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Here Is the Love

Building community through agape love
This sermon is part of the sermon series "Fruit: It Does a Body Good". See series.

Introductory remarks from Bryan Wilkerson:

Each year we choose a ministry focus for the church year, which we introduce in September and address from the pulpit in two or three sermon series. The first series in the fall is a vision-casting series, in which we help people visualize what our lives and/or church would look like if we were to embrace God's truth in that particular area. Our goal is to create a "want-to" in the hearts of people to become the people/church God created us to be. As the year unfolds, the series become more instructional and application-oriented.

Our theme for 2008-2009 is "One Another: Building Up the Body of Christ." I introduced the theme in a stand-alone message the first week, and the message you are about to read was what I used to introduce the vision-casting series—a series based on the Fruit of the Spirit, entitled "Fruit: It Does a Body Good."

In addition to exploring each of the fruit of the Spirit from week to week, we went to the gospels to see how Jesus demonstrated that particular fruit in his own life and ministry. I had always wanted to explore that idea—the fruit of the Spirit in the life of Jesus—and it seemed to be effective. The chief challenge was working with two primary texts in each message. This first sermon was especially challenging, because I had to introduce the series as well.

As a part of the series, we invited artists in the congregation to create a work of art that captured a particular fruit of the Spirit visually. The work of art would be on the platform during the message, covered with a drape. At the close of each message, we unveiled the artwork, projecting it on the screens so all could see. Week by week the artwork would be added to a gallery ...

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Bryan Wilkerson is pastor of Grace Chapel in Lexington, Massachusetts.

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Sermon Outline:

Introduction

I. Fruit-like virtues

II. Interpersonal qualities

III. Agape love

IV. An example of agape love in the life Jesus

V. Transforming love

Conclusion