Thursday, March 24, 2011

Thurs., 3/24/11 Devotion (Jn. 14:15)

Today's encouragement comes from John 14:15, where we read these words of Jesus:

"If you love Me, [you will] keep My commandments."

The end of this verse may be taken either as an imperative ("be
sure to keep . . . "), or as an indicative ("you will [of necessity]
keep . . . "). I prefer the latter, (the indicative). The only people who ever actually obey God in anyway, at anytime, are those churchmen who love Jesus Christ. (And even then, our compliance is not perfect.)

True obedience is always motivated and achieved by and through
love--and never by or through fear. All false religions seek to get their adherents to do what their deity commands by seeking to scare them, fill them with fear, and intimidate them. Not so with the true reli-
gion. Faith in Jesus leads the church to love Him. Once we love Christ, we are happy to obey whatever God tells us to do (albeit only by the Holy Spirit's power).

[Puritan quote of the day: "It is a greater mercy to descend from pray-
ing parents than from the loins of nobles." --John Flavel, in, "The Mys-
tery of Providence"]