Two Standards

 

 

Jesus said to him, “‘You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’  On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.” Matt. 22:37-40

 

Have you thought about what it means to “love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind” Matt.22:37?

Here are a few obvious aspects: You seek fellowship with Him and long to gaze upon His beauty (Psalm 27:4). You rejoice in meditating on His Word and rise early to pray (Psalm 119:97; Mark 1:35). You always delight to do His will (Psalm 40:8). A regard for His glory governs and motivates everything you do (1 Cor. 10:31)—eating and drinking, working and playing, buying and selling, reading and speaking, even driving. You’re never discouraged or frustrated by adverse circumstances because you’re confident God is working all things together for your good (Romans 8:28). You’re always content because you know He’ll never leave you or forsake you (Heb. 13:5).

Or look at what Jesus called the “second” commandment: “Love your neighbor as yourself” (Matt. 22:39). Among other things, this would mean that you never show selfishness, irritability, peevishness, or indifference in your dealings with others. You take a genuine interest in their welfare and seek to promote their interests, honor, and well-being. You never regard them with prideful superiority or talk about their failings. You never resent any wrongs they do to you, but instead are always ready to forgive. You always treat them as you would have them treat you.

Do you begin to grasp some of the implications of what it means to obey these two commandments? Most of us don’t even think about them in the course of a day, let alone aspire to obey them. Instead we content ourselves with avoiding major outward sins and performing accepted Christian duties.

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