12 Nov Love in Action
Read Matthew 22:34-40
Thought for the Day: I can love God with both word and action!
In the Old Testament times, many Jewish rabbis began the practice of taking Deuteronomy 6:4-8 literally and wearing small boxes on their foreheads with the command to “love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might” inside. These boxes, now called ‘phylacteries’ provided an outward physical reminder that we must love God and follow Him. Even in Jesus’ day, some leaders wore these. However, Jesus pointed out that an outward act only has meaning if it is matched by the inward condition of a person’s heart. It is meaningless if a person simply wears this commandment without taking it to heart.
So, when the Jewish leaders sought to test Jesus, He made it clear that the great commandment is to “love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind”. But, He immediately followed this by emphasizing the need to love our neighbors. Put simply, if we say that we love God but we are unwilling to live out this love, we don’t actually love Him!
No matter our situations or circumstances, we are always asked to love God first. Jesus did so with authenticity. If we simply go through life acting ‘religious’ without following Jesus from the inside out, we are hypocrites. No matter the season we find ourselves in, we always have the opportunity to stop and realize that we should not simply express an outward love for God. Instead, Jesus instructs each of us to love God. To do this, we should begin with our thoughts and actions!
Pastors Stan and David