For a Bible study/memory competition this summer called the National Bible Bee (click Here for more information) I've been studying John 13-15. As I was studying John 14 a truth seemed to just jump off the page at me. In John 14:15, Jesus is talking to his disciples and says, "If ye love me, keep my commandments." I believe that this verse holds the key for a deeper and more consistent relationship with God. Many people today believe that they can have love without obedience. The problem is that love and obedience are two inseparable friends. If you try to have one without the other you will have neither. An attempt at love without obedience equals liberalism. An attempt at obedience without love equals legalism. When one truly loves Jesus they cannot help but obey him. Obedience is impossible without love, but when we truly love we cannot help but to obey. Judas and Peter are two excellent examples of the difference a heart of love makes when one is trying to obey. Judas tried to obey, but eventually betrayed Jesus in the most cruel manner. I believe that this heartless betrayal occurred because Judas was trying to obey without any true love. Peter, although he also fell and denied Jesus, rose again to new heights of victory because he was following Jesus out of an heart of love. 1 John 4:19 states, "We love him, because he first loved us." Jesus is our example of love. We can have a heart of true love if we ask God to give us his true love.
A. Love and Obedience cannot be separated.
B. Obedience can only be achieved out of a heart of love.
C. Love comes only from God.
Let us go on our way with true love, and obedience will always follow.
(photo credits- Denver Bontrager)
Editors note- When your younger brother is finishing high-school and only has some work to score and re-score before he is DONE, you help him with the scoring, and he writes your blog post!