The risen and exalted Christ had this against the church in Ephesus (Revelation chapter 2): they had “abandoned their first love” (verse 4). What remedy did he give the church – were they to stir up loving feelings for Jesus they once had but now were lost? Was it a matter of intensity or sincerity of their affections toward him?
No, not at all.
The remedy for them to regain their love had nothing to do with stirring up feelings or sentiments about Jesus. It was, nevertheless, to love him. How were they to love him – and how are we to do so? It is this: ”Repent! And do the first works” (verse 5). To love Christ is to repent of love of self and the world, and to do works of righteousness. And the reverse is true, understanding that it is in God-given faith by grace: to repent and do good works is not mere religion, it is to love Jesus Christ.