A Community of Grace · Clinton, SC

Doing the Two Step

Matthew 22:34-40 – But when the Pharisees heard that he had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together.  And one of them, a lawyer, asked him a question to test him.  “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?”  And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.  This is the great and first commandment.  And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.  On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.”

Okay, so this is not about dancing as the picture suggests – it is about two steps to living a full Christian life. We learn what these two steps are from the passage above. In an attempt to trap Jesus, the Pharisees asked him to list the greatest commandment – thinking Jesus would choose one of the ten and then they could hold him in contempt for denigrating the other nine. But Jesus, in his vast wisdom, answered in a way that not only silenced the Pharisees, but that challenges us to think about our own lives. His two greatest commandments; 1) Love God with ALL your heart, ALL your soul and ALL your mind (meaning, “love God with your whole being!”) and, 2) “Love your neighbor as yourself”. These seem easy to understand, but just as there are 14 steps to learn the two step dance (see wikihow), learning to love God and our neighbor involves a little more probing. For instance, what does it mean to love God? Is it just to have gushy feelings for him and have a feeling that he is watching over us – or is there more to it? And as to loving our neighbor, who exactly is our neighbor? (As to the first, see 1 Thessalonians 1:3 and Titus 3:14-15 regarding the relationship of loving God and faith as well as John 14:15 about the relationship about love and obedience. For the second see Luke 10:25-37).  Still – if only we could think about the two greatest commandments as we go through our day – my guess is we would make great progress in living in a manner that pleases God.