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Loyalty

The story is told of a dog in Liverpool, England that visited the grave of his friend every day for over three years. That’s loyalty! Treated properly, dogs are the most steadfast pets. They are always glad to see you. They have been known to fight to death to protect their owner.  They don’t hold grudges and will quickly forgive when you forget them. Can you be that loyal and faithful? Let’s check out this subject in the Bible.

What is loyalty?  It’s in the Bible, "Never tire of loyalty and kindness. Hold these virtues tightly. Write them deep within your heart"(Proverbs 3:3-4, TLB). Loyalty is a character trait God desires all of us to have in our lives. Loyalty is another word for faithful.

Who should I be loyal to? Everyone’s first loyalty should be to God. It’s in the Bible, "For you must worship no other gods, but only Jehovah, for he is a God who claims absolute loyalty and exclusive devotion" (Exodus 34:14, TLB).

What can prevent me from being loyal to God?  It’s in the Bible, "For neither you nor anyone else can serve two masters. You will hate one and show loyalty to the other, or else the other way around-you will be enthusiastic about one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money" (Luke 16:13, TLB). Anything that you love can slip between you and God.  Some people spend their lives searching for wealth, fame or material possessions. The important thing is to keep God first in your life.

Am I supposed to be loyal to my friends?  Yes! It’s in the Bible, "A true friend is always loyal, and a brother is born to help in time of need" (Proverbs 17:17, TLB). A loyal friend is someone who helps you when you need help.

Does loyalty really mean that much to people? Paul was a missionary in the Bible that endured many hardships. His loyal friends brought him much joy. He wrote, "When he told me how much you were looking forward to my visit, and how sorry you were about what had happened, and about your loyalty and warm love for me, well, I overflowed with joy!"  (2 Corinthians 7:7, TLB).

Another example of loyal friends can be seen in the story of Jonathan and David. In human terms, Jonathan had every right to be jealous of David. Jonathan was King Saul’s son and was in line to be the next king. God had other plans and wanted David to be king. Instead of being jealous, Jonathon accepted David as his best friend. It's in the Bible, "After David had finished talking with Saul, Jonathan became one in spirit with David, and he loved him as himself. From that day Saul kept David with him and did not let him return to his father's house. And Jonathan made a covenant with David because he loved him as himself.  Jonathan took off the robe he was wearing and gave it to David, along with his tunic, and even his sword, his bow and his belt"(1 Samuel 18:1-4, NIV).

Loyalty is important to people, but loyalty is also important to God. In the last book of the Bible Jesus said, “Hold on to what you have until I come” which is another way of saying, “Be loyal to me until I come.” He promises this reward. “To him who overcomes and does my will to the end, I will give authority over the nations” (Revelation 2:25, 26, NIV). In other words, He will make you like a king. What a promise! Make the decision today to be loyal to God. You will never regret it.