Skip to main content

Twenty-Four: The Greatest Commandment

Today's Gospel is taken from Mark 12:28-34. One of the scribes asked Jesus which commandment is the first of all. And the lord replied, "The first is: Hear, Israel! The Lord, our God is One Lord; and you shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength. And after this comes another one: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. There is no commandment greatest than these two."

For today's post, allow me to share the commentary on my Bible (Christian Community Bible) which I think is the summary of talks 5 and 6 in the SFC Christian Life Program (CLP). :)

To love God is not a commandment like others, because the commandments show specific actions that should be undertaken or avoided, i.e., you shall rest on the day of the Lord, or you shall not commit adultery. On the other hand , when it comes to loving God, there is no limit. 

The commandments of the Bible (especially the Ten Commandments of Moses) merely express in a clear manner the demands of our conscience. It should not be necessary to tell us not to steal, and not to slander others. Nevertheless, it is necessary to teach this to children and to unscrupulous persons. Paul says, "The Law was not intended for the good, but for those who do evil." (1 Timothy 1:9)

It is the reason why the love of God is not presented in the New Testament as a commandment, but as the fruit of the Spirit that God gives to His sons and daughters: Romans 8, 15, and 22. God is the first to be loved (Matthew 6:9-10, 1 John 4:17) most especially in the person of His Son: 2 Corinthians 5:16, 1 Peter 1:8. There is no authentic love of neighbor without the love of God: 1 John 5:2. 

You shall love the Lord, with all your heart. You shall love Him more than you love your loved ones. You shall long for Him, you shall forget yourself so that, in everything, you search for what He wants most from you.

You shall love the Lord, with all your mind. You shall devote the best of your intelligence to knowing Him. Looking into your own life, you shall understand how much He has guided you. You shall try to understand how the kingdom of God is coming through world and daily events. Praying and reading the Bible regularly, you shall ask God to give you His own Spirit so that you may understand Him better. 

You shall love the Lord, with all your strength. Since you are very weak in this, you shall ask for His help and strive to unite with the true servants of God, using the means that the Church makes available to you. 

The commandment to love your neighbor as you love yourself comes second, because it cannot be understood or fulfilled without love of God. For God asks for more than solidarity with one's neighbor, or concern for those who are suffering. We should make an effort to look at our brothers and sisters in the same way that the Father does. We should give them what the Father wants for them. Among so many good things we could do for our neighbor, we should select those that the Holy Spirit inspires us to do. All this requires that we first know and love God.

To end, let me just say that to LOVE is not an option. It's our personal calling. And while it may not be as simple as it is spelled, the grace of the Lord is more than sufficient to help us fulfill this greatest commandment. :) 

Popular posts from this blog

Jesus Week 2015: A Time To HEAL ♥

I had the best, most meaningful HOLY WEEK ever, so far (the best is yet to come!). :) Thanks to Joy who shared the Jesus Week poster on Facebook. It was God's personal invitation, and I couldn't thank Him enough for the grace that He also gave me to respond. Everything is grace. It was not just my personal decision to join. It was God's grace that allowed me to. 
So how did it go? Well, as what I have told my friends, it was amazingly beautiful! The experience was priceless! On Holy Monday, I posted Fr. Jerry Orbos' acronym for HOLY WEEK. I experienced all of that and more! :) 
I won't be able to share everything as there is just a lot of personal, intimate encounters with the Lord. But if I were to summarize, it was a time for me to HEAL. :) 
Halt. Indeed, I was able to stop and just rest in the Lord. Before leaving Manila, I have already told myself that this retreat will be all about Jesus (Jesus Week nga e :D). No emails, no texts, no calls. I'll just spend…

Understanding Lupang Hinirang

Every Filipino knows Lupang Hinirang (though some know it better as "Bayang Magiliw"). How can you not know it when it is the national anthem of the Philippines? But do we really mean the lyrics that we sing? Do we understand it in the first place? 

This video has gone viral weeks ago. This afternoon, I shared it to my teammates, and one commented, "Yun pala yun. Ngayon ko lang naintindihan."He immediately downloaded it and converted to MP3.
So for those who have not seen it, once again, here is Joey Ayala's version of Lupang Hinirang. And I agree, you would never want to sing it in another way. (But that's just me. :D) This rendition is simply beautiful. Truly Filipino. :) Of course that doesn't mean we need to revise our national anthem but maybe we can consider about correcting the way we sing it (read: proper pronunciation).

Read more about the Philippine National Anthem here.

P.S. I read a lot of negative comments on the original video uploaded o…

Thank You, Lord! :)

It has been a long and stressful day (the past three days have been lonnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnng and stressssssssssssssssssssssssssssssful), but You are just so amazing, Lord that I couldn't sleep without telling You how grateful I am. :)
Thank You, Lord for the miracle that You did yesterday. Break even and more. :)
Thank You, Lord for the laughter and stories shared during the post-mission meeting with Team Thailand. :)
Thank You, Lord for Lawrence. He is just the (almost) perfect man. He has his flaws, but they are acceptable; he makes mistakes, but they are all forgivable. There are a lot of men but there can never be anyone else. He's really the one. And You know it very well. :)
Thank You, Lord for giving me strength and endurance each day. :)
Thank You, Lord for the short but restful sleeps. :)
Thank You, Lord for every waking moment and every opportunity that You give me to proclaim Your greatness. :) Thank You, Lord for Your message through Fr. Frank. I heard it loud…

The Holy Spirit*

*Cluster 4 Household Topic
Reflections from John 15:26-16:4

True friendship is strengthened in adversity. Jesus offers His disciples the best and truest of friends. Who is this promised friend? 
Jesus calls the Holy Spirit our Counselor and Advocate (also translated Paraclete or Helper). Counselor is a legal term for the one who will defend someone against an adversary and who guides that person during the ordeal of trial. The Holy Spirit is our Advocate and Helper who brings us safely through the challenges and adversities we must face in this life. As Jesus approaches the hour that He was to be glorified - through His death on the cross and His resurrection - He revealed more fully to His disciples the person and the role of the Holy Spirit. What does Jesus tell us about the Holy Spirit? 
First, the Holy Spirit is inseparably one with the Father and the Son. It is the Holy Spirit who gives life - the very life of God - and who kindles faith in hearts receptive to God's word. The S…

Just Be Grateful :)

We just had our sector GRATEFUL assembly and six sharers testified to God's goodness and faithfulness.
Boggs is grateful for the blessing of a new job and a possible promotion this month (let's pray for that). Ellen is grateful for the gift of community and God's means to keep her ablaze in service. Albert is grateful for a new life in Christ through the CLP. Shiela is grateful for the gift of health and a second chance to live. Cha is grateful for brothers and sisters in the community who made her experience God's redeeming love, and the realization that God will truly replace what was lost with something better, something more beautiful. Kuya Boyce is grateful for the gift of relationship.
As I was listening to their stories, I can't help but be amazed at how the Lord works wonders in each of our lives. And I was reminded of my own blessings, too. :) And so for this post, allow me to share the things for which I am grateful. :)
I am grateful for the cross becaus…