John 15:12,13;18

My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. … If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you.

From the birth of humanity, people have had an insatiable need to be loved. It’s how Christ created us to live and be. There was a time when humanity was one with God and one within his love, that is until one fatal day that humanity’s desire to be equal with God separated all of us from God (Genesis 3).

Jesus’ disciple, John, describes God beautifully in one word, “Love” (1 John 4:8). Therefore, you could say that when humanity was separated from God it was, in fact, separated from Love. Imagine being created to live within God’s love, and just resting in it every day. Unfortunately, the truth is, because of our separation from God, a void has been created within all of us. A void that demands to be filled by Love itself.

Jesus Christ new this well when he commanded believers to love each other and to lay down their lives for each other. Christ’s message of salvation to humanity is the opposite of the world’s message of salvation. The world’s message lets us know that the more fame and money we accumulate for ourselves in this life the more fulfilled we will be. Christ’s message proclaims that it is harder for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven than it is for a camel to walk through the eye of a needle (Matt. 19:24). The world encourages many and diverse sexual experiences, but Christ calls us to sexual purity (Mark 7:21; Colossians 3:5; Ephesians 5:3; 1 Corinthians 6:9,15). The world tells us to build up security here on earth for ourselves. Christ tells us to build our security in heaven (Matthew 16:19-21).[Matthew 16:19-21 doesn’t seem like the correct verse.]

The truth is, the world hates Jesus the Christ and, if you are a true friend and a follower of Christ, Jesus promises that the world will hate you too. Are you ready for that? Are you ready to fill the void in you with Christ and trade all your money, fame, relationships and security for him alone?

QUESTION 1. What are some of the ways you have tried to fill the void in your life by using the things of this world (e.g. money, fame, food, relationships, security, etc.)?
QUESTION 2. Have you ever tried giving your world (e.g. money, fame, food, relationships, security, etc.) to Christ? If not, what are some steps you could take to do that?
CHALLENGE: Don’t be afraid of this message, embrace its truth and know that God is Love and Christ is the only way to truly fill the void.
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