But now since I've come to the Lord and have been reading the Bible for decades, I've learned the answer to the question, What does God want? Almighty God wants certain things from all of us who have been washed in the blood of the Lamband been forgiven.
Today, let's look at just four very important things that God wants from all Christians now that we are His children. (There are other important things God wants from us not mentioned in this teaching.)
One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, "Of all the commandments, which is the most important?" "The most important one," answered Jesus, "is this: 'Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.' The second is this: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' There is no commandment greater than these." (Mark 12:28-31)Please notice the emphasis here is to be on us loving God - not God loving us! Many in our day have so stressed the love of God that our love for Him is not even mentioned, much less exalted as it should be! This is the FIRST and GREATEST commandment! Our love for God is to be more than our love for our family, friends, etc., even our own lives.
Love for God is simple obedience:
This is love for God: to obey his commands. And his commands are not burdensome (1 John 5:3)We are to be very careful regarding this!
If you love me, you will obey what I command. (John 14:15)
So be very careful to love the LORD your God. (Josh 23:11)Notice after the resurrection and ascension of the Lord Jesus, He mentions this point as being what he held against New Testament Christians, even though they had some tremendously good traits:
To the angel of the church in Ephesus write: These are the words of him who holds the seven stars in his right hand and walks among the seven golden lampstands: I know your deeds, your hard work and your perseverance. I know that you cannot tolerate wicked men, that you have tested those who claim to be apostles but are not, and have found them false. You have persevered and have endured hardships for my name, and have not grown weary. Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken your first love. (Rev 2:1-4)They once had the right kind of love for God, but didn't have it anymore. This serious backslidden condition was apparent to Jesus, even though people might never detect it with all the good they were doing!
Great and wonderful things await him who loves God:
Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him. (James 1:12)We can tell if someone is lying about loving God:
However, as it is written: "No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him" - but God has revealed it to us by his Spirit. The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God. (1 Cor 2:9,10)
Listen, my dear brothers: Has not God chosen those who are poor in the eyes of the world to be rich in faith and to inherit the kingdom he promised those who love him? (James 2:5)
If anyone says, "I love God," yet hates his brother, he is a liar. For anyone who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot love God, whom he has not seen. And he has given us this command: Whoever loves God must also love his brother. (1 John 4:20,21)He keeps his covenant of love with those who love him:
I prayed to the LORD my God and confessed: O Lord, the great and awesome God, who keeps his covenant of love with all who love him and obey his commands. (Dan 9:4)God will test us regarding our love for Him:
If a prophet, or one who foretells by dreams, appears among you and announces to you a miraculous sign or wonder, and if the sign or wonder of which he has spoken takes place, and he says, "Let us follow other gods" (gods you have not known) "and let us worship them," you must not listen to the words of that prophet or dreamer. The LORD your God is testing you to find out whether you love him with all your heart and with all your soul. (Deu 13:1-3)False prophets are allowed as a test.
And now, O Israel, what does the LORD your God ask 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, and to observe the Lord's commands and decrees that I am giving you today for your own good? (Deu 10:12,13)The word serve in that passage means:
to work (in any sense); by impl. to serve, till, (caus.) enslave, etc.: X be, keep in bondage, be bondmen, bond-service, compel, do, dress, ear, execute, + husbandman, keep, labour (-ing man), bring to pass, (cause to, make to) serve (-ing, self), (be, become) servant (-s), do (use) service, till (-er), transgress [from margin], (set a) work, be wrought, worshiper.Remember, Paul described himself as a bondservant of Christ.
According to the following Scripture, this issue of serving God is the only distinction between the righteous and wicked:
And you will again see the distinction between the righteous and the wicked, between those who serve God and those who do not. (Mal 3:18)God wants us to serve him with joy and gladness:
Because you did not serve the LORD your God joyfully and gladly in the time of prosperity, therefore in hunger and thirst, in nakedness and dire poverty, you will serve the enemies the LORD sends against you. He will put an iron yoke on your neck until he has destroyed you. (Deu 28:47,48)He also wants us to serve him with fear. Note this fear God scripture:
Serve the LORD with fear and rejoice with trembling. (Psa 2:11)We've been bought with a price. We are not our own. He wants us to serve Him! Hence, Christians are commonly called servants.
