Saturday, August 11, 2012

The Command to Love

Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ Matthew 22:37-39

Love is the great commandment of the New Testament. Every directive in the word of God upholds the law of love. Every time we fail to obey the Scriptures we fail to love. A lover of God and man abides in the truth, and true love is defined within the pages of God’s word. 1 John 2:5 says, “But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in Him. By this we know we are in Him.”

It is impossible for us to grow in love without a steady diet of God's word. The commandments of the Lord create the boundaries for the river of God's love to flow. Spending time in the Scriptures prepares, equips, and motivates us to love God and others as Jesus does. Our love for God and others is also fueled by having a firm revelation of how much God loves us. We love Him because He first loved us.

The love between a man and a wife is to be tender and passionate, loyal and lasting, but this relationship is to be secondary to the love we have for God. It has been said that there is no love like the love of a mother for her children. Those of us that have children are to love them and nurture them in the ways of the Lord, but still this love is not to be greater than our love for the Savior. We find that when we love God above all others, we have a deeper love for others. Why? Because when we put our relationship with the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit first, we tap into the power of God, and God is love.

There are no two commandments greater than the commandment to first love God, and then to love others. Let's make it the goal of our lives to live out these two directives. God's blessing will accompany us as we follow in this way.

Dear Lord of Love,

Help me to make loving You and others my greatest aim. Teach me to put You first in everything I do, and teach me to love all people – even those that are difficult to love. In Jesus name I pray, Amen.

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