AND YOU SHALL BE MY DISCIPLES – Lesson #42
- Keep My Commandments
“If you love me, you will keep my commandments” (John 14:15).
WHAT DOES IT MEAN?
The plain face-value reading is adequate. If you love Him, you will do what He has asked of you. You will do what He has commanded.
However, be aware that This is NOT a statement which says, “IF YOU LOVE ME, THEN YOU ARE BOUND BY OATH AND THE LAW TO DO KEEP MY COMMANDMENTS”.
It IS instead a PROPHETIC word describing a RELATIONSHIP. It is saying that:
“IF YOU LOVE ME, THEN YOU WILL WANT TO KEEP MY COMMANDMENTS
IF YOU LOVE ME YOU WILL BE ABLE TO KEEP MY COMMANDMENTS”
From its root meaning, this word “love” (AGAPAO ἀγαπάω in the Greek) is properly understood to denote love based on esteem ( diligo). This is distinct from love expressed as a spontaneous natural affection or an emotional and unreasoning love (amo φιλέω from the Greek – amorous English.).
AGAPE, LOVE (ἀγαπάω) is used in the New Testament of a Christian’s love toward God and man. It is the spiritual affection which follows the direction of the will, and which, therefore, unlike that feeling which is instinctive and unreasoning, can be commended as a duty.
It is the highest form of love and esteem when we are duty-bound, not from our emotions or passion but from an act of our will to commit to love unconditionally.
If this AGAPE is our type of love toward God, then we are equally committed to keep His commandments, not as an obligation nor by the force of law, but by an act of our will.
Next we have the words “TO KEEP”. There are at least 6 different Greek words in the New Testament which can be translated as “to keep”.
The word used for “KEEP” in this verse is TEREO – to observe, to watch, to preserve, to hold fast; to attend to carefully, take care of; to keep, one in the state in which he is
The idea contained in this word ” keep ” is translated to in the same fashion as you would see a mother and her baby interacting. Think on this:
The relationship of a newborn and his or her mother is wrought from much excitement and anticipation followed by months of patient preparation and finally realized through great difficulty and pain.
The mother’s love is born of an innate unconditional love and duty which is brought about by the process pregnancy and birth.
Imagine the scene as a mother holds and feed her newborn in the first days.
Imagine the baby, suckling and watch his or her mother intently. Over time, the baby begins to take on the expressions and attributes of the mother. The bond between them grows and strengthens. Their love deepens and as their commitment grows. The bond of a parent and child.
This is a representation and an expression of “Loving God” and of “keeping His Commandments”. It is saying,
- Being Born of God means
- Staying Near to God, and
- Staring into “His Face” and coming to know HIm
- Resting in His Arms
- Loving God unconditionally
- Taking on His attributes
- Being His son or daughter
- Becoming like Him so others see the resemblance
Then, having come to know Him and to love Him, you will keep His commandments.
Now, it is your turn:
HOW MUST YOU DO IT?
HOW MUST YOU TEACH IT?
Your Brother and Friend,