2:3-17 (The Message) The Only Way to Know We're in Him

2-3Here's how we can be sure that we know God in the right way: Keep his commandments.  4-6If someone claims, "I know him well!" but doesn't keep his commandments, he's obviously a liar. His life doesn't match his words. But the one who keeps God's word is the person in whom we see God's mature love. This is the only way to be sure we're in God. Anyone who claims to be intimate with God ought to live the same kind of life Jesus lived.  7-8My dear friends, I'm not writing anything new here. This is the oldest commandment in the book, and you've known it from day one. It's always been implicit in the Message you've heard. On the other hand, perhaps it is new, freshly minted as it is in both Christ and you—the darkness on its way out and the True Light already blazing!  9-11Anyone who claims to live in God's light and hates a brother or sister is still in the dark. It's the person who loves brother and sister who dwells in God's light and doesn't block the light from others. But whoever hates is still in the dark, stumbles around in the dark, doesn't know which end is up, blinded by the darkness.

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For the Love of God

Loving the World

12-13I remind you, my dear children: Your sins are forgiven in Jesus' name. You veterans were in on the ground floor, and know the One who started all this; you newcomers have won a big victory over the Evil One.  13-14And a second reminder, dear children: You know the Father from personal experience. You veterans know the One who started it all; and you newcomers—such vitality and strength! God's word is so steady in you. Your fellowship with God enables you to gain a victory over the Evil One.

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For the Love of God
  • The “Mayonnaise Sign”
    • Why do we have them?
    • Why do we need them?
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For the Love of God
  • The World of John
    • Gnosticism
      • Rules
      • Secrets
      • False piety
      • Confusion over doctrine
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For the Love of God

“This situation may be described by two propositions, both of which are equally true. Only one who believes is obedient and only he who is obedient believes. …

For faith is only real when there is obedience, never without it, and faith only becomes faith in the act of obedience.

If we are to believe, we must obey a concrete command. Without this preliminary step of obedience, our faith will be only pious humbug.”

Dietrich Bonheoffer The Cost of Discipleship

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For the Love of God

Wesley used four different sources in coming to theological conclusions. The four sources are:

  • Scripture - the Holy Bible (Old and New Testaments)
  • Tradition - the two millennia history of the Christian Church
  • Reason - rational thinking and sensible interpretation
  • Experience - a Christian's personal and communal journey in Christ
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For the Love of God
  • What is the source of authentic Christian relationship?
  • What is the source of authentic relationship with God?
  • What are the barriers to this relationship?
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For the Love of God
  • Where have systems helped birth authentic relationship?
  • Where have systems restrained or caused failure in authentic relationship?
  • Where have we, as modern Christians, helped or harmed the process of authentic relationship?
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For the Love of God

GOD IS LOVE.

WE SHOULD LOVE ONE ANOTHER.

LITTLE CHILDREN, LET US LOVE, NOT IN WORD OR SPEECH BUT IN TRUTH AND ACTION.

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For the Love of God

EVERYONE WHO LOVES KNOWS GOD AND IS BORN OF GOD.

NO ONE HAS EVER SEEN GOD, IF WE LOVE ONE ANOTHER GOD LIVES IN US AND HIS LOVE IS PERFECTED IN US.

GOD IS LOVE AND THOSE WHO ABIDE IN LOVE ABIDE IN GOD AND GOD ABIDES IN THEM.

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For the Love of God
  • Who are the unserved/underserved of your community?
  • What efforts has your congregation made to reach out to them?
  • What efforts has your unit made to reach out to them?
  • What efforts have you made to reach out to them?
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For the Love of God
  • When in your own life has your faith been made stronger through your obedience?
  • When have you been more ready to act because of your faith?
  • What are the consequences to the unserved and underserved populations of inaction?
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For the Love of God
  • The World of John
    • Upside Down
      • Jews and Christians together
      • Men and women together
      • Slaves and free together
      • Truth and lies together
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For the Love of God

Genesis 4

1 Adam slept with Eve his wife. She conceived and had Cain. She said, "I've gotten a man, with God's help!"  2 Then she had another baby, Abel. Abel was a herdsman and Cain a farmer. 3-5 Time passed. Cain brought an offering to God from the produce of his farm. Abel also brought an offering, but from the firstborn animals of his herd, choice cuts of meat. God liked Abel and his offering, but Cain and his offering didn't get his approval. Cain lost his temper and went into a sulk. 6-7God spoke to Cain: "Why this tantrum? Why the sulking? If you do well, won't you be accepted? And if you don't do well, sin is lying in wait for you, ready to pounce; it's out to get you, you've got to master it."  8 Cain had words with his brother. They were out in the field; Cain came at Abel his brother and killed him

