Love No Matter What

Love no matter what
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Help me to love no matter what.

That was a simple seven word prayer, no … more like a desperate plea, to my heavenly Father that I found praying over and over and over again in 2019-2023.  And now in 2024, it remains a prayer of mine because of what I’ve come to learn about that one four letter command – LOVE.

Volumes of books, bible commentaries, and other biblical resources were spread all across our coffee table, dining room table, and even on our floors for months just so I could read and study – walk away – and come right back to where I left off. It was a deep longing to really learn and understand what biblical love truly is that drew my mind and my heart to study God’s Word. Coupling my heart’s desire to learn all I could about “love” with some intensely painful life experiences made for a quite prodigious need in me for the truth.  I wanted to know two things – how GOD defined love and how Jesus Christ modeled love. But I studied and prayed, not so that I would only know the truth of biblical love, but to walk in the wisdom of biblical love. Basically, my craving to understand was rooted in wanting to obey. That was all.

Well, as I’ve learned about love for the past several years – through the study of Scripture and from Christian theologians such as R.C. Sproul, Dr. Steven Lawson, Dr. Martin Llyod Jones, A.W. Pink, Jonathan Edwards, Charles Spurgeon, J.C. Ryles, John Owen, Sinclair Ferguson, Mike Riccardi, and many, many other godly theologians and authors – it wasn’t until this past month (February) when Dr. John MacArthur took us through an entire series on love. And do you know what he titled his series? Can you guess?


It was titled: “Love No Matter What”   And as I listened to every message (sometimes 2-3 times each message), I learned even more in how a child of God is to “live love.” He addresses loving our enemies, loving those who are rude, crude, unkind or hurtful, and loving those who use us, deceive us, betray and reject us. He explains how praying for those who wrongly accuse us or persecute us or hurt us IS how God imparts His love to us so beautifully and powerfully! Through prayer, our heart and mind is transformed by His Word to love absolutely as Christ loves!


John MacArthur covers the truth that love is an action word. And he even shows in Scripture that if someone says they love you but they do nothing to show it, then we have every reason to question their love.


And he also preaches on the beauty of biblical love – the rewards that come to a believer who first loves the Lord their God with all their heart, with all their soul and with all the mind and strength AND loves their neighbor as their self. Who is our neighbor? To a true Christian, it is anyone in our path in need. Anyone.


Here are just a few excerpts from his messages: 

Jesus says if you hate (hate is to smugly ignore them, give them the silent treatment, betray them, spread gossip about them, are envious or jealous of them, reject them, slander them, try to turn others against them, which are all forms of hatred), that’s as good as murder. He says, you think you love and what you love is everybody in your little group that agrees with you.  And then you have license to hate everybody else. 

“Love is always considerate,” always concerned with somebody else, always tender in dealing with people, even evil people.  Love never insists on its rights.  That’s not the way love acts. 

“Love seeks not its own.”  In other words, it’s unselfish; it only seeks the things of others. 

“Love is not provoked,” and that means it doesn’t have a sudden outburst of anger or rage.  It never reacts to injury or loses its temper. 

“Love thinks no evil,” that is, it always imagines the best about people.  It always wants to think the very best.  It always wants to give the benefit of the doubt.  It always forgives and forgets, and never carries a grudge, and is never defensive, never eager to blame somebody else.

“Love does not envy.”  That is, it doesn’t have a competitive spirit, it isn’t jealous.  It joys in another’s success.   

“Love is not boastful.”  It is not boastful, it vaunteth not itself, means it’s not boastful, and I think the Greek word there has mostly to do with outward bragging, outward pretense, outward showing off; the voice of conceit.  

“Love is not puffed up,” and I think that’s talking more about the inside, the inward, big-headed, self-centered.  See, love is not self-centered.  It’s patient toward people, it’s kind, and it has not competitive spirit, no jealousy, never envies anybody else’s position or anybody else’s situation at all, and can just totally rejoice in somebody else’s success.

“Love rejoices not in iniquity.”  Love never takes pleasure when someone else sins, never takes pleasure when someone else is chastised. 

“Love rejoices in the truth.”  That is, love is positive, encouraging, goodness. 

And “Love,” then four things: “bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.”  Love bears all things.  It’s a beautiful Greek word; it means to cover something.  It throws a blanket on other’s faults; it just covers them up.  It believes all things – it’s never suspicious, it always believes the best.  It hopes all things; even when it knows there’s a failure, it’s optimistic enough to believe that something different is going to happen.  There’s going to be a change.  It refuses to take the failure as final.  And then, love endures all things.  No matter what you do to love, verse 8 says, “Love never fails.”


Do you love like that?  That’s the kind of love that characterizes our Lord Jesus Christ.  That’s the way God loves.


If you don’t love like that, you need a Savior.


If you’ve received the forgiveness for a lack of love, and Christ lives in your heart, and you have forgiveness, and you have His love shed abroad, as Romans 5:5 says, but you’re not letting that love out, you’re bottling it up, then you need to make a new commitment to love the way He says you’re to love.


The commentator Lenksi says, “I cannot love a low, mean criminal who robs me and threatens my life, at least in the sense of liking him.  And I cannot like a false, lying, slanderous fellow, who perhaps has vilified me again and again.  But I can, by the grace of Jesus Christ, love them all, see what is wrong with them, desire and work to do them only good, and most of all, to free them from their vicious ways.”  End quote.


Maybe you’ve got conflict in your marriage.  Maybe you’ve got conflict in your family between the children and the parents.  Maybe you have conflict on the job.  Maybe you have enemies at home and you have enemies at work and people who speak against you.  Maybe a brother-in-law or a sister-in-law or a brother or sister, another part of your family speak evil of you or your children. 


I read of a native tribe in Polynesia who had around their huts special articles hanging all around the roof of the hut. A visitor said, “What are they?” They said, “They are reminders.” “Reminders of what?” “Reminders of injury. When anybody injures us, or anybody does something against us, we hang a token of that injury there so that we will remember every time we have been wronged, and none is ever removed until full vengeance is gained.” That’s the human way, that’s not God’s way.

That’s the way the Pharisees lived; all around their legalistic hut hung all of the articles or symbols of their vengeance. They were proud and prejudicial; judgmental, hateful men masquerading as religious. And Jesus devastates that.


Do you know people who do just that very thing and sadly, they profess to be Christians? And may I ask … are you finding yourself doing this very thing? Holding on to a grudge, a bitterness, an injury, a memory … you refuse to speak to someone? Refuse kindness to someone? Refuse to show mercy or grace?  According to Scripture, it is the sin of pride that leads people to hold on to what they want to remember against someone. God says two things – they will not go unpunished AND they are liars and murderers and they do not walk in the light, but in the darkness…no matter what they claim.


The Lord detests all the proud of heart. Be sure of this: They will not go unpunished.” Proverbs 16:5

“Whoever claims to love God yet hates a brother or sister is a liar. For whoever does not love their brother and sister, whom they have seen, cannot love God, whom they have not seen.” 1 John 4:20

“Anyone who hates a brother or sister is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life residing in him.” 1 John 3:15

“Anyone who claims to be in the light but hates a brother or sister is still in the darkness.” 1 John 2:9


It’s my prayer that this entire series will challenge you, too, to pray …


Help me to love no matter what. 




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lisa rippy

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