With so much evil, treachery, and narcissism in our culture, all of which seemingly is both admired and rewarded, one may ask the question, what is the purpose and the impetus of being “good?” The answers to this question may be obtained in the story of a certain lawyer who posed a question to Jesus from Nazareth at the advent of His public ministry in Jerusalem centuries ago.
This scribe asked The Messiah, “Teacher, which is the Great Commandment in the Law?” Messiah quickly responded “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. Deut. 6:5 [This is the great and foremost Commandment.]
The second is like it, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself. Lev. 19:18 The Master’s summation of these words was, “On these two Commandments depend the whole Law and Prophets.”
Jesus from Nazareth was the very first Jewish Rabbi to combine the above-mentioned Scripture references [Deut. 6:5 and Lev. 19:18] as the complete summary of the Mosaic Law. In my personal reflection of what was His basis for this response, I was reminded of the Ten Commandments that were initially recorded in Exodus 20.
Using myself as an example, the first four Commandments reflects my personal vertical spiritual relationship with a loving, personal yet holy God. The next six Commandments concerns itself with my horizontal interactions with human beings who share God’s earth with me. At the very center of these two interconnected lines is my heart, soul, and mind, this is where Messiah’s reformational change must take place in God’s plan of redemption of all fallen humanity.
Messiah was introducing to this scribe and to the world today, that the Kingdom of God is within each individual that would seek after God and live! [Amos 5:4] Jesus from Nazareth presence in the earth was/is the fulfillment of both the Law and Prophets combined yet He still remained connected with the Father through submission to the Father’s will and the calling for which He came into the earth.
What that means to each of us is the importance of being and remaining spiritual united with God in marriage in order to effectively impact our culture for Christ. Within this union, we are benefactors of a rebirth, a reunion with God through Messiah. Please consider the words of Hosea 2:19 “And I will betroth you to me forever, yes I will betroth you to Me in [righteousness and justice, in lovingkindness and compassion.] This is God’s eternal promise to all of Israel, Jews and non-Jews alike.
We as imperfect human being may be able to memorize large volumes of the Holy Scriptures, we may be able to preach and teach the Holy Scriptures in wonderful if not impressive ways. We also may be very successful by the world’s standards yet, only those who have developed and nurtured a long-lasting mature relationship with God through Messiah are blessed with the spiritual virtues of having righteousness, justice, loving-kindness and compassion within them for God’s will and purposes for them in their lives. These are the very foundation of God’s character and His Kingdom which reflects His hesed, [lovingkindness]. This is the answer to the scribe’s inquiry to Messiah, for the Greatest Commandment of the Law is God’s loving-kindness toward sinful humanity.
Now for all of humanity, God has offered to everyone and every Nation His hesed [lovingkindness] that until the end of this evil age, each soul now has a heavenly alternative for true life by receiving from Him, regeneration, communion, deliverance, enlightenment, guidance, forgiveness, hope, praise and preservation all within this earthly life. This answers the issue and benefits with the first four Commandments that reflects the personal, vertical, and spiritual relationship with a loving, personal yet holy God.
Spiritual Service of Worship
In an effort at completely pleasing God according to the example that Messiah demonstrated and expressed in the opening passages, one must now demonstrate the horizontal response to being in the presence of God as commanded by God to the hearer of His Word. Just how does one love their neighbor as thyself?
This is only made possible by the follower’s ability to now share with others, the same measure of justice, loving kindness and compassion that God bestowed on them in redeeming them unto Himself. In a reciprocal manner, out of humility and gratitude, the one who was made worthy by God’s grace, now is able to freely share that same measure with others.
The greatest public example of being “Christ-like” is for a follower to present themselves as a living sacrifice, acceptable to God which is your spiritual service of worship. [Roman 12:1] One is left to answer the question what is good, and what does the Lord requires in today’s evil, treachery, and narcissism culture for a soul that has been regenerated?
Only now, due to God’s loving kindness can I now:
- Do Justice
- To Love Kindness
- To Walk Humble with my Creator [Micah 6:8]
- Walk Righteously
- Speak with Sincerity
- Rejects Unjust Gain and Shakes My Hand so that they hold no Bribe
- Stop my Ears from hearing about Bloodshed
- Shuts my Eyes from Looking at Evil [Isa. 33:15]
Now and forever more, because of the Greatest Law [God’s Loving Kindness], I know that my life has meaning and purpose for:
If I can help someone as we pass along,
If I can cheer someone in this life,
If I can show somebody that their travel may be wrong,
Then my life shall not be in vain!
Much Grace and Peace