Exodus 34-35 Matthew 22:23-46
“One Pharisee, who was an expert on the law of Moses, asked Jesus this question to test him: ‘Teacher, which command in the law is the most important?’” (Matthew 22:35-36 NCV)
On the surface, it seems like a simple question. “Which commandment is the most important?” Hidden in the question was a test. “If I know the most important one, I can figure out which ones to ignore.” The other side of the test was that however Jesus responded, He’d spark an argument because either God, or mankind would be shortchanged. Jesus responded by letting this Pharisee know that you have to love both God and man.
John put it this way: “How can you love the God you haven’t seen when you hate the people you have seen?” How can you love God, and not love His creation? The other side of that question is valid, also: how can you love creation, and not love the Creator? If you love creation without loving God, the Creator, you end up making creation your god. Jesus sent the Pharisees then, and people today, into a tizzy by calling for balance. We must love God with all that we are and we must love people. To answer THAT question, yes, even “those” people.
Lord, remind me that I show my love for You by loving people. Help me to love others, even “them” in the same way You loved me.
Scripture taken from the New Century Version®. Copyright © 2005 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.