Fulfilling the Great Commission by raising Christ-centred disciples to plant vibrant, biblical churches in our cities and countries all over the world

DEVOTION TO GOD By Dr Wilson Lim

The author Jerry Bridges suggests that our devotion for God consist of three essential elements. These are the reverent fear of God, the love of God and the desire for God. Both the reverent fear of God and the love of God form the foundations for a true devotion to God, while the desire for God is the highest expression of that devotion. 
FEAR OF GOD 

As a believer, we should become acutely aware of the majesty, holiness and transcendent glory of God. We would then approach God with profound veneration and honour, reverence and awe. It is this awareness that draws forth from our hearts the worship and adoration that characterises a true devotion to God.

The reverent, godly Christian sees God first in his awesome glory, infinite majesty and absolute holiness (1 Tim 6:16) before he sees Him in His love, mercy and grace. 

In Isaiah 6, we vividly observe the reverence with which the angels had before the throne of God. Their faces were covered by 2 of their wings in the presence of the Most High while another 2 wings covered their feet. The prophet Isaiah’s shuddering response showed the fear that gripped his heart before a Holy God until God’s mercy was shown. There needs to be a healthy tension between the reverential awe of God (1 Pet 1:17) and the child-like trust in God as Heavenly Father. Without such a tension, the filial confidence can easily degenerate into presumption. The right concept of the fear of God will cause us to not only worship God aright, but also to restrain our conduct. We would not approach God flippantly nor disregard His commands (Deut 6:2).

How much do we reverently fear God today?

 LOVE OF GOD 

A believer that truly fears God will better appreciate the love of God. It is when we are faced with the infinite chasm between a holy God and sinful man, that it reveals how immensely potent God’s love is to bridge the gulf (1 Jn 4:8-10).

1 John 4:8 – 10 (NIV) “8Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. 9This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. 10This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.” 

The Scripture above points to the fact that the love of God would lose its incredible depth of meaning apart from Calvary. And Calvary has no meaning except for the holy and just wrath of God. Thus, how much we appreciate the love of God is largely conditioned by how deeply we fear Him. The more we grasp God in His majesty, holiness and glory, the more we will be amazed at the extent of his love poured out at Calvary. Further, the more we comprehend God’s love for us, the deeper will our reverence and awe of Him will be.

Are we gripped by the love of God?

DESIRE FOR GOD 

The reverential fear of God and the love of God complement and reinforce each other to stir in our souls an intense desire for the Most High One. 

One who is awesome in his glory and yet so touching in His love and mercy. It awakens in us a desire to enjoy God’s presence and fellowship. It produces a longing for God Himself. By analogy, it is like having an earthly father who is highly respected because he is blameless and principled and also feared at home because he implements discipline judiciously. A father who is also dearly loved, because he loves the children immensely and is gentle and kind always in his actions towards them. Such fathers often stir a deep love from his children. Such deep longing for our Heavenly Father is echoed in

Psalms 42:1 – 2 (NIV) 1 As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, O God. 2 My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God? 

What could be more intense than a hunted deer’s thirst for water? The psalmist paints a picture of intensity in his own desire for God’s presence and fellowship. May we each come to a place of reverential fear of God and a deep appreciation of the love of God. To a place where our desire for God is awaken to great heights. In devotion to Christ,