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Essential Glue for Every Couple to Apply, Part 2

Insight for Living / Chuck Swindoll
The Truth Network Radio
March 1, 2022 7:05 am

Essential Glue for Every Couple to Apply, Part 2

Insight for Living / Chuck Swindoll

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March 1, 2022 7:05 am

Marriage: From Surviving to Thriving

Living on the Edge
Chip Ingram
Our Daily Bread Ministries
Various Hosts
Core Christianity
Adriel Sanchez and Bill Maier
Living on the Edge
Chip Ingram
Hope for the Caregiver
Peter Rosenberger

Today from Chuck Swindoll. Being right in our theology doesn't give us the okay to be demanding in our relationships. Remember that. It doesn't give you the freedom to pull rank on those that are biblically ignorant. How pleasant and surprising to be around individuals who are well known and gifted and in demand who never make demands or expect special treatment. What's the common ingredient that holds a marriage together? With all the forces working against the home, what keeps a husband and wife from giving up? Today on Insight for Living, Chuck Swindoll points us to a familiar passage in 1 Corinthians 13 that provides the answer. This virtue rises above all others as the primary personal behavior that draws a couple together.

So whether you're engaged to be married, a newlywed, or a seasoned husband or wife, there's something for everyone in the message Chuck titled, Essential Glue for Every Couple to Apply. Father, we have trusted in many things that have failed in our lives. We have counted on people who have failed us. We have chased dreams that have failed us. We have followed our hearts only to find that they were moving in the wrong direction.

But we have never encountered a day when we have followed You or carried out the promises of Your truth where You have failed. Today, Lord, we live in a world that's lost its way. We're solving it by running faster. Slow us down in the midst of a frenzied society. Give us a sense of calm and quiet as we peacefully return to things that matter. May we be very careful to hear these things that will be taught us today as if we were the only person in the room. Please speak directly to each one of us. Deliver us from the age-old habit of being grateful someone else is here to hear this.

Or even rushing to the excuse, if I had heard this earlier, I could do more of my life. May we hear this as if for the first time today. And as a result of hearing, may it make a difference in living. Lord, there are many who would love to be a part of this room and the praises and the songs of these times together, but illness, a hospital experience, a disability, whatever may have caused them to stay away. Our hearts go out to them and we pray for them today, not only them, but those who serve alongside them. Hardworking and careful physicians, diligent nurses, those who care for individuals in hospices and homes, loved ones and friends. Open our hearts of love these days in this season of the year to include those who are different than we are, those who have lost their way, those who have turned against you and selected a life of bitterness, those who are confused. Some may be in the very circle of our family.

Somehow, Lord, speak through this lesson on love so that we are able to be different people with them and toward them. Our hearts also go to families that are lonely today whose mom or dad is in prison or serving in a uniform out of love and patriotism for their country. We pray for those families that are left without their loved ones and we pray for those who are in lonely and dangerous places.

This season of the year makes us especially tender. Let our hearts be broken, our Father, rather than go about our work in a perfunctory, businesslike manner. May it be a time when we wonder as we wander out under the sky how Jesus, our Savior, could come to die. We worship you today, our Father, as a result of our work and our wages we're able to give to you our gifts. Just as those of old have always done and as you have done since your existence, Lord, we have never known you to keep. You give and give and give and give again. And so we learn from you how to do that. Be pleased in the reasons behind our gifts and the gifts themselves.

They come as an overflow from hearts full of gratitude. Now, our Father, may our worship be enhanced today as we give to you and as we ask this in Jesus' name. Amen. You're listening to Insight for Living.

To study the Bible with Chuck Swindoll, be sure to download his Searching the Scriptures studies by going to slash studies. And now let's resume the message titled Essential Glue for Every Couple to Apply. The apostle begins with three statements regarding priority. The first priority in verse one has to do with words, and love is so much better than that. The second has to do with, oh my, knowledge, prophetic gifts, the whole ability to act on faith, and love is better than that. And the third verse has to do with sacrificial living, right to the point of martyrdom, and love is better than that.

