Knowing The Form Of Love

Matthew 22:37-39 (New King James Version)

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Jesus said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’

MISSIONS DISCIPLESHIP

THE OBLIGATION OF LOVE (MATT. 22:37–39)

May 4, 2020

To understand Matthew 22:37–39, we need to understand the setting in which Jesus responds. Throughout His ministry, Jesus faced questions from religious leaders meant to entrap Him or damage His reputation. They would often try to tie Him up in a difficult subject or statement to prove He was unworthy.

This portion of Matthew’s gospel is no different. Jesus has just silenced the Sadducees, and the Pharisees put a lawyer from their group up to test Him with a question meant to spin off a multitude of concerns (Matt. 22:34–35). While the use of teacher is one of endearment, Matthew signifies this lawyer’s intentions when he records that the lawyer asked the question to test Jesus.

The question, “Which is the great commandment in the Law?” (Matt. 22:36), is meant to get Jesus to stumble into a trap. If Jesus picks only one, that would imply that the other laws were not as great. At the very least, this would surely stir up controversy around Jesus and get His followers to look at Him in a negative light.

As a reader, when you come to these places in Scripture, it is so important to examine the context. The context paints a picture of what it must have been like as the religious leaders posed this question and waited for the response they believed would finally take this thorn in their flesh down.

But Jesus never responds the way they expect or hope. He’s already left the Sadducees in silence, and now, His response has been cited as one of the high points of Scripture for generations. Jesus alludes back to Deuteronomy and Leviticus when He responds to the lawyer. Here we have a clear, simple, and direct response to the difficult question. Jesus’ response, while simple, is far weightier than merely following a law to the letter.

His response was to love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. On the surface, this doesn’t appear too difficult. But in practice, this is the encompassing of so much more.

Our whole self is to be wholly devoted to Jesus. Our love for God has the highest place rather than attempting to check off boxes of following laws. In William Barclay’s commentary on Galatians, he writes regarding the law and love, “And so religion becomes a matter, not of satisfying the claims of the law, but trying to meet the obligations of love.”1 Jesus’ response demonstrates the religious leaders have missed the purpose of the laws and are missing the purpose of Jesus’ testimony here.

Jesus follows up the first commandment with a second that is like it. It is to love our neighbors as ourselves. Again, this command seems simplistic but has been a driver of Christian service for generations. Loving God with all we have spills over into how we see other people. It is not a personal decision void of implications for how we treat others but drives us to care and love all people.

Both of these commandments are simple and clear. The difficulty comes as we are people who appreciate being able to quantify or check off boxes of completion. There is not a clear checklist of completion with either of these commands. As William Barclay described, we are focused on fulfilling the obligations of love rather than the requirements of the law. Our neighbors next door and the neighbors across our landscape are to be loved and showed the gospel.

This is the heart of the gospel message for believers. Because of what God has done for us in Jesus, we extend the same grace, compassion, mercy, forgiveness, and love to those around us. Jesus’ love over us should change every facet of our lives and lifestyles.

As Christians, if we are to live according to Scripture, Jesus holds this commandment as the foundation by which we build. If we do not first give ourselves entirely to Jesus (heart, soul, and mind), our structure will be off. Everything hangs on getting this right. We allow Jesus’ grace to affect us to the deepest parts of our hearts, souls, and minds.

1. William Barclay, The Letters to the Galatians and Ephesians, The Daily Study Bible Series (Philadelphia: The Westminster Press, 1958), 10.

Mark Bethea is an associate pastor at First Baptist Church in Montgomery, Alabama. He enjoys hanging out with his wife of 10 years and son Micah (3) and daughter Helen Ann (1). You can follow Mark at marklbethea.com or on Instagram @marklbethea.

