Jesus Christ Is Lord

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Love the Lord

Copyright © Andrew J. Shreeve 2013

This teaching is in video format on my YouTube channel - Andrew Shreeve

 

And Jesus answered him, the first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; the Lord our God is one Lord: and thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment

Mark 12:29-30

 

This is the first and great commandment

Matthew 22:38

 

The word "all" in the above verse is translated from the Greek word "holos" and means: "… whole or all… complete (in extent, amount, time or degree)… all, altogether, every… throughout, whole" (Strong's Dictionary). To love the Lord with all our heart, soul, mind and strength is the first priority of every Christian. There is no doubt this means committing 100% of everything we have, and are, to the Lord - and to His interests on the earth. Jesus established His aversion to those Christians who do not adopt a 100% mindset when He said: because thou art lukewarm… I will spew thee out of my mouth (Revelation 3:16). Many people's problems in life stem from a lack of commitment to this first and most important commandment to give all we have, and are, to the Lord.

 

In this teaching we will examine seven areas of our lives and relate them to the Lord's first and greatest commandment:

 

  • 100% surrender to the Lordship of Jesus Christ - to be born again, and enter the Lord's kingdom, we must genuinely confess Jesus Christ as the Lord and master over our lives (Romans 10:9). To be under someone's Lordship is to be under their authority. A Christian is someone who is continually aware that they are under authority, much like a soldier is under the authority of his commanding officer (2 Timothy 2:3-4). Jesus said: if any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. For whosoever will save his life shall loose it: and whosoever will loose his life for my sake shall find it (Matthew 16:24-25). A Christian gives up his, or her, own will in preference to the will of the Lord. A Christian's will and life, therefore, is no longer his or her own, but is at the directive of God.

 

  • 100% commitment of our physical resources to God's kingdom - our financial and physical resources represent our time, energy and ability. It is consistent with being under the authority of the Lord that we are also prepared to use all of our financial resources, without reservation, for the use of our Lord. In other words, if the Lord commands us to do something we should be willing to use all our financial resources, if necessary, to complete the command of our Lord (Luke 18:22). Jesus said: lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth… no man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon (Matthew 6:19, 24). To withhold some of our finances from the Lord would not be a complete surrender to His Lordship and, therefore, not loving Him with all our strength.

 

  • 100% commitment to maintain our heart to be full of faith in God's promises - the scripture describes a heart which does not believe God's promises as evil (Hebrews 3:12). We should, therefore, do everything within our power to avoid having an evil heart of unbelief, as this would not be 'loving the Lord' with all our heart. To keep our heart in faith in all God's promises we first need to know what His promises are and then meditate those promises on a daily basis to establish them faithfully in our heart. My book "The Sword of the Spirit" lists many of the most significant promises of the Lord, and is a useful tool to keep our heart in faith in God's promises. When we keep our heart filled with faith in God's promises, we are loving the Lord with all our heart, soul, mind and strength.

 

  • 100% commitment to follow the leadings of the Holy Spirit - the scripture says: for as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God (Romans 8:14). As Christians we are to continually seek the leading of the Holy Spirit in all areas of our lives. With regards to decisions there is always the temptation to revert to our own judgement rather than to make the effort to consult the leading of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit leads us through witnessing His anointing to our spirit (Romans 8:16, 1 John 2:27). Anointing means: "smearing or unguent" (Strong's Dictionary). Like the gentle application of ointment on our skin, the Holy Spirit gently touches, or witnesses to, our spirit. To be able to accurately discern the witness of the Holy Spirit upon our spirit, our spirit needs to be edified. We edify our spirit through praying in unknown tongues (1 Corinthians 14:4). We should always pray in the spirit to ensure our spirit is sufficiently edified to discern the leadings of the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 14:2, 14-15, Ephesians 6:18). To be committed to always follow the leadings of the Holy Spirit is to love the Lord with all our heart, soul, mind and strength.

 

  • 100% commitment to walk in the spirit of love and faith and resist the temptation to sin - the scripture says, there is no fear in love…, God is love…, faith which worketh by love, and whatever is not of faith is sin (1 John 4:18, 16, Galatians 5:6, Romans 14:23). When we walk in the spirit of love and faith we are resisting sin. To walk in love and faith requires commitment and diligence. To be in faith requires the diligent cultivation of our heart through meditating God's promises. To walk in love requires a constant choice, or decision, to believe the best in others, and only do what is in their best interests. This would include refraining from hurting others through engaging in slander, un-forgiveness and revenge (1 Corinthians 13:7). To love God with all our heart includes loving, forgiving and believing the best in those people who are around us.

 

  • 100% commitment to the building of the kingdom of the Lord Jesus Christ - as Christians we are expected to work with the Lord to establish His covenant in the hearts of people throughout the earth (1 Corinthians 3:8-13). The primary work of the kingdom is the planting and watering of God's Word in our own heart, and then other people's hearts. What the devil hates the most is God's Word living and growing in our heart (Mark 4:15). Persecution and rejection will always follow our loyalty to God's Word (Mark 4:17). Jesus said: if the world hates you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you. If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you. Remember the word that I said unto you, the servant is not greater than his lord. If they persecuted me they will also persecute you (John 15:18-20). James wrote: whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God (James 4:4). John wrote: 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 (1 John 2:15). To be 100% committed to the establishing of God's Words in the bible in, our own heart and, the hearts of others will bring persecution and hatred from the world. Nevertheless, regardless of the hatred and persecution, we are to work tirelessly with love, knowing that only the preaching of God's Word can assist someone to become born again and saved from an eternity in hell (1 Peter 1:23, Romans 10:13-15).

 

  • 100% commitment to only worship the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, and not bow down to any other gods - God's commandments to Israel through Moses says: thou shalt have no other God's before me. Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, of that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me (Exodus 20:3-5). God's Word is very clear with regards to bowing down, or praying, before idols, statues, or images of any kind - it is sinful and hatred towards God. We should not pray to anybody apart from God, nor should we think we can reduce the Almighty God to an image made by man. All these kinds of idol worship are an abomination to God. There are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one (1 John 5:7). To bow down and worship, any other god or, any image, is not to love the Lord with all our heart.

 

Pray with me: "Father God, thank you for Jesus' teaching; that we are to love you with all of our heart, soul, mind and strength. We purpose in our heart to continually surrender to the authority of Jesus Christ as seen, through the written Word of God in the bible and, through the anointing and leading of your Holy Spirit. We place all our financial resources at your disposal; we will diligently meditate your promises to ensure we do not have an evil heart of unbelief; we are committed to always walking in the spirit of love and faith; we are committed to the establishment of your covenant in the hearts of your creation; and we will never bow down to any, other god or, image. Please strengthen us to love you with all our heart, soul, mind and strength; we pray this in the name of Jesus Christ, amen."

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