Jesus said that the heavenly Father loves us dearly. Do you believe Him? Your answer reveals your view of God.
A question was posed to me the other day concerning Jesus’ comment to His disciples in the upper room on that fateful night,
21 He who has My commandments and keeps them is the one who loves Me. And he who loves Me will be loved by My Father. And I will love him and will reveal Myself to him.”
If we are not careful, we can get the idea that Jesus’ love for us is works-based, which is not true. In order to know what Jesus is talking about, let’s do some digging.
In Matthew 4:17, Jesus said, “Repent! For the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” “Repent” means to change direction (usually the opposite direction) and change the way you are thinking. So, here is their first command. The second command is found in John 6:29, “This is the work of God, that you believe [trust] in Him whom He has sent.” Both of these commands have to do with what we believe about God and Jesus Christ. What does this tell us about the commandments Jesus wanted them to keep? They were not about doing, but about thinking and believing.
What we believe affects how we feel, which then affects what we do. Jesus knew this fact and was telling His disciples to believe and trust in Him; then, and only then, would they comprehend His love for them.
“Change the way you think, and you’ll will change the way you feel;”*
change the way you feel and you’ll change what you do.
Jesus was not setting up a merit/demerit system; He was establishing their faith in Him. Paul said in Romans 12:2,
2 Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.
We reveal our love for Jesus by believing Him and trusting Him. Look at the promises:
- The heavenly Father will love us; actually, it’s a given since Jesus and the Father are One (John 10:30).
- Jesus will love us (see above explanation).
- Jesus will reveal Himself to us. Why? Because we are looking at Jesus and not into the darkness anymore. Our eyes will be full of His light and will fill us completely (Matthew 6:22).
What a beautiful picture of our relationship with Jesus! Let’s let God transform us into new people by changing the way we think. Then we will learn to know God’s will for us, which is good and pleasing and perfect.
Abba, You are amazing. Revealing Yourself to us is what the cross was all about. You revealed Your love for us by taking every bad thing mankind could throw at You and then forgiving us–even while You were dying! Thank You for finding us and taking us home when we were lost. You are the loving heavenly Father and our Good Shepherd. Amen.