June 24, 2011
Love and Obedience to the Scripture
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I have seen many men tell me that they love Jesus, but they do not keep His commandments. Of course, all of us fail to keep all of His commandments because we are all sinful (1 John 1:8-10). The focus of our lives, however, must be upon following the Lord Jesus Christ, and implementing His desires in our lives.
Jesus had this wonderful ability to state the truth in simple, precise terms that contained divine power for living. In John 14:15, Jesus linked our love for Him to a very tangible standard of living: keep His commandments. Jesus used Himself as the example in John 15:10: “If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love; just I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love.” Not only will we have the abiding love of the Father and Son in our lives by keeping His commandments, we will also have the joy of Jesus Christ (John 15:11). Jesus taught that His commandments centered around loving God and one another (John 13:34-35; John 15:12-17). God inspired the words of Scripture so that we would obey His commands, and so demonstrate to the world that we are His disciples (John 13:35). Love underlies the commands of Christ, and in His love we experience His life and joy.
I often meet people at the beach who claim they will go to heaven because they have tried very hard to obey God and do the right thing. In fact, Jesus made it plain that we all sin and fall short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23). If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth of God is not in us (1 John 1:8). Only faith in Christ forgiving us because He died for us on the cross takes away sins. In other words, faith and not works sends us to heaven (Ephesians 2:8-9). Jesus makes the point that we should not call Him Lord if we do not obey His commandments. We learn His commandments by reading and following His word, written in the Bible. In Luke 6:46, Jesus told His disciples that calling Him “Lord” proved nothing more than lip service. Jesus always sought to promote heart service, that is, new life flowing from a new heart. Jesus likened the man who heard His words and acted upon them to a man building a house, who dug deep and laid a foundation on rock. When the flood came, the house withstood the flood (Luke 6:46-49).
Finally, Jesus again linked love for Him to keeping His commandments. While keeping His commandments all the time will prove impossible for all of us, it remains our constant goal and pursuit in life. We see our love for Jesus by looking at how well and how often we keep His commandments in our lives. If you claim to love Jesus, but do not keep His commandments, then your love amounts to nothing. If you love Jesus, then He promised you that you would abide in the Father’s love, and Jesus’ love too. Furthermore, Jesus will disclose himself to you (John 14:21). This word “disclose” (“ἐμφανίσω“) means to make known inwardly and spiritually in this context. This same root word appears in John 14:22 when Judas (not Iscariot) questioned Jesus about this disclosure. Jesus answered and explained how both He and His Father would take up living inside the believers, plus the Holy Spirit would also take up residence within the believer. In this short passage in John 14, we see every member of the Trinity (Father, Son and Holy Spirit) described as living in the believer. What tremendous blessings we have in Christ Jesus. Through Him, God lives within us and discloses Himself to us.
So we learn more about the loving Jesus today.
● If we love Jesus, we will keep His commandments.
● We should not call Jesus “Lord, Lord” unless we keep His commandments. We all fall short, but our lives should reflect our love for the Lord Jesus by keeping His commandments.
● If we keep His commandments, we will have the Father, Son and Holy Spirit living within us, and Jesus will disclose Himself to us.
Application for Today
I want to keep the commandments of Jesus today, no matter how I have been doing lately. Because I love Jesus, I want to keep His commandments and abide in His love every moment of every day. Will you keep His commandments today?