In parts, one and two of this series we touched on four ways that people can limit God: unbelief, maintaining a hardened heart, rejecting the will of the Father, and living a double life. One more way that people limit God is by failing to walk in love. This is no small issue, as this is a major component in the Kingdom of God. Without love, it is virtually impossible to do the things of God. In truth, everything God does for us is based upon His love. If one is having difficulty with ascertaining whether he is truly walking with God, a simple way he can do this is by examining where he stands in relation to love.
He that saith he is in the light, and hateth his brother, is in darkness even until now. He that loveth his brother abideth in the light, and there is none occasion of stumbling in him. But he that hateth his brother is in darkness, and walketh in darkness, and knoweth not whither he goeth, because that darkness hath blinded his eyes. (1 John 2:9-11, KJV)
In the simplest terms, those who walk in love are walking in the Light, and those who do not love others are not. We can see this principle in action in relation to faith. Galatians 5:6 says that, “Faith . . . worketh by love,” which means in order to truly walk by faith, one has to walk in love. Love benefits others, and will not cause another to stumble. If we walk in love, the faith by which we walk will encourage others. Conversely, if we do not walk in love, it may cause others to stumble. An example of this principle can be found in Romans 14:1-14. As we walk by faith in the fullness of love, we will not judge those who do not walk by faith. We will not criticize those who struggle with areas of faith that we think we have a handle on. There is no freedom for brothers and sisters who find themselves being judged by others because they happen to be struggling. Love lifts people up!
1John 2:5 says, “But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him” (KJV), and 1John 3:3 says, “For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous” (KJV). Our obedience should follow our love. In other words, our obedience to God should be the result of our love for God. As we read 1Corinthians chapter thirteen, we find that nothing will profit us if we do not have love. If we do not love God, we are not going to obey Him in the truest sense of the word. Our motivation behind what we do will not be pure, because what we do will be either based on fear, or old fashioned selfishness. As we walk in love, our work for the Lord will be a labor of love, which means that what we do will bring us joy. If we do not want to limit God, we need walk in love.