DO YOU HAVE CLEAR PRIORITIES?

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What should be your greatest priority each day?

Do you have a ready answer?

Have you ever thought about it?

Do you think it even matters whether you have an answer?

For those who claim to be Christ followers and submit to God’s word, there is a clear answer to this question about our priorities.

(drum roll)

Love for God is to be our highest priority.

This has been a consistent theme in the Bible.

When God first presented his covenant with the people of Israel, these words accompanied it:

 “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart.” (Deuteronomy 6:4-6)

After the people had sinned with the golden calf, the Lord reaffirmed his covenant with them by saying:

 “Israel, what does the Lord your God require of you, but to fear the Lord your God, to walk in all his ways, to love him, to serve the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul.” (Deuteronomy 10:12)

When the Lord spoke about future rebellion by his people, he also spoke of how he would restore them and how he would restore them:

 “The Lord your God will circumcise your heart and the heart of your offspring, so that you will love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, that you may live.” (Deuteronomy 30:6)

After Israel conquered the land God promised to them and were ready to settle in it, the Lord gave this warning:

Be very careful to observe the commandment and the law that Moses the servant of the Lord commanded you, to love the Lord your God, and to walk in all his ways and to keep his commandments and to cling to him and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul.” (Joshua 22:5)

When Jesus was asked, “Which commandment is most important of all?” He answered:

 “The most important is ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one.  And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.” (Mark 12:28-31)

The context in each of these passages is what it means to be the people of God.

The Old Testament passages come at times of confirmation to Israel that they are in a covenant relationship with God. In the New Testament passage, Jesus is answering the question of God’s priority for us.

As believers, we should recognize that it’s God’s job to establish our priorities and it’s our responsibility to act upon them. And God has consistently declared that profound love for him should be the identity of his people. Indeed, failure to deeply love God should be almost be unintelligible to us – something makes no sense at all!

Each morning, regardless of circumstances, our highest priority is to love God today.

This not only gives direction to life, it is an enormous help when we are in those moments when we have no idea what to do. Take a breath and remember, whatever we are to do in this moment, it should involve showing God that we love him!

 

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