One of the scribes came and heard them arguing, and recognizing that He had answered them well, asked Him, “What commandment is the first of all?” Jesus answered, “The foremost is, ‘Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God is one Lord; 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 12:28-30.
Today your LORD (יהוה) God says:
Today we are on Life Lesson No. 4 on how to live the abiding life. Jesus, who speaks My Words for He is My Word, made a promise to you, “If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.” John 15:7. Many people assume because they believe in Jesus and know at least something of what He said that they are abiding in Him and His Words are abiding in them, but this is generally not the case. Very few have truly lived the abiding life. And how do you discern whether you or others are living the abiding life? By your fruit, that is, the fruit of your lips and the fruit of your lives. Remember this promise was made in the setting of Jesus likening believers to branches abiding in a vine producing fruit. And how do you know what vine a branch is on? By its fruit. It produces the fruit of the one to which it is attached and receiving input from. And how do you know how deeply it is abiding in that vine? By the quality, purity, freshness, soundness, and quantity of the fruit it produces.
And how do you discern this? Just listen to someone’s conversation long enough and you will find out whether My Word is abiding in them. If they gossip, judge, complain, are unforgiving and bitter, question My actions, lie, talk about lack, are sarcastic, use obscene language, are offensive or abusive in how they talk to you, swear, are angry, are mean, are depressed, use My Name or that of Jesus for ungodly exclamations, or are agreeing with government laws that are contrary to My commandments, you know they are not abiding in Me and My Words are not abiding in them and that I cannot trust them with whatever they ask for because they will ask with a wrong motive and squander or not value My precious gifts.
And if any of those red flags are in your speech it is time to renew your mind. In other words, change what you are allowing your mind to dwell upon, for your thoughts produce your words (the fruit of your lips) and your actions (the fruit of your lives) follow your words just as a steering wheel turns a car.
Abiding means agreeing. There is tremendous power in agreement. Why don’t you just agree with what I say about you and walk with Me? I tell you that I have forgiven all your sins and that of first importance is that Christ died for your sins so that you are holy and blameless without reproach before Me. Agree with that, stop dwelling on regrets about past sins, I don’t remember them anymore. I tell you that I heal all your diseases and that by His stripes you are healed. Agree with that. Just agree and you will see how beautiful your life will become—it will be just like My beloved Son, for He always agreed with Me, for He knew My Words were words of eternal life. And that is how simple your life can be. Just agree and refuse to dwell on or speak contrary words of degradation.
We began our journey to living the abiding life with Life Lesson No. 1: “Forgive, Forget, and Proceed.” Next was Life Lesson No. 2: “Do not Fear, Only Keep Believing,” and then Life Lesson No. 3: “Give and it Will Be Given You.” You would do well to go back and read these to continue on.
Today is Lesson No. 4: “Love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your mind, with all your soul, and with all your strength.” This Lesson encompasses something so great that it is beyond the scope of all you can ask, think, or imagine. This is the very essence of the abiding life for it touches who I AM and who you really are. And that is why Jesus called it the first and greatest of all the commandments. Until you begin to get a hold on this you really cannot understand the abiding life. For essentially, above all else, the abiding life is a life lived, immersed in, fueled by, and carried by Love. And Jesus told you that just one sentence after the promise: “Just as the Father has loved Me; I have also 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.” John 15:9-10.
Do you see? “Abide in My love.” What does that mean? It simply means to imitate Me as My dear children and think, talk, and walk in love. Ephesians 5:1. And what is love? It is My very essence and being, love permits nothing contrary to enter. Love is always in the light for love has nothing to hide that is not open to all for it is pure goodness of motive and purpose. Love never harms the neighbor. Love does nothing that has to hide in the dark for it does not tolerate evil. When you give Me place in your life and give the devil no place, this transformation from darkness to light takes place. “For this reason also, since the day we heard of it, we have not ceased to pray for you and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so that you will walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, to please Him in all respects, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; strengthened with all power, according to His glorious might, for the attaining of all steadfastness and patience; joyously giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified us to share in the inheritance of the believers in Light. For He rescued us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.” Colossians 1:9-14.
