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So you say you Love God! #1

This is what it Really means


                             by 

                         Keith Hunt



     So you say you are a Christian. You say you believe in God.
You say you have Jesus as your PERSONAL savior. Well, very good.
You also say "I love the Lord" or "I love you God." Well very
good again! 

     BUT, do you know what "loving the Lord" really means? Can
you go to the Bible verses and expound the meaning of loving
Jesus and God the Father? 

     Actually, if you did not know, the word of the Lord is FULL
of verses that tell us not only to love God, but explain in some
detail what God tells you loving Him really means.

     Yes, to be sure, we are to love God: "Hear, O Israel: The
Lord our God is one (Hebrew - unify, united, one, first, alone,
altogether, only). And you shall LOVE the Lord thy God with ALL
thine heart, and with ALL thy soul, and with ALL thy might. And
these words, which I command thee this day, shall be IN thy
HEART" (Deut. 6: 4-6).
     God then goes on to expound how you shall love Him by the
words He commands:

     "And you shall teach them DILIGENTLY unto your CHILDREN, and
shall TALK of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk
by the way, and when you lay down and when you rise up. You shall
BIND them for a SIGN upon your hand, and they shall be as
FRONTLETS between your eyes. And you shall WRITE them upon the
posts of your house, and on your gates" (Deut. 6: 7-9).

     The WORDS of God are to be ENGRAVED in all aspects of your
life. They are to be a part of your life as NOTHING else. Part of
your MIND. Part of your physical life and home. You are to pass
them on to your children. You are to talk about them with others
who want to talk about them.
     
     You are to LOVE the words, the teachings, the precepts, the
statues, the commandments of God!  Do you?  Do you really love
them and have them as engrafted in your very mind and soul and
life?

     Here is part of how the great king David of ancient Israel
LOVED the WORDS and COMMANDMENTS of God:

     "With my WHOLE HEART I have sought thee: O let me not wander
from thy commandments. Thy word have I HID in my HEART, that I
might not sin against thee.....Open my eyes, that I may behold
wondrous things out of your law....I will speak of your
testimonies also before kings, and will not be ashamed....I have
remembered your name, O Lord, in the night, and have kept your
law....Thy WORD is a LAMP unto my feet, and a LIGHT unto my
path....Order my STEPS in thy WORD....Thy WORD is VERY PURE;
therefore thy servant LOVES it....Thy WORD is TRUE from the
beginning....I REJOICE at thy WORD, as one that finds great
spoil....My TONGUE shall speak of thy WORD...." (various verses
from Psalm 119).

     Do you love God? Do you love His Son Jesus Christ? If you
do, then you will have the same attitude of mind as David did in
the above quoted verses from  Psalm 119.

     Do you understand what LOVE God the Father has towards YOU?
Do you understand the LOVE Jesus showed towards you by coming as
human flesh, overcoming sin in the flesh, and dying for YOUR
sins, and my sins, and the sins of the whole human race? 
     Yes, you may say you do. You may say you fully understand
and believe the following verses:

     "For God so LOVED the world, that He gave His only begotten
Son, that whosoever BELIEVES in Him should not perish, but have
EVERLASTING LIFE" (John 3:16).

     "Let this MIND be IN you, which was also in Christ Jesus:
Who, being in the form of God, thought it not something to be
grasped and clung to and never to part with, being equal with
God. But made Himself of no reputation (when you think of God),
and took upon Himself the form of a servant, and was made and
became in the likeness of humanity. And being found in the form
as mankind, He humbled Himself and became obedient unto death,
even the death of the cross" (Philippians 2: 5-8, my own
translation).
     
     "But God has shown His LOVE towards us, in that, while we
were yet SINNERS, Christ died for us" (Romans 5: 8).

     You say you know and believe this, and you say you do love
God because He first loved you, even while in your sins. Very
well then. Now, do you know what LOVING God REALLY means?

     Hear what the Eternal says to you if you want to be a part
of spiritual Israel:

     "And now, Israel, what does the Lord thy God require of
thee, but to FEAR (respectful honor) the Lord thy God, to WALK in
ALL His ways, and to LOVE Him, and to SERVE the Lord thy God with
ALL thy heart and with ALL thy soul (life practices). To
KEEP the COMMANDMENTS of the Lord, and His statues, which I
command thee this day for thy GOOD?.....Circumcise therefore the
foreskin of your HEART, and be no more STIFFNECKED...." (Deut.
10: 12-16).

