Friday, June 22nd. Mark 12:28-34

One of the scribes came near and heard them disputing with one another, and seeing that he answered them well, he asked him, “Which commandment is the first of all?” Jesus answered, “The first is, ‘Hear, O Israel: the Lord our God, the Lord is one; you shall 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, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” Then the scribe said to him, “You are right, Teacher; you have truly said that ‘he is one, and besides him there is no other’; and ‘to love him with all the heart, and with all the understanding, and with all the strength,’ and ‘to love one’s neighbor as oneself,’ —this is much more important than all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices.” When Jesus saw that he answered wisely, he said to him, “You are not far from the kingdom of God.” After that no one dared to ask him any question.  Mark 12:28-34

We hear all the time about how complicated the world is.  Of course it is.

So why not keep it simple?

A scribe asks a question.  It seems a simple question and yet it is just another example of how we human beings tend to think.  “Which commandment is the first of all?”

That’s how we tend to think.  We wonder, “Which is the first?”  “Which is the best?”  “Which is on top?”  All questions behind which lurks the real question…”Who is first?”  “Who is the best?”  “Who is on top?”

It seems it is always about striving to be the best.

Why?

The Bible is clear.  There is none who is righteous, no not one, save Jesus himself.  Whom we killed.  Which puts us all at the foot of the cross.  All at the mercy of Jesus.  Every single one of us.

There is no top.  There is no first.  Except for God.

There is no bottom.  There is no least, no lost, none left out.  Because God is there too.

Keep it simple.

When I love God, I love my neighbor.  When I love my neighbor, I love God.  These are inextricably bound together.

Let us pray:  Dear Lord, today, one moment at a time, help us see the good that flows forth as we love you by loving those around us.  Let us see our world, as torn and dark as it so often seems, through your eyes.  One step, one word, one thought, one glimpse, one act, at a time.  May love teach us to let go, to give up, to give way, to step aside, to surrender.  In Jesus’ name.  Amen.

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One Response to “Friday, June 22nd. Mark 12:28-34”

  1. Sharon Longnecker Says:

    This is an incredible devotion! You have such a way of cutting through to the essence of a Scripture. John and I both were awed and encouraged by this. Many thanks. God bless you,
    Sharon

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