First Things @First

Good Monday to all! I trust your work week is off to a good start!

It seems that everywhere we turn we are faced with policies and procedures for our work as well as our earthly relationships. At times all of it can seem a little overwhelming. We are often governed by the laws of men that too often can become difficult to fully understand and at times hard to adhere to.

The Jews had similar issues, as well.

God had given His people the Ten Commandments at Sinai (Exodus 20:1-7). In the Torah or Pentateuch, (the first five books of the Bible attributed to Moses as given him by God), there are another 613 commands. If you'll take the time to read those books, you'll discover a lot of policy and procedure for properly relating to God and to others!

Jesus was asked this question by a lawyer one day during His time on earth--'Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the law?" Jesus, in less than fifty words condensed all the information given in the first five books of the Bible into two commands. The first--'you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your mind.' This is the first and greatest commandment. The second--'you shall love your neighbor as yourself.' Then Jesus said, 'On these two hangs all the Law and the Prophets.'

Those two commands provide all we need to live the blessed life that God desires for His people, both then and now. When the vertical relationship with God is healthy our lives will be holy as He is holy. (1 Peter 1:16) The outflow of a sound relationship with God through Christ provides all we need to love our neighbor as ourselves and live peaceably with everyone around us. (Romans 12:18)

As we embrace those principles, Jesus is seen in us more consistently and others are encouraged to follow Him through our witness of love for God and love for others.

The Apostle Paul concludes chapter 13 of 1 Corinthians with these words--"And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love."

The time will come when we who believe will no longer need faith and our hope will be fulfilled in being with Christ. Only love will remain. We have this time on earth to put into practice the only policy and procedure that matters.

Love prompted God to intervene in our dilemma of death. (Romans 5:8)

Love prompts us to intervene in the lives of others in life.

(1 John 3:18)

After all, love will govern our being throughout eternity. Why not begin today to embrace a simpler approach to every relationship?

Simply because love endures!

May the Lord bless you this week in loving others to Jesus!

Pstr K

Hebrews 10:35-36