     Do you know which man in the Bible God said was a man after
His OWN HEART? It was the man and king of Israel, DAVID (see
Acts13: 22).
     Let's go back to the Psalms of David and see what his mind
and heart was as he LOVED His God:

     "Blessed is the man that walks not in the counsel of the
ungodly, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat
of the scornful. But his DELIGHT is in the LAW of the Lord, and
in His law he does MEDITATE DAY AND NIGHT" (Psalm 1: 1-2). Sounds
like what God already instructed in the books of Moses, as to how
to serve and love Him

     "Lord, who shall abide in thy tabernacle? Who shall dwell in
thy holy hill? He that WALKS UPRIGHTLY, and WORKS RIGHTEOUSNESS
(see Ps. 119: 172 for a Bible definition of righteousness), and
speaks the TRUTH in his heart (Ps. 15: 1-2).

     "You that LOVE the Lord, hate evil...." (Ps. 97: 10).

     "For as the heaven is high above the earth, so GREAT is His
MERCY towards them that FEAR Him (deep respectful honor)......But
the MERCY of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting upon
them that FEAR Him, and His righteousness unto children's
children; To such as KEEP His COVENANT, and to those that
REMEMBER His COMMANDMENTS to DO them" (Ps. 103: 11-18).

     Now to the splendid and magnificent Psalm 119.

     "With my WHOLE HEART have I sought thee: O let me not wander
from thy COMMANDMENTS. Thy WORD have I hid in my heart, that I
might not sin against thee" (v. 10-11).
     "I will run the way of thy COMMANDMENTS, when you shall
enlarge my heart" (v.32).
     "My soul (life) faints for thy salvation: but I hope in thy
WORD" (v.81).
     "O how LOVE I thy LAW! It is my meditation all the day" (v.
97).
     "I have REFRAINED my feet from every EVIL way, that I might
KEEP thy WORD (v. 101).
     "Thy WORD is a LAMP unto my feet, and a LIGHT unto my path"
(v. 105).
     "It is time for thee, Lord, to work, for they have made VOID
thy LAW. Therefore I LOVE thy COMMANDMENTS above gold; yes, above
fine gold" (v. 126, 127).
     "I opened my mouth, and panted: for I LONGED for thy
COMMANDMENTS....Order my steps in thy WORD: and let not  INIQUITY
have dominion over me....Rivers of water run down my eyes,
because they keep not thy law....Thy WORD is very PURE: therefore
they servant LOVES it....Thy righteousness is an everlasting
righteousness, and they LAW is the TRUTH...." (verses 131, 133,
136, 140, 142).
     "You are near, O Lord; and all thy commandments are TRUTH"
(v. 151).
     "Great PEACE have they which LOVE thy law; and nothing shall
offend them" (v.165).
     "My tongue shall speak of thy WORD: for all thy COMMANDMENTS
are RIGHTEOUSNESS" (v. 172).
     "I have longed for thy SALVATION, O Lord; and thy LAW is my
DELIGHT" (v.174).

     Then to finish this small capsule of how to LOVE God as
taught in the Old Testament, we have:

     "I will worship towards thy holy temple, and praise thy name
for thy LOVINGKINDNESS and for thy TRUTH: for you have MAGNIFIED
thy WORD above all thy name....All the kings of the earth shall
PRAISE you, O Lord, when they hear the WORDS of thy mouth. Yes,
they shall SING in the WAYS of the Lord: for GREAT is the GLORY
of the Lord" (Psalm 138: 2-5).  And:

     "The Lord is nigh unto all them that call upon Him, to all
that call upon Him in TRUTH. He will fulfil the desire of them
that FEAR Him (show Him respectful honor): He also will hear
their cry, and will SAVE them. The Lord preserves all them that
LOVE Him; but all the wicked will He destroy" (Psalm 145: 18-20).

THE NEW COVENANT

     Do you think that under the so-called "age of grace" or "age
of the New Covenant" that all we have read about in the Old
Testament, as to what LOVING God means, is somehow abolished,
somehow "done away with" or just no longer applicable? If you
think this is so, then you need to SLOWLY read ALL of God's WORDS
as contained in the New Testament.
     LOVING God, what it REALLY means, is fully explained many
times over in the New Testament. The question is, are YOU willing
to BELIEVE the WORDS of God BEFORE the words of men or the ideas
and teachings of people, that try and tell you what the New
Testament says or teaches? 
     God, in His New Covenant WORD is very PLAIN, very CLEAR, as
to what He says is LOVING Him in your attitude, your thoughts,
your actions, and all that is your LIFE.
     I will give you some passages in this particular study, but
you can find lots more, IF you will just take the time to read
the WHOLE New Testament.

