When Jesus was asked, “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the law?” His response was, “ ‘You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.” (Matthew 22:36-37, 39-40 NKJV). The church’s failure to rediscover the importance of love for God and her neighbours has left her deprived.
1 John 5:3-4 reads, “This is the love of God, that we keep his commandments. And his commandments are not burdensome. For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world — our faith.” John says here that, loving God is not just keeping his commandments. It is having a kind of heart for God that means that commandment-keeping is not burdensome (See Mt.22:34-40).
Piper wrote, “You can’t love Christ too much. You can’t think about him too much, or thank him too much, or depend upon him too much. All our forgiveness, all our justification, all our righteousness is in Christ.” Take note, we can’t love Christ too much. There is nothing like over loving Christ.
The church at Ephesus was reputed to be fervent and faithful. Its members endured persecution and lived to please Christ, but their passion for Christ grew cold and lukewarm and for this, she was reprimanded. “Nevertheless I have this against you, that you have left your first love. Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent and do the first works, or else I will come to you quickly and remove your lampstand from its place—unless you repent” (Revelation 2:4-5 NKJV). Their doctrinal and moral purity, their undiminished zeal for the truth, and their disciplined service were no substitute for the love for Christ they had forsaken.
David was one person who loved God. In Psalm 91:14-16, we see God’s sevenfold response to his love for him.
“Because he has set his love upon Me, therefore I will deliver him; I will set him on high, because he has known My name. He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him and honor him. With long life I will satisfy him, And show him My salvation.”
(Psalms 91:14-16 NKJV).
David’s love for God brought him God’s deliverance; he was set on high. God promised to answer him when he called. God promised to deliver him and to be with them in trouble. Above all, God said to him, “with long life I will satisfy him, And show him My salvation.” What amazing promises for one who dared to love God!
The human mind cannot comprehend and fully understand what is in the heart of God for those who love him. Paul said in 1 Corinthians 2:9,
“But as it is written: “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, Nor have entered into the heart of man The things which God has prepared for those who love Him.” But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God.” (NKJV)
The Church must return to the true love for God. That is the pathway to her salvation and revival. True love for God will restore the fulness of Christ’s presence and glory in his Church, that is what revival is.