The Savior – The Person of Jesus Christ
Learning to Love Christ Supremely
And He said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.‘ “This is the great and foremost commandment. NASB
Love What He Loves, Hate What He Hates
How then can we cultivate affections for Christ? One very obvious way is to begin to value things which He assigns value to, and also to disdain things which He disdains. We begin to love Christ and value Him when we begin to see life as He sees it and begin to conform our lives to that which He values. When our value system becomes defined by His value system, He is then honored, esteemed and valued by us. It only stands to reason then, that we must come to know what He values and what He disdains. And this dear reader, is the great purpose that the Scripture fulfills in us. It causes us, by the power of the Spirit, to be transformed in our thinking so that we come to know what God loves and what He hates and what is His perfect and pleasing will!
Romans 12:1-2 – I urge you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship. 2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect. NASB
So then, as we go to the Holy Scriptures each and every day, there we feed on the heavenly delights that God gives us by His Holy Word! We feed on the bread of Life, and we partake of God’s wisdom, which causes us then to hunger and thirst for His righteousness and His Kingdom and His person like no other thing. The Scripture is pure revelation of God and His wisdom! So as we go to the Scripture, we seek for nuggets of truth, and morsels of heavenly wisdom that change us and cause us to become like Him. More and more being filled and blessed with His virtue, which we see revealed in all of its Glory in the revelation of Scripture. And this dear reader, is how we become blessed! In fact this is the state of being blessed, it is properly assessing God, His Kingdom, and His virtue so that we properly and appropriately see our world through the eyes of true wisdom from the Creator God, who made everything for His own purpose and for His own glory!
Psalm 1:1-3 – How blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked, Nor stand in the path of sinners, Nor sit in the seat of scoffers! 2 But his delight is in the law of the Lord, And in His law he meditates day and night. 3 And he will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water, Which yields its fruit in its season, And its leaf does not wither; And in whatever he does, he prospers. NASB
How we may know that we love Christ
Consider that of all the things that God commanded us to do, the greatest is to love Him supremely, then this ought to be our response. Consider with me if God is the Sovereign, the Supreme Authority, if He is the Lord of Heaven and Earth, and He has given us high and holy commandments, our response should then be one of unwavering obedience. If a powerful earthly authority gives us a directive, what would we do? We would obey. How much more should we honor God with obedience to Him? Shall we rail against our maker? We had better be sure to obey God lest we be found to be rebels against our Sovereign Creator and our Righteous Judge! Jesus said,
John 14:15 – 15 “If you love Me, you will keep My commandments. NASB
“If” you love me, “you will” keep my commandments. In other words, it will be plainly seen if you really love me when you obey my commandments. Love for Christ produces obedience to His commandments. If we look at our lives and see disobedience to Christ’s commands, then we have good reason to question whether our love for Him is genuine.
John 14:21-24 – He who has My commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves Me; and he who loves Me shall be loved by My Father, and I will love him, and will disclose Myself to him.” 22 Judas (not Iscariot) said to Him, “Lord, what then has happened that You are going to disclose Yourself to us, and not to the world?” 23 Jesus answered and said to him, “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him, and make Our abode with him. 24 “He who does not love Me does not keep My words; and the word which you hear is not Mine, but the Father’s who sent Me. NASB
If we truly love God we will in fact obey Him. This is how we prove our love for God, through our obedience to Him….
1 John 5:3 – 3 For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not burdensome. NASB
Obedience to Christ is proof positive that we in fact love Him and honor Him from our hearts! We obey Him because we love Him and we know that His commands are what are best for us. But what are other ways that we can see that we love Christ? Consider these few ……
· Christ will be the most engrossing subject of thought. Are you enamored with thoughts of Christ? Does Christ occupy your thought life with intensity, or do you give your thoughts to lower earthly things?
· Christ will be the attractive theme of conversation. What do you spend your time talking about? The weather, sports or God forbid the latest gossip about other people? We know what is in our hearts by what flows out of our mouths.
· Christ will be the source of the greatest delight in pleasing. What is it that in your heart brings the most gladness to you? Do you treasure Christ more than anything else in the entire world? If you love Christ, He is your greatest delight!
