Scripture Reading: John 14;15-17
“If you love Me, you will keep My commandments.” (John 14:15)
When God established His covenant with the people of Israel, He said to them — “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might” (Deuteronomy 6:4,5). Many years later, a lawyer asked Jesus what the greatest commandment is. Jesus replied — “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 first commandment” (Matthew 22:37,38).
The problem is that all of us have violated the greatest commandment. None of us love God with all our heart and with all our mind and with all our might, all of the time. Just think how many times a day we fail to love God in this manner. We can never earn God’s favor by our own efforts, not even our efforts to love Him. We have failed miserably in obeying the first and foremost commandment. This is where grace enters into our lives. It is not that we first loved God, but rather it was God who loved us in spite of our sins. “In this is love, not that we loved God but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins” (I John 4:10).
When we consider Christ’s sacrificial love for us, we should be in awe of Him and love Him in return. Love for Jesus becomes the great motivator for our obedience. Obedience cannot save us, because we have already failed miserably. We are saved by grace through faith in Jesus Christ. But when we grasp what Jesus has done for us, how could we not love Him?
We obey Jesus’ commandments because we love Him. It is His love that compels us to action. When we fail to obey Jesus, we know that our love for Him has grown cold. Perhaps this is the time for us to consider all that Jesus has done for us and rekindle our love for Him. Then we will once again desire to obey His commandments.
Lord Jesus, I confess that many times I fail to love You as I ought. I know that every time I sin, I grieve You because You love me so much and want what is best for me. Forgive me when my love for You grows cold. Forgive me when I don’t obey Your commandments. Thank You for loving me so much that You became the propitiation for my sins. Thank You for Your amazing grace.
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