Love Your God

Love Your God

Matthew 22:36-40

36 “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”

37 Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’[a] 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’[b] 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

One of the most creative r and b musicians of my time has been and still is Musiq Soulchild.  His first album Aijuswanaseing had so many great songs on it like:

Girl Next Door 

You and Me

Just Friends

143

My Girl

And many other songs that were great as well.  One of my favorite songs on the album was a track called Love.  But what I did not know was that Musiq originally wrote it as a gospel song and the title of the song was God.  The record label did not want a gospel track on his album so he changed the title to love because God is love.  So every time you hear the word love in the song it is actually supposed to be God.  I find that so ironic because every time I would listen to the song I would think to myself this would be a great gospel song.  The gospel group trinity 357 actually recorded the song as a gospel song later.  This is how the song should have gone.

Love.

So many things I’ve got to tell you.

But I’m afraid I don’t know how.

‘Cause there’s a possibility.

That you’ll look at me differently.

Love,

Ever since the first moment I spoke your name.

From then on I knew that by you being in my life.

Things were destined to change ’cause…

Love,

So many people use your name in vain.

Love,

Those who have faith in you sometimes go astray.

Love,

Through all the ups and downs, the joys, and hurts.

Love,

For better or worse I still will choose you first.

Many days I’ve longed for you, wanting you.

Hoping for the chance to get to know you.

Longing for your kiss, for your kiss, for your touch, for your feel, for your essence (your beautiful essence).

Many nights I’ve cried from the things you do.

Felt like I could die from the thought of losing you.

I know that you’re real.

With no doubts and no fears, and no questions.

Love,

So many people use your name in vain.

Love,

Those who have faith in you sometimes go astray.

Love,

Through all the ups and downs, the joys, and hurts.

Love,

For better or worse I still will choose you first.

At first you didn’t mean that much to me, no.

But now I know you’re all I need, oh.

The world looks so brand new to me.

Now that I found love.

Everyday I live for you, yeah.

And everything that I do I do it for you.

What I say is how I feel so believe it’s true.

You got to know I’m true, love.

Love,

So many people use your name in vain.

Love,

Those who have faith in you sometimes go astray.

Love,

Through all the ups and downs, the joys, and hurts.

Love,

For better or worse I still will choose you first.

I thought it was so fitting to begin this sermon with that song since February is the month of celebrating love and we have been talking about love all month long.  The second Sunday in February we started our love series by talking about loving ourselves.  I shared with you that this may be one of the hardest things to do because sometimes we do not even like ourselves let alone love ourselves.  There are four reasons why we need to love ourselves.  

We love ourselves because God commands it. 

We love ourselves because God created us. 

We love ourselves because God is committed to loving us. 

We love ourselves because we are children of God. 

Then last week we talked about the importance of loving our neighbor.  There are five reasons why we love our neighbor.

We love our neighbor because God commands it.

We love our neighbor because it’s correct.

We love our neighbor because it’s courageous.

We love our neighbor because it’s contagious.

We love our neighbor because God commends us for it.

This week we are going to talk about loving your God. And another reason why I opened this message talking about Musiq Soulchild’s song…

Love,

So many people use your name in vain.

Love,

Those who have faith in you sometimes go astray.

Love,

Through all the ups and downs, the joys, and hurts.

Love,

For better or worse I still will choose you first.

Shall we look at the text.  

36 “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”

37 Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’[a] 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’[b] 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

As I have been telling you the past couple of weeks Jesus had just finished checking the Sadducees and now the Pharisees were testing him.  One of the Pharisees asked Jesus which is the greatest command.  Without hesitation Jesus responds to love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.  In other words Jesus was telling the Pharisees and everyone else listening or reading this passage that we have to love God before we love anything else.  We must love God more than we love anything else.  We must love God with everyone once of our being.  We have to love God with all of our heart, with all of our soul, and with all of our mind.  So what exactly does that mean?  I am so glad that you asked.  I believe I shared this with you before, but its always good to review information every now and then.

