Our Christian faith is more than the “do”s and the “don’t”s but about becoming the person that God desires (Deut. 10:12 – 13; 2 Chron. 16:9; Isa. 66:2; Matt. 22:37 – 38). It is more than an act but a response to who God is! I am incapable of loving God passionately and wholeheartedly by my own sheer will and desire (Zech. 4:6). I am passionate for Jesus because He is firstly passionate for me.
Three Keys to having Passion for Jesus
1. Knowing the passion of Jesus for me (1 John 4:19; Eph. 3:16 – 19)
I love God because He first loves me. I seek to love Jesus with all my heart, with all my soul, with all my mind and with all my strength because I know that He loves me with His all. Passion for Jesus is the result of knowing a God who loves me so jealously like an All Consuming Fire. (Deut. 4:24)
2. Knowing who Jesus is (Phil. 3:7 – 11) How could Paul respond this way? What did he see and understand? The measure of our knowledge and revelation of “who Jesus is” correlates to the measure of our passion for Him. Our lack of passion for Jesus is primarily due to our lack of knowledge of who He is.
In his book Knowledge of the Holy, A.W. Tozer wrote,
“The decline knowledge of the Holy has brought on our troubles. A rediscovery of the majesty of God will go a long way toward curing them. It is impossible to keep moral practices sound and our inward attitudes right while our idea of God is erroneous or inadequate. If we should bring back spiritual power to our lives, we must begin to think of God more clearly as He is.”
He added, “The low view of God entertained almost universally among Christians is the cause of a hundred lesser evils everywhere among us… With our loss of the sense of majesty has come the further loss of religious awe and consciousness of the divine Presence.”
We have too little an understanding of Jesus, too few thoughts of Him and too low a view of Him. A low view of Jesus produces little passion for Him. We need to have a fresh revelation of who Jesus is!
Thus, the most foundational and fundamental question for every believer now is Matthew 16:15 – “Who do you say that I am?”
3. Knowing the privilege of the invitation to be intimate with God (Jer. 9:23 – 24) Everyone craves to be in the inner circles and be closely associated with popular, famous, and important men and women. Yet we overlook the greatest privilege and honor of being invited to be intimate with the Most High God. Intimacy with God is an invitation to know and understand His heart, to be His friend, to stand and partner with Him and His will. What a privilege and honor! Like David in Psalm 8, my response is, “Who am I, Lord? Why are you inviting me to such privilege and honor?”
Keys to Sustaining our Passion for Jesus
1. Desire J. Osward Sanders said,
“It is an incontrovertible fact that some Christians seem to experience a much closer intimacy with God than others. They appear to enjoy a reverent familiarity with Him that is foreign to us. Is it a matter of favoritism on the part of God? Or do such people qualify in some way for that desirable intimacy? Both Scripture and experience teach that it is we, not God, who determines the degree of intimacy with Him that we enjoy. We are at this moment as close to God as we really choose to be. We are now, and we will be in the future, only as intimate with God as we really choose to be.”
Hunger and desire are some of the most important keys in our quest for intimacy with God. (Ps. 63:1; Matt. 5:6; Matt. 15:21 – 28)
2. Discipline We have to jealously prioritize and guard our time with the Lord. Reading the Bible, meditating on the Word of God, praying, and seeking His face have to be the number one agenda in our life. Jesus said in Luke 10:42, “One thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part…” No one can choose for us. No one can read the Word and pray on our behalf. No one can press in on our behalf.
3. Delight Discover the pleasure of loving God and the joy of intimacy with Him (Ps. 37:4; 1 Peter 1:8; 1 John 1:1 – 4). Knowing and loving God is not a duty and obligation. It is man’s greatest joy and highest pleasure!