When He instituted marriage, God taught that a man is to “hold fast to his wife.” This establishes that UNCONDITIONAL love must be at the heart of a marriage relationship. As we consider ALL our relationships with others, we’ll note that such unconditional love is important there as well. Of course, once again, we’ll consider the example and power we have in Jesus Christ when it comes to choosing to love others unconditionally.
Any feedback or questions you have on this study are encouraged (either in a comment at the end or by way of an email to me at firstname.lastname@example.org). I’d be glad to respond to you and I’d also like to use constructive feedback to improve this study for later usage.
Life in God’s Way … A Bible Study
Rev. Dr. Todd A. Biermann
LESSON 4: Choosing to Show UNCONDITIONAL Love
Read Phil. 2:8
1. Jesus did more than just die a normal physical death. How far was He willing to go in order to show his love for all people?
Read Rom. 8:34-39
1. What conditions has Jesus placed on his love for us?
2. Is there any force inside of us or outside of us that can keep Jesus from loving us?
3. The love Jesus has for us is based on His conscious choice to love us unconditionally and is much more than a feeling. Explain what this means and the comfort it gives.
Read Eph. 5:31-32
1. As the perfect husband, Jesus gives us a picture of the way a husband should love his wife. What does this teach us about the mandate God gives for a husband to “hold fast to his wife”?
2. How is the unconditional love of Jesus also instructive for every relationship we have with others? (Consider John 15:12)
3. What conditions might tempt us to stop loving someone?
4. How can the unconditional love of Jesus help us address the conditions we will, as sinners, place on our love toward others?
Read Eph. 5:33
1. Showing unconditional love requires us to be conscious of the needs of the other person. What might be some differences between the needs of men versus women?
2. Gary Chapman has written about our “five love languages.” He indicates that everyone tends to gravitate more to one or two of these languages than to the others. How can it be useful to understand these love languages when it comes to making the choice to love others unconditionally?
Read James 1:19
1. What roles do spoken and written dialogue play in our choice to love others unconditionally?
Apply the insights of this lesson to your life.
1. Describe some ways you have chosen to place conditions on your love for God and others.
2. What has helped you improve with your follow through on your decision to show unconditional love?
3. Since unconditional love is not natural and it goes against much of what we learn in this world, what (who) is the best resource and guide for such love?
4. Will Jesus ever refuse to hear our pleas for forgiveness when we fail to love unconditionally? What comfort does this give?
Pray: Dearest Jesus, thank you for loving me unconditionally. Forgive me for the many conditions I set on my love towards you and others. In the freedom and joy of your forgiveness and love, guide me to the decision to love others as you have first loved me. Amen.