May 1, 2022
If you love Me, keep My commandments (John 14:15).
What are the commandments of Christ that the disciples, then and now, should keep them? Dr. John Brown (1784-1858) wrote, “The whole revelation of the Divine will, respecting what I am to believe and feel and do and suffer, contained in the Holy Scriptures is the law of Christ. Both volumes of Christ are the work of the Spirit of Christ. His first and great commandment is: ‘Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and soul, and strength’; and the second great commandment is like unto the first: ‘Thou shalt love thy neighbour [sic] as thyself.’ The commandments of Christ include whatever is good and whatever God hath required of us.”
What has God required of us? (Micah 6:6-8) With what shall I come before the LORD, and bow myself before the High God? Shall I come before Him with burnt offerings, with calves a year old? Will the LORD be pleased with thousands of rams, ten thousand rivers of oil? Shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul? He has shown you, O man, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you but to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God? What the Lord requires of us is what He has always required of us, for all time. But the motivation behind these requirements is love - love for God, love for your neighbor. Take the 10 Commandments as an example:
1. You shall have no other Gods before Me - in loving God, we will honor and worship Him only and no one, or nothing else.
2. You shall not make for yourself a carved image - in loving God, we will honor and worship Him only and no physical representation of Him or anyone/anything else that represents Him.
3. You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain - in loving God, we will respect His name and not use it flippantly or in cursing, since His name holy as He is holy.
4. Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy - in loving God, we will take one day per week to celebrate and worship Him, and as a day of rest for ourselves.
5. Honor your father and your mother - in loving God we will love and respect our parents who are His representative to us in life, authority, love, and counsel.
6. You shall not murder - in loving God and others, we will respect the sanctity of all life, for He has created all life, and only He has the right to take life.
7. You shall not commit adultery - in loving God and others, we will respect the sanctity of marriage and not defile our own marriage or that of another.
8. You shall not steal - in loving God and others, we will respect what others have and be content with what the Lord has blessed us with.
9. You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor - in loving God and others, we will speak the truth in all things, honoring God who is truth and our neighbor who deserves the truth.
10. You shall not covet - in loving God and others, we will not be envious of what others have, nor desire to have their possessions, but will be content with what the Lord has given to us. Amen.