Tuesday, September 23, 2008
The First and Greatest Commandment
Jesus replied, “ ‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.” This is the first and greatest commandment. A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ ” (Matthew 22:37–38)
Some years ago, around three hundred whales were found marooned on a beach. Scientists speculated that the whales had been chasing sardines and became trapped in shallow water when the tide went out.
Now that's an amazing thing. By chasing little sardines, these gigantic creatures were ultimately led to their doom.
Many people waste their lives chasing sardines, so to speak. They major on the minors and have no clear focus or objective in mind.
But God tells us what should be the primary goal of every Christian. If we can get our priorities straight in this area, everything else will come together. In fact, if we can get these two principles operating in our lives, then all the commandments of God will become a natural outflow of our commitment to Him.
What are these principles? One, “ ‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind’ ” (Matthew 22:37); and two, “ ‘Love your neighbor as yourself’ ” (verse 38).
When Jesus spoke these words, He was identifying what should be the focus of every person. Essentially, He was saying that love is the basis for all obedience. If you really love God, then you will naturally want to do the things that please Him.
It has been said, “If you aim at nothing, you are bound to hit it.” What is your highest priority in life? What are your goals?
We all channel our energies and passions and thoughts toward something in life. What is it for you?
Copyright © 2008 by Harvest Ministries. All rights reserved. Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved.
For more relevant and biblical teaching from Pastor Greg Laurie, go to www.harvest.org.
The Bible says, "If any man be in Christ, he is an altogether different kind of person. Old things have passed away. Everything becomes fresh and new." That is the truth I want you and everyone who reads this book to come away with. And it is a message not just of hope, but also of Christ's redemptive power.