God wants our hearts, not simply our discipline

Mission: Impossible
Love: The Glue – Part 2

Scripture Reading: Matthew 22:34-40

Key Verse: Matthew 22:36

“Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”

 

Yesterday we studied Jesus’ answer to the trick question given to Him by the Jewish expert in Law.  However, Jesus did not stop with simply answering his question.  Jesus quickly followed up with the second greatest command of God.  I have to believe that Jesus’ answer stunned this expert of the written word.

            Jesus wanted everyone to know that in kingdom values, loving God was of highest value, but close behind that was loving people.  The Pharisees and scribes had made their religion a task oriented lifestyle—do good tasks and receive approval.  Jesus came to let us know that what God wants foremost is loving relationships, not a “to do” list.  God wants our hearts, not simply our discipline.  God wants us to love people around us, not just attend to all the sacraments.

            You may be a very disciplined person, never missing a day in your daily devotions, and that’s good, but how are you measuring up on the “loving God, loving people” scale?  Is your love more a theory in your mind, or do you put your love into action?  Our love must move beyond the “I don’t hate anybody” level.  It must grow to a level of external deeds done to people around us, showing them what love is really all about!

Father, please remind me today to watch for opportunities to show your love to people in tangible ways.  In Jesus’ name, amen.

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