The Need for Belief, Love, and Obedience

Now, please don’t misunderstand me, I am not saying a person who is tempted toward a certain sin is any better or any worse than someone who is tempted toward a different sin. In God’s eyes, all sin is horrible and He hates sin, but He loves us all enough to have sent His Son Jesus to take on human form to suffer and die for our sins, and be resurrected to show His power over death and His deity. If we accept what God has done, then we need only believe – but if we believe, then we must obey.

Christ said in Matthew 22:36-40,

“Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” Jesus replied: ” ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.” This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

And then Scripture also defines Love for God, – to obey God: 1 John 5:2-3

2 This is how we know that we love the children of God: by loving God and carrying out his commands. 3 This is love for God: to obey his commands. And his commands are not burdensome.

Just because someone says something does not make it so, even if they believe it. There are plenty of people who go to church and call Christ Savior and Lord, but when you look at their lives, its evident that they do not love God. To be a Christian involves following Christ – believing in Him and obeying God.

As for living a lifestyle of sin and claiming Christ as Savior, Christ said in Matthew 7:21-23,

“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’

Jesus said we are to obey His commands.

John 14:15

If you love me, you will obey what I command.

John 14:21

21 Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one who loves me. He who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love him and show myself to him.”

Paul taught the same: Acts 26:20,

First to those in Damascus, then to those in Jerusalem and in all Judea, and to the Gentiles also, I preached that they should repent and turn to God and prove their repentance by their deeds.

James taught the same: James 2:14-17,

What good is it, my brothers, if a man claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save him? Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to him, “Go, I wish you well; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.

Peter taught the same: Acts 5:29,

Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men.

The author of Hebrews taught the same: Hebrews 5:9,

And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him.

John taught the same: 1 John 3:7-10,

Dear children, do not let anyone lead you astray. He who does what is right is righteous, just as he is righteous. He who does what is sinful is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devil’s work. No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God’s seed remains in him; he cannot go on sinning, because he has been born of God. This is how we know who the children of God are and who the children of the devil are: Anyone who does not do what is right is not a child of God; nor is anyone who does not love his brother.

Its about love and obedience.  If you say you love, but you do not obey, then its not true love, because you love yourself more than God. We must love GOD more than anything and anyone – including ourselves, and we must obey him. We must love.

And loving someone does not mean allowing them to do something that is damaging them. It means helping them; it means confronting them gently with truth; it means not condoning bad behavior or a bad condition of heart; it means not judging the person to be bad or beneath you but to judge the behavior and evidence of the condition of their heart.

But ultimately, we have to love (God and our brothers) and obey (God). 

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One Response

  1. […] If you claim to be Christian, then you need to recognize you are to ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind’ (Matthew 22:37; Mark 12:30; Luke 10:27). If we love Him, we are to obey Him (John 14:15; 1 John 5:2-3; see https://wbmoore.wordpress.com/2008/06/20/the-need-for-belief-love-and-obedience/). […]

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