podcasts buttonnews buttoncalendar buttonmore button

Sermon Notes + 8.13.2023




If You Love Those Who Love You
Matthew 5:46
Dr. Tony Chute, Lead Pastor

Overview: The love of God surpasses all human love but forms the basis of who and how Christians are to love. Jesus tells His followers that loving those we are predisposed to love is a worldly love that requires no extra effort and leads to no eternal reward. To love as God loves means that Christians will look to love those who are unloved, unlovely, and seemingly unloveable. Such love can be directed to a personal enemy or a lost world, with many more applications included. Jesus informs us that in order for our love to mirror God’s love, it cannot be in word only but also in tangible ways as well. This love cannot be generated by the human heart or sheer willpower but must be driven by the free grace of God, which every believer has received and may draw from as we seek to follow our Lord.


1. Consider Jesus’s words in Matthew 5:3. How does this statement reflect worldly thinking rather than Christian thinking? Could such a statement be derived and defended from the Old Testament? How would you respond to someone whose manner of dealing with others is summed up by, “I treat people the way they treat me”?

2. What is the force of Jesus’s words, “You have heard it said . . . but I say to you” in Matthew 5:43-44? How does such a statement demonstrate the authority which Jesus inherently has as the Son of God? Does your view of Jesus’s words and Scripture coincide with His claim to have all authority? How does such authority prompt you to adjust your worldview and to walk in line with His teaching?

3. Why does Jesus command us to love our enemies? In what ways were we God’s enemies before coming to faith in Christ? See Romans 5:6-10 for further insight. How did the love of God transform your heart to love Him in return? Is it possible that loving our enemies can become an evangelistic means by which their hearts are transformed to love God also?

4. In what ways does God demonstrate love toward the just and the unjust (verse 45)? In what ways can you show love to those you are not predisposed to love? See Proverbs 24:17 and 25:21 for further insight.

5. How does the gospel enable us to love the unlovely without using guilt or legalism to drive our affections towards those we are not predisposed to love? Pray that the Lord will grant you a heart like His to love those whom He loves and to find ways to demonstrate such love in word and in deed. Consider Romans 12:14-21 as a template for allowing the gospel to live through you for the glory of God.

For Further Reading: D. A. Carson, Love in Hard Places (Crossway, 2002)