WHAT JESUS TAUGHT

     As shocking as it may seem, Jesus upheld what had already
been written in the Old Testament. When on one occasion Satan
tempted Jesus to make loaves of bread out of stones, Jesus
answered him saying, "It is written, Man shall not live by bread
alone, but by EVERY WORD that proceeds out of the mouth of God"
(Mat. 4: 4). Yes, the New Covenant age still upholds this Old
Covenant teaching (you can find it in Deut. 8: 3). You may have
many questions, especially in this modern 21st century age, as to
HOW do you live by every word of God. I have a full two part
in-depth study on how to do this. You will find it on my Website
(keithhunt.com) under the name "Living by Every Word of God -
How."

     At another time a lawyer, trying to trick Jesus, wanted to
know which was the GREAT commandment of the Old Testament. Jesus
did not fall for his trick, but answered, "You shall LOVE the
Lord thy God with all your heart, and with all your life, and
with all your mind. This is the first and great commandment. and
the second is like unto it. you shall LOVE your neighbor as
yourself. On THESE TWO commandments hang ALL the law and the
prophets" (Mat.22: 35-40).

     Jesus was upholding the living by every word of God, and
that could be summed up in LOVING God with all your LIFE, and
LOVING your neighbor as yourself. The WHOLE of God's word is thus
divided and built upon those two great commandments.

     Jesus taught, "If you CONTINUE in my WORD, then are you my
disciples indeed. and you shall KNOW the truth, and the truth
shall make you FREE" (John 8: 31, 32).

     Here are more straight to the cut, plain teachings of Jesus:

     "....I do nothing of myself, but as my Father has taught me,
I speak these things" (John 8: 28).
     "He that is of God HEARS God's WORDS...." (John 8: 47).
     "My sheep HEAR my voice, and I KNOW them, and they FOLLOW
me" (John 10:27).
     "He that rejects me, and receives NOT my WORDS, has one that
judges him: the WORD that I have spoken, the same shall judge him
in the last day. For I have not spoken of myself; but the Father
which sent me, He gave me commandment, what I should say, and
what I should speak. And I know that His commandment is LIFE
everlasting: whatsoever I speak therefore, even as the Father
said to me, so I speak" (John 12: 48-50).
     "A NEW commandment I give unto you, that you LOVE one
another as I have loved you, that you love one another. By this
shall all men know that you are my disciples, if you have love
one to another" (John 13: 34-35).

     "If you LOVE me, KEEP my COMMANDMENTS.....He that has my
COMMANDMENTS, and KEEPS them, he it is that LOVES me, and he that
loves me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and
will manifest myself to him" (John 14: 15, 21).
     
     "If a man LOVE me, he will KEEP my WORDS, and my Father will
love him, and WE will COME unto him and make OUR abode with him.
He that loves me NOT keeps not my SAYINGS, and the word which you
hear is not mine, but the Father's which sent me" (John 14:
23-24).

     "If you KEEP my COMMANDMENTS, you shall abide in my LOVE,
even as I have kept my Father's commandments, and abide in His
love" (John 15: 10).

     "This is my COMMANDMENT, that you LOVE one another, as I
have loved you....You are my FRIENDS, if you DO whatsoever I
COMMAND you" (John 15: 12, 14).

     Speaking about the disciples the Father had given to Jesus,
Christ said, "I have given them thy WORD....SANCTIFY them through
thy WORD: thy WORD is TRUTH" (John 17: 14, 17).

     Standing before Pilate Jesus gave this testimony and
witness:

     "You say that I am a King. To this end was I born, and for
this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto
the TRUTH. Everyone that is of the TRUTH HEARS my VOICE" (John
18: 37).

     There we have Jesus telling us in no uncertain words what
REALLY LOVING God is all about, what it really means. 
     Those who have their hearts in tune with Jesus Christ will
HEAR the clear WORDS He spoke throughout all of His ministry as
recorded in the four Gospels. There are indeed many other
passages of the words of Jesus that speak to us in plain language
what it means to think and act as a way of life, LOVING God and
our fellow human beings.
     Just take the time to read and meditate upon Jesus' WORDS
and you will come to understand what true LOVE for God and man is
all about. You will come to understand LOVE in a way that even
many religious leaders of the world at large do not understand
it. As the apostle Paul once said, "...the simplicity that is in
Christ Jesus...."  Yes, it is not hard at all, it is quite simple
really, to understand what God teaches as to HOW to LOVE
Him and love your fellow man.

TO BE CONTINUED
                .............................

Written 2003


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