So you also, when you have done everything you were told to do, should say, "We are unworthy servants; we have only done our duty." (Luke 17:10)The word servant means:
So then, men ought to regard us as servants of Christ and as those entrusted with the secret things of God. (1 Cor 4:1)
Live as free men, but do not use your freedom as a cover-up for evil; live as servants of God. (1 Pet 2:16)
"Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness. Stretch out your hand to heal and perform miraculous signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus." After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly. (Acts 4:29-31)
The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show his servants what must soon take place. He made it known by sending his angel to his servant John (Rev 1:1)
a slave (lit. or fig., invol. or vol.; frequently therefore in a qualified sense of subjection or subverviency):bond (-man), servant.The following Old Testament Scripture gives us details about how to serve God:
But be sure to fear the LORD and serve him faithfully with all your heart; consider what great things he has done for you. (1 Sam 12:24)
Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; (Prov 3:5)This word trust there means:
batach, baw-takh'; a prom. root; prop. to hie for refuge [but not so precipitately as H2620]; fig. to trust, be confident or sure:- be bold (confident, secure, sure), careless (one, woman), put confidence, (make to) hope, (put, make to) trust.While the heathen people trusted in chariots and horses when going into battle, the psalmist said in contrast their trust was elsewhere:
Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the LORD our God. (Psa 20:7)The object of our trust for all of our problems is to be God. Furthermore, not to trust God is to anger him:
Blessed is the man who makes the LORD his trust, who does not look to the proud, to those who turn aside to false gods. (Psa 40:4)Daniel the prophet was delivered from the lions because he trusted God:
Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge. Selah (Psa 62:8)
When the LORD heard them, he was very angry; his fire broke out against Jacob, and his wrath rose against Israel, for they did not believe in God or trust in his deliverance. (Psa 78:21,22)
The king was overjoyed and gave orders to lift Daniel out of the den. And when Daniel was lifted from the den, no wound was found on him, because he had trusted in his God. (Dan 6:23)Notice these other important Scriptures. Especially remember we are not to trust in man:
You who fear him, trust in the LORD - he is their help and shield. (Psa 115:11)
It is better to take refuge in the LORD than to trust in man. It is better to take refuge in the LORD than to trust in princes. (Psa 118:8,9)
Do not put your trust in princes, in mortal men, who cannot save. (Psa 146:3)
Trust in the LORD forever, for the LORD, the LORD, is the Rock eternal. (Isa 26:4)
Woe to those who go down to Egypt for help, who rely on horses, who trust in the multitude of their chariots and in the great strength of their horsemen, but do not look to the Holy One of Israel, or seek help from the LORD. (Isa 31:1)
The LORD is good, a refuge in times of trouble. He cares for those who trust in him, (Nahum 1:7)
Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. (John 14:1)
But if from there you seek the LORD your God, you will find him if you look for him with all your heart and with all your soul. (Deu 4:29)What does it mean to seek the Lord? It is shown in this next verse:
Just as it is written in the Law of Moses, all this disaster has come upon us, yet we have not sought the favor of the LORD our God by turning from our sins and giving attention to your truth. (Dan 9:13)So to seek the LORD means to turn from your sins and give attention to his truth (the Bible). Elsewhere we read:
From one man he made every nation of men, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live. God did this so that men would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from each one of us. (Acts 17:26,27)bear fruit and won't perish. That is what God wants.
And you, my son Solomon, acknowledge the God of your father, and serve him with wholehearted devotion and with a willing mind, for the LORD searches every heart and understands every motive behind the thoughts. If you seek him, he will be found by you; but if you forsake him, he will reject you forever. (1 Chr 28:9)
Blessed are they who keep his statutes and seek him with all their heart. (Psa 119:2)
You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. (Jer. 29:13).