Sunday, June 10: The Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments
We return to our occasional reading from beginning to end through the Gospel of Matthew, which emphasizes Jesus' divine nature and his status as the Messiah—as the Son of David, the Son of Man, and the Son of God.
Read Matthew 22:34-40
Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: "Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?"
Jesus replied: "'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.' This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments."
One more try: The Pharisees throw together a team to trip Jesus up with a tough question about which of the many commands of God is the greatest. Little do they know that Jesus would answer with one of the most profoundly challenging and overlooked teachings known to the world. Love, Jesus says. Love God, love neighbor. And if you do these things, everything else God said to do will be done.
Why do you think we neglect this perfectly distilled teaching of Jesus? Why all the attention on the other laws, and even some "laws" we make up, rather than focusing our efforts on love—loving God and loving neighbor?