Marriage Covenant

When Love is not enough

when-love-is-not-enough

Please read (Mat 7:15-23)

We so often say we love You Lord, but do they really? It is so easy to sing along songs in church about how much we love Him, but do we obey Him? Jesus’ love for the Father was tested, when He endured the most difficult burden of our sins and death saying: “Not My will be done, but thine!”

There are so many things in my life, that I know God wants me to do, but I never get around doing it. My spouse asked me to do something in the house ages ago, and I simply never do it. The Church made and appeal, and I felt that God wants me to respond, but I never did it.

Are we not singing too many love-songs in church, and doing too little? When we are asked to labor and come and work in church, like attending the prayer meetings, visiting the poor, praying for people at work. We just never get around to do it, with a long list of excuses.

God is not looking for obedience grounded in a slave mentality. He wants us to want to obey. Obedience should come naturally. There is nothing so offending when my spouse makes it clear that they did something out of obedience and I should take note that it was not easy, and that actually they did not want to do it. Love says: you should have wanted to do it for me, because you love me!

When people commit sin, adultery, deceit, selfish ambition, selfishness I cannot but question their love for God. Even more, I question their experiential knowledge of the Love of God.

No one filled with the love of God, can continue in sin.

We should focus more on trying to understand and come to see for ourselves the width, depth, and height of His love. (Eph 3:16-19) His love is what heals us. His love quench the hunger of your deepest desires. His love completes every yearning and longing you have in your heart. His love restores all the heartbreak. It is in seeing His love that we understand that all our desires were actually seeking Him. No husband or wife, no children, no perfect job, no conquest of any kind, can permanently fill and satisfy your desires like God. He is the author of Love. He is love! There is no true love without Him.

Let us study this passage closely in Matthew 7.

In vers 15 we are warned of false teachers. Ravenous wolves! How will you be able to discern them? By their fruits. Meaning the stuff they do! How they live, their attitude, values, habits and actions will prove whether they are true or not. In vers 17-19 Jesus explains that fruit bearing is a natural process. No matter how hard a citrus tree will strive to bear bananas, it cannot. You bear naturally according to your DNA. This is why our natures needs to be transformed by God. We need to be born again. (Joh 3:3-5; 1 Pet 1:21; 2 Cor 5:17) When we are changed from the inside we will naturally bear His fruit. (Gal 5:21-22) The opposite list mentioned in Galatians 5, is called “works” of the flesh. You cannot work godliness from the flesh. These people have a show of godliness but lacking the power. (2 Tim 3:5) When God transforms us from within, He becomes the means and power towards Godliness. He works His grace in us to do according to His will. (Phil 2:13)

Someone who is still struggling with sin, has not yet received this power. This is how you know that you walk in His grace. You overcome sin naturally. (Rom 5:17) Through God’s mercy we have gained access, but through His grace we have received power to overcome. (Heb 4:14-16) Obedience is thus not a work like that of a slave. Godly obedience is a grace that He works in us, because of our faith in Him. We have come to the place of desperation because we find no good in ourselves, we simply cannot perform His will. (Rom 7:19-25) But thank God through Jesus Christ, I find a power in Him that enables me to overcome sin. (Rom 8:2)

Back to Matthew 7:

In vers 21 Jesus continue with His line of thought saying that not everyone who says to me Lord, Lord shall enter the Kingdom. He is not interested in what we have done for Him, even performing miracles. Did we obey Him? This is what He is looking for. Vers 21 exclaimed: “You who practice lawlessness!”

Let us all come to realize this truth – The law cannot save you and make you right with God. But you cannot disobey the law and say you love Him. Whoever therefor breaks one of these commandments and teaches men so, will be called least in the Kingdom. (Mat 5:19) You are my friends if you do what I command them. (Joh 15:15) My food is to do the will of God. (Joh 4:34) As many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are sons of God. (Rom 8:14) Obedience is important to God.

