Keep Yourselves in the Love of God Jude 21 CLICK TITLE FOR AUDIO
You have heard “God loves you.” It is true. Like a parents find satisfaction in tender moments of love for their children so the Lord is pleased when we respond to his love for us [1 Jn 4:19]. That’s why Jude says Keep yourselves in the love of God. Notice the Lord’s love for Lazarus and John [Jn 11:36; Jn 13:23, etc.]. The reason that the Lord takes such good care of his children is not that his children are such good people or that their prayers are so good; he takes such good care of us because he loves us. Keeping yourself in the love of God affects how you deal with:
His Son – Jn 3:16 you will respond to his offer of love in the gospel and you will respond to his love as his child [Jn 16:27] – Martha, like many Christians today, was careful and troubled about many things – Mary chose to sit at Jesus’ feet, instead – and she made the better choice.
His Commandments – Jn 14:21, 1 Jn 5:13 – keeping his commandments will not be grievous because you love him and he will love you in response – his commandments are not strait jackets to keep you from enjoying life; they are there to protect you and keep you in his love. And when you mess up, rather than dwelling on your sin in shame and guilt, confess your sin and return to the love of God.
His Words – Jn 14:23 – you won’t read the Bible out of obligation and duty; you will read his words in response to his love for you and he will speak to you in his words.
Others – Jn 15:9-13 – nestled in the context of the vine and the branches is this beautiful truth – God loves us and in the same way that he loves us we are to love others – in other words, if we attempt to win souls simply as a duty we will be mechanical and programmed in our approach to others – but if we tell them about Jesus and preach the gospel as an outgrowth of his love for us and, through us, his love for them, then our approach with the gospel is going to be with compassion and care – our joy and our love for others are full when we keep ourselves in the love of God.
Your Cross – Gal 2:20 – our crucifixion with Christ is rooted in his love for us – the cross of discipleship [Matt 10:38] is the best thing that ever happened to you because it is what draws you to the love of God and away from the love of the world – when bad things happen don’t ask “Why” and question God’s love for you – his love is fixed – allow the trial to draw you to his love not away from it.
The World – 1 Jn 2:15 [Jn 12:43] – when a man loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him – many Christians say, “I love to…” – fill that in with whatever you love – to the extent that there is something in the world that you love, you limit the capacity of the Father’s love in your life – to keep yourself fully in the love of God, love Him and not the things in the world.
Conclusion: If you are lost, receive God’s Son and His love – if you are saved, keep yourself in the love of God – never forget that he loves you and his love for you and your response to his love are key to fully enjoying your salvation.