John 15:9-10 As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you; abide in my love. If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father's commandments and abide in his love.
Oh do you love Jesus? Do you really really love Jesus? Tell me why you love Jesus? This is why we love Jesus, because he first loved us. Oh how I love JesusÖ.
How do we love Jesus? How do I love thee, let me count the waysÖ.
Hmmm, this is a problem, I canít think of anything I do to show I love Jesus. What do you suppose Jesus would like me to do? Oh yes, I remember, Jesus said, "If you love me, you will keep my commandments."
How is it then, that we have come to think that Christians do not have to do anything. Why is it that we have come to think that even though Jesus said, "If you love me, you will keep my commandments." That somehow he didnít really mean it. Who told us that because we are human, that of course we cannot keep the law, or the commandments. God knew we couldnít so, it really doesnít matter. For while according to our human nature, we cannot keep the commandments perfectly, if we are in Christ, we are a new creation, we are a child of God, and what was impossible when we were just human, is possible, by the grace of God, for the child of God.
You see, that IF in "If you keep my commandments" doesnít say, we canít Ö There is another kind of IF - this is not IF, but of course you canít -- this is the OTHER IF - IF and of course you will. This If is not the result of what we do, but the result of what God has done for us in Jesus Christ, this IF is the result of the love of God, which changes us, which forgives our sins, which makes us a new creation, and so it is as a new creation, as a child of God by grace through faith, that we of course, love Jesus and keep his commands.
The point of this IF is that we will keep the commandments as long as we are abiding in Jesus love, or to use another analogy, as long as we are in Godís hands. When we are in Godís hands, Godís love keeps us doing Godís will. Godís love keeps us from rebelling. Godís love keeps us from seeking our ways and our will.
So if you are in Godís hands you are safe, and by the grace of God through the love which comes to us in Jesus Christ, we keep the commandments.Romans 8:33-39 Who shall bring any charge against God's elect? It is God who justifies; 8:34 who is to condemn? Is it Christ Jesus, who died, yes, who was raised from the dead, who is at the right hand of God, who indeed intercedes for us? 8:35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 8:37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 8:38 For I am sure that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, 8:39 nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
So leaving the hand of God, or not abiding in the love of Jesus is like jumping out of heaven and into the fires of hell. And jumping into the fires of hell, is jumping into a hole, which has no way out -- who would knowingly jump into such a place? We may jump in a pool or jump in a lake, but we know before hand that those have a way out. We may jump in the pool, but that is largely because we are not satisfied with where we are -- why would anyone want to jump out of the hand of God, or the abiding love of Jesus?
Do you know what abiding love is? In the olden days we used to talk about oatmeal which sticks to your ribs, it goes into you and stays with you. Jesus love comes into us, and stays with us, and it lasts longer than oatmeal. Oatmeal goes in an breakfast and lasts till dinner, but when Jesus comes in it starts and Baptism and lasts forever. Or it would, but some people say, Jesus, donít stick with me, I donít want your love, or anything else, get out of my life.
The only problem with that is that we need the grace of God, forgiveness and life everlasting that come only in the name of Jesus. We want Jesus always with us, and all his love and grace.