Attitudes – Love

The first most basic attitude is love. Jesus includes loving God with the first commandment, and loving others as the second commandment:

36 Master, which is the great commandment in the law?  37 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.  38 This is the first and great commandment.  39 And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.  40 On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.”  (Mat 22:36-40 KJV)

28 And one of the scribes came, and having heard them reasoning together, and perceiving that he had answered them well, asked him, Which is the first commandment of all?  29 And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord:  30 And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.  31 And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.  32 And the scribe said unto him, Well, Master, thou hast said the truth: for there is one God; and there is none other but he:  33 And to love him with all the heart, and with all the understanding, and with all the soul, and with all the strength, and to love his neighbour as himself, is more than all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices.”  (Mar 12:28-33 KJV)

27 And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself.” (Luk 10:27 KJV)

This sums up all the Law and the Prophets. It is the foundation of holiness.

Jesus mentions having love for God, our neighbor, and ourselves. Love for God carries with it obedience to His Word.

“If ye love me, keep my commandments.” (Joh 14:15 KJV)

“Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.” (Joh 14:23 KJV)

3 And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments.  4 He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.  5 But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him.”  (1Jo 2:3-5 KJV)

We are to love for one another as He loves us.

“This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you.” (Joh 15:12 KJV)

“These things I command you, that ye love one another.” (Joh 15:17 KJV)

34 A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.  35 By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.”  (Joh 13:34-35 KJV)

20 If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen?  21 And this commandment have we from him, That he who loveth God love his brother also.”  (1Jo 4:20-21 KJV)

It is easy to love those that love us back, but Jesus tells us to love everyone- even our enemies.

43 Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy.  44 But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;  45 That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.  46 For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same?  47 And if ye salute your brethren only, what do ye more than others? do not even the publicans so?  48 Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.”  (Mat 5:43-48 KJV)

We are to be a light unto the world. We shine this light through love. Showing love to others allows them to see a difference in our lives.

Love for others will cause us to proclaim the Gospel, to treat others with respect, and to help those in need. That was the difference with the Good Samaritan- he had love for his fellow man. Even someone without the Spirit of God in his life stopped to help someone in need; how much more should Christians help those in need? This is love in action. Love causes action.

Without love, nothing else matters.

“Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.  2 And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing.  3 And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing.  4 Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,  5 Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;  6 Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;  7 Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.  8 Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away.  9 For we know in part, and we prophesy in part.  10 But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away.  11 When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.  12 For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.  13 And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.”  (1Co 13:1-13 KJV)

If we love God we will want to obey and please Him. We will want to do His will and devote our lives to Him. Having love for God and our fellow man will build a foundation for holiness- a foundation that will promote holiness in our lives for the rights reasons. Without love, we become hypocritical on our walk in holiness, which causes us to hold to holiness standards with the wrong attitude. Love is the foundation that builds and strengthens all attitudes.

 

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