Summary: PENTECOST 2 - We hear the Lord and we learn to love the Lord who first loved us. Our loving Lord guides our lives and blesses our lives. Our Lord deserves our love.
“HEAR…THE LORD…LOVE THE LORD” (Outline)
June 26, 2011 -
Pentecost 2 -
INTRO: The believer knows well these words of the Lord: “Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength” (verse 5). Why would any of us love the Lord? We are conceived and born in sin. We begin this life as the enemies of God. Enemies usually never come to love one another. By grace God changes us. "And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him" (1 JOHN 4:16). Today we learn the “what” and the “why” of loving the Lord God Almighty. “HEAR…THE LORD…TO LOVE THE LORD”. I. Our Lord guides our lives. II. Our Lord blesses our lives. III. Our Lord deserves our love.
I. OUR LORD GUIDES OUR LIVES
A. Verse 4. Israeli children still know and recite this verse to this very day. “Hear…The LORD is one.”
1. Verse 6. The Lord wanted his people to have his commands (words) on and in their hearts.
2. Verse 7. God’s word was to be a part of their daily lives. It was for them and their children.
B. Israel “took to heart” these next two verses very literally. Jesus warned about this during his day.
1. Verse 8. Little boxes tied to their hands and foreheads are still seen today, phylacteries.
2. Verse 9. Small cylinders are still attached to doorframes of Jewish houses today, mezuzah.
C. God’s law for the believer is a guide. Scripture describes three uses of the law. God’s law is a curb. A curb checks or hinders the rash outbreak of sin. God’s law is a mirror. The mirror of God’s law reflects back our sin whenever we look into it. God’s law as a curb and a mirror are designed for all people of all times. The use of God’s law as a guide applies alone to believers. By grace believers value the laws of God for guidance in life. "I gain understanding from your precepts; therefore I hate every wrong path. Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path" (PSALM 119:104, 105). We can hate evil.
E. God’s law is written upon our hearts. This is called our conscience. God also gave his law a second time on Mt. Sinai. Moses brought down God’s law written on tablets of stone. Now, mankind is without excuse. We no longer trust only our conscience to know what is right and wrong. God has made it very clear for each of us in his word. It is of the utmost importance that we make daily use of God’s word in our daily lives. "For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved. As the Scripture says, ‘Anyone who trusts in him will never be put to shame’" (ROMANS 10:10, 11). God has planted his word into our hearts that it may guide us as we go bear fruit.
WE HEAR THE WORD OF THE LORD TO LOVE THE LORD. Our Lord guides our lives.
II. OUR LORD BLESSES OUR LIVES
A. Verse 10a. The Lord promised great blessings to the forefathers of Israel. They would receive them.
1. Verses 10b, 11. Cities, houses, crops they did not earn, deserve, or buy would be theirs: Grace!
2. Verse 12a. Satan could and would use such great blessings to distract believers from worship.
B. Verse 12b. Israel was free from the power of Pharaoh. Remember the freedom the Lord gave them.
C. Believers, we have been set free from the greatest powers and authorities that can come against us. The Lord God Almighty has set us free from the slavery of sin, Satan, and even death itself. Our Lord God Almighty blesses us day in and day out with more than we can ask or imagine. We have nothing to worry about. Satan still sneaks into our lives and tries to rob us of the joy that our loving Father would want us to have. Our society pushes us to have more. In order to have more we work and struggle to get more and more things. "But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it" (1 TIMOTHY 6:6, 7). God blesses our lives always.
D. Our nation is a nation blessed with an abundance of things. The fact is we have an overabundance of what we truly need. Thankfully we have a loving Lord who knows that our lives do not exist simply in the abundance of our possessions. It is by the grace of God that our heavenly Father blesses our souls. Yes, our Lord takes care of our daily needs. God is far more concerned with our eternal welfare than all of our earthly possessions. "Why spend money on what is not bread, and your labor on what does not satisfy? Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good, and your soul will delight in the richest of fare"(ISA. 55:2).