30 “‘And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ 31 The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”
To me, this is basically the entire point of the Bible broken down into two scriptures. Get rid of the 10 Commandments. Forget about the scriptures in Leviticus. The begats don’t matter. If all Christians practiced these two commandments, the world would be a much better place. Consider how we would be obligated to behave as if we loved God with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength. Think about it–could we allow people to starve? to go without medical care? to have unsafe drinking water? to sleep knowing the bonuses the bank executives got? to watch someone lose a house? We haven’t even gotten to the second commandment and we are starting to squirm.
Aren’t we tasked with serving the least of our brothers?
Actually though, I think the second verse is potentially more damning. Love your neighbor as yourself? I’m guessing it isn’t the dysfunctional, self-deprecating, therapy-seeking, guilt-filled love that I’m still working on, eh? Didn’t think so. Projecting my lack of self-esteem onto some of the PTA moms who live in my neighborhood might be very therapeutic. I’m looking at YOU, Demers. I’m done with how put together you are, pulling up to the school in your nice, shiny car. If you don’t stop making the rest of us look so inadequate…okay, you can stop laughing, I can’t even type it with a straight face.
No, I’m guessing that isn’t the type of love I’m supposed to display. But I do think that God doesn’t want me gossiping about my neighbor. Or stealing from her. Or saying hateful things. I’m guessing I need to do everything I can to lift my neighbor up–to meet her needs, to make sure that she is able to shine in the best light.
Isn’t that what I want for myself?