You cannot divorce your spouse, and say I love God. You are breaking His law! He hates divorce! (Mal 2:16) Read (Mal 2:12-17) It also speaks of people bringing their sacrifices of worship to God, they come with weeping and crying. But you deal treacherously with the wife of your youth? You have wearied the Lord with your words v17.

You cannot be guilty of the following practices and fruit and be named among the elect. But now I have written to you not to keep company with anyone named a brother, who is sexually immoral, or covetous, or an idolater, or a reviler, or a drunkard, or an extortioner — not even to eat with such a person. (1 Cor 5:11)

When one turns from these and repent there is mercy and grace. (Heb 4:14) But when one identifies with sin, and line yourself up with it, you will be judged with the sin by the church. “put away from yourself this evil person” (1 Cor 5:13) Paul’s plea to the church in this whole chapter is: Why are you as the church not judging this person? Do you not know that little leaven leavens the whole lump? (v6) He exclaims: as absent from the body but present in the spirit, I have already judged this person! (v3)

God will cut away the branch that does not bear fruit. (John 15:2) If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered; and they gather them and throw them into the fire, and they are burned. (v6)

We cannot escape God’s law. We cannot disobey Him, and think we can correct our rebellion with nice words and emotional worship songs! May we be totally raptured in His love! May we be so filled with His presence and love that shines on our darkness and draws us unto Himself, so that He can heal us. “For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. 21 But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God.” (Joh 3:18)

We all like to know God. We even presume we know Him. What a shock it will be one day to hear: “I never knew you; depart from Me!” (Mat 7:23) When we read further in Mathew 7:24-29 Jesus continues to explain why this is so important for us to not just hear His words but to obey Him. When we only hear, but do not obey we are like someone who builds his house on sand. This is why so many Christian leaders and people are losing their testimony and fall into sin. They did not obey! Whether you are a Christian for many years or only a few months the same standard is set for everyone –obedience! You need to mix your hearing with actions of faith. For indeed the gospel was preached to us as well as to them; but the word which they heard did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in those who heard it. (Heb 4:2)

Why do some Christian believers marriage’s fail, are their business not producing good success, and their relationship with people always in troublesome waters? I am over simplifying. But hear the truth: Obedience is good fruit! Obedience is building your house on the rock! Obedience is what gives us authority. (2 Cor 10:6)

though He was a Son, yet He learned obedience by the things which He suffered. 9 And having been perfected, He became the author of eternal salvation to all who obey Him, (Heb 5:8) Even Jesus had to learn obedience! We do not learn obedience when everything is going well. It is when we struggling through difficulties and hardship, that we need to hear from God what to do. Do not pray to God for the problem to go away. Rather ask Him for a ‘Jesus’ strategy on how to overcome it. We are not victims of people’s wrongdoing. We cannot blame others for our sin. In God, in the scriptures, in the life and way of Christ there is solutions to be found on how to handle every difficulty! Instead of searching for the problem in someone else, rather seek the answer in the Word of God. Let the Holy Spirit guide and teach you His ways. Learn from other believers who have already discovered truths and ways on how to overcome. I have found that with obedience, comes the grace to obey. Before obedience the task may seem daunting, but the moment you agree to do it, you will feel the energy of God’s Spirit working in you to do it. The more you obey, the more you will want to obey. Just do it!

We all know the feeling when your spouse, declares that “they love you” yet when you ask them to do something for you, they forget, or went and did something else for you. This is really frustrating. May God wash our hearts and work His grace of reverence and the fear of the Lord in our hearts, dealing with all rebellion, hardness of heart, unwillingness to yield, resentment, excuses, procrastination, and everything that hinders us to walk an obedient life to His Glory! God is most glorified in us, when Christ is most evident in us!

We receive His obedience by faith.

Grace and Peace

Apostle Jan and Prophet Chantál, called by the grace of God to preach the Gospel of the Kingdom of Jesus Christ.

 

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Jan Oosthuizen

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