I heard a sermon the other night by Alistair Begg that really gave me one of those “AH HA” moments. It’s one of those moments where you gain another “hook” in your mind to hang some life application on. He had quoted what I think was a Puritan of days gone by in regards to giving to the church. The quote was, “Love God, then do what you want”. After that had some time to marinade a bit, I immediately thought of :
2Cor.9:7 Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.
While this verse has to do with giving, I think the “Love God, do what you want” quote can be very revealing into a mans heart and his motives. If he loves God first, his actions will be reflective of that love. No wonder it is the greatest command. The issues of life and how we live this life stem from that love we have for our God. Everything will naturally fall into place if that love is placed first. Place it second, and our own desires and wishes will lead us because we have placed us first…creating a false god if you really want to get technical.
Think of placing the horse in front of the cart. Works well, right? Place the horse behind the cart, and the horse just gets a headache and a fractured skull from bumping into the cart all day.
When we love God, we naturally want to do His will out of honor and respect for all He is and has done. To say you love God, yet have no desire to please Him or seek after Him, is contradictory at its best.
Another example of this I heard was in a sermon by Paul Washer in which he said he was talking to a young man once who wasn’t sure he was saved. So Paul told the young man to go down to the local bar, drink all night, cuss up a storm, pick up a prostitute, and steal a car to get home. The young man replied there was no way he could possibly do that. When Paul asked why, the man stated that he loved God too much and that would be sinning against Him. Paul then said, “So why are you wondering if you are saved or not?”
The man couldn’t sin willingly because his love of God was to great. His will (the mans) naturally fell in line with that of his Gods.
Perhaps we might even be able to say, “Love God, then you’ll do what he wants.”
For some further pondering, check out this for some further reading. Good stuff.
I don’t know about you, but it sure challenges me!