“Jesus said unto him, ‘Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment.”
There is a second commandment most people are familiar with, but it is really the same commandment. When stripped to its essential truth, the words of Jesus above are the whole truth about God, the message of scripture, and Christianity. Love is all you need, and it is all you must do.
It sounds simple, doesn’t it? And it is until you begin to live it. Proof of that is evidenced by its adherents’ struggles to achieve even a modicum of success and their critics’ mockery.
What about belief, faith, and righteous behavior? What about going to church, saying prayers, and reading the Bible? What about the Ten Commandments?
Those are all very fine things. None of them, on their own, will bring you peace with God or an opportunity to share His life, His peace, and His joy. We are made for God and without keeping that commitment to love God, all is vanity and vexation of spirit.
Just what does it mean to love God with all your heart, soul, and mind? It means total surrender of oneself to the will and purposes of God. It means, like a child, believing all God says, completely trusting in His care, and earnestly desiring to imitate all He does. It means obeying God at all times simply because you love Him and to do less is infidelity.
Those are the broad principles of loving God. Once you accept those terms, the Holy Spirit will provide you with the specific lessons necessary for your unique transformation. He will supply you with the power to successfully accomplish all the details. Don’t worry. There are tests along the way in which the Holy Spirit will shine a light upon how well you’re doing. There are also remedial learning opportunities if at first you don’t succeed.
So, there you have what God wants from you. You have also just been given an opportunity to accept or reject God’s terms for an abundant life filled with love. There are two schools of thought on how long you have to decide on an answer. One idea is that only God knows how long that may be. The other school of thought says that you just decided.
“And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take of the water of life freely.”