We all enjoy the spiritual and temporal blessings and gifts that God gives us. How comforting to know, too, that we are “part of the family.”
Read Deuteronomy 6:5 and Matthew 22:37. What does this mean, and how do we do it?
How would you love God with “ ‘ “all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind” ’ ” (Matt. 22:37, NKJV)? Interestingly enough, the Bible gives us the answer, and it’s not what most people expect.
Read Deuteronomy 10:12, 13 and 1 John 5:3. Biblically speaking, what is our proper response in our love relationship with our Father in heaven?
Keeping the law? Obeying the commandments? For many Christians, unfortunately, the idea of obeying the law (especially the fourth commandment) is legalism, and they claim that we are called, simply, to love God and to love our neighbor as ourselves. However, God is clear: we reveal our love to God and to our neighbors by, yes, obeying His commandments.
“For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments” (1 John 5:3, NKJV). We are used to looking at this verse as, well, we love God and, therefore, we keep His commandments. That’s fine. But perhaps we also can read it as “this is the love of God”; that is, we know and experience the love of God by keeping His commandments.
In Matthew 7:21–27, Jesus said that those who hear and do God’s words are likened to a wise builder who built his house upon the solid rock. Those who hear but don’t obey are likened to a foolish builder who built his house on the sand—with disastrous results. Both heard the word; one obeyed, one didn’t. The results made the difference between life and death.
Think about the link between loving God and obeying His law. Why would love for God be expressed that way? What is it about keeping the commandments that, indeed, does reveal that love? (Hint: Think about what disobeying His law causes.)
Saturday, December 31
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