Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.
Love your neighbor as yourself. --Matthew 22:37, 39
Over the years I have attempted to simplify what I believe and how I want to live. I believe the ENTIRE Word of God as the inerrant, living Word of God to me. I center my life around my love for Jesus and God's Word but I need things in a nutshell, and these verses do that for me.
Jesus repeats these commands in all the gospels, but this is nothing new. He is telling us what the greatest commandment is
Do not have other gods besides me. Exodus 20:3
I have been reading What Jesus Demands for the World
by John Piper. I was thrilled to read his chapter Love Your Neighbor With the Same Commitment You Have To Your Own Well-Being
which further clarified what it means to love God and my neighbor.
As you love yourself, so love your neighbor. Which means: as you long for food when you are hungry, so long to feed your neighbor when he is hungry.
As you long for nice clothes for yourself, so long for nice clothes for your neighbor.
As you seek friends for yourself, so be a friend to your neighbor.
As you want your life to count, so desire that same significance for your neighbor.
Make your self seeking the measure of your self giving. Make God the focus of your self-seeking. This is the point of the first commandment.
Find in God a meaning so rich and so deep it fills up all the aching corners of your soul.
This one chapter was well worth the price of the entire book. Here it is in black and white what it means to love God and my neighbor.
Therein lies true happiness...living my life by seeking God with all my heart, following His ways and wanting the same thing for the neighbors He puts in my path.
Who are my neighbors?
according to Christ, any other man irrespective of nation or religion with whom we live or whom we chance to meet. (Blue Letter Bible.com)
Radical thinking right? Loving someone as much as I love myself. Does that mean...
...love my enemies and pray for those who persecute me? Are they my neighbors?
More radical living and a lot to think about.