Revisit them with me quickly. A higher priority than words is love. Verse one. If I spoke or were able to speak with the tongues of men and of angels, if I had the language of the angelic creatures, if I knew how to communicate with those who are six-winged, who fill the throne room of God, if I had the giftedness to hold vast audiences in my grip with my words, if I had the eloquence to say things as had never been said before, and I lacked love in the saying of them, I would come across as a noisy gong or an empty brass cymbal. If I could speak with any language in heaven on earth, I might as well save my breath. No amount of linguistic skill, no amount of eloquence can replace the presence of love. Without love, I have nothing of value to say.

The second verse. If I am gifted in the realm of prophecy, I know all the mysteries and I have all knowledge. Just think about that for a moment. Highest priority here is spiritual giftedness and spiritual depth. And if I had the kind of faith that can move a range of mountains from one part of the continent to another just by claiming the moving of the mountains, and yet lack love, I am nothing.

Nothing. Love is more valuable than prophetic knowledge and utterance. Love is more valuable than biblical awareness. Love is more valuable than personal faith. Believe it.

It says it. And yet we find ourselves pursuing an answer to the mysteries and an understanding of knowledge and unraveling all of these incredible statements in the Bible about faith. But Paul says, love, that's the ticket.

That's the one essential. A few people have put it better than Dr. Ron Allen in his footnote on the Nelson Study Bible. Listen to what he says at the base of 1 Corinthians 13. The word agape, translated love, describes a love that is based on the deliberate choice of the one who loves rather than the worthiness of the one who is loved. It is a giving, selfless, expect nothing in return kind of love. Our modern throwaway society encourages us to get rid of people in our lives who are difficult to get along with whether they are friends, family, or acquaintances. Yet this attitude runs in complete contrast to the love described by Paul. True love, he concludes, puts up with the people who would be easier to give up on.

Convicting, isn't it? Well, when it works its way out, now that we know the priority of it, what are the characteristics? Give me some for instances, I'm hearing some of you say. Well, if you look at the list in verses 4 through the first part of 8, you'll come across over a dozen characteristics. Each one of them is unique, each one of them worth your time to think about, apprise your life on the basis of what is said, and interesting, you'll find that there are more negatives than positives. More love is nots than there are love is.

Love doesn't is more often than love does. Let's sort of bunch up the group into chunks we can bite off and digest, okay? Let's take patience and kindness together. Let's kick it off right there, love is patient, love is kind. The term short-tempered, interesting, that would be in Greek, micro-thumia. Thumia is a word from which we get our word thermometer, the idea of heat or passion, or in this case, temper.

But this is macro-thumia, long-temper, isn't that interesting? Love is long-tempered. Love doesn't have a short fuse.

John Chrysostom used these words to describe the term. It's used of one who is wronged and has it in his power to avenge himself, but restrains from doing so. All of us are stronger than at least one other person or we maybe are able to pull rank on at least one other, maybe several. And even though that's true of us, when we have that opportunity and they've done us wrong, we restrain from getting back or getting even. Love does neither.

Love is also kind. What a great word. We've lost it in our evangelical churches, I'm afraid. We sort of left it when we left the Methodist Church, huh? Heard a lot about it when you were a Methodist.

Here we are, an independent kind of gathering, and Paul revives it. It's not a Methodist term. It's not a Presbyterian term.

It's not a religious term. It's kind, kind. It means friendly, helpful, free of pettiness and criticism. As a matter of fact, this word kind is used of aged wine that has mellowed. I like the word mellow. Love is mellow. It doesn't mean weak.

It means, well, as A.T. Robertson called it, gentle in behavior. Remember the words of Jesus, come to me all you who are weary and heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is what?

There you have it. Same root word as kind. My yoke is kind.

