The Greatest Commandment
And one of them, a lawyer, asked him a question to test him. “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. ~ Matthew 22:35-38
I’m going to say something controversial here, we are each made to be slaves. Dictionary.com defines a slave as:
1) a person who is the property of and wholly subject to another; a bond servant.
2) a person entirely under the domination of some influence or person
If we look at this commandment from Christ, we see the option of willing submission to being the property of God, wholly subject to His will, a bond servant. The other choice we have is the second, to be entirely under the domination of some other influence. History has demonstrated what happens in society when we leave the choice of master to our fellow human beings, we get the might makes right approach whether it was in the African slave trade, fascist and communist governments, or the present human trafficking that still continues in some places today.
Our lives demonstrate what happens when we fail to choose to be God’s bond servants. We find ourselves in bondage to our reputation, drugs, television, money, sex, drinking, politics, and any number of other things or people in our lives that seek to dominate our time, our resources and our hearts. All these various masters compete for dominion over our lives, and we find ourselves stuck, struggling with addiction, anger, despair, anxiety, sinking ever further into the darkness. Each time we fight free of one monster, we find ourselves beset by dozens more. The world feels hostile, hopeless. Have you been there? I know I have.
I have often heard it mentioned that the command to love God above all others is somehow for His benefit, that He somehow needs our worship. God is God, and nothing we have can add to or take away from who He is. So why then would He command such a thing, not only command it but make it a point that it is the most important command? God loves us, and He doesn’t wish us to be drowning in these sorrows, He wishes us to be joyful and filled with His peace. He knows our nature, He knows we will be slaves to something. He tells us to commit fully to Him because it is only once we are wholly subject to Him that there is no room for those other things that seek to master us.
If you are struggling today, feeling anxious, perplexed, beset, or adrift, take time to really look at whether or not you have chosen to be fully subject to God. Do you love Him in everything you do, with everything you are? If as you reflect and pray on this God reveals some area where you are being subject to another master, it is time to choose the One who loves you.
Father, we know sometimes the world can be a distracting place, with many things that seek to take us from you. We know we sometimes allow ourselves to love things more than we love you. Today, we repent of this Father, we ask for You to show us where we need to change and we ask for the aid of the Holy Spirit in driving out the other influences that seek to be our masters. In the Name of the Son, Jesus Christ we seek Your forgiveness and aid