We have to love the Lord our God with all of our heart.  

The Greek word for heart is Kardia, (kar-dee-ah) its where we get the term cardiology, the study of the heart.  Kardia or heart is the organ in the animal body which is the center of the circulation of the blood, and hence is regarded as the seat of physical life.  It is the center of all physical and spiritual life as well.  So Jesus is saying you must love the Lord your God with all of your spiritual and physical life.  

We have to love the Lord our God with all of our soul.

The Greek word for soul is psuche (psoo-khay) which means breath, the breath of life, the vital force which animates the body and shows itself in breathing of animals and man.  This is what God breathed into man after he created him.  The soul is the seat of feelings, desires, affections, and aversions.  The soul is the essence which differs from the body and is not dissolved by death.  The body dies but the soul lives on.  Has anyone seen the movie Soul?  It’s a Disney Pixar movies that depicts the life of Joe, a music teacher that is also a struggling jazz musician that finally gets his big break only to fall in a man hole and die minutes later.  Then his soul goes to the great before and through out the movie he realizes what life is all about, and he ends up getting a second chance.  Jesus is telling you to love the Lord your God the very essence of your being, to love God with all of your soul.

We have to love the Lord our God with all of our mind.

The Greek word for mind is dianoia (Dee-an-oy-ah) which means the mind as a faculty of understanding, feelings, and desires.  Mind, i.e. spirit way of thinking and feeling.  Thoughts, either good or bad.  So Jesus is telling you to love the Lord your God with all of your thoughts, feelings, desires, and understanding. 

Notice how Jesus states whether it is your heart, soul, or mind we are to love God with all of it.  All in the greek is holos which mean all, whole, completely.  In other words, God wants all of our hearts, all of our souls, and all of our minds.  He does not and will not except shared custody with he world.  He wants full custody.  And that is why we must love the Lord our God with all of our hearts, all of our souls, and all of our minds.

We have to love the Lord our God with all that we’ve got and I am going to give you six reasons why.

We love God because he commands us to love him.  Just like he commands us to love our neighbor and to love ourselves. We love God because he tells us to.  And I don’t know if you know this or not but God is a very jealous God.  That is why he also says you shall have. no other Gods before me.  (We are the same way…)  That is why he commands us to love him.  But here is where the rubber meets the road and why I personally love God so much.  Because although he commands us to love him he does not make us to love him.  The God we serve is a gentleman and he does not force himself on us.  He gives us free will and he wants us to choose him just like he chose us.  We love God because he commands us to.

We love God because we are his children.  We love him because He’s our daddy.  I know I told you a few weeks ago that we love ourselves because God the creator of the heavens and earth is our father and we our his children, but we also love God because he is our father and we are his children.  He is our dedicated and determined daddy.  In other words, he is not a dead beat daddy.  That is why I told you he does not want shared custody.  He is not trying to see us every Wednesday and every other weekend. He desires full custody.  We love him because we are his children.

We love God because he chooses us.  Now you already know how I feel about being chosen.  I have shared with you on several occasions how much I appreciate being chosen because I know what it feels like not to be chosen. God could have chose anybody in the world but he chose me.  God could have chosen anybody in the world but he chose you.  We love God because he chooses us.  Anybody excited about the fact that you are chosen?

We love God because he changes us. What did Paul say in 2 Corinthians 5:17, Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.  In other words, he changes us.

A change has come over me.

He changed my life and now I’m free.

He washed away all my sins and he made me whole.

He washed me white as snow.

He changed my life complete and now I sit, I sit at his feet.

To do what must be done I’ll work and work until he comes.

A wonderful change has come over me.

A wonderful change has come over me.

Yes he changed (changed).

My life complete (changed).

And now I sit (changed).

I sit at my savior’s feet (I’m so glad he changed me).

To do (changed).

What must be done (changed).

I’m gonna work and work.

