The Lord is Testing You
So many know the first and greatest commandment—to love the Lord God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength. A vital question to be answered, “Is there any way I can know that I really do love Him like He wants me to love Him? Has God given me any guidelines to measure my love?”
We are so blessed that He has told us. Before Moses repeated the Ten Commandments the second time in Deuteronomy, he told the Jews they should seek the Lord with all their heart and soul (Deut. 4:29). The commandments are found in chapter five and then in chapter six he gives God’s greatest commandment about loving Him above all else (Deut. 6:5). In chapter 13, Moses gives God’s test so the Jews could know if they truly loved God.
He told Israel that the time would come when false prophets and dreamers would arise and seek to lead them away from the will of God. He even described the signs and wonders that might accompany their message. Read his words carefully. “You shall not listen to the words of that prophet or that dreamer of dreams, for the Lord your God is testing you to know whether you love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul.” (Deut. 13:3). Here is the test! God allows the presence of teachers with amazing abilities to come to His people to test them! Our response to keeping His commandments is the visible manifestation of the kind of love we have in our hearts. While we may think we love the Lord and we may feel deeply that we love Him, God gives us this visible test so that we can know!
How serious is God about this? The Jews were instructed to put that teacher to death. His suaveness is described as the way he was enticing them to ignore what God said (Deut. 13:5). How serious was it? Even if the teacher was your brother, your child or your best friend, he was to die! He had secretly brought his ideas to entice you to ignore God. He was to show no pity, nor should provisions be made to spare him or conceal him or his actions (Deut. 13:6-8).
In fact, you were told to cast the first stone to bring about the death of this loved relative or friend and then the nation should do as you had done. You were to continue throwing stones until the one you loved so much was dead (Deut. 13:9-10). Your love for this person must never be greater than your love for God.
In your life you will face this test. Your decision to become a Christian demands you love God more than family or friends. You likely will be confronted by teachers you respect and love. Remember that how you respond in this situation is God’s visible way to measure your love. Do not fail this test!