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For the Love of God

9God said to Cain, "Where is Abel your brother?" He said, "How should I know? Am I his babysitter?" 10-12God said, "What have you done! The voice of your brother's blood is calling to me from the ground. From now on you'll get nothing but curses from this ground; you'll be driven from this ground that has opened its arms to receive the blood of your murdered brother. You'll farm this ground, but it will no longer give you its best. You'll be a homeless wanderer on Earth.“ 13-14 Cain said to God, "My punishment is too much. I can't take it! You've thrown me off the land and I can never again face you. I'm a homeless wanderer on Earth and whoever finds me will kill me.“  15God told him, "No. Anyone who kills Cain will pay for it seven times over." God put a mark on Cain to protect him so that no one who met him would kill him.  16 Cain left the presence of God and lived in No-Man's-Land, east of Eden.

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For the Love of God
  • 1 John 3:11This is the message you heard from the beginning: We should love one another. 12Do not be like Cain, who belonged to the evil one and murdered his brother. And why did he murder him? Because his own actions were evil and his brother's were righteous. 13Do not be surprised, my brothers, if the world hates you. 14We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love our brothers. Anyone who does not love remains in death. 15Anyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life in him.
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For the Love of God
  • LOVE ONE ANOTHER

John 13:34 "A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.

John 15:12 My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.

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For the Love of God
  • LOVE AND OBEDIENCE
    • Inaction IS an action.
    • God’s call invites us outside our comfort zone.
    • Multiple disciplines are required to move beyond our comfort zone.
    • We are called to reflect the light.
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For the Love of God

Psalm 4 - Answer Me When I Call

Answer me when I call, O God of my righteousness! You have given me relief when I was in distress. Be gracious to me and hear my prayer!

O MEN, HOW LONG SHALL MY HONOR BE TURNED INTO SHAME? HOW LONG WILL YOU LOVE VAIN WORDS AND SEEK AFTERLIES?

But know that the LORD has set apart the godly for himself; the LORD hears when I call to him.

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For the Love of God

BE ANGRY, AND DO NOT SIN; PONDER IN YOUR OWN HEARTS ON YOUR BEDS, AND BE SILENT. OFFER RIGHT SACRIFICES, AND PUT YOUR TRUST IN THE LORD.

There are many who say, "Who will show us some good? Lift up the light of your face upon us, O LORD!“ You have put more joy in my heart than they have when their grain and wine abound.

8IN PEACE I WILL BOTH LIE DOWN AND SLEEP; FOR YOU ALONE, O LORD, MAKE ME DWELL IN SAFETY.

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For the Love of God

May God bless you with discomfort…

At easy answers, half truths and superficial relationships so that we may live deep within our heart.

May God bless you with anger…

At injustice, oppression and exploitation of people, so that we may work for justice, freedom and peace.

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For the Love of God

May God bless you with tears…

To shed for those who suffer from pain, rejection, starvation and war so that we may reach out our hand to comfort them and to turn their pain into joy.

May God bless you with foolishness…

To believe that we can make a difference in this world so that we can do what others say cannot be done.

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For the LOVE of God

The Epistles of John

UMW Spiritual Growth Study

Catherine Gunsalus González and Justo L. González

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For the Love of God

GOD IS LOVE.

WE SHOULD LOVE ONE ANOTHER.

LITTLE CHILDREN, LET US LOVE, NOT IN WORD OR SPEECH BUT IN TRUTH AND ACTION.

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For the Love of God

EVERYONE WHO LOVES KNOWS GOD AND IS BORN OF GOD.

NO ONE HAS EVER SEEN GOD, IF WE LOVE ONE ANOTHER GOD LIVES IN US AND HIS LOVE IS PERFECTED IN US.

GOD IS LOVE AND THOSE WHO ABIDE IN LOVE ABIDE IN GOD AND GOD ABIDES IN THEM.