Until my savior comes (I’m so glad he changed me).

I’m not what I want to be.

Oh I’m not what I use to be.

I’m not the same way thank God

Thank God (I’m so glad he changed me).

He changed my walk, (CHANGE).

He changed my talk, (CHANGED).

He changed my life he even changed (CHANGED).

Changed my soul, I’ve come along way, in Jesus, I’ve come along way, in Christ, I’ve come along way, Thank God Thank God.

We love God because he changes us.

We love God because he challenges us.  This actually one of the ways that he changes us by challenging everything we believed before we met him.  

Remember you thought you had all the answers.  

You thought your way was the only way.  

You thought you had it going on.  

You thought that all you had to do was this. 

You thought all you had to do was that.  

You thought you had it all under control.  

You thought you had it made. 

You thought you had nothing to worry about. 

You thought things would go according to your plan, and God came in and challenged it all. I don’t know about you, but I don’t want anybody in my life that is going to agree with everything that I say.  I need someone to challenge me.  Because through the challenge I am changed from what I used to be to what God wants me to be.  That’s why I love him because he challenges us.

We love God because he charges us.  First, God commands us to love him. Then we love him because we’re his children. Next, we love him because he chooses us. After he chooses us he changes us, and we love him for changing us.  Which happens because he challenges us.  We love him for challenging us.  And now he charges us.  He charges not to just love him, but to love ourselves and to love our neighbors.  We love him because he trusts us enough to charge us to do the work of the kingdom. By charging us I mean he empowers us.  He endows us.  He anoints us.  And we all know it is the anointing that breaks the yoke.

It is the anointing that breaks the chains.

It is the anointing that delivers.

It is the anointing that makes ways out of no ways.

It is the anointing that heals.

It is the anointing that deals.

It is the anointing that makes you walk right.

It is the anointing that makes you talk right.

It is the anointing that makes you live right.

Anointing fall on me.  Anointing fall on me.  Let the power of the Holy Ghost fall on me.  Anointing fall on me.  We love God because he charged us.  Just like we plug up our phones, tablets, and computers we need to plug into God so that we can get charged up.  That is why coming to church and Bible study are so important because we need to charge up.  We love God because he charges us.

We love God because he commands it.

We love God because we are his children.

We love God because he chooses us

We love God because he changes us.

We love God because he challenges us.

We love God because he charges us.

I opened this sermon with song lyrics so let me close it with a few more.

I love you Lord, and I lift my voice to worship you.

Oh my soul rejoice.  Take joy my king in what you hear.

Let it be a sweet sweet sound in your ear.

I love you Jesus.  I worship and adore you.  I just want to tell you that I love you more than anything.

I love him, I love him.  I love the Lord today.  Because you cared for me in such a special way.  That’s why I praise you.  I lift you up, and I magnify your name.  That’s why my heart is filled with praise.

I really love the Lord.   I really love the Lord.  You don’t know what he’s done for me.  He gave me the victory.  I love him.  I love him.  I really love the Lord.

We must love the Lord our God with all our heart, with all our soul, and with all of our mind.  He does not want a part or a piece of us he wants it all.  We have to love him completely. 

We have to love him like Joanie loved Chachie.

We have to love him like George loved Weezie.

We have to love him like Heathcliff loved Claire.

We have to love him like Tony loved Angela.

We have to love him like Nicki loved Victor.

We have to love him like Bo loved hope.

We have to love him like Reeva love Josh.

We have to love him like Martin loved Gina.

We have to love him like Jack loved Rebecca.

We have to love him like Sam loves Linda.

We have to love him like Buddy loves Katherine.

We have to love him like Phil loves Betty.

We have to love him like Ted loves Faye.

We have to love him like Dawn loves David.

We have to love him like Sam loves Latisha

And so much more!

We love the Lord our God with all our hearts, with all our souls, and with all our minds because…

He commands us to.

We are his children.

He chooses us.

He changes us.

He challenges us.

He charges us.


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