Today’s reading includes a repeated message by James about something Jesus said in Matthew’s account of Jesus’ interaction with the Sadducees and Pharisees. I have found in my study of God’s Word that anytime you find repetition it is something to pay attention to. I also find that God speaks to me in this way a lot. I will read something in my quiet time that strikes me in a new way, then I hear something in a podcast that day that references the same learning, then I hear it in a worship song at church, and then pastor Steve might speak on it in his sermon.
So, when I read something where something in the Old Testament is repeated in the New or vice versa, I pay attention to it and today is an example of one of those times.
If indeed you [really] fulfill the royal Law in accordance with the Scripture, You shall love your neighbor as [you love] yourself, you do well. James 2:8 [AMP]
This is the only verse I am going to dwell on today because it is one of those that harken back to other scripture.
Small Tidbit – Today I had a strategy meeting with my peer Directors and our VP here in Silicon Valley and my prayer this morning as I started my day here in God’s Word, was that God would be glorified in how I conducted myself. The reason for this is because, as a group, we can get contentious about certain topics and paths forward. God gave me strength and I stayed in mindful attention to my behavior and speech. I am so thankful to report that we started out being all over the place but the Lord gave me the wisdom and where-with-all to get the group aligned on a posture of solving our problems by focusing on what specifically we need to both deliver to the Org and how that same Org expects us to lead in terms of Product Integrity. I owe this insight and fortitude to my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It ended up being the most productive meeting we have had together so far. The reason I called this out is because, internally, I took the stance of ‘what would I want someone to do in this situation’ which maps to the quiet time topic today.
36 Teacher, which kind of commandment is great and important (the principal kind) in the Law? [Some commandments are light—which are heavy?] 37 And He replied to him, You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind (intellect). 38 This is the great (most important, principal) and first commandment. 39 And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as [you do] yourself. 40 These two commandments sum up and upon them depend all the Law and the Prophets. Matthew 22:36-40 [AMP]
Here we see that repetition example of when Jesus clearly called out the 2 Kingdom commandments.
- Love the Lord your God with all your Heart, with all your Soul, and with all your Mind.
- Love your neighbor as you do yourself.
These 2 commandments, when adhered to as God instructs and intends, provide the framework to follow Him in righteousness, contentment, and in alignment with glorifying Him. Put it to the test – the key is the order of the commandments. You must love God by searching His will purposes in your life E-V-E-R-Y-D-A-Y. You must be applying what you learn through your time in God’s Word to your life E-V-E-R-Y-D-A-Y. THEN—> Loving your neighbor as you do yourself (by you yourself being aligned to God’s will for you) will have Godly impact on that neighbor.