Not sure if you’ve ever noticed this word written this way as you read Scripture:
I bet you have, but I wonder if you ever notice the difference between LORD and Lord. I never did for years. I would read through Scripture and at times I would notice that it was in all capital letters, but I didn’t know why, and to be honest, I never really gave it much thought.
Until I did.
As I dug a little deeper in my times of Bible study, I uncovered such a profound and precious truth about this that has changed my view of God in the best possible way. Whenever you see “LORD,” it is referring to “Yahweh” or God’s personal, covenant name that He gave to His people by which they could know Him personally. It’s pretty powerful if you think about it. When “LORD” is used, it’s a personal invitation to relationship. On the contrary, whenever you see “Lord,” it’s referring to one of God’s positions of authority, a title. That word “Lord” simply means God is in charge, and you are not.
Such an astounding difference, right?
Now, take a look at Proverbs 15. How many times do you see “LORD?” Go ahead and count. Nine times! Nine times you will find “LORD” in chapter 15, and this is so significant because up until this point in our study of Proverbs, we have been challenged, encouraged, and propelled towards wise, moral living. Here in chapter 15, we are given the only appropriate reason why we should do so: Relationship must be our motivation.
Our obedience, if only done out of obligation and duty, is meaningless. It must stem from relationship with Jesus, an obedience that flows from a heart of love toward the God we are seeking to obey. Wise living must be motivated by relationship with our Savior.
It’s not as if chapter 15 is void of instruction on wise, moral living. In fact, it’s full of it, just like the previous chapters in Proverbs. The difference in this chapter is that God’s personal invitation to relationship with Him is on display nine times as we read these wise words of challenge and conviction. Our obedience must be motivated by love, by relationship, by Jesus.
So, is it? Is your relationship with Jesus your first priority even over your obedience to Him? Because, the obedience will naturally follow if your love for Him is first. There’s no other way around it. Obedience to God and His commands is the natural result of our love for Him. Let’s choose to remember today one important truth as we read through Proverbs 15:
It’s all about relationship.
“The eyes of the Lord are in every place,
keeping watch on the evil and the good.” Proverbs 15:3
“The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord,
but the prayer of the upright is acceptable to him.” Proverbs 15:8
“The Lord is far from the wicked,
but he hears the prayer of the righteous.” Proverbs 15:29
“The fear of the Lord is instruction in wisdom,
and humility comes before honor.” Proverbs 15:33