The Great Commandment
"Then one of them, which was a lawyer, asked him a question, tempting him, and saying, Master, which is the great commandment in the law? Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets." (Matthew 22:35-40)
Jesus gave a command--to love God with every part of our being. "Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind." The command of every Christian is to love God, and love your neighbor. But first to love God! Every bit of our heart, our soul and our mind is meant to be directed at loving God. Christians sometimes get off on so many other tangents--worrying about law and sacrifice and so on---Jesus said to love God first and foremost--everything else will then follow.
Look again at what Jesus said--"On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets." It makes perfect sense--if we first love God--all the other laws will follow. But so often we worry about our disobedience to other laws. So many of us have sin we return to over and over again. I believe the problem is that we are not obeying Jesus and loving Him first.
The devil will distract us away from His love by showing us our disobedience to some other part of the law. When we try to correct this without first realizing we must love God, we are going about the commandments backwards--in reverse order. Many good folks get so distracted with their own disobedience to certain laws that after a time they lose their love for Jesus! You see-all the other commandments "hang" upon our obedience to love God first. If we get hung up on other commandments, we can loose our love for God--and we are going about things in the wrong direction. I guarantee you--if you truly love God with all your heart, soul and mind--you will automatically come into obedience to all the other commandments.
Think about it. If you are having trouble with obedience to some other law of God-- think about the times when you are in obedience. I am sure you will realize that when we are in love with God--we have no thought of disobeying some other commandment. However, when we are in sin--God is the furthest thing from our mind. You can't love God and sin at the same time--the two just won't go together! So, instead of trying to correct the sin--try loving God more! Our love of God is the greatest weapon we have against sin--so use it!--love God all the time!
We must always love God first! If we are disobeying some other part of the law--it really stems from us taking our eyes off Jesus and loving Him. Some Christians can even go so far as getting into legalism (believing it is our obedience to the law that gives us salvation). I can always tell a Christian who is into legalism--they never mention the fact that they love Jesus. Oh, if you question them, they will say --"Of course I love Jesus" But they really don't seem to mean it. On the other hand, one of the easiest ways to discern a Christian who is really sold out to the Lord is by watching them get excited and emotional when they say they love Jesus. I believe one of the biggest problems we have as Christians is that the devil tries so hard for us to get off this simple fact. Love Jesus first! Give Jesus the best love you have--heart, soul and mind!
Jesus said if you love Him you will keep His commandments. What are Jesus' commandments? Love God and love your neighbor! Jesus made some incredible promises to those who are bold enough to obey Him and love God...
"Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father. And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it. If ye love me, keep my commandments. And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;" (John 14: 12-16)
Wow! Jesus said, if we love God, we will do His works --and even greater ones! Whatever we ask in His name--He will do it! And, He will send the Comforter (the Holy Spirit) to live inside us! Those are powerful things--and I am sure they are the desire of every Christian. But, they all hang on our obedience to the command to love God and neighbor first.
"And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose." (Romans 8:28)
Wouldn't you like all things to work together for good in your life? Well this scripture clearly states that God will work all things for good--but only to those who love God! If things aren't working together for good in your life--get closer to God!
"But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him." (1 Corinthians 2:9).
The blessings that God has are awesome! God has them prepared...but only to those who love Him! Love Jesus more! He loves you!
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