“I hate double-minded people, but I love your law. You are my refuge and my shield; I have put my hope in your word. Away from me, you evildoers, that I may keep the commands of my God!” Psalm 119:113-114 NIV
What does it take to love God’s word? God has to change the human heart first. This is not possible by man’s own ability or even choice. By nature we reject God’s word, or else we try to follow it by our own ability or motivation, which is not really pleasing to God. The Bible refers to it as “the flesh” or “sinful nature”. The flesh/sinful nature is not just capable of evil; it is also capable of doing good things. But good deeds done in the flesh or according to the sinful nature is still not acceptable to God. In fact, it is hateful to God because it is self-righteousness, rather than the righteousness of God. Only faith in Jesus Christ can bring about a change of heart, and therefore that alone can produce a true love for God’s word that is pleasing and glorifying to God. This is the work of the Holy Spirit. By faith we receive the grace to change our orientation from self-righteousness (trying to earn our right standing with God by being self-righteous) to the righteousness of God, which is based on what God has done, is doing, and will do for us in and through Jesus Christ. It is by God’s grace alone that we begin to love the word of God, as the psalmist describes it. We cannot do it by our own power. Even if we try, we will fail, because by nature we are double-minded. But once we love God’s word, as the Spirit of God works in us, we must keep His commands. We must treat it as our refuge and shield. We must put our hope in His word. This choice, and the ability to implement it, are made possible through the amazing work of God’s Spirit in our hearts through faith in Jesus Christ. Praise be to God!
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