I am sharing with you today about THE JOY OF LIVING IN LOVE AND OBEDIENCE.
The subject of obedience can send our minds toward obligation, or “measuring up”, or even guilt-driven efforts to become more obedient. It’s my belief that guilt-driven effort or obedience from obligation can never produce good spiritual fruit.
At times we are personally challenged about obedience toward God, and we try to achieve greater depths of obedience through greater resolve. But we are not called simply to ACTS of obedience. We are called to a LIFE of obedience.
The obedience that Jesus spoke about was always about LOVE first.
John 14:15: “If you love me, keep my commands”.
John 14:21: “He who has My commandments and keeps them, it is he who LOVES ME. And he who loves Me will be LOVED by My Father”.
John 14:23-24: “IF ANYONE LOVES ME, HE WILL KEEP MY WORD; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him. He who does not love Me does not keep my words; and the word which you hear is not Mine but the Father’s, who sent Me.”
Here we have the foundation of obedience. Loving Jesus. Loving Him at the core of our being. Loving Him first, above all other loves.
The great command is LOVE… “You shall love the Lord your God with all of you heart, soul, mind and strength… and love your neighbour as yourself”. In this, our entire being is called into loving Him. Our will, our emotions, our soul, our thoughts, our desires, our heart, our motivations, everything in love with our God. And best of all, this is not one-way! We are loved with all of the depth and height and breadth of His love towards us through Jesus.
We will never be “loved more” by God by showing more acts of obedience. But we will flourish in obedience if we love Him and grow in love with Him.
At the very core of original sin, was disobedience. This is called “the spirit who now works in the children of disobedience” (Ephesians 2:2). None of us need reminding that this fallen world became the way it is through disobedience, and we know for sure that the same demonic spirit continues his work in the world today.
We must consider the spirit of disobedience to be alive in this world, but dead to us who live in Christ. Just as we don’t desire to go back into the bondage of sin, but live as those who are “freed from sin”, we desire to live free from the bondage of disobedience. This victory was won at the cross. Obedience is a glorious freedom. Our life of love and obedience is evidence that we are free indeed!
It is good to realise that Jesus broke the power of disobedience specifically, just as He conquered all sin through His sinless life and sacrificial death.
According to Hebrews 5:8&9, “Though He was a Son, yet He (Jesus) learned OBEDIENCE by the things which He suffered, and having been made perfect, He became the author of eternal salvation to all who obey Him.” Philippians 2:8 “He humbled Himself and became OBEDIENT to the point of death, even the death of the cross.” Perfect obedience. This obedience was part of the sinless necessity, that He, fully God and fully man, conquered disobedience through absolute obedience in the life He lived in the flesh, just as He conquered all sin in the flesh, being offered up without sin as the spotless Lamb of God for us. His obedience won ours.
This is true obedience. There is something holy about it. It’s not just saying “yes” or “no”. It’s love expressing itself in full surrender to the one that we love.
So, the obedience that we walk in today is just as Jesus said… “If you love Me, you will keep my commands’. One will follow the other.
If you are struggling with disobedience, check your relationship with Jesus. Have you been growing in Love for Him? Fellowshipping with Him? Is He the treasure of your heart? Without doubt…”where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.”
Much love to you all.