"Section 11 part 2 sub-point J should really be negatable by loophope X except for exception P9!"
These laws end up being so complicated that even after careful inspection we aren't even sure we are keeping it correctly! (See Filling Out Your Taxes).
Humans are so bad at making laws that we just keep making more and more laws to try to cover up the poorly written laws in the first place.
In the Old Testament God wrote down 10 laws. That's it. No loopholes. No exceptions. No subpoints. No revisions.
Pretty smart, right?
Then, in today's meditation Jesus summarized those ten laws into two commands. Two simple measly rules for life. That's pretty smart, really simple, and easy to keep, right?
34 Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. 35 One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: 36 “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”
37 Jesus replied: “ ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”
Sounds simple enough. How have you been doing this week?
Have you loved God with all your heart? Or has been more like "love God with that tiny portion of your heart that isn't too tired to love after putting your heart into your work?"
Have you loved God with all your soul? Or has it been more like "love God sure, but make sure the body is taken care of first and worry about the soul if there's time?"
Have you loved God with all your mind? Or has it been more like "love God when your mind says its appropriate and when it won't get you into trouble with our culture?"
And don't even get started on loving neighbors as much as ourselves!
The point? There's two rules. And we fail miserably at both of them.
But Jesus didn't. He loved God his Father perfectly. He completely obedient all of his laws through his lifetime. He placed God's plan first above his own desires. He willingly gave his life up on the cross in order to show love to God.
At the same time, he was loving his neighbor -- namely YOU -- as himself! He gave up his life to save you exchanging his perfect obedience to these two commands for our meager, flawed attempts at keeping them.
Thanks be to Jesus. "God made him who has no sin (meaning that he always loved God in everyway and he always loved his neighbor as himself) to be sin for us (that is he suffered the punishment for all the times we failed to love God and neighbors like we should) so that in Him we might become the righteousness (that is the perfect obedience of these two commandments) of God."-- 2 Corinthians 5:21
PRAYER: Dear Lord, please forgive me. Forgive me for my failure to love you and others perfectly. I am at fault. Forgive me for the sake of your Son who loved you and me perfectly. His loving sacrifice on the cross saves me. May his love motivate me to love you and others the rest of this day. Amen.