“Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” And He said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the great and foremost commandment. The second is like it, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ Upon these two commandments hang the whole Law and the Prophets.” Matthew 22:36-40
In our culture, the Fall Season marks a shift. We move from freedom to explore optional Summer activities back to a committed work cycle. As we focus on serious work, we should hope to find or establish a way to serve the people God has placed in our realm of influence.
Jesus’ summation of the bedrock commandments: “Love God with everything you’ve got and love your neighbor as yourself” gives us a great place to start something or renew previous commitments.
As we readjust, let’s consider Jesus’ expansion on these commands, “Upon these two commandments hang the whole Law and the Prophets.”
Jesus’ answer puts the rest of God’s commandments and prophetic pronouncements in perspective. God has crafted them out of his great love for us. God’s love expressed by his indwelling Holy Spirit speaks to us through his marvelous scriptural revelation and enables us to more deeply love him and love our neighbor as ourselves.
The moral law and the prophets are not incidental elements of his love, but a glorious encouragement to live “life in all its fullness.” John 10:10.
Martin Luther’s great hymn, “A Mighty Fortress Is Our God,” contains the line “Though this world with devils filled, threatens to undo us, we will not fear, for God has willed, his truth to triumph through us.” Lies of our spiritual enemies are defeated by God’s immutable truth, undergirded by his incredible love.
Savor each element of his love as you pray through the Lord’s Prayer and read & listen to Martin Luther’s great hymn. Open your heart to the good work he’s prepared in advance for you to experience this season.
Your kingdom come. Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Matthew 6:9-15
A MIGHTY FORTRESS IS OUR GOD
By Kathleen Petersen