Can you command someone to love you? It seems like such an odd concept given our modern definition of love. When we think of our love for someone, it is typically focused inward on our own personal feelings. If we do not have the proper feelings for that person, we cannot love them.
But, God commands us to love him. Many Scripture passages record this command, including:
And now, Israel, what does the LORD your God require of you, but to fear the LORD your God, to walk in all his ways, to love him, to serve the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul, and to keep the commandments and statutes of the LORD, which I am commanding you today for your good? (Deuteronomy 10:12-13).
It is easy to wrap our brains around being commanded to obey the commandments and serve God. But commanded to love? We naturally bristle at the idea, but it is clearly Biblical. God requires us to love him.
Ironically, if you do not love God now, you will probably dislike him even more at the thought that he commands you to love him. It is not God’s recommendation or request. It is the all-powerful, all-knowing Creator of the universe who commands you to love him. You are to love the real God that is revealed in the Bible. You are not to love a false god you have fashioned in your mind – a god akin to the wimpy, forlorn school-boy hiding in the shadows of the high school dance desperately hoping someone, anyone would choose him.
If you do not love the one true God, then fall on your knees before him and beg that he grant to you that love before it is too late. For “behold, now is the day of salvation” (2 Corinthians 6:2).