THE GREATEST COMMANDMENT — Matthew 22:34-40
Verse: “When the Pharisees heard that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together, and one of them [a scholar of the law] tested Him by asking, ‘Teacher, which commandment in the law is the greatest?’ He answered him:
‘You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the greatest and the first commandment. The second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. The whole law and the prophets depend on these two commandments.’”
Notice how God answered the question with two commandments, not just one? And He didn’t name any of the other Commandments either–only the two Great Commandments of Love. Love God and love your neighbor. All Ten commandments find their true meaning in light of these two Great Commandments of Love.
Loving God and loving our neighbor is paramount to the Christian faith. In fact, it is impossible to please God without placing these two Commandments on top of our priority list. Because Jesus’ parable of the Good Samaritan teaches that everyone is our neighbor, God makes it clear that we are to do just that — love everyone. And, obeying God’s command is not an option.
If you haven’t been putting God first lately or if you’ve been having strife with a neighbor, colleague, friend, family member or anyone else, ask God for His eyes of mercy and compassion. Ask Him to forgive you or to help you forgive someone else…and He will.
It won’t be easy, it’ll be worth it.
“And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is Love” –1 Corinthians 13:13.
[Read also: Why Forgiveness Matters: The Parable of the Unforgiving Servant]