Tuesday, March 1, 2016

This Is Love

Courtesy of Faithwalk Photogrphy
As we begin thinking about the Resurrection of our Lord, I can't think of a more appropriate topic to study than the love God desires from us. We could bore ourselves to tears with vast theological volumes or the musings of sages, but I think the best answer is summed up in this sentence.

~*~ We love Him because He first loved us. ~*~

How simple. How deep. So simple a child can understand, yet so deep God wrote a whole book about it. Untainted from the stain of man's opinions and bias, the Bible contains the perfect definition of what it means to return the love of One Who first loved us. Let's turn our eyes to it now and see what loving God truly means.

Deuteronomy 6:5 And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.

What part of our lives is not touched by our hearts, soul or might? All areas of our lives are to be consumed with one love and more than that, our very hearts, souls and physical strength are to be exhausted in loving Him.

Deuteronomy 10:12 And now, Israel, what doth the LORD thy God require of thee, but to fear the LORD thy God, to walk in all his ways, and to love him, and to serve the LORD thy God with all thy heart and with all thy soul,

What does God require? What is it He really desires from us? Is it not love that manifests itself in fearing Him, serving Him and walking in His ways rather than our own?

Deuteronomy 11:13 And it shall come to pass, if ye shall hearken diligently unto my commandments which I command you this day, to love the LORD your God, and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul,

Now true love is getting flesh and bone on it. Loving God is not just intense emotion, but listening diligently to His commandments. You've not seen diligent listening until you go out in the woods with a dedicated hunter. Hunters listen for game with their whole body. They have trained their muscles and mind to listen for the telltale sounds of hoof beats or rustling leaves. This is the kind of “hearken” God is after. He wants us to be listening to Him with all our being.

Deuteronomy 11:22 For if ye shall diligently keep all these commandments which I command you, to do them, to love the LORD your God, to walk in all his ways, and to cleave unto him;

Here is a chain of progression: doing, loving, walking, cleaving. All the ingredients must be together to make authentic love.

So if I bring this passage home, this is what it looks like. In the go and flow of my daily life, do my choices and actions reveal this kind of love for God? Is it seen in my relationships, work, my choice of entertainment, my secret thoughts, social media posts, text messages, time, money, what I look at; my desires and emotions? Am I walking and cleaving so tightly to Jesus that nothing can separate my love for Him?

John 14:15 If ye love me, keep my commandments.

What can I add to the words of Christ? If I love Him, I will keep His commandments. Next week, we will see what God says His commandments are. I think we will be surprised at what we learn.

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