Week 12 March 18-
There is no word in the English language that is more misunderstood than the word “love.”
While other languages use multiple terms to describe different degrees of love, in English we use the same four-
So, when the Bible commands us to love God, we need to consider what type of love is being required of us.
In Deuteronomy 6:4-
In just these two verses (known in Hebrew as “The Shema” which means “Hear”), Moses not only restates the exclusive identity of the one true God, he also reveals the only proper way to love this one true God: By Dedicating every area of our human experience to expressing our deepest level of commitment and affection towards our Creator, as one continual act of worship.
To illustrate how we can offer this type of devotion, Moses mentions three areas of our human DNA that we must exhaustively use to express our love for the Lord: Our heart, our soul, and our might. These three areas are used interchangeably to point to the very core of our being and challenge us to pour out all of our passion, energy, and strength, towards making God the sole focus of our existence.
But how exactly do we use our passion, energy, and strength on a daily basis to love and worship God? Thankfully, Moses continues throughout the book of Deuteronomy to give God’s people numerous examples of what this type of love looks like tangibly. He reveals that if we love God with all of our heart, soul, and might, we will… Learn, obey, teach, and remember God’s commandments (6:6-
If we evaluate these areas, we would all be quick to admit that we have not fully loved God with our entire heart, soul, or might. This is why we need the saving work of Jesus Christ and the transforming work of the Holy Spirit in our lives to help us.
Christ is our Savior who declares us righteous because He exchanged our flawed love with His perfect love on the cross at Calvary. The Holy Spirit is our Transformer who cleanses us and enables us to actually begin loving God with the type of passion, energy and strength that meets the standard of righteousness we have already been declared. Our responsibility is simply to repent of sin, confess that we have not loved God with our whole hearts, and then ask the Spirit of God to change our desires and ability to focus squarely on Him.
So, take a closer look at where your passion, energy, and strength is being poured out the most today and ask yourself, “What do I need to love less so that I can love God more?”
A Longing to Love the Lord
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THIS WEEK’S GOLD
We are Not Worthy
There is an interesting lesson in worthiness found in the story of the Roman centurion in Luke 7:1-
Giving God Our Word
God expects His people to be true to their word at all times. This is especially true in the vows we make to Him. Deuteronomy 23:21 says, “If you make a vow to the Lord your God, you shall not delay fulfilling it, for the Lord your God will surely require it of you, and you will be guilty of sin.” The passage goes on to reveal that we are not required to make any vows and would be better off just living in faithful obedience. As Jesus says in Matthew 5:37, “Let what you say be simply ‘Yes’ or ‘No’; anything more than this comes from evil.”
A Lord Who Listens
David’s focus throughout the Psalms is not primarily on what he is praying for, but instead on a God who actually hears his prayers. In Psalm 5:1-
Tips to Keep You on Track
The readings this week will take you into “The Promised Land” as you begin studying Israel’s conquest of Canaan in the first few chapters of Joshua. As you read this account, notice how many times God reminds Israel not to fear their enemies but to be “strong and courageous.” This is because it was a constant temptation for the Israelites to look at the size and power of their adversary and run away in terror. They often forgot that God’s power was made perfect in their weakness, and that He alone was the source of all their victories. This is also true in our lives as Christians. God’s grace works in and through us as His adopted children to accomplish His sovereign purposes. So, let God’s words to Israel be a daily reminder to you as you study Joshua that God is not impressed with your ability but simply wants your trust and obedience.
Week 13 Readings: March 25 -
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