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For the Love of God

“LOVE”

“BELOVED”

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For the Love of God

52 TIMES IN

1 JOHN!!!

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For the Love of God

29 TIMES IN

1 JOHN 4:7-21!!!

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For the Love of God
  • EROS
    • Physical intimacy, libido, sexual desire
  • PHILIA
    • Fondness, sentiment, liking, attachment, friendship
  • AGAPE
    • Christian Love, used to describe the sacrificial giving of Christ. Agape love allows one to seek the well being of another without regard to reward or safety.
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For the Love of God
  • CREATOR, REDEEMER, SUSTAINER GOD, GRANT THAT WE MAY HAVE THE PEACE OF CHRIST IN OUR HEARTS, THE WISDOM OF CHRIST IN OUR WORK, AND THE LOVE OF CHRIST IN OUR LIVES, SO THAT WE MAY CONTINUE TO BE YOUR HUMBLE SERVANTS BRINGING HONOR TO YOUR HOLY NAME. AMEN
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For the Love of God

UBUNTU: (from the Bantu Language)

A person with Ubuntu is open and available to others, affirming of others, does not feel threatened that others are able and good, for he or she has a proper self-assurance that comes from knowing that he or she belongs in a greater whole and is diminished when others are humiliated or diminished, when others are tortured or oppressed.

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For the Love of God

One of the sayings in our country is Ubuntu - the essence of being human. Ubuntu speaks particularly about the fact that you can't exist as a human being in isolation. It speaks about our interconnectedness. You can't be human all by yourself, and when you have this quality - Ubuntu - you are known for your generosity. We think of ourselves far too frequently as just individuals, separated from one another, whereas you are connected and what you do affects the whole world. When you do well, it spreads out; it is for the whole of humanity.

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For the Love of God
  • AGAPE/UBUNTU are the heartbeat of the true Christian Community
    • THOUGHT
    • PRAYER
    • DEED
    • SERVICE
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For the Love of God

1 John 4:7-11 (New International Version)

God's Love and Ours

7Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. 8Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. 9This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son[a] into the world that we might live through him. 10This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for[b] our sins. 11Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.

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For the Love of God
  • The absence of Agape/Ubuntu
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For the Love of God

1 John 4:16b-21

God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him. 17In this way, love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment, because in this world we are like him. 18There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.

19We love because he first loved us. 20If anyone says, "I love God," yet hates his brother, he is a liar. For anyone who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot love God, whom he has not seen. 21And he has given us this command: Whoever loves God must also love his brother.

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For the Love of God
  • Who are the unserved/underserved of your community?
  • What efforts has your congregation made to reach out to them?
  • What efforts has your unit made to reach out to them?
  • What efforts have you made to reach out to them?
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For the Love of God
  • “I did not send you here to make those people happy…”
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For the Love of God
  • Who are the unserved/underserved of your community?
  • What efforts has your congregation made to reach out to them?
  • What efforts has your unit made to reach out to them?
  • What efforts have you made to reach out to them?
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For the Love of God
  • The Invitation…
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For the Love of God
  • A Service of Healing
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For the Love of God

PANTS PRESSED HERE

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For the Love of God
  •  James 5: 13-15Are you hurting? Pray. Do you feel great? Sing. Are you sick? Call the church leaders together to pray and anoint you with oil in the name of the Master. Believing-prayer will heal you, and Jesus will put you on your feet. And if you've sinned, you'll be forgiven—healed inside and out.  16-18Make this your common practice: Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you can live together whole and healed. The prayer of a person living right with God is something powerful to be reckoned with.
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For the Love of God

The Prayer of St. Francis

LORD, MAKE ME AN INSTRUMENT OF THY PEACE;

WHERE THERE IS HATRED, LET ME SOW LOVE;

WHERE THERE IS INJURY, PARDON;

WHERE THERE IS DOUBT, FAITH;

WHERE THERE IS DESPAIR, HOPE;

WHERE THERE IS DARKENSS, LIGHT;

AND WHERE THERE IS SADNESS, JOY

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For the Love of God

O DIVINE MASTER,

GRANT THAT I MAY NOT SO MUCH SEEK

TO BE CONSOLED AS TO CONSOLE;

TO BE UNDERSTOOD AS TO UNDERSTAND;

TO BE LOVED AS TO LOVE;

FOR IT IS IN GIVING THAT WE RECEIVE,

IT IS IN PARDONING THAT WE ARE PARDONED,

AND IT IS IN DYING THAT WE ARE BORN TO ETERNAL LIFE.

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For the LOVE of God

The Epistles of John

UMW Spiritual Growth Study

Catherine Gunsalus González and Justo L. González

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For the Love of God

The Home Stretch:

  • 1 John 5
  • 2 John
  • 3 John
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For the Love of God
  • In today’s church, how do we keep within the truth as it was shared in 2 John and separate from theose who deceive others as to what the truth is?
  • How does today’s Christian live with the cross at the center of life with conflict swirling all around?
  • The early church endured splits and refused hospitality to those who were deceptive in their teaching. What do we do with those who are creating conflicts today?
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For the Love of God
  • How does a limited understanding of love affect our actions? Our relationships? Our response to the poor? Our sensitivity about justice?
  • How does my community of faith offer live to the greater community, nation, and world?
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For the Love of God

The church’s one foundation is Jesus Christ her Lord;

She is his new creation by water and the Word.

