“If you love Me, you will keep my commandments.”
John 14:15 NASB
I’m continuing to work my way through the “Do You Love Me” devotional kit and Ingrid has chosen such great scripture for us to study and meditate on with this one. The world is full of talk about love but what does it look like to truly love God?
According to Jesus, our love is shown by obeying God. Our love for Christ cannot be separated from our obedience…they go hand in hand.
As we read the context of John 14:15 we see a set of promises that Jesus lays out for believers as a result of our obedience to Him. In verses 15-31, Jesus promises the comfort from 5 supernatural blessings: 1) a supernatural Helper (the Holy Spirit), 2) a supernatural life, 3) a supernatural union, 4) a supernatural teacher, and 5) a supernatural peace. All we have to do in return is love Him through our obedience to Him.
When we submit ourselves to Christ and commit to a life of following Him, we are also committing ourselves to a life of servitude and obedience.
In a world of progressive Christianity, prosperity Gospel, and “love”, this fact of Christian life is often times set aside or even dismissed entirely. God is a God of grace, mercy, and love but in return for that and for saving us from a life of eternal death, He asks for our dedicated obedience to His Word and commandments.
And He said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the great and foremost commandment. The second is like it, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets.”
Matthew 22:37-40 NASB
How many times have you seen or heard the emphasis on “love your neighbor as yourself”? Yes, this is a commandment and one that we should take seriously but we cannot skip past the first commandment…”to love the Lord your God”. And what does it look like to love God? Well, look to John 14:15, “If you love Me, you will keep my commandments“. We are missing a crucial part of what it means to be a Christian if we are skipping past the first commandment and just focusing on loving people (often times according to the worldly standard of “love” and not the biblical examples we see from Christ). Love is not just a feeling, it’s an action. Loving God enough to give up our worldly priorities, loving others enough to call them out of their sin behavior, loving enough to repent of our own sins.
Jesus reiterates this point of obedience in John 14:23, Jesus answered and said to 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 abode with him'”. Friends we have to be in God’s Word daily and committing ourselves to a life of obedience to Christ if we want to enjoy any of the wonderous things that He has for us. This isn’t a works based salvation, but instead we are to show our love and thankfulness for what Christ did on the cross by submitting ourselves to Him in full obedience and that is the evidence of true saving faith.
If you’d like to see the Bible art journaling process for this time of study then check out my process video below!