Do I love the Lord? The answer to that question will affect the way we live and operate as Christians. If we, in fact, love the Lord with all of our heart, we will have a much greater prayer life and service life to God than if we simply like the Lord. It is sad to say, but I think most Christians don’t love the Lord as we should.
I think, instead, we like Him a lot but are torn between our affection for Him and our affection for the things of the world. The Apostle John addresses this type of ‘love-hate’ issue with God and the world in I John 2:15, coming from the King James version Bible, he writes,
“Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.”
In other words, this verse is saying that we will either truly love the world or we will truly love God. It is an ‘either-or’ situation, no ‘and’ is in the equation. This is the choice that we must make as individuals who have placed our faith completely in the sacrifice of Jesus to save our souls. Once we are saved, where do we go from here? Many Christians believe that they can continue to love the things of the world and still love God by serving Him.
The Question Is: Why We Cannot Love Both?
John continues in the next few verses (v.16 & 17) explaining what is so wrong with loving the world that will affect our love and faith in God,
(16)”For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.”
(17)”And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.”
That is to say, all that the world has to offer are lustful passions of every kind that only serve to turn our desires away from God and fix them on carnal things that are meaningless and temporary. The world, however, will pass away, but God is eternal and we are eternal beings, as well, who will have to spend eternity either with God are with fellow sinners in the Lake of Fire. This is no joke!
Therefore, God is looking for individuals who decide to love Him even if they have put aside and pull-off the things that are in the world in order to put on Christ and His Holy Spirit. God actually searches the world for individuals whose hearts affectionately desire His presence and desire His will above anyone else’s will or presence including their own.
This is the key to serving the Lord with a sincere heart. When we really love somebody, we go above and beyond the call of duty for that person. It is not too difficult to do things for them because we care for them so much. And this is how we should love God by caring about Him and for the things that He cares about. This type of relationship with God places us on another level as it becomes a love relationship and not a legalistic relationship based on religious rules or law.
Now we can start to worship God in spirit and in truth, as this is the type of worship God has always sought after in the first place (John 4:23). It is not something that we have to conjure up, but this love causes us to say like David, “I was glad when they said unto me, let us go into the house of the Lord.”(Psalm 122:1 KJV). Those of us who love the Lord have no problem worshiping Him anywhere and at any time.
When Christians Get In Trouble.
Christians get in trouble when we fall out of love with God. This is when our service to God becomes work. It now becomes a task to pray and read or study the Bible. That is usually the time when we begin to search our hearts and wonder what has happened to our relationship with God. Probably the answer is that we are more in love with something or someone other than the Lord.
The Lord Jesus addressed this problem with His church at Ephesus in the book of Revelations 2:4-5, He says (from the King James version),
(4)”Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love.”
(5)”Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except thou repent.”
The phrase, “…left thy first love,” (in v.4) refers to the fact that they were no longer in love with God. Or, they fell out of love for God. This was and is a serious matter to God because it affects our faith in Christ as being our only source and hope for eternal life. Because we no longer love the Lord, we start to get legalistic with our faith and start to trust in our works instead of our loving-faith for the Lord. Pretty soon we find ourselves loving even church work over loving the Lord. And loving the Lord is our first work.
Therefore, we must seek to love the Lord first and foremost, not second, and not third. Our first desire must be to care for God and for His will in our lives above all else. If we want everything else to work out correctly in our lives, this is what we must know:
“And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.”(Romans 8:28). Remember, the first step in our faith walk is to Love The Lord. A-MEN