Friday, June 29, 2007

Love God With All Your Heart: Lesson Two

Here is the second lesson I wrote for our church's children's musical:

The Bible is full of verses that speak about God’s steadfast love for His people. Steadfast means that it is fixed, not moving, firmly established. He loves His people with a never failing, keep going, constant love that cannot be broken. That means that if you are His child then He will always love you no matter what! That is great news for His children, for those who stay faithful to Him until the end. Some verses that tell us this are: Lamentations 3:22-23 “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” And Romans 8:38-39 “For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Nothing can take away God’s love for His children!

But we do not always have that same love for God. We often let things enter our hearts and love them more than we love Him. Those are called idols. Anything that we love more than God is an idol. It could be toys, money, friends, our house… anything. Those things by themselves are not bad, because God has given us all things. It is when we spend all of our time thinking about those things and loving those things more than God that they become an idol. God tells us many times that we should love Him first! One of the Ten Commandments tells us this. Exodus 20:3 says, “You shall have no other gods before me.” That means we are to love God with all your heart, not other things. He even tells us how to love Him. In Deuteronomy 6:5 God says, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.” And Jesus even tells us in the New Testament which commandment is the most important. In Mark 12:28-30 “And one of the scribes came up and heard them disputing with one another, and seeing that he answered them well, asked him, “Which commandment is the most important of all?” Jesus answered, “The most important is, ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’”

So, we have to have a single minded heart. That means that we need to love God above all things. In His Word He tells us that, “No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.”(Matthew 6:24) God is trying to warn us that we cannot love two things the same or we will end up hating one of them and loving the other. We need to serve Him only with our heart. This is for our good and His glory. He is trying to protect our hearts and keep them for Himself. It is easy to let our hearts wander away, but the way that leads us to God is very narrow. Jesus tells us in Matthew 7:13-14 “Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few.” These verses tell us that many people will run after idols in their life and not love God above all, but the way that leads to God is very narrow. Only a few people will love Him and find the right way. The narrow way is hard, but it is worth it because we will have Jesus.

So we should listen to God and love Him above all things. We must give Him all of our heart so that we may be saved.

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