My burden is light. I would love to meet up with more kind Christians, wouldn't you? Just kind, mellow, gentle. They sort of disarm us, don't they? Love is not jealous, love does not brag, and love is not arrogant.

Let's group those together. The first term has in mind the idea of holding people loosely without suspicion. When you hear their name, you don't get suspicious if you love them. Furthermore, love does not call attention to itself. This term, brag, see it here in the verse? Love does not brag.

This is called in Greek language, or in Greek classes, Hapaxlegomena. It means once spoken, only once spoken. It's the only time in all the Bible, all the New Testament, where the original term translated brag appears.

So Paul picks out a term, extant in his day, and he puts it in here under the Spirit's inspiration. Bragging is what we do, arrogant is what we are. It's why we do it. Love doesn't do either, love isn't either.

Love doesn't call attention to itself, doesn't seek to be noticed. I like the original meaning of the word arrogant. It's the word for bellows, bellows.

Years ago when your fireplace wouldn't get the message, it kind of smoldered and started filling the room with smoke, you get these old bellows. It's that part that's translated here, arrogant. It means to blow. We get our word blowhard from that. Like I read of the mother whale who said to her young, don't go up and blow with such noise, that's when you get harpooned.

And the same happens to us. There's a genuine humility when love has its way. You don't call attention to yourself and you don't brag. Love also refuses to act unbecomingly, verse 5. It doesn't seek its own will or way or rights.

Talk about convicting. The word unbecoming is the idea of being rude or crude. It's the thought positively of being tactful, being courteous, saying thank you, answering, you're welcome. Nowadays it's no problem. Wouldn't it be nice to hear once in a while, you're welcome.

You're no problem, no problem, no problem. Hidden within, hidden within not being, not acting unbecomingly is the old age-worn word charm, a word we need to revive. Howie Stevenson taught me people are charmed into righteousness.

We are, aren't we? I've never heard anyone say, you know what? He hit me in the kisser and I realized I don't have Christ in my life and the man just won my heart by punching me in the mouth.

Or I lost that wrestling match or the guy treated me like dirt and man, I wanted to be like him. I wanted to be a Christian as a result of that kind of, no, it's silly, it's stupid. You know what wins them? Charm, charm. Folks want that because they don't have that. That's what Christ gives. Love is charming. It doesn't act unbecomingly and I love this. It doesn't seek its own. Being right in our theology doesn't give us the okay to be demanding in our relationships. Remember that.

It doesn't give you the freedom to pull rank on those that are biblically ignorant. How pleasant and surprising to be around individuals who are well-known and gifted and in demand who never make demands or expect special treatment. Cynthia and I have a long-time friend who left his former career to work as a business manager for a small Bible college. As Joe got underway in that job, he and the brain trust at the school decided that we need to get the school on the map because the attendance was waning and they thought, well, maybe a good athletic program would work and they didn't have the money to field a football team and all that goes with that. So they chose basketball. They thought that would be probably the least expensive way to do it and we could attract students, especially with a winning squad. And the Lord gave them, virtually out of the blue, gave them a marvelous coach who was not only Christian but was an excellent coach and just threw himself into the program. But what they needed was good players. You can't have a good basketball team without great players.

And how do you win them when you don't have any money for scholarship and you're competing with all the big schools? Out of the blue one day the phone rings and the man on the other end of the line says, I understand you're the business manager we've never met. He says, my name is John. He said, I followed basketball for a long time. I hear that you'd like to get a team going. And he says, I applaud that. I think that's wonderful.

I love your school. I've watched it grow from almost nothing to where it is and I know your coach. And he said, it would be great. He said, I happen to know one kid who could easily be an All-American.

For some reason he kind of got overlooked in the draft or the college people that were trying to reach out to the hotshots. And he said, I think I could connect you two guys. Would you like that? And of course Joe says, my friend, yeah. He says, as a matter of fact, he's got a couple of friends that might want to go to school with him. Well, John was John Wooden. And Joe finds that out weeks later. The kids on board, his two friends have come with him.

