Big Idea: We can love God well by loving Him supremely. We should love God as our God, for who He is, for what He has done. This authentic love should lead to a growing desire to worship Him and to passionately pursue Christ, as we convey love for others in partnership with what God is doing in this world.
I. Loving God supremely
A. The command and its context
B. Loving God for what He has done
C. Loving God for who He is
D. Loving God for who He is to us
II. What does this love look like?
A. Passion for Christ
(“If God were your Father, you would love me.” John 8:42, 14:28; Hebrews 1:1-3)
B. A consuming desire to worship God
(Psalm 84:10, Psalm 65:4)
C. Compassion for people
(“Do you love me? -- Feed my sheep.” John 21:17)
D. A growing desire to be a part of what God is doing
III. Love God supremely!
A. Remember and Celebrate what God has done for you.
B. Praise God in passionate worship for who God is. Love God for who He is.
C. Make your faith more personal. Let Him be your God.
1) Have you heard the phrase “defining the relationship”? If so, what does that mean to you? What is that like? Have you ever thought of the ten commandments as God “defining the relationship”?
2) Do you know what it’s like to have seen only one side of a person because you have only known them in one context? Have you ever seen that same person in a totally different context and had to reconsider who they were? In what context had the Exodus generation seen God? How do you think those events shaped their categories of God? What aspects of God’s character might they have a better grasp on and which aspects might they never have seen?
3) When you say something is “yours”, what do you mean by that? What is the difference between saying, for example, “this is my car” and “this is my country”? Does the possessive mean the same thing in both cases? Can belonging go in both directions? Can you belong to someone else or a group just as much as they belong to you?
What has been your deepest experience in mutual belonging?
4) Is loving someone for all that they have done for you a good thing? Is this an appropriate response of gratitude, or a mercenary love that loves only for what it gets out of the relationship? What is the difference between the two?
Is it ok to love God for all that He has done for us?
5) What has God done for you? Where do you think you would be without grace?
Can you think of specific incidents where God’s influence was the tipping point? Are you willing to share?
6) What does it mean to love God for who He is? Which attribute of God do you find the most amazing?
7) Is it possible to love someone completely and yet be unable to stand their bride, their house, their work, and their friends? Would you believe someone who told you that they loved you but whenever they had a choice would choose not to be in your presence?
8) National studies show that Christians go to church a lot less than they did even a few years ago. What do you make of this information? Is this an indication that our love is growing cold, or are other factors driving this trend?
9) What are you most thankful for that God has done for you?