Jesus said to him,” ‘You shall love the Lord your God with (in) all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’
“This is the first and great commandment.
“And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’
“On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.”
I want to begin an exciting new series of columns about ‘the heart’! These columns will refresh you and probe your heart and mind. I also pray you will invite the Holy Spirit to open your understanding. Pause and ask God for understanding just now.
Jesus said to him,” ‘you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart’¦
The Heritage Bible very accurately uses the word ‘in’.
‘You shall love the Lord your God ‘in’ all your heart’¦
The Bible declares, “God is Love’.
There is nothing on earth like knowing, receiving and experiencing the love of God. It is the greatest treasure you can have. Oh, the joy of that love. Oh, the peace and rest in that assurance.
As we welcome Jesus into our lives He makes known to us the love of God. As a matter of fact it is His love that draws us to Him.
Our heart becomes the dwelling place of God and His love! That is why we can say God is with me, because Jesus is with you! The Holy Spirit of God indwells you.
It is almost too much to comprehend but God’s love is poured into our hearts. Hallelujah!
Now we are to love God with all our heart! With all’¦ in all’¦our heart !
Now as you know I am writing a column and not teaching theology or doing an English lesson. Ha!
To me when we say we are to love the Lord our God ‘with’ all our heart it seems to put the emphasis on me ‘doing’ something, my effort, my will, my obedience. It seems to be a work or an effort on our part. But when I read in the Heritage Bible how the translation says ‘in all your heart’. It gives me great peace and a glorious thrill.
The effort is not mine. God’s love is poured into me. It rises up like a glorious spring and flows into all of me filling every part of my heart with the fullness of the love of God. Now all my heart is full of the love of God. No room for anything else! His love fills every crevice! As the Blood of Jesus cleanses the heart of sin the love of God comes in to fill us to overflowing.
Now from within me in a real and natural way I love God. How much? In all my heart! Glory, Awesome! And with all my heart. With and in my heart I love God. All my being loves Him. As His love fills me the old nature is gone. We begin living in the love of God. We soon reflect the love of God in our lives and witness and love for others. But this love is from God. No self created.
The word for heart here means “thoughts or feelings’ according to ‘Strong’s Greek-Hebrew Dictionary’.
Here is how “Vines Expository Dictionary’ defines ‘heart’.
kardia “Strong’s Number’ 2588, “the heart” ( Eng. , “cardiac,” etc.),
The chief organ of physical life (“for the life of the flesh is in the blood,” Leviticus 17:11, occupies the most important place in the human system. By an easy transition the word came to stand for man’s entire mental and moral activity, both the rational and the emotional elements. In other words, the heart is used figuratively for the hidden springs of the personal life. “The Bible describes human depravity as in the `heart,’ because sin is a principle which has its seat in the center of man’s inward life, and then `defiles’ the whole circuit of his action, Matthew 15:19,20.
As to its usage in the NT it denotes:
The heart as the sphere of Divine influence, Romans 2:15; Acts 15:9….
The heart, as lying deep within, contains `the hidden man ,’ 1 Peter 3:4, the real man .
T he seat of physical life , Acts 14:17; James. 5:5;
The seat of moral nature and spiritual life, the seat of grief , John 14:1; Romans 9:2;
2 Corinthians 2:4;
Joy , John 16:22; Ephesians 5:19;
The desires , Matthew 5:28; 2 Peter 2:14;
The affections , Luke 24:32; Acts 21:13;
The perceptions , John 12:40; Eph. 4:18;
The thoughts , Matthew 9:4; Heb. 4:12;
The understanding , Matthew 13:15; Romans 1:21;
The reasoning powers , Mark 2:6; Luke 24:38;
The imagination , Luke 1:51;
The conscience : Acts 2:37; 1 John 3:20;
Intentions : Hebrews 4:12, 1 Peter 4:1;
Purpose : Acts 11:23; 2 Corinthians. 9:7; the will, Romans 6:17; Colossians 3:15;
Faith : Mark 11:23; Romans 10:10; Hebrews 3:12.
(From Vine’s Expository Dictionary of Biblical Words)
(Copyright (C) 1985, Thomas Nelson Publishers)
As the love of God fills our heart it brings the knowledge that we can love God all the time. In every waking moment and even in our sleep we love God.
I love God who is Father,
I love God who is Jesus,
I love God who is Holy Spirit,
I love God in all my heart and with all my heart.
When we have anything in our lives that does not look like Jesus it is sin! As sins and love for other things of this world creep into us it comes in conflict with the Holy Spirit that indwells us. Now for repentance and confession to Jesus. He forgives and cleanses and becomes Lord and God’s love afresh fills us.
Welcome the love of God now and be free.
Raise your hands and smile! Shout out for joy!
Now in your own words express aloud your love!
You my feel like crying or smiling or leaping or jumping or just laying in silence on the floor but just be free! From your heart you my find yourself even speaking words you don’t understand. Fear not and welcome whatever the Holy Spirit gives you.
Love! Love God! Love Him with and in all your heart!
Please note that this is just the first of many weeks to come of columns about the heart. Just one point at a time, slowly get it and go live it for a week then come back next week for the next point. Those of you who take this journey with me will be blessed and changed, I can assure you of that. God willing every Sunday we will be posting a new column as we cover this subject.
Pilgrim followers of Jesus,
Arthur and Denise Blessitt