Loving God – Part 2: Fearing (and not loving) God & Signs of Genuine Love for God (and His Word)
2. What happens if all we possess is fear of God or this is the dominant motivator?
2.1. We become paranoid (1Jo 4:16-18).
2.2. We question whether God loves us (Eph 3:14-19 = loving God is how we become convinced He loves us, 1Jo 4:19).
2.3. We are not as faithful or slower to faithfulness (Luk 19:11-27 = v14, “But his citizens hated him” is in contrast to the ten servants of v13. IOW: they do not hate him but love him. However, one of the servants fears him more than he loves him. The result is the same as though who hated him.).
3. What (then) are (and are not) the signs that we do possess genuine love for God and His Word?
3.1. What Are:
3.1.1. You are faithful to obey God’s Word (Joh 14:15).
3.1.2. You spend time reading, hearing or studying His Word (Psa 119:48)
3.1.3. You get angry/frustrated w/those who disobey God and His Word (2Ch 19:2; Psa 26:5, 97:10, 119:53).
3.1.4. You prefer to be where God’s presence (i.e. the church) and people dwell (i.e. the church) over any other place on earth (Psa 26:8, 122:1-6).
3.1.5. You love God’s people in deed (not just words) (Mat 25:31-40; 1Jo 3:18 w/4:20-21 – this includes forgiving one another, being long suffering and promoting unity versus division– Eph 4:1-3; Col 3:12-14).
3.1.6. You persevere (in faithfulness and w/o getting angry at God) during trials (i.e. you pass the test of love – 1Th 2:4).
3.1.7. You are broken when you sin (Jam 4:8-9 = through such brokenness you demonstrate that you want to be near to God – i.e. that you love Him; 2Co 6:14-18 is the context for 7:1-11 = bc they in the past, DID love God, they were broken over their sin).
3.1.8. You possess a backbone and are bold for God and His Word (1Ti 1:5; this means also you are not ashamed of Christ or His gospel – Rom 1:16).
3.2. What Are Not: Simply feelings/affection for God (affection w/o loyalty only makes you a prostitute); b/c you say you love God (talk is cheap).