From heaven he came and sought her to be his holy bride,

With his own blood he bought her, and for her life he died.

Samuel J. Stone, 1866

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For the Love of God
  • The Summary
    • 3 Sections
      • Theme of Love and Obedience
      • The Identity of Christ
      • The Challenge of Faithfulness
    • An abrupt ending
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For the Love of God

1 John 5 (English Standard Version)

Overcoming the World

1Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ has been born of God, and everyone who loves the Father loves whoever has been born of him. 2By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and obey his commandments. 3For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments. And his commandments are not burdensome. 4For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith. 5Who is it that overcomes the world except the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?

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For the Love of God
  • Our Identity
    • Belief in Christ = Children of God
    • Loving God = Love God’s Children
    • Loving God = Obedience to God
    • God’s Children Overcome the world
  • Why would these concepts be important?
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For the Love of God

Testimony Concerning the Son of God

6This is he who came by water and blood—Jesus Christ; not by the water only but by the water and the blood. Andthe Spirit is the one who testifies, because the Spirit is the truth. 7For there are three that testify: 8the Spirit and the water and the blood; and these three agree. 9If we receive the testimony of men, the testimony of God is greater, for this is the testimony of God that he has borne concerning his Son. 10Whoever believes in the Son of God has the testimony in himself. Whoever does not believe God has made him a liar, because he has not believed in the testimony that God has borne concerning his Son. 11And this is the testimony, that God gave us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. 12 Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life.

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For the Love of God
  • A new idea: Water and Blood
    • Doctrinal correction?
    • Trinity
    • Gnosticism and the Humanity of Jesus
      • Birth motif
      • John 19:24 – soldier’s spear
    • Possible form of liturgy
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For the Love of God

That You May Know

13I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God that you may know that you have eternal life. 14And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. 15And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him.  16If anyone sees his brother committing a sin not leading to death, he shall ask, and God will give him life—to those who commit sins that do not lead to death. There is sin that leads to death; I do not say that one should pray for that. 17 All wrongdoing is sin, but there is sin that does not lead to death.

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For the Love of God
  • Mortal Sin
  • John Wesley:
    • “In essentials, unity; in non-essentials, liberty; in all things, charity.”
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For the Love of God

18We know that everyone who has been born of God does not keep on sinning, but he who was born of God protects him, and the evil one does not touch him. 19We know that we are from God, andthe whole world lies in the power of the evil one. 20And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, so that we may know him who is true; and we are in him who is true, in his Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life. 21Little children,keep yourselves from idols.

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For the Love of God
  • Three parallel sentences:
    • Reaffirmation of theology
      • “We know that…”
  • An abrupt ending…
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For the Love of God

2 John 1 (English Standard Version)

Greeting 1The elder to the elect lady and her children, whom I love in truth, and not only I, but also all who knowthe truth, 2 because of the truth that abides in us and will be with us forever:  3Grace, mercy, and peace will be with us, from God the Father and from Jesus Christ the Father’s Son, in truth and love.

Walking in Truth and Love 4I rejoiced greatly to find some of your children walking in the truth, just as we were commanded by the Father. 5And now I ask you, dear lady—not as though I were writing you a new commandment, but the one we have had from the beginning—that we love one another. 6Andthis is love, that we walk according to his commandments; this is the commandment, justas you have heard from the beginning, so that you should walk in it. 7Formany deceivers have gone out into the world, those who do not confess the coming of Jesus Christ in the flesh. Such a one is the deceiver and the antichrist. 8Watch yourselves, so that you may not lose what we have worked for, but may win a full reward. 9Everyone who goes on ahead and does not abide in the teaching of Christ, does not have God. Whoever abides in the teaching has both the Father and the Son. 10If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching,do not receive him into your house or give him any greeting, 11for whoever greets him(S) takes part in his wicked works.

Final Greetings 12 Though I have much to write to you, I would rather not use paper and ink.Instead I hope to come to you and talk face to face, so that our joy may be complete.  13The children of your elect sister greet you.

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For the Love of God
  • All three epistles generally appear together
    • The Elder
    • The Lady
    • Letter format
    • Reinforce themes from 1 John 1-4
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For the Love of God

3 John 1 (English Standard Version)

Greeting 1The elder to the beloved Gaius,whom I love in truth.  2Beloved, I pray that all may go well with you and that you may be in good health, as it goes well with your soul. 3For I rejoiced greatly when the brothers came and testified to your truth, as indeed you are walking in the truth. 4I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth.

