[CF Devotionals] 2009-10-09 - God's Commandments

Part 2

New Testament - In the day of Jesus and the age of grace

Matthew 22:36-40

  1. Master, which is the great commandment in the law?
  2. Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.
  3. This is the first and great commandment.
  4. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
  5. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.

Jesus summed up all ten commandments in two rules. One to four can be restated as love god with your whole heart. Commandments four through ten can be summarized as love neighbor as thyself.

So who is a neighbor? This was important to the Jews because they inferred it was ok to hate anyone who wasn't their neighbor. Pharisees defined their neighbors as only other Pharisees. That allowed them to mistreat all that weren't up to their standards. Jews in general felt neighbors meant only other Jews. This was a broader group than the Pharisees but allowed them to hate and mistreat or simply not care about everyone who was not a Jew. But Christ said all mankind was our neighbors (Parable of the Good Samaritan - Luke 10:30-37).

John 13:33-35

  1. Little children, yet a little while I am with you. Ye shall seek me: and as I said unto the Jews, Whither I go, ye cannot come; so now I say to you.
  2. A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.
  3. By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.

It is here that Jesus gives a new commandment. He says we are to love one another as He loves us. Who is this one another? Well it is who He was talking to - his followers. Therefore one another in practical terms is Christians. Christians are to have a special love for one another that models the love Jesus had for us.

Commitment Challenge

Notice now the commitment levels or how much you are to love people. To start off with we are to love ourselves. Then we are to love everyone as much as we love ourselves. Next on the scale we are to love fellow Christians as much as Jesus loves us. Just how much love is that? Well he gave his life for us so we must be willing to give to one another. When a brother or sister is hurting we are to help them until it hurts. Then at the top of the scale is our love for God. This love is to be with all of our being; it is to be as much love as we can conjure up. Now for the challenge - set your priorities according to these love levels. Your reward will be that you will stay on course. Why? Why are we to do it? Simple, God has called his children of both the old and new covenant to be a unique people that stand out from the rest of the world. We are to be in this world not of it.

IHFHBOH
Adam

[email adam] adam@cfdevotionals.org
http://www.cfdevotionals.org

All scripture references from KJV unless otherwise noted