Honor your… Exodus 19:3-6; 20:1-17; Eph 6:1-4; Rom 12:10; Titus 3; Col 3 Exodus 20:1-5 God is jealous (He is zealous for us… “His zeal has done this…” Isa 9:6)
Exodus 19:3-6 NIV
3 Then Moses went up to God, and the Lord called to him from the mountain and said, “This is what you are to say to the descendants of Jacob and what you are to tell the people of Israel: 4 ‘You yourselves have seen what I did to Egypt, and how I carried you on eagles’ wings and brought you to myself. 5 Now if you obey me fully and keep my covenant, then out of all nations you will be my treasured possession. Although the whole earth is mine, 6 you will be for me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.’ These are the words you are to speak to the Israelites.”
Exodus 20:1-8 NIV
1 And God spoke all these words: 2 “I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. 3 “You shall have no other gods before me. 4 “You shall not make for yourself an image in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. 5 You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me, 6 but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments. 7 “You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God, for the Lord will not hold anyone guiltless who misuses his name. 8 “Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy.
Jealousy is an expression of love and devotion, it is the passion and zeal of love and fidelity. God is jealous for us and our affections and His love will not allow us to have any god beside or before Him…
Yet, strangely enough… God is not jealous of our love and honor for others.
In fact, God’s love, true love of God, demands, that we love others. That when we truly love and honor God, we love others - we love who and what He loves and we love the same
So, a person loved rightly, rightly placed in our heart’s affections, in our acts of kind affection, is the fulfillment of God’s love for and in us, and our loving Him and others His love is made complete. (1John 4:12-21)
It is when we get that person out of place - whether that be beside and before God, or, we love them, not. So, God’s love demands we love Him first, but then in turn, love others and self
Why such a list of explicit commands? Israel was infantile in the ways of God…
It is God’s desire that we grow beyond to live lives marked by Him, His Spirit, the Spirit of Truth, having transformed our hearts and minds, to more and more naturally reflect His person, His grace, His love. The commands help guide us there, it is ours to read/hear, know, work out, practice, to obey, and become the very expression of His loving affections - reflected in His commands.
And who are we to love? Our enemies…? (Matt What is an enemy? One who seeks to harm, to destroy, to kill. Why then do we treat those closest to us as though they were the enemy? Why does God have to command us in regard to relationships that are supposed to be loving just as much as loving our enemies?
Because we perceive those closest to us as enemies. To what? What would cause us to do such a thing? Our flesh. Those who truly love us most are perceived as enemies because they war against our flesh - what we, our flesh, wants.
Therefore, God must command and admonish us to honor those closest to us as much as He must command us to love our enemies. He’s speaking to our fleshes’ desire to have what it wants and to do anything it needs to get it… hence commands 6-10
Exodus 20:12-17; James 4:1-7
Exodus 20:12-17 NIV
12 “Honor your father and your mother, so that you may live long in the land the Lord your God is giving you. 13 “You shall not murder. 14 “You shall not commit adultery. 15 “You shall not steal.16 “You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor. 17 “You shall not covet your neighbor’s house. You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or his male or female servant, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.”
James 4:1-7 NIV
1 What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you? 2 You desire but do not have, so you kill. You covet but you cannot get what you want, so you quarrel and fight. You do not have because you do not ask God. 3 When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures. 4 You adulterous people, don’t you know that friendship with the world means enmity against God? Therefore, anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God. 5 Or do you think Scripture says without reason that he jealously longs for the spirit he has caused to dwell in us?6 But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says:“God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble.” 7 Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
Commands, what are commands?
