If you keep my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my father’s commands and remain in his love.
I’ve said these things to you so that my joy may be in you, and so that your joy may be full.
Changing Your Narrative On Obedience
It always saddens me when I hear that someone thinks God is someone who requires obedience for the purpose of appeasement, as if it is in the mere keeping of rules that God’s satisfaction is attained. How joyless that would indeed be. How small of a “God” is that? Obviously it is a god of our own making–pathetic and no greater than any average human. Regrettably, we often painfully pass this god on to others.
Those who believe God to be a being in need of petty appeasement have likely never really met Jesus, for he shows us that his Father is not a god of appeasement, but rather more like the “God of alignment”.
Admittedly, upon a surface glance, some Scripture passages do appear to show God as requiring obedience before giving love. But taking just a slightly deeper look reveals that it is much richer and better than “Do what I say, and then I will love you.” You will not find that message anywhere in Scripture. It must be twisted to render such a heretical interpretation.
How we read and how we listen colors how we receive.
What Scripture, and more importantly Jesus, tells us is, “You were designed to live attached to me, aligned with my good ways. My commands generously show you how to be in alignment with Me-perfect love. They are not to cruelly deprive you of anything good whatsoever.”
It is about remaining, abiding, aligning, not about earning.
“If you keep my commands you will remain in my love” not “you will earn my love.” You have that already, simply because you exist.
Will you align with that love that brought you into existence?
There’s a way things work—a way this life, and how to live it well, is designed to function properly. And it comes graciously from that design’s Designer.
The reason Jesus gave for telling us how these things work?
To keep your butt in line, not mess up, and appease his appetite for perfection?
So that you can share my joy. So that my joy may be in you. So that your joy may be full. Share my joy and you will miss out on nothing.
Meditating on all of this a couple days ago, I heard Jesus say, “I am coaxing you away from the tragedy of being distracted from, and missing out on, a satisfying life.”