Joshua and Judges: The doctrine of leadership part 57 - Essential qualities of leadership: The filling of the Spirit; Gal 5:22-23.

Class Outline:

Title: Joshua and Judges: The doctrine of leadership part 57 - Essential qualities of leadership: The filling of the Spirit; GAL 5:22-23.


Announcements / opening prayer:  



Principle: The Spirit produces Christian character. Compressed into nine words, the fruit of the Spirit is a condensed description of the life of Christ that the Spirit is to work out in each believer's life.


GAL 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,


GAL 5:23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.


The Greek word eros is a needs-based and desire-based, egocentric and acquisitive love: in other words, we can love other humans and God with a love of eros in which we love them out of self-interest in order to acquire and possess them.


Agape - "love" = A mental attitude love from mature virtue that produces a preference and a regard for the benefit of others, without sin, nor motivated by any affection or attraction.


The love of which John, like Paul, speaks is self-giving love, not an acquisitive love (of self-interest). Agape involves a consuming passion for the well-being of others - its wellspring from God.


Agape is spontaneous, unconditional, theocentric, self-giving, and self-sacrificial. It is a consuming passion for the well-being of others. It rejects all self-gain and surrenders to love others purely for themselves.


I no longer use the word impersonal in my definition since that can connote a sort of coldness. Yet the word does apply in some way. We are not commanded to like or be attracted to another. An evil person is not at all likeable or attractive to anyone but another evil person. This love, or charity, is in essence the person of Christ and His cross. Sometimes this love demands separation from another since that is in their best interest. The believer has to decide this for himself in each case.


We can love others and God with a love of agape in which we reject all self-gain and interest and surrender ourselves to others and love them purely for themselves.


This is the fruit of the Spirit.


This explains why the Bible commands us to love God with an agape love.


To agape God is to love Him without respect to self-gain or self-interest and to surrender ourselves to Him purely for His sake, for who He is.


1JO 2:4 The one who says, "I have come to know Him," and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him;


1JO 2:5 but whoever keeps His word, in him the love of God has truly been perfected [mature or complete]. By this we know that we are in Him [the evidence of our position]:


True motivation to keep God's commands is to agape love Him. Refer again to the above point and know it well. To love Him is to surrender ourselves to Him purely for His sake and not for any self-gain or interest. Obviously the first step would be to come to know Him.


1JO 2:6 the one who says he abides in Him [fellowships in Him] ought himself to walk in the same manner as He walked.


We don't experience the presence of God within us but we can know for a fact that He is because without Him in us we could never walk in the manner as He walked.


1JO 3:17 But whoever has the world's goods, and beholds his brother in need and closes his heart against him, how does the love of God abide in him?


He is not a co-participant in the love of God.


1JO 5:3 For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not burdensome [rather joyful].


An eros love of God is more in line with the prosperity gospel, the teaching that the good news is that if we follow Christ everything in our lives will work out to our favor and we will prosper in every realm without suffering. That is a self-interested love of God. Agape love is loving Him simply because of who He is and laying down our lives for His sake, or as Christ put it, losing our lives (a selfish priority system in the soul) for His sake. It's not that He needs it. Sake is not used here in that context, but surrendering ourselves and loving Him for the sake of His essence and nature.


Those who show such love to one another give proof in doing so that they are God's children and that it is they, and not those who say so much about the true gnosis or knowledge of God without regard for the love of God, who really know Him (1JO 2:4). Those, on the other hand, from whose lives such love is absent give proof by that fact that they have never begun to know God, however confident their claims may be.


To know the love of God is to manifest His love.


And so simply put, God is love. God in His character and nature is love. It is who He is. So then by nature He possesses a consuming passion for the well-being of His creatures - all of them. This is actually one of the hardest things to believe about Him because it affects us so much. It is easier to believe His omniscience and omnipotence, His eternity and Sovereignty, His righteousness and justice, but it is His love that impacts us in the most personal way.


God is love - From His essence God has a consuming passion for my highest and best and that in grace and mercy, accepting me just as I am and blessing me beyond my wildest dreams.


It is His love for you that motivates you to lay aside the selfish soul, forsaking it, and pursuing Him.


The Christian affirmation that God is love is not sustained by ignoring the cross, in all its stark obscenity, but by setting it in the forefront.


1JO 4:9 By this the love of God was manifested in us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world so that we might live through Him.


This is very similar to JOH 3:16. John returns to the sacrifice and presents it from the Father's point of view. The supreme act of God's love was His sending His only begotten Son into the world.