● Commands are God’s expressions of love and affection to us. (Psalm 19; 119; Prov 6:22-23)
● Commands are those things that glorify Him and help us prosper. (2Pet 1; Prov 3:18; 4; 10:17)
● Commands are given to us at our points of most resistance or to that thing we are least inclined to do. “love your enemy”, “do good to those who mistreat you”, “pray for those who hate you”
Commands are the boundaries in which we live until character and value is established…
● We follow the command until it is so deeply ingrained in us and the value it represents is developed in such a way that we now naturally live out or express the character and value the command expresses and teaches - we now live in love - hence: “Love the Lord your God… love your neighbor as yourself… all the law and the prophets hang from these two commands” (Matt 22)
The goal is to no longer live by the commands, but…
● By having followed and lived by them, to have them establish in us the very character of Jesus and the values that he espouses that are represented by the commands, so that our lives now naturally express and demonstrate what the commands point to and have led us to - Jesus, His person, His character, and His attributes. As they, by the commands, are established in us, we are then established in Him.
The Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Truth empowers and enables us… (2Cor 2; Eph 1; Gal 5; 1John 4)
● This is a life transformed, not just conforming to commands. You see, conforming to the commands is just the beginning, but the true goal is being transformed by the commands (Rom 12) - and this comes by practice, obedience (Heb 6) - tasting to see that the Lord is good, that His commands, precepts, instructions are a delight, sweet to the taste. (Psalm 19; 34; 119:103; Prov 16:20; Jer 17:7; 1Pet 2:3)
So, this command to honor… God wants it to go well for us “plans to prosper” (Jer 29:11)
● Why are we commanded to honor? Because, we are not inclined to. The origin of sin. (Gen 3)
● The serpent did not honor God or man; Eve did not honor Adam; neither did Adam honor Eve
● They both, each and together, dishonored God
● It did not go well for them… or, us.
Ex 20:12; Eph 6:2. So, to honor comes with a promise – that it will go well. And that, we must trust – God wants it to go will for us!
What does honor mean?
● Assign value; to esteem, to see as precious; to fix a value, a price; to revere or venerate
● As He did us by sending His Son
What does it then to honor?
● To esteem, to count as precious, to revere - to respect or admire someone
● According to the intrinsic merit of the one honored
● To love denoting personal attachment – God has made us His children – attached to us
What does honoring demand?
● A right perspective of God, self, and others
● A right attitude toward God, self, and others
● A humble spirit before God, self, and others
● A growing confidence in one’s position and identity in Christ confident of who we are to God
...that bears itself out in…
● Love - an agape love (Matt 22; 1Cor 13; Rom 12:9-10) – as we have been loved by God…
○ A preferential love
○ A decided love
○ A committed love
○ A staying love
○ A love that chooses the good of, what is good for, the benefit of, the object of that choice or choosing to, love (the beneficiary)
○ A love that chooses the good of the one loved even if it does not (seem to) benefit the one loving
○ A love that forgives and keeps no record of wrongs - rejoicing in the truth, it considers the fragility of one loved when assessing that person’s being worthy of our, my, love.
● Honor – as we have been honored by God – seen as precious and valuable worthy the price
Rom 12:9-10 “Love (agape) must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in (brotherly) love. Honor one another above yourselves”
When we honor... we do what God has done for us, even when we were His enemy… (Luke 2; Romans 5)
● We esteem and dignify
● We encourage goodwill
● We choose to love… even the unlovable
● We bring life
● We walk in peace - of soul, mind, and spirit
● We are free - no longer controlled by fear or contempt or disappointment
● We walk out our identity as God’s children
● We are free to love and honor… as we have been loved and honored (Rom 13:8)
Jesus honored His...
● Luke 2:39-48-52 Jesus taught to honor, learned to honor (“obedient to them” Eph 6)
● John 2; John 19:25-27 - Jesus honoring His mother
That did not mean that He would allow their misconceptions of Him keep from obeying His Father and His call
● Matt 12:46-48
● Mark 3:21-31
That it might go well with you… to a large degree, everything we are has been accomplished by God through those who brought us into this world…
Jesus came to redeemed it, us, all of it and us.
And for this, we can be grateful
“...all things for the good of those who love Him and have been called according to His purpose…”
Jesus, formed in us, that we would be conformed to Jesus - Joy!
Jesus came to bring peace, that we might live in peace, peacefully.