The Greatest Commandment

October 11th, 2014

RG AUDIO 101114


Matthew 22:34-46

It was not the first time the question had been asked, and the answer Jesus gave was not unique to Him. The students of the rabbis were schooled in these truths. These primary commands were not found in the Law itself, but were the context within which the Law was given.

How easily we too fall into the same trap as the Pharisees. They loved to interpret the Law and make applications in excruciating detail: you could walk only so many steps on the Sabbath. You had to make your Sabbath food preparations the day before. It went on and on.

Some in the Wesleyan-Holiness tradition used to measure hemlines, hair length, and a few other things, and could become very caustic in their criticism of those who failed the tests. What had been legitimate personal conviction for some became the rule of law for others.

Jesus, on the other hand, boiled all the commands down to their finest essence. All the Law and all the prophetic utterances were intended to bring us back to those fundamental expressions of holiness: Love God! Love your neighbors!

Author: Jesse C. Middendorf


2 Responses to “The Greatest Commandment”

  1. Bob Worthman Says:

    October 11th, 2014 at 8:57 am

    Thank you ever so much, Dr Middendorf, for your devotional this morning…It’s just what the Doctor ordered, a time of much needed refreshing. Praise the Lord! The gospel song Loving God, Loving Each Other came to mind in the midst of this. I am a retired structural draftsman, and close detailed work was what I was involved in for several years…There was a lot of checking and back-checking detailed shop drawings that went on at my place of employment. Now, in reading and studying the Scriptures, I sometimes catch myself trying to “check and back-check”; rather than soaking up the word of God, I kind of get off the beaten path…Then the fire goes out. A good friend once shared with me that, ‘You just got to let that Love in’…The last five words of your devotional brought that to mind…And….next thing I know, the tears were flowing. Thank you Jesus! May the Lord continue to bless your ministry, Dr. Middendorf…Have a blessed day!!!

  2. Barbara Says:

    October 11th, 2014 at 7:37 pm

    Bob Worthman: “Now, in reading and studying the Scriptures, I sometimes catch myself trying to “check and back-check. . .”

    Bob, I may be inaccurate in my line of thinking, but I likewise do this. I feel that the Holy Spirit has “trained” me in reference to searching out a matter.

    Yes, there are many stopping points along the way, but (just maybe) we feed on the hunt as Proverbs 12:27 indicate.

    Furthermore, maybe following through with a line of thought is necessary according to 2 Timothy 3:16. The greatest commandment simplified our commandments into an “example/application” of love.

Add your Comment