· The most transforming power of character. Are you becoming like Him? If so, you can know that you love Him. Pursuing Christ results in becoming like Him!
· If you love Christ, you love His cause. That His kingdom my come, that people might be saved, that is love would abound to every person is your great pursuit.
· If you love Christ You love His people. How can we say we love Christ and do not love His people. We know we love Christ by how well we love and serve His church!
1 John 5:1-2 – 1 Whoever believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God; and whoever loves the Father loves the child born of Him. 2 By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and observe His commandments. NASB
· If you love Christ, you love His Word and His commandments. Love for Christ is clearly seen in a great hunger and desire for His word.
Let us cultivate our love for Christ by seeking after Him and treasuring Him each and every day. Let us give serious thought on regular occasion to our love for Him and our devotion to Him!
9 Things we can do to cultivate a love for Christ!
There are many ways that we can cultivate and grow in our love and esteem for Christ! In these things we are seeking Christ, and our relationship to Him and our worship of Him that we seek to enhance. These things do not replace Christ, instead they enhance and cultivate our love for Him.
- Treasure and esteem God and His Word above any and every other thing in your life. Let it become a consuming passion in your life to come to know God and see His Glory.
Psalm 119:47-48 – 47 And I shall delight in Thy commandments, Which I love. 48 And I shall lift up my hands to Thy commandments, Which I love; And I will meditate on Thy statutes. NASB
Job 23:12 – 12 “I have not departed from the command of His lips; I have treasured the words of His mouth more than my necessary food. NASB
- Have a daily time of meditation and contemplation in the Word of God, undistracted. Allow the Word to judge and confront the thoughts and intentions of our hearts. Seek God’s face and His truth as for hidden treasure.
Psalm 1:1-2 – How blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked, Nor stand in the path of sinners, Nor sit in the seat of scoffers! 2 But his delight is in the law of the Lord, And in His law he meditates day and night. NASB
- Do what the bible says. The revelation of truth comes through obedience to God’s Word.
Luke 11:28 – 28 But He said, “On the contrary, blessed are those who hear the word of God, and
observe it.” NASB
- As we read through the Word, we stop to ponder how great God is, and how wonderful He is! We marvel, and worship with intensity as we ponder the Majesty of His being and the transcendence of His works and purposes in the world! We consider the perfections of His being and attributes, and we drink from them as a thirsty man in the desert!
Psalm 73:25-26 – 25 Whom have I in heaven but Thee? And besides Thee, I desire nothing on earth. 26 My flesh and my heart may fail, But God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. NASB
- Remember that God is personal! He has created us in such a way that we can fellowship with Him intimately through these means and experience the power and fulfillment of relationship with Him! We can treasure Him for He is our possession!
Song 6:3 – 3 “I am my beloved’s and my beloved is mine, He who pastures his flock among the lilies.”
- Remember to be thankful and rejoice with thanksgiving for the great things God has done! Revel in and cherish the goodness of God and the blessing that He pours out in our lives!
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 – 16 Rejoice always; 17 pray without ceasing; 18 in everything give thanks; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. NASB
- Sing joyfully to the Lord. This is the only proper response for the victory we have been given. More than this, we Him, the highest reason for rejoicing and singing has become our possession!
Psalm 68:4 – 4 Sing to God, sing praises to His name; Lift up a song for Him who rides through the deserts, Whose name is the Lord, and exult before Him. NASB
Colossians 3:16-17 – 16 Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God. 17 And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father. NASB
- Fellowship regularly with people who have a love for Christ and a devotion to Him.
Acts 2:46-47 – 46 And day by day continuing with one mind in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they were taking their meals together with gladness and sincerity of heart, 47 praising God, and having favor with all the people. And the Lord was adding to their number day by day those who were being saved. NASB
- There are many very good things for Christians to read, listen to, and watch that help us grow in our appreciation and love for Christ! There also is need for discernment here! Look here for a start…. http://www.heavenslight.org/resources.html
See the Outline here….. http://www.abqhcf.com/lessons/2007/handouts/dz/The_Savior_The_Cross_and_The_Gospel_Brochure.pdf
This teaching can be heard on audio here:
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