They are knocking him dead on the basketball court. And Joe realizes one day, I wonder who John was. And he checks it out. And Wooden never once threw his name out. You know, didn't say, I have 10 NCAA championships out of 12 years with UCLA Bruins. You are so grateful to be talking to me. I will put your school on the map if you name the gym after me, the John Wooden Gym.

None of that. Hi, I'm John. I've followed basketball for a few years. I bet. Hey, when you get big and sassy and you're really top of your game, don't seek your own. There's a great proverb that says, Let another man praise you and not your own mouth, a stranger, not your own lips. You do good work, they'll find you. They'll sing your praises. Just be sure you don't believe it. Don't read your own clippings.

And for sure, don't write them. Love doesn't seek its own way. Don't you love is not provoked and doesn't remember wrongs done to it? It's an accounting term.

It's the idea of taking into account or keeping on a ledger. But first off, this provoke. Love is not provoked. It means to have an outburst of irritability.

It doesn't fly off the handle. Speaking of basketball, the other evening, I'd finished my study. And the evening was fairly young. And I thought, I'll see who's on the tube tonight.

And I checked with ESPN. And boom, I get into the Pacer game right at the time when the beer starts to fly. And I'm like, well, I didn't know we were having hockey here.

I thought I was going to watch a little basketball. And all of a sudden, boom, boom, boom. These guys are climbing over tables and going out there punching fans. And the fan walks on the court. Boom, he gets knocked down. And I'm thinking, this is unbelievable.

Good night. What prompted this? And in the middle of all of it, Bill Walton, who is one of the sports announcers, big tall Walton who played for Wooden, by the way, watches this. And almost under his breath in an unguarded moment, I don't know if you remember seeing it, he said, this is a disgrace to our game.

I thought, that is a great line. Irritability is a disgrace to the Christian family. Just below the surface, emotions can boil until they finally explode.

And I'm afraid we've witnessed a lot of this volatility today, not just on the basketball court, but anywhere people gather. You're listening to the Bible teaching of pastor and author Chuck Swindoll. And to learn more about this ministry, visit us online at

Now Chuck has titled today's message, Essential Glue for Every Couple to Apply. And if you're prepared to dig deeper into this topic, I'll remind you Insight for Living provides interactive study notes for every message. Please take a few moments to review this popular resource. In fact, we were pleased to read a recent comment about searching the Scriptures. It said, I absolutely loved the year-long study of Matthew.

I was a little behind the daily broadcast, but finally finished it. The writer continues, I read the commentary on Matthew and did the STS studies for the entire series. Thank you Chuck and team for these resources. You'll find the current series, Marriage from Surviving to Thriving, available right now in the Searching the Scriptures section of our website. There's no cost to access these interactive study notes.

In fact, you can print them out and share them with friends. Just go to slash studies. But that's not all. Chuck wrote a full-length book on this topic. Like his sermon series, the book is also titled Marriage from Surviving to Thriving. It includes an entire chapter on the topic we address today. And there's another chapter on Staying Young as Your Family Grows Older. This book on marriage is for everyone, no matter your age.

The title again, Marriage from Surviving to Thriving. And it's available when you call us if you're listening in the United States, dial 1-800-772-8888. Or go online to slash offer. We rely on your support to make these daily Bible studies with Chuck possible. To give a donation today, call us if you're listening in the United States, dial 1-800-772-8888. Or give online at slash donate. Chuck Swindoll continues to describe the essential glue for every couple to apply.

Wednesday on Insight for Living. The preceding message, Essential Glue for Every Couple to Apply, was copyrighted in 2004, 2006, and 2022. And the sound recording was copyrighted in 2022 by Charles R. Swindoll, Inc. All rights are reserved worldwide. Duplication of copyrighted material for commercial use is strictly prohibited.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-05-29 00:32:01 / 2023-05-29 00:41:00 / 9

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