Have you ever come to church on Sunday morning to hear someone say, “Hey, you can’t wear that here?” or “We don’t believe in that here” or “You can’t do that in here.” Have you ever noticed how church seems to be so complicated? Is pleasing God really this complicated? The answer to that question is no. In the Old Testament, believers were kept under the law, but in the New Testament under Jesus, we are under grace:
For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace. (Romans 6:14 KJV)
Now that we are under grace, our commandment list is much shorter. In fact, Jesus only gave us three commands to follow. Here they are in order:
- You must be born again
Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother’s womb, and be born? Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again. (John 3:3-7 KJV)
The only way to enter the kingdom of God and gain his favor is to be born again or to be saved. Jesus was not making a good recommendation, for he said “you must be born again.” This is something you MUST do ….or else suffer the consequences.
- We are commanded to love one another
A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another. (John 13:34-35 KJV)
This is how we should differentiate ourselves from the world: love. Why love? This is the only characteristics that the enemy cannot duplicate. His followers can act righteously for a season and can duplicate many of the things we do, but they have no capacity to love each other. Love can only come from God, and therefore, only his disciples are capable of loving anyone.
- You must be filled with the spirit
And, being assembled together with them, commanded them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait for the promise of the Father, which, saith he, ye have heard of me. For John truly baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized with the Holy Ghost not many days hence. (Acts 1:4-5 KJV)
Growing up in church, I was never told about this command. In fact, I only saw it a few years ago, and I was shocked at how many Christians avoid this command. The command is simple: you must be baptized in the Holy Spirit. Don’t be confused by this one. Some will say that if you don’t fulfill this commandment, you will go to hell. This is wrong. The first commandment (you must be born again) gets you into the kingdom of God, and you are there forever. The purpose of this commandment is to give you a comforter that will walk, talk, and guide you in your walk with God. Actually, the New Testament puts us under the Holy Spirit that corrects us and chastises us as needed (see Hebrews 12:5-11 to understand the doctrine of chastisement). When we obey this commandment, we are in less need of the law to reveal sin, for now we have a comforter that teaches us not to sin.
Does this commandment bother you? Click here to learn more about the Baptism in Holy Spirit. Trust me when I tell you that the Baptism in the Holy Spirit is the greatest thing that ever happened to me. If you seek after it and get it, I guarantee you will say the same thing.