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Who Do You Love The Most?
Bible study on love.

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 the most?"

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 cost.

  • "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 all others.

  • "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. 4:20-24).

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 (Gal. 3:27).
  • 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 (Jn. 14:6).

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 than God.

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?"