When a book is or movie is produced, generally there is usually a main theme or topic.
Because this article has to do with God, naturally I went to the Bible, which is God’s book. And, like other books, this book has to have a main theme.
What do you think is one of the main messages is the Bible?
To find out, I did several searches of the Bible to see how many times certain words showed up. I chose several words I thought were important. I did the search on all the word forms of each word, Singular, plural, possessive and with a wild card (*)
Five words surfaced as the most frequent.
From this list, I should be able to conclude that these words are important to the author of this book. Why else would they appear with such frequency?
I think I know the meaning or definition of these words. However, to be sure, I consulted my trusty dictionary. Here are the definitions.
Note: All the following definitions are from the American Heritage Dictionary unless otherwise stated.
- An intense affection for another person based on familiar or personal ties. Strong affection for or attachment to another person based on regard or shared experiences or interests.
- Unselfish, loyal, and benevolent intention and commitment toward another (Bible Dictionary).
- To accept as true or real.
- An expression of warm approval or admiration; strong commendation: the extolling (praising lavishly) of a deity or hero.
- One of humanity’s many responses to God’s revelation of Himself (The Bible Dictionary).
- The reverent love and devotion accorded a deity, an idol, or a sacred object.
- The ceremonies, prayers, or other religious forms by which this love is expressed.
- Ardent devotion; adoration.
- A condition or feeling of great pleasure or happiness; delight. Or, the expression or manifestation of such feelings.
- State of delight and well-being that results from knowing and serving God (The Bible Dictionary).
Now, let’s go back to the five words I discussed earlier. I have ordered them in the order of frequency, with the highest number first and the least number last.
- Love – 443
- Believe – 287
- Praise – 269
- Worship – 188
- Joy – 187
Just for curiosity sake, I decided to see how many times Jesus spoke about each of these words. My study revealed the following.
- Love – 54
- Joy – 14
- Worship – 11
- Praise – 1
Now, what does this list tell us? Frankly, I do not know. It could be just a coincidence. However, I know that God does things for a purpose and that He does everything decently and in order.
So, with that little piece of information in mind, it seems that Love is the main theme of the Bible. You can go to John 3:16 and prove that point pretty easily. And this does not touch on all the other references to love.
Next, we have Believe or Belief. We already know how important belief is.
Next we have Praise. I believe that Praise ties in with Love. Think about it when you love God, you just want to Praise Him. You get excited and want to do something. Even when you tell someone about Him you are in a sense Praising Him.
The next one is Worship. This is the sister word to Praise. How often do we say Praise and Worship? How often do we Praise and Worship God? Why?
Psalms 138:1-2 gives a good example. It says, “I will praise thee with my whole heart: before the gods will I sing praise unto thee. I will worship toward thy holy temple, and praise thy name for thy lovingkindness and for thy truth: for thou hast magnified thy word above all thy name”.
David’s Psalm 145 is all about Praising God:
It starts out by saying, “I will extol thee, my God, O king; and I will bless thy name for ever and ever.Every day will I bless thee; and I will praise thy name for ever and ever…”
So, as we can see, the love of God naturally brings out the Praise and Worship in us!
And the last but not least we have Joy! It just sort of happens automatically. When you feel God’s love you get the Praise and Worship going and the next thing you know you feel that great Joy!
It all boils down to one thing: Love, the First Great Commandment!
“Jesus said unto him, ‘Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.’ ” (Matthew 22:37-39 KJV)