Skip to content

Putting God First

Who is the most important person in your life? Your spouse or partner? Your kids? Your parents? In the world in which we live, those are probably the most natural and predictable responses. For some people, it may not even be a person that occupies the top spot in their lives – it might be their job, a pet or even an addiction. As Christians, however, we need to consider carefully our answer to this question – and the implications that our answers have on our faith walk.

In Matthew 10:37, Jesus makes a statement that many Christians struggle to accept and / or apply to their lives. The NIV version says this: “Anyone who loves their father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves their son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.” The NLT version renders “not worthy of me” as “not worthy of being mine”. It is a difficult concept to get your head around, really. Many new believers question exactly what that means. Surely, they ask, God doesn’t expect me to give up my family for Him? No, He doesn’t. But what He is concerned with is our priorities. What God is asking in this passage of the Bible is for us to put our relationship with Him first, before everyone and everything else in our lives.

Created to be in Relationship with God

When God created mankind, in the very beginning, before the Fall, His one desire was to be in relationship with mankind, with Adam and Eve. He walked with them every day in the garden of Eden. The Fall, however, made that kind of relationship impossible because sin separated us from God (until Christ came to reunite us with the Father). But the Fall didn’t change the fact that we were created to be in relationship with God. Neither did it change God’s fierce desire to have that closeness of relationship with us again.


It is human nature, therefore, to seek people or things to fill the hole that our separation from God has left inside us. Family and friends and jobs and pets are just some of the things that we grasp and put first in our lives. With salvation, the act of accepting Jesus as Lord and Saviour, the relationship with the Godhead is restored when we are washed clean of sin by the blood of Christ, but often by the time we have accepted the gift of salvation, the first place, the one God should now be occupying in our lives, is already taken by something else.

When Jesus says that no one who puts someone else before Him in their relationship hierarchy is worthy of being His, He is effectively reminding us what we were created for: relationship with Him. It’s not necessarily that He is asking us to stop loving our family and friends (although in some extreme situations people can feel as though they have to choose between God and their family), but rather that we love Him more, and that we put Him in absolute first position in our lives. Nothing should be more important than Him – because there is nothing more important to Him than us.

Sometimes, loving God more and putting Him first does mean that sacrifices have to be made. The message of Matthew 10:37 is that God’s poll-position in our lives cannot be compromised. Therefore, if we have someone or something in second place to God’s first place, and that person or thing is pulling us in the opposite direction to the one God is pulling us in, we have a choice to make. If we choose anything other than

God’s will for our lives, we are denying that He is first in our lives, and therefore making ourselves unworthy of being in intimate relationship with Him. If we are to be worthy of being in relationship with Him, His will must override all other influences and demands on our lives. In Matthew 6:24, Jesus reminds us that “No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other.”


Consider then, who is first in your life? Is God occupying the position we were created for Him to occupy? And if it comes down to a choice between a Godly path and a worldly path, which one are you going to choose? 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.