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Love the Lord your God

We hear a lot these days about how much God loves us. That's not a bad thing.
It's good to know that God loves us. But do we love Him? Do we really?

It's interesting the first and greatest commandment is ... "Love the Lord your God, ...
...with all your heart.
... with all your soul.
... and with all your might. ( Deut 6:5; Deut 11:13; )

Jesus confirms this as the greatest commandment in the gospels.
( Matt 22:37; Mark 12:30; Luke 10:27; etc ... )

I recently read a news article that this is what offends most people. Loving God.
An atheist said that most of the ten commandments are good. They agreed that things
like stealing, murdering, cheating on your spouse, lying about someone, were all things
no one should want to do.

But it's that first one... about loving the Lord... that's the problem.
I think it's a problem for some Christians also. I love my wife, I love my kids, I love my family,
...those are the easy ones...
I love the guys I work with.. ( well kinda, sometimes... ) I love my enemies... ( yeah right )
I love people of different races, and different religions... ( are you kidding me? )
Those are little harder for some of us.

Some churches have recently come out with a doctrine that says a personal relationship
with Jesus/God is not required. Some even go so far as to say "it should not be coveted".

How can you love Him if you don't know Him? For that matter.. how can you not love Him
if you really do know Him?
Jesus said "IF" you love me, you will keep my commandments. ( John 14:15; )

... Hmmm.. well what if I don't keep the commandments? Can't I still love him?

Jesus the one who has His commandments "and keeps them" .... is the person who loves Him ( John 14:21; )
He goes on to say... the one who keeps my commandments... "I will love him". ( John 14:21; )

Some churches are teaching things like "there is nothing you can do to make God love you more
than He already does". Hmmmm... is that really true?

John 15:10; If you keep my commandments, you will abide in My love....

..... what if I don't keep the commandments... does He still love me?

It seems that loving God... is somewhat dependent upon loving your neighbors.

1 Jn 3:17; But whoever has plenty of worldly goods, and sees his brother in need and closes
his heart against him, how does the love of God abide in him?

Hmmm.... what was that first commandment again? Something about loving the Lord.

1 Jn 4:12; No one has seen God at any time; if we love one another, God abides in us, and His love is
perfected in us.

What if we don't love one another? Does God still abide in us?

1 Jn 4:20; If someone says "I love God" and hates his brother, he is a liar;

wow.... have you ever really considered that statement?

The verse continues on to say....

... for the one who does not love his brother whom he has seen, cannot love God who he has not seen.

Do you love the Lord your God?
Do you love Him with all your heart?
Is there anything? Money, job, success, fame, ... anyone? Girlfriend, boyfriend, wife, husband, children, ...
That ever comes before God?

We all make mistakes... there is grace and mercy for those times we lapse in love.
But love is a lifestyle.... it's a choice... it's a commitment... ( maybe that's why some churches
say we don't need to have a relationship with God.... hmmm )... because it requires effort on our part.

I ask again... do you love the Lord your God? Do you know Him?

1 Jn 2:3; By this we know that we have come to know Him, if we keep His commandments.
1 Jn 2:4; The one who says, "I have come to know Him", and does not keep His commandments
is a liar, and the truth is not in him.
Rev 2:4; But I have this against you, that you have left your first love.
Everything hangs from Love -
If you dont Have Love you dont have result producing faith and if you dont have forgiveness then you dont have love or reuslt producing faith.

Loving God also means Obeying God and His ways.
Can you truly say you Love God with your entire being if you can not forgive ALL offences against you ?
After all " forgiveness or forgiving" is a command

If you dont Have Love then you dont have any of the above and you Dont Have Result Giving Prayer either.
Love is like Faith or anything else of God - it must be built on and nurtured to Grow in Christ.
Thank You Bac for this thread and God Bless My Blessed and Highly Favored of the Lord Friend.
James W