Yesterday was Valentine's Day, a day when we express
our love to others, often with a card or note.
Thinking about this, I asked myself, "Who do I love
Christians love God the most, with both types of love
expressed in the Bible.
Agape love is a mental commitment whereby we
do the things that are right toward God, no matter the
- "Jesus answered, 'The foremost is, "Hear, O Israel!
The Lord our God is one Lord; 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"'" (Mk. 12:29-30).
Phileo love is affection whereby we do the things
that are right toward God, no matter the cost. When
we're committed to love God with all our heart (Mk.
12:30), we're committed to have affection for Him above
- "If anyone does not love the Lord, he is
to be accursed . . ." (1 Cor. 1:22).
As Christians, our commitment and affections are directed
toward God above all others.
- We put God first in every relationship.
- We put God first in every activity.
- We put God above the things of the world.
Do you love God more than anyone or anything else,
of this world?
The truth is of God, and from God. So, we love
the truth as we love God.
One distinct difference between people who are saved
and those who are lost is love of the truth. The saved
love the truth, but the lost do not.
- "and with all the deception of wickedness for those
who perish, because they did not receive the love
of the truth so as to be saved" (2 Th. 2:10).
Because we love the truth:
- We believe the truth (2 Th. 2:12).
- We obey the truth and are saved (1 Pet. 1:22-23).
- We practice the truth by keeping God's commandments
(1 Jn. 1:6; 2:3f).
We love the truth, as we love God. We love the truth
more than anyone, or anything else in the world.
Do you love the truth?
God's Word is Truth
In praying to His Father, Jesus said, "Your word is
truth" (Jn. 17:17).
Then later, when Paul wrote Timothy, he used the phrase,
"accurately handling the word of truth" (2 Tim. 2:15).
The word of God is truth. It's the only standard by
which we direct our lives. If we obey the truth we're
saved, but if we disobey we're lost (1 Pet. 1:22-23).
The Truth is in Christ
The truth is in Christ. Therefore we lay aside the old
man of sin and put on the new man of righteousness,
as taught by Christ.
- "But you did not learn Christ in this way, if indeed
you have heard Him and have been taught in Him,
just as truth is in Jesus . . . lay aside the
old self . . . put on the new self, which
in the likeness of God has been created
in righteousness and holiness of the truth" (Eph.
Because we love God, the truth, and His word, we change
our lives as taught by God.
- ". . . present your bodies a living and holy
sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual
service of worship. And do not be conformed
to this world, but be transformed by the renewing
of your mind . . ." (Rom. 12:1-2).
Living as God directs in His word:
- We're in Christ, having been baptized as He commands
- In Christ, we're walking in the truth (Eph. 5:21).
- In Christ and walking in truth, we are on the path
of eternal life -- Jesus is the way, truth, and life
Because we love God and the truth, we love your relationship
with God, and the eternal life we possess as His child.
We'll never exchange eternal life for anything of
this world, unless we change and love the world more
Church: Pillar and Support of Truth
Paul tells us the "household of God, which is the church
of the living God" is "the pillar and support of the
truth" (1 Tim. 3:15).
As the pillar and support of the truth, we love the
church as we love the truth, and place it above everything
of the world.
Do you love God's church as much as you love Him?
To love God and put Him first in our lives, we must
put the truth, the Word, our relationship with Christ,
eternal life, and the church first.
What's the significance of this?
Although there are many answers, I want to express
two in this article, besides those already mentioned.
First, we'll pay any price to put God first, and be
happy about it. We'll rejoice when experiencing tribulations,
and count it all joy when experiencing trials (Rom.
5:1-5; Jas. 1:2-4).
Second, we want people to love us less than God. We'll
teach them and encourage them, verbalizing our desire
for them to love God more than ourselves (Lk. 14:25-27).
With this in mind, ask yourself:
- "Who do I love the most?"
- "Do I want people to love God more than me?"