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|Love in Our Hearts||MAY 16|
THE HARMONY OF LOVE AND OBEDIENCE—2
If ye love me, keep my commandments. John 14:15.
The emphasis on love and obedience is not milk for babes, but meat for mature Christians. The combination of rules and regulations is for children. When we are children we have to be told what to do. When we grow up in an atmosphere of love we should not have to be told. The fundamental issue is whether our obedience constitutes an expression of love for God and man.
When people get married there is a change in relationship. This involves a new set of mutual responsibilities. Each has entered a new type of living, one of total self-commitment to live for the other's best welfare, security, and integrity as a person.
And when we accept the Christian relationship with our heavenly Father our life changes. Obedience on a legal basis and obedience on a love basis are based on different principles. The first operates outside a personal relation to Christ. The second derives its power from a personal love relationship to Christ, which is the primary thing.
Our relationship with Christ cannot be secure in an atmosphere of dishonesty, impurity, disobedience, hate, and hostility. It will not work in our homes, either. If our homes are ever going to be safe, if our Christian experience is to continue, we must discover the power of God's love to make us obedient to His will and His law.
In our time it is not the lack of the use of the word love that worries us. It is the perversion and adulteration of it that robs lives and homes of its vitality, that practice of a certain laxity and license that we as Christians are in no position at all to defend.
Over and over again in our lives and in our homes, it is not the use of the word love that is important. It is the urgent necessity of sticking by the kind of righteous, trustworthy, high love that Christ talks about. The tragedy of our day is that people continue to use this supreme word love that describes God, after they have dropped God's meaning out of it. God's final word of love to us has to do with an eternal quality of love that honors the everlasting moral principles of the moral law.
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