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  • Writer's pictureRobert Finley, Ph.D.

Following Jesus Out of Love

“For the love of Christ compels us, because we judge thus: that if One died for all, then all died; and He died for all, that those who live should live no longer for themselves, but for Him who died for them and rose again” (2 Corinthians 5:14-15).

What motivates you to follow the Lord Jesus? If it’s anything other than love for the Lord Jesus, then it is the wrong motivation! The word, compel means to drive or constrain. Your love for the Lord Jesus should be your driving force to obey the Scriptures and follow in His example. According to the text Scripture, you should make a conscious decision to surrender to live your life for the One who died and rose again for your salvation—Jesus Christ! 

The Bible says that God demonstrated His love for us, in that, Christ Jesus died for us when we were ungodly and undeserving sinners, (Romans 5:6-11). Therefore, we should be more than willing to live for Him because we love Him! We love Him, because He first loved us (1 John 4:19). 

The Lord Jesus said, “If you love Me, keep My commandments” (John 14:15); “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word” (John 14:23a); “He who does not love Me, does not keep My words” (John 14:24a). According to the Lord Jesus, our love for Him will be evident by our obedience to Him and the Scripture! Someone has said, “The way we treat our Bible is the way we treat the Lord Jesus!” What does our life show about our love for Jesus?

Our love for the Lord Jesus should not only compel us to obedience to Him, but also be the constraining force behind our resistance to temptation and sin. Wow, how we/I fail at this! We/I need to fall more in love with the Savior so we/I will not even entertain the thought of sinning against Him. How is this accomplished? It is accomplished with time; by spending more quality time with Him. Fellowship with the Lord in prayer, reading and studying the Bible, are ways to cultivate this relationship. This relationship, like all others, requires deliberate effort to flourish. Unless this effort is made, our love will grow lukewarm and cold and we don’t want that to happen!

Read how John was inspired to address this issue: “If someone says, “I love God, and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen, how can he love God whom he has not seen? And this commandment we have from Him: that he who loves God must love his brother also. Whoever believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God, and everyone who loves Him who begat also loves him who is begotten of Him. By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and keep His commandments. For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome. For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith. Who is he who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?” (1 John 4:20-5:5). The connection is that our belief and faith (trust) in Jesus as our Savior and Lord should result in a compelling love that motivates our obedience to Him and His Word, and our resistance to temptation and sin. Our love for Christ Jesus will be seen through our obedience to Him and our love for others!

Some thoughts to ponder,

Robert Finley, Ph.D.

October 2020

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