This morning as I was spending time in prayer and reading God’s Word, I was reminded of a truth. A truth that I knew… honestly it’s a truth that most of us who claim to be Followers of Christ know. However, it’s a truth that is easily overlooked in our daily life.
I’m not saying we forget it, or that we blatantly say to our self “I am choosing to not care about this truth” (if we are saying that to our self, our heart is very hard). Rather, I believe it’s a truth that we know of and have in our minds, but we overlook how to live it out in our daily lives. We have the knowledge of this truth, but unfortunately it is easy to skip or overlook the application of this truth.
That truth is simply this…
To love God means to obey what God says
That’s it. Nothing overly fancy or full of theological words that many of us don’t understand (or are even able to pronounce). It’s a simple truth really. To love God means to obey what he says to us.
It’s a simple statement. Simple formula. Simple truth to know and be aware of. Simple.
Loving God = Obeying God
Question is, do we act upon that truth? Are we applying that truth? Or, have we allowed ourselves to place that truth in our mind where we have knowledge of it, but we overlook the importance of living according to that truth with our actions?
Jesus answered him, “If anyone loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him. Whoever does not love me does not keep my words…” (John 14:23-24)
…everyone who loves the Father loves whoever has been born of him. By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and obey his commandments. For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments… (1 John 5:1-3)
To love God means to obey what God says. It’s a simple truth. Unfortunately, it’s also simple to overlook in our daily actions and choices and decisions. Simple to remember and know, simple to skip and overlook.
What is really scary to me about this simple truth is that there is an opposite truth that is just as simple…
If loving God means obeying God, then not obeying God means not loving God.
If loving God = obeying God, then not obeying God = not loving God.
I know, that seems like a bold statement when you first read it. But the more you consider it, the more it makes sense. It is simply the opposite of the first truth.
Now, I’m not saying that every single time we make a mistake and don’t obey God that we have stopped loving God. Not at all. We are sinners, so we will disobey God in this life. That is the struggle we will be dealing with until Christ returns are we are done with this sinful world.
But, when we read what God’s Word says, it comes right out and tells us that if we love God then we will obey him. We can’t explain that away simple because we are sinners and still struggle at times in this life.
What we need to understand is that when we choose to sin, in that moment we are choosing to do the opposite of what God tells us to do. In those sinful moments, we are loving our self and what we want to do more than loving God and what he tells us to do. It may only be a moment, and then we are sorry and we repent of that sin because we love God…but it still shows that we have moments where we don’t love God like we should.
The other thing we need to understand is that we can choose to live in sin for a period of time in our life. That choice is a drawn out version of that momentary sin like I just talked about. It’s a time period in our life where we are choosing to love our self and what we want more than loving God and what he tells us. We might never get to the point where we hate God…but hate is different from the act of not loving.
I know that these truths can be difficult to grasp, and we might struggle to fully comprehend them as well as all the implications that come from them. I do myself. But that does not change the fact that these are still true. It’s what God’s Word says, so as Followers of Christ we must accept it as truth…even if we can’t grasp it or struggle with it.
To love God means to obey what God says
May we as Followers of Christ daily seek to show we love God through acts of obedience to God. May we obey God even when it’s tough, because we love God that much!