To understand this scripture you must understand love, love is not violent or boasting it is gentle in touch and voice and accepting to all done and all around us it is not pushy or rude God is love he is accepting to all demands, he is gentle and does not envy to Love you must follow in like the scripture says in Matthew 22:37-39 (New King James Version)

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Jesus said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’

First Loving God being gentle and accepting to then loving yourself of who God has created you in acceptance of you to then sharing that love to others following with loving your neighbors second for you can mot truly love without loving God and loving you

It all starts with God and ends with yourself and God everything that happens in life is to be found by love but it doesn’t happen that way all times yet it’s supposed to be like that one of Satins biggest things is spreading hate to disrupt love like a disease you need to know God and know Love to know the tools to fight back at hate to defeat Satins disease of hate it all begins with loving God and doing good

Who am I, that the eyes that see my sin
Would look on me with love and watch me rise again?
Who am I, that the voice that calmed the sea
Would call out through the rain
And calm the storm in me? I am yours

This is love that God shows and that you also can know and learn

I can only imagine
What it will be like
When I walk by your side
I can only imagine
What my eyes would see
When your face is before me
I can only imagine Surrounded by your glory
What will my heart feel

Have you been praying and you still have no answers?
Have you been pouring out your heart for so many years?
Have you been hoping that things would have changed by now?
Have you cried all the faith you have through so many tears?Don’t forget the things that He has done before
And remember He can do it all once more Waiting on the other side of the darkest night
Don’t ever lose hope, hold on and believe
Maybe you just haven’t seen it, just haven’t seen it yet
You’re closer than you think you are
Only moments from the break of dawn

Maybe you just haven’t seen it, just haven’t seen it yet
Maybe you just haven’t seen it

He had the solution before you had the problem
He sees the best in you when you feel at your worst
So in the questioning don’t ever doubt His love for you
‘Cause it’s only in His love that you’ll find a breakthrough

It’s his love

You open up your eyes and up ahead
There’s a big sun shining
Right then and there you realize
You’ll be alright

Gotta keep it real simple, keep it real simple
Bring everything right back to ground zero
‘Cause it all comes down to this
Love God and love people (People)
We’re living in a world that keeps breakin’
But if we want to find a way to change it
It all comes down to this
Love God and love people

Love is patient, love is kind
Rescues hearts and changes lives
Love is all we need to make things right
Gotta keep it real simple, oh
It’s really so simple

‘Cause all of me
Loves all of you
All your perfect imperfections
Give your all to me
I’ll give my all to you
You’re my end and my beginnin’
Even when I lose, I’m winnin’Cause I give you all of me

This is the kind of love God gives this is who he is

show love

I was sure by now
God, You would have reached down
And wiped our tears away
Stepped in and saved the day
But once again, I say, “Amen” and it’s still rainin’Well, as the thunder rolls
I barely hear Your whisper through the rain
“I’m with you”
And as Your mercy falls
I’ll raise my hands and praise the God who gives
And takes awayAnd I’ll praise You in this storm
And I will lift my hands
For You are who You are
No matter where I am
And every tear I’ve cried
You hold in Your hand
You never left my side
And though my heart is torn
I will praise You in this stormI remember when
I stumbled in the wind
You heard my cry to You
And raised me up again
But my strength is almost gone
How can I carry on
If I can’t find You?

But as the thunder rolls
I barely hear Your whisper through the rain
“I’m with you”
And as You mercy falls
I’ll raise my hands and praise the God who gives
And takes awayAnd I’ll praise You in this storm
And I will lift my hands
For You are who You are
No matter where I am
And every tear I’ve cried
You hold in Your hand
You never left my side
And though my heart is torn
I will praise You in this storm

Never will his love fail

Never will he leave our side

I lift my eyes unto the hills
Where does my help come from?
My help comes from the Lord
The Maker of Heaven and Earth
I lift my eyes unto the hills
Where does my help come from?
My help comes from the Lord
The Maker of Heaven and Earth
(I lift my eyes unto the hills)
(Where does my help come from?)And I’ll praise You in this storm
And I will lift my hands
For You are who You are
No matter where I am

Let me tell you ’bout you, yeah, you, do you know that you’re amazing?
A one in a million masterpiece that’s in the making
You might think, ‘not me’
But every single breath, that you breathe
Is saying you are
A living, breathing, walking miracle, they’re all around us everywhere we go (Everywhere we go)
The proof that we should never give up hope
‘Cause we serve a God who turns impossible (The impossible)
Into living, breathing, walking miracles
We are living, we are breathing, we are walking miracles

God is our love

Jeremiah 29:11New King James Version

11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.

Author: J. Palmer

Living under the wings of God and the angels around me keeping me going and safe. Sharing the love of Christ.

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