And how does one walk in love? Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails. 1 Corinthians 13:4-8.
You may be considering your ways and thinking you do not see how you can do this all the time. Of yourself alone you cannot. Jesus explained, “As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me. I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.” John 15:4-5.
But now I will show you how you can do this all the time. The answer is simple but few people take the effort to do it, but once you have experienced it there will be no other way you want to live this life or for all eternity. And the good news is this life is yours now and forever. You just have to receive it. To live at a whole new level, the God level, so to speak, which is the Love level, you must be a partaker of My divine nature, you must, as My apostle Paul explained, “know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God.” Ephesians 3:19. And how do you do this? You get filled with the Holy Spirit. And that is your answer, “because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.” Romans 5:5. Jesus told you, “I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may be with you forever; that is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it does not see Him or know Him, but you know Him because He abides with you and will be in you.” John 14:16-17.
The Spirit-breathed seed of the Word generates fruit, the fruit of the Spirit, in the branches of the vine when My Word abides in you. The Spirit is divine life—resurrection power—flowing in the vine into the branches. The more of the Spirit you let into your heart, the more of His fruit is produced in your spirit and becomes the fruit of your lips and your life (your works). And what is the fruit of the Spirit? Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Galatians 5:22-23. And then the gifts of the Holy Spirit are distributed by Him into your life for the benefit of all. 1 Corinthians 12. And these are love gifts.
And how do you get filled to overflowing so that the rivers of life giving water Jesus promised would flow out of believers (and He was speaking of the Spirit) are flowing out of you and bringing healing, new life, and resurrection power into your mortal body and into the world? I tell you quite clearly, “And do not get drunk with wine, for that is dissipation, but be filled with the Spirit, speaking to YOURSELF in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody with your heart to the Lord; always giving thanks for all things in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to God, even the Father.” Ephesians 5:18-20. You become filled with the Holy Spirit by allowing Him to share My thoughts with you by opening your heart to Him in speaking My Word to yourself in song, making up your own melody in your heart. And you sing in the Spirit, spiritual songs. When I speak of praying or singing in the Spirit, I am speaking of tongues. The language of the spirit in you. And it is there I reveal mysteries to you. “For one who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men but to God; for no one understands, but by the Spirit he speaks mysteries.” 1 Corinthians 14:2. And when you speak in tongues you edify yourself—that is, build up your spirit which then can produce the fruit of the spirit that flows into your soul and your body and manifests in the world. My presence among you is by the manifestation of My Spirit in you and on you. Speaking in tongues is the sign of being filled with the Holy Spirit, just as it was on Pentecost Sunday, Acts 2:1-4, in Cornelius’ household, Acts 10:44-47, and in the believers in Ephesus. Acts 19:6. And as you see taking place on Pentecost Sunday, being filled with the Spirit showed, the crowd thought the Spirit filled believers were drunk! They had to have taken something, thought the amazed crowd, to be so filled with joy and praising Me as they prophesied. They were out of just concentrating on themselves and the life of the five senses into another realm. And you can live there too.
Let us go back now to when Moses first gave you the first of all the commandments, as Jesus called it, “Hear, O Israel! The LORD is our God, the LORD is one! You shall love the את LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might (in Hebrew, “meod,” meaning exceedingly, greatly). These words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand and they shall be as frontals on your forehead. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.” Deuteronomy 6:4-9.
Do you see? How do you carry out that commandment? By keeping My Words in your heart and teaching them and talking of them constantly—sitting, standing, walking, when you lie down, and when you rise up. And that is abiding in Me and My Words abiding in you. And that is loving Me with all your heart, soul, mind and strength. And My Words are pleasant words that bring health to all your flesh and strength to your bones. And they will give you great peace—shalom, shalom.
I love you and I have poured My love into you by My Holy Spirit, My gift to you in Jesus. If you love Me, you will keep My Words, and I will come to make My abode with you. When you abide in Me, I abide in you. And when I am with you, who or what can come against you? No one and nothing. You have nothing to fear—perfect love casts out all fear. Have you come to know and believe in the love I have for you? Just read My promises that are all “yes” to you in Jesus and do not speak against them, just agree.