Friday 12 July 2019
Love God – Love All (Part 1)
On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. “Teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”
“What is written in the Law?” he replied. “How do you read it?”
He answered, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and, ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’
“You have answered correctly,” Jesus replied. “Do this and you will live.”
The expert in the law quoted two passages from the Jewish Law. The word ‘Law’ here refers to the first five books of the Old Testament. The first passage quoted is about loving God. This is found in Deuteronomy 6:5 and it was traditionally recited by faithful Jews on a daily basis.
The second passage, about loving our neighbour, is a quote from Leviticus 19:18. Taken together these two quotes summarise the central themes of the Law. ‘Love God’ is a summary of the first four of the Ten Commandments and ‘Love your neighbour is a summary of the other six (Exodus 20:1-17).
However, Jesus was not teaching eternal life through works or the Law. Instead, He was establishing the fact that the natural product of our love for God is to love all without exception.
Jesus gives an example that God does not show His goodness to the righteous only, but to the unrighteous as well; God provides rain and sun to both the good and the wicked people alike (Matthew 5:45).
Love has been the heart of the Gospel – the good news of Christ. Our relationship with God must mirror the nature of God, which is love to the world. 1 John 4:20 says that it is impossible to claim to love God and not love the people whom we see.
Lord thank you that you love me so much that you called me into your marvellous light. Help me to be rooted and established in your love. Please give me the power to grasp how wide and long and high and deep your love is for me, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that I may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Grant me the grace to share this love with all those I come across without reservation.
1 John 4:7-21
Eric K. Mensah – Leadership Team – Sawyers Church