Grow Through The Gospels - Mark 12

Pastor Ed Young - Lead Pastor of Fellowship Church
Ed Young

July 10, 2024

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Grow Through The Gospels - Mark 12

Read: Mark 12

Mark 12:29-30 “‘The most important one,’ answered Jesus, ‘is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’”

Think

Loving God seems simple yet challenging. On the surface, it feels natural to love our Creator and Savior, but it gets complex when we delve into what this love truly demands. Jesus emphasized this in Mark 12:29-30, declaring it the "most important" commandment. Both the Old and New Testaments highlight that loving God is essential for experiencing his favor. Moses noted that Yahweh “keeps covenant and steadfast love with those who love him and keep his commandments” (Deuteronomy 7:9-10), and Paul affirmed that “all things work together for good” for those who love God (Romans 8:28).

Loving God means giving him our all. Deuteronomy 6:5, often called the "all-command," instructs us to love God with all our heart, soul, and might. This means there is no room for divided affections or half-hearted loyalty. Jesus reinforced this, saying, “No one can serve two masters” (Matthew 6:24). True love for God starts with the heart—the source of our will, desires, and thoughts. Without a heart aligned with God, genuine love for him is impossible.

Loving God with all our soul involves committing our entire being to him. This includes our passions, thoughts, actions, and interactions. It's about loving God, not just inwardly, but with every part of our lives—how we speak, work, and use our talents. The call to love God with our "might" extends this to include all our resources—everything we have is to be used to honor him, from our possessions to our time.

Whole-hearted, life-encompassing allegiance to God is what Deuteronomy 6:6-9 calls for. This love saturates every aspect of our lives and relationships. It's not just a church activity but a daily commitment. Every part of our lives should reflect our love for God, whether at home, work, or in our communities. Loving God means letting his love influence our thoughts, actions, and even our entertainment choices. It's about living authentically for him in every area, demonstrating that our faith is genuine.

When we love God fully, it transforms us and those around us. This love spills over into our daily interactions, making us kinder, more compassionate, and more patient. People notice a difference—a warmth and authenticity that stands out. Our lives become a testament to the power of God's love, showing it's not just a religious concept but a transformative force that makes us better humans in every way.

Apply

Is there an area where your private behavior and public behavior don’t match? Make sure that your faith is not just outward appearance but a genuine reflection of your relationship with God. Be consistent in your behavior and let your love for God be evident in your everyday interactions and decisions.

Pray

Lord, I want an authentic relationship with you that permeates every aspect of my life. Help me to live consistently, showing your love in all my interactions. Strengthen my commitment to you and let my love for you be a testament to your goodness and grace. In Jesus' name. Amen.

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