Support and Opposition 5Beloved, it is a faithful thing you do in all your efforts for these brothers, strangers as they are, 6who testified to your love before the church. You will do well to send them on their journey in a mannerworthy of God. 7For they have gone out for the sake of the name,accepting nothing from the Gentiles. 8Therefore we ought to support people like these, that we may be fellow workers for the truth.  9I have written something to the church, but Diotrephes, who likes to put himself first, does not acknowledge our authority. 10So if I come, I will bring up what he is doing, talking wicked nonsense against us. And not content with that, he refuses to welcome the brothers, and also stops those who want to and puts them out of the church.  11Beloved, do not imitate evil but imitate good. Whoever does good is from God;whoever does evil has not seen God. 12Demetrius has received a good testimony from everyone, and from the truth itself. We also add our testimony, and you know that our testimony is true.

Final Greetings

13 I had much to write to you, but I would rather not write with pen and ink. 14I hope to see you soon, and we will talk face to face.  15Peace be to you. The friends greet you. Greet the friends,every one of them.

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For the Love of God
  • New Players
    • Gaius
    • Diotrephes
    • Demetrius
  • A more personal letter to Church leadership
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For the Love of God
  • How to stay in the truth?
  • How do we face conflict?
  • When to challenge conflict?
  • The importance of understanding love:
    • Relationships, the poor, justice
  • How do we offer love? Where do we begin?
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For the Love of God

The Baptismal Covenant

Brothers and sisters in Christ:

Through the Sacrament of Baptism we are initiated into Christ's holy church. We are incorporated into God's mighty acts of salvation and given new birth through water and the Spirit. All this is God's gift, offered to us without price.

Through the reaffirmation of our faith we renew the covenant declared at our baptism, acknowledge what God is doing for us, and affirm our commitment to Christ's holy church.

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For the Love of God

RENUNCIATION OF SIN &PROFESSION OF FAITH

On behalf of the whole church, I ask you: Do you renounce the spiritual forces of wickedness, reject the evil powers of this world, and repent of your sin?

I DO.

Do you accept the freedom and power God gives you to resist evil, injustice, and oppression in whatever forms they present themselves?

I DO.

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For the Love of God

Do you confess Jesus Christ as your Savior, put your whole trust in his grace, and promise to serve him as your Lord, in union with the church which Christ has opened to people of all ages, nations, and races?

I DO.

According to the grace given to you, will you remain faithful members of Christ's holy church and serve as Christ's representatives in the world?

I WILL.

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For the Love of God

Let us join together in professing the Christian faith as contained in the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments.

Do you believe in God the Father?

I BELIEVE IN GOD, THE FATHER ALMIGHTY, CREATOR OF HEAVEN AND EARTH.

Do you believe in Jesus Christ?

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For the Love of God

I BELIEVE IN JESUS CHRIST HIS ONLY SON, OUR LORD, WHO WAS CONCEIVED BY THE HOLY SPIRIT, BORN OF THE VIRGIN MARY, SUFFERED UNDER PONTIUS PILATE, WAS CRUCIFIED, DIED, AND WAS BURIED; HE DESCENDED TO THE DEAD. ON THE THIRD DAY HE ROSE AGAIN; HE ASCENDED INTO HEAVEN, IS SEATED AT THE RIGHT HAND OF THE FATHER, AND WILL COME AGAIN TO JUDGE THE LIVING AND THE DEAD.

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For the Love of God

Do you believe in the Holy Spirit?

I BELIEVE IN THE HOLY SPIRIT, THE HOLY CATHOLIC CHURCH, THE COMMUNION OF SAINTS, THE FORGIVENESS OF SINS, THE RESURRECTION OF THE BODY, AND THE LIFE EVERLASTING.

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For the Love of God

Eternal Father, your mighty acts of salvation have been made known through water—from the moving of your Spirit upon the waters of creation, to the deliverance of your people through the flood and through the Red Sea. In the fullness of time you sent Jesus, nurtured in the water of a womb, baptized by John, and anointed by your Spirit. He called his disciples to share in the baptism of his death and resurrection and to make disciples of all nations.

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For the Love of God

Pour out your Holy Spirit, and by this gift of water call to our remembrance the grace declared to us in our baptism. For you have washed away our sins, and you cloth us with righteousness throughout our lives, that dying and rising with Christ we may share in his final victory.

AMEN.