Unlimited: The Greatest Commandment
Mar 5, 2021 1534
One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?”“The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one.Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’The second is this: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these” (Mark 12:28–31, NIV).
Jesus debated with the Sadducees, and some of the religious teachers who were listening in, were impressed with how Jesus answered.
So, one of them decided to ask Jesus a question that was an old chestnut for the religious teachers of his day. It was a question that they debated back and forth and couldn’t agree on.
But Jesus made it all so simple.
The Jewish people in Jesus’ time loved to debate endlessly an infinite number of questions. They particularly loved to talk about the law, and all the various commandments.
One of these teachers of the law was impressed with Jesus’ answers, and so he asked Jesus a question that he had been wondering about. And it was a good question. Of all the commandments, which is the most important?
Jesus went straight to the heart. As the greatest commandment, Jesus quoted the Shema from Deuteronomy 6: the call to acknowledge the oneness, unity, and supremacy of God. But he didn’t stop there.
He went right on and continued quoting what follows logically: that we must love God with everything we have and are. That’s the greatest commandment, and he said that the second-greatest is the requirement to love our neighbour.
– Eliezer Gonzalez
Eli’s Reflection: Just how seriously do you take Jesus’ statement that the most important commandment is to love God fully, and the second one is to love our neighbour? Do you think that there are other duties in the Christian life that even come close? And if what Jesus said was true, then here is my final question to you: Are you growing in love?