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. (Matthew 22:34-40
…a Beautiful Work of Art in the Master’s Hands!!!
Take time to imagine what it would have been like to be an eye witness on this crime scene. Here Jesus is, a man without sin, healing the sick, casting out demons, feeding the hungry, teaching the lost, and those who were more concerned about the law tried to trap Him. They didn’t like how He showed up on the scene. They wanted to expose Him as a fraud, so they continued to scheme behind the scenes. When Jesus silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees decided to take a shot at Him. They even sent their very best to ask the question they thought would get Jesus into trouble.
vs. 35 says, “One of them (Pharisees), an expert in the law, tested him with this question…” An expert, REALLY? Sounds like someone is a little intimidated. Thankfully Jesus was never afraid of a little question. Yes, it was a crime to try and trap Jesus, as if He were someone to condemn. But Jesus handled the question graciously. He handled it with God’s Word. Just as we ought to handle the questions that daily come to us from people who surround us.
The question: Which is the greatest commandment in the Law?
Jesus response, “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.”
If you’re paying close attention, you will notice the crime scene has changed. Jesus is not the center of the scene any longer. The focus returns to the Pharisees. Where is their love? What is it that they are truly living for? The laws will not get them into heaven.
Both commandments are hinged on one key phrase, “LOVE YOURSELF”. This can be one of the most difficult things to do, as we look at ourselves and find all the flaws. We let God know what we can’t do, even when He’s looking at us and saying, “I know what you can do. Are you willing?”
It’s time to go deep into Scripture and see what it has for us. Time to live like the Stephen Curtis Chapman song “Dive” which says,
I’m diving in, I’m going deep in over
my head, I want to be
Caught in the rush, lost in the flow,
in over my head, I want to go
The river’s deep, the river’s wide,
the river’s water is alive
So sink or swim, I’m diving in
There is a supernatural power
In this mighty river’s flow
It can bring the dead to life
And it can fill an empty soul
And give a heart the only thing
Worth living and worth dying for, yeah
But we will never know the awesome power
Of the grace of God
Until we let ourselves get swept away
Into this holy flood
So if you’ll take my hand
We’ll close our eyes and count to three
And take the leap of faith
Come on let’s go
Are you ready to dive in? Do you want the most out of God that you can get? I’m so excited about who God is and lately I can’t get to sleep because I feel like a little girl giddy in love with the Lord. It’s exciting to live in the presence of the Father. Living deep in Him is a thousand times better than anything else this world can offer!
I’ve saved the best for last! This is so exciting! Are you ready? Brace yourself! I’ve studied the Word so much and really, truly enjoy every ounce of wisdom I can absorb from it. Last night I was reminded of something I learned last year that totally, one hundred percent made me want to dance in the freedom of God. There is JOY in His presence and I am basking in it after this new found wisdom! Okay, okay I will share it with you!
This wisdom comes to us from Matthew 5:48 which says,
“Be perfect as your heavenly Father is perfect.”
This doesn’t sound like good news for most people, but it can be when you know the true context of the verse. So here it is.
The word “perfect” in Greek is Telas which means complete. Replace perfect with the word complete and you have a sentence that is so much more attainable.
“Be ‘complete’ as your heavenly Father is complete.”
God is calling us to a better life every day. He wants us to come with our broken pieces, our fragments, the things that don’t make sense. He will put it all together and make us into a beautiful piece of mosaic art which the light of His Son Jesus Christ can shine through. Only through Jesus can we be truly COMPLETE! I pray you will embrace this opportunity to run to God and give Him the fragments of your life, so that He can make a beautiful mosaic artwork out of you!
Lord, You are completely amazing! I’m in awe of the wonders You perform on a daily basis. I praise You for this day and the Joy I have in knowing that my life is complete because I have You in it. I’m so blessed because I wake up knowing I get to live my days for You. I can’t imagine anything better than loving You each and every day. Thank you for the wonderful privilege I have to be a child of God.
Lord, I come in Broken Pieces, thankful that You make me into a Beautiful Work of Art ,