The Difference Between Believing in God and Loving Him

We love and serve God according to the measure of revelation we have of His love for us.
We love and serve God according to the measure of revelation we have of His love for us. (Flickr/Creative Commons)

There is a difference between believing in the Lord and loving Him.

God loves everyone unconditionally, but how you respond to His love is what marks your Christian life. Let me illustrate this point with a little parable the Lord gave me. A father had three sons living under his roof, young twin boys and an older son. One day the twins got themselves in severe trouble which required a severe punishment from their father. They were grounded for an entire year. That's a very long time for any boy. But it came to pass that the older brother had compassion on both of them and propositioned to the father that he would take the punishment for them. Now watch this very carefully. Upon hearing the great news of their deliverance both of the twin boys expressed appreciation, but one was so grateful that he remained to serve his older brother for the entire year. Which of the twins believed his older brother? Both of them did. But which of them loved him? The one that served him. The difference in the twin boys was in their heart, and in their depth of response to their elder brother's love and sacrifice.

"We love Him because He first loved us" (John 4:19).

I believe the above verse is the great key to loving and serving God. We love and serve God according to the measure of revelation we have of His love for us. Love is pure because of choice. In our little parable, the elder brother did not require the twins to love him, but only to believe in what he did for them. Believing set them free. But in the light of the elder brother's sacrifice, the one twin saw his own value and worth, and responded with love. His servant's attitude and willingness to give back to his brother distinguished him from the other twin. This too is what distinguishes a loving Christian from only a believing one.

Furthermore, while we understand that God is no respecter of persons, we must understand that He has favorites. Sounds contradictory, doesn't it? Let me explain. Those of you who have children will understand this clearly. Any normal parent loves his children equally, but will have a more determined love toward the obedient child. A parent will naturally want to extend himself and his own goodness more to the obedient one. Compare the following two verses and set your own understanding.

"For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life" (John 3:16).

"He who has My commandments and keeps them is the one who loves Me. And he who loves Me will be loved by My Father. And I will love him and will reveal Myself to him" (John 14:21).

God loves the world unconditionally, but has a determined love for His obedient children. The loving Christian obeys God, not because he has to but because he wants to. Obedience is not based on law, but on love. God is not interested in perfect deeds but in a perfect heart. The one who truly loves God is guaranteed God's determined love and manifested presence. How wonderful is His beauty and grace! 

Bert Farias' books are forerunners to personal holiness, the move of God, and the return of the Lord. They also combat the departure from the faith and turning away from the truth we are seeing today. The Tumultuous 2020s and Beyond is his latest release to help believers navigate through the new decade and emerge as an authentic remnant. Other materials/resources are available on his website, Holy Fire Ministries. You can follow him personally on Facebook, his Facebook ministry page, or Twitter.

To contact us or to submit an article, click here.

Get Charisma's best content delivered right to your inbox! Never miss a big news story again. Click here to subscribe to the Charisma News newsletter.

Five ways to deepen your relationship with God, increase your faith and save money!

  • Deepen Your Relationship with God with a FREE eCourse: Click Here to view all of our free e-Courses. Favorite topics include Fear, Forgiveness, Holy Spirit, Supernatural, and How to Hear God.
  • Super Discounts and Close-Out Specials: Click Here to view all our bundles and close-out specials and save up to 86%! Prayer, Holy Spirit, Anointing, the Supernatural and more.
  • God Wants to Anoint Women Now: Rise up and enter the anointing of Deborah, Anna, Esther, Ruth and Hannah. You were called to go higher. Click Here to learn more.
  • Change Your Atmosphere and Circumstances Through Prayer! John Eckhardt's prayer bundle gives you six powerful books to help you pray and change any situation. Click Here.
  • HUGE Bible Sale!: Click Here to save up to 50% off a great selection of Bibles. Plus, get a free gift with each order!

Subscription Special: Subscribe to Charisma for Only $24.97 and get a free gift. With your subscription, you'll receive Born For Significance by best-selling author Bill Johnson. View Offer

Attention Pastors and Leaders: Leadership training and development are crucial for success. Enroll in a FREE 1-hour leadership mini-course by Dr. Mark Rutland. View Details

Charisma News - Informing